Ever since the high school mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, in 2018, student David Hogg has thrust himself, with ample help from the liberal media, onto the political commentary scene as some sort of anti-gun, social justice activist.
The only problem is, Hogg is terribly ill-informed about the nature and reality of the world around him — and rather arrogant in his ignorance. He recently proved this once again with an incredibly provocative tweet that slammed the U.S. military as being “imperialist” troops presumably committing imperialist atrocities against innocent people in Africa.
However, the command structure that oversees U.S. military operations in Africa — U.S. AFRICOM — just released a statement that should set Hogg, and those who share his misguided view of American soldiers, straight on the actual facts.
In response to a news report and map from Yahoo News — which stemmed from a Freedom of Information Act request that revealed 36 separate U.S. military operations on the African continent — Hogg tweeted, “Alexa, what does US military imperialism look like?”
Alexa, what does US military imperialism look like? https://t.co/p0awbnnDgO
— David Hogg (@davidhogg111) April 23, 2019
As can be seen from the map published by Yahoo, there are dozens of U.S. military operations that were recently concluded or are still ongoing in central and northern Africa, from the west coast to the east coast of the continent. To the incredibly uninformed or those who look upon the U.S. with disdain, these could be construed as bases of imperialist control and expansionism throughout the upper half of Africa.
Of course, that isn’t the case at all, as was just made abundantly clear by a spokesperson for U.S. AFRICOM in response to a query from the Washington Examiner.
“What’s most important to know is that our command is dedicated to assisting partner nations in their efforts to bring stability and security to their people,” Major Karl Wiest explained to the Examiner.
“We view our mission through a whole-of-government lens, and strive to enable capable, responsive African governments that serve the interests of their citizenry,” Wiest continued.
The spokesman proceeded to detail just a few of the many things American military forces do in Africa, none of which involved conquering native forces or exploiting the natural resources of the region, as an imperialist force would do, and as imperialist forces of the past have done.
“U.S. Africa Command, with our partners, strengthens security forces, counters transnational threats, and conducts crisis response in order to advance U.S. national interests and promote regional security, stability, and prosperity,” Wiest said.
“A recent, concrete example of our crisis response efforts is the humanitarian relief operations that our command supported recently in Mozambique,” he added.
Indeed, a terribly destructive Cyclone Idai came ashore on the southeast African nation of Mozambique in March, causing severe flooding and numerous deaths, both from the storm and diseases that sprung up afterward. In the wake of the disaster, it was the U.S. military forces in the region that leapt into action to deliver vital emergency supplies like food, medicine and clean water to the inundated country.
“Ultimately, the core mission of U.S. Africa Command remains one of helping our partners to strengthen defense capabilities,” Wiest said. “We concentrate our efforts on helping African nations and regional organizations build capable and professional militaries that respect human rights, adhere to the rule of law, and more effectively contribute to stability in Africa.”
Had Hogg bothered to carefully read the very Yahoo article he shared in his tweet, he might have realized that it presented the very same message later delivered by the U.S. AFRICOM spokesman. American military forces are stationed in numerous parts of Africa in order to provide military training assistance to native military forces, peacekeeping duties in troubled areas, counter-terrorism operations when terrorists pop up, and critical emergency relief efforts when necessary to counter natural disasters.
U.S. military forces are doing incredible acts of good for the people of many nations in Africa. While there is room for a legitimate debate as to whether such operations should be undertaken while America faces daunting issues of its own back home, it is an abominable lie — or simply foolish idiocy — to characterize U.S. troops in Africa as “imperialist” forces or imply that they are there for nefarious purposes.
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