U.S. Sends Dozens Of Troops To … Somalia?

In what may appear to be an out-of-left-field move, the United States is sending a "few dozen" troops to Somalia.

According to CNN:

...Charles Chuck Prichard, a spokesperson for US Africa Command, confirmed the deployment Friday, saying that the deployment of "a few dozen troops from the 101st Airborne Division" came "at the request and in close coordination with" the government of Somalia. 

Samantha Reho, a spokesperson for AFRICOM, further clarified the mission, telling The Daily Wire:

"These troops from the 101st Airborne Division are logisticians who will be in Somalia to teach basic logistics operations with the Somali National Army.

This mission is not associated with teaching or conducting counter-extremism activities in the region."

Since his inauguration in February, Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed has placed a target on al-Qaeda affiliate, al Shabaab, calling on them to surrender in exchange for a "good life." Considering Mohamed's stated goals, it follows that he would work to create and maintain a well-trained militia.

There are currently a small number of U.S. special operations forces in Somalia advising authorities in the fight against al Shabaab, and other extremist organizations. This deployment would increase that number only slightly. The members of the 101st Airborne Division will be in Somalia until September, according to Reho.

CNN notes that although President Trump recently "granted additional authority to U.S. Africa Command to conduct counterterrorism airstrikes against [al Shabaab]," according to the Africa Command, this five month troop deployment is an entirely separate arrangement.

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