Opinion: On the high-profile Navy SEAL raids in Africa (Pt. 1)

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The failed raid on the al-Shabaab compound in Barawe, Somalia, is the new hot button issue of discussion and is leaving a plethora of paranoia and confusion in its wake. U.S. forces were trying to apprehend members of the organization who participated in a massacre at a Nairobi shopping mall that brutally ended the lives of 60 innocent people. World-policing may have some, and I mean some, mutual benefits but these decisions are far from thought out. There is an old saying about war being an art, and that saying has always been lost on myself. Citizens of the glorious first world countries do not comprehend what living in these situations can have on one’s psyche.

The Libyan interim government is accusing the United States government of kidnaping Abu Anas al Libi, the al Qaeda operative who was involved with the bombing of U.S. embassies, and good ol’ John Kerry says that this man will have the chance to defend himself in court. That sounds like justice but I want to know why we have these casual facts that we don’t check. We’re in much need of a reform of how these exercises are handled.

U.S. Navy SEAL insignia

Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Amanda Dory said recently, “For the foreseeable future, we must maintain focus on Somalia to sustain security progress made to date, as al-Shabaab is likely to remain the primary threat to Somalia and East Africa stability for some time to come.” Good intentions but a horrendous execution, as these are the words that always precede invasions. Vietnam, Iraq, etc it’s all the same because we are continuing to make decisions that do not benefit others.

It is disgusting to view something like this unfold. The money funding these programs could be going to other, non-violent operations. It could even go to trying to settle our debt because a wounded, world police is not a strong one.  The missions’ failure astonishes me; as one anonymous official said ““Their mission was to capture him. Once it became clear we were not going to [be] able to take him, the Navy commander made the decision to withdraw, The mission’s aim — to capture Ikrima — is the reason the team went in rather than using a drone to attack the heavily guarded seaside villa.”

One of the purported reasons for the retreat is that there were children on the compound, a move most likely based by the soldiers own, human, decision. To be blunt, I don’t think that is the reason why. I am sure that children are to be avoided when they can but there is a plethora of innocent drone victims across the world who can attest to that. I am positive that there are stats that show what we have done is just; but what is sinister are the stats that are not recorded.