By Satyaki Chakraborty
The Ukraine war entered its 134th day on July 7 giving no signs of ending. In the initial days, there were some efforts for active negotiations but since then, it has been converted into an open confrontation between Russia and Ukraine backed by the USA and NATO. Sanctions against Russia by the western nations have failed to make any deep adverse impact on the Russian economy though the high energy prices have wrecked the western economies.
President Biden had a major responsibility in bringing peace in Ukraine by talking to the Russians, but he took a one sided position and used the occasion to influence the areas of NATO influence and endorsing the positioning of more troops in borders along Russia. The encouragement to some of the non aligned countries of Europe to join NATO was factor which has angered President Putin. Though the US forces are not directly participating in war against Russia in Ukraine, the US armed forces are helping the Ukrainians through proxies as the Americans have done in many other countries.
United States Special Operational forces have been involved in at least 23 secretive proxy wars across the world on a scale far greater than previously known, new documents indicate.
A report published by US website The Intercept detailed the secretive 127e Pentagon programme with at least 14 operations across the Middle East and Asia Pacific region as recently as 2020.
In total, US commandos conducted 23 clandestine proxy wars across the world at a total cost of $310 million between 2017 and 2020, according to documents obtained via the Freedom of Information Act.
Retired army general Joseph Votel, who headed both Special Operations Command and Central Command, confirmed the existence of previously unrevealed 127e “counterterrorism” efforts in Egypt, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen. He told The Intercept that the 127e in Lebanon was codenamed Lion Hunter. Mr Votel also acknowledged previously unknown 127e programmes in Syria; Yemen, known as Yukon Hunter; and Egypt, codenamed Enigma Hunter.
In Lebanon, the US entered a partnership with the G2 Strike Force, or G2SF, an elite special unit of the Lebanese military, the documents show. A former senior defence official, who requested anonymity to discuss a classified programme, confirmed that an earlier version of the 127e programme had also been in place in Iraq.
Another secretive US mission was carried out in Tunisia under the code name Obsidian Tower which allied with local proxy forces in 2017. The clandestine programme comes from the US Code Section 127e and was previously known to have been in operation across Africa, using “surrogate teams” in direct action and reconnaissance missions.
Under its auspices the Defence Secretary can spend up to $100 million during a fiscal year to support “foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals” combatting terrorism. The obscure funding authority allows US commandos to conduct so-called counterterrorism operations “by, with and through” foreign and irregular partners across the world.
According to The Intercept, basic information about these missions — where they are conducted, their frequency and targets, and the foreign forces the US relies on to carry them out — are unknown even to most members of relevant congressional committees and key State Department personnel.
The Pentagon and Special Operations Command refused to comment on the 127e authority. “We do not provide information about 127e programmes because they are classified,” Socom spokesman Ken McGraw said. Critics of the 127e programme have warned that the operations could be unlawful and lack the congressional authorisation for overseas military operations required by the US Constitution.
Mr. Joe Biden was elected President in 2020 elections defeating the right wing Republican Donald Trump who was in favour of regime change policy in the countries which acted against the interests of the USA. President Biden as a nominee of the Democratic Party was supposed to change that Trump policy in favour of values which the Democratic Party upholds. The continuing activities of the US armed forces show that not much has changed since Trump era in terms of foreign policy. (IPA Service)