On Sunday the United States Air Force in coordination with Somali Military ground forces carried out an airstrike resulting in over 100 casualties of the al-Qaeda backed terrorist group al-Shabaab, as reported by the Somali News Network. Somali troops moved in to conduct a ground offensive after the US carried out the deadly air strike.
Al-Shabaab is the terror network responsible for the deadly truck bombing October 14th in Mogadishu which killed over 350 people. Al-Shabaab seeks to overthrow the current Somali government in order to install their brutal interpretation and enforcement of Sharia Law.
The air strike targeted an al-Shabaab camp located 125 miles north of Mogadishu, as stated by United States Africa Command (AFRICOM). A move the Trump Administration cleared the way for in March as an additional measure in countering radical Islamic terrorism.
In March of 2017 the White House granted a broader authority to the military by declaring parts of Somalia as “areas of active hostilities.” The new authority extended by the White House allows US forces to make offensive strikes against the terror networks operating throughout the region
In March, Pentagon spokesman Captain Jeff Davis issued the following statement with regards to the Trump Administration’s decision to expand military authority in and around Somalia:
“The additional support provided by this authority will help deny al-Shabaab safe havens from which it could attack U.S. citizens or U.S. interests in the region.”
The Trump Administration has certainly began to deny terror networks any safe-havens. They have carried out 29 air strikes this year, many of which occurred November 9 through the 14. Prior to the Trump Administration designating parts of Somalis as “areas of active hostility,” the United States military was only authorized to strike in self-defense or in defense of partnered forces.
The Islamic State, one of the largest terror networks the United States is attempting to eradicate, often recruits new jihadists from the Somali region. Any terror network operating camps in and around the Somali region pose a threat to the United States and must be handled accordingly. A position the Obama Administration failed to recognize as they allowed terror networks to operate with impunity in and around the region. A failure that has allowed terror networks to spread through not only the Somali region, but the entire Sehal region as well. The Sehal region stretches across the south-central latitudes of North Africa from the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea.
Prior to the Trump Administration taking office the United States forces in Africa, or its partnered forces, would have to be attacked in order to carry out any air strike. Thanks to the Trump Administration we are now carrying out offensive strikes against multiple terror networks in Africa, and yielding terrific results in doing so.