The Most Revolutionary Act

Diverse Ramblings of an American Refugee

Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall

Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall
New Plymouth, New Zealand
December 02
Retired psychiatrist, activist and author of 2 young adult novels - Battle for Tomorrow and A Rebel Comes of Age - and a free ebook 21st Century Revolution. My 2010 memoir The Most Revolutionary Act: Memoir of an American Refugee describes the circumstances that led me to leave the US in 2002. More information about my books (and me) at

JANUARY 31, 2013 5:49PM

US Trained Mali Rebels Who Overthrew Government

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General Carter Ham, the AFRICOM commander for the Pentagon, admitted last week that the US had helped trained the Mali rebels, including Captain Amadou Sanogo, who led the military coup which overthrew Mali’s constitutionally-elected government.

In describing the statement Ham made at the Ralph Bunche center, Veterans Today editor Gordon Duff is highly critical of Ham’s support for widening US military involvement in the region, including the recent establishment of drone bases in Niger.

Duff is extremely concerned that the US lacks the intelligence resources in Africa to prevent the horrendous “collateral damage” nightmares drones have caused in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen.

He goes on to describe Mali as a “domino” in a misguided and poorly thought out destabilization effort aimed at creating a generation of warfare.

Read more here here


Photo credit: US Army Africa via photopin cc

Cross posted at Daily Censored and The Most Revolutionary Act

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sanogo, rebels, niger, mali, ham, drones

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We trained their army, yes, who grew impatient with the response to the original rebellion, not the people later, although that isn't good either. It might be the case that in certain circumstances, giving local militaries greater capacity runs that as a real risk, because then they become too much more powerful than other instruments of government. Libya generated part of the problem, interacting with a longstanding issue with the Tuaregs in the North of Mali, nomads who have issues with a lot of people, just as nomads in a world of states. That is why they were in Libya, as the enforcers, and then had to go somewhere, back to Mali, triggering the rebellion in the North that caused the coup, who then proved not so great against the North, bringing in the French. That doesn't mean AFRICOM doesn't have issues, or that people ought to really think through what it is they are dealing with, a lot of local variety.
As to collateral damage, you would rather not have that, but compared also to what? B-52 strikes? Maybe we shouldn't be involved at all, if that has risks too, even if you didn't think much of American policies in general. Putin for example has been supportive at times of us not leaving chaos in Afghanistan, something China often favors as well, even as they are also rivals, frenemies hedging bets.
Don, I just think Americans need to be told the truth (for a change) about what's really happening in Africa. They deserve a say in whether trillions of their tax dollars will be spent this way.
We [the U.S.] tie strings to a cobra, hoping it will act like Pinocchio, and then are upset when it bites us in the ass.

How stupid are "we"???

The administration is probably going to start drone strikes against them in retaliation... as soon as they can target their children.
[r] Stuart, thanks for addressing Mali. this from Alex Newman re slaughter of Mali citizens:

"Summary executions and mass human rights abuses targeting innocent civilians in Mali are being perpetrated by soldiers loyal to the dubious Malian regime in a campaign supported by the United Nations, the new socialist French government, and the Obama administration. According to human rights groups and witnesses on the ground, the atrocities are increasing as the number of murdered victims continues to rise — eerily reminiscent of similar tragic interventions in Libya, Syria, and the Ivory Coast.


"After the UN Security Council purported to “authorize” an international invasion on behalf of the coup-installed regime, forces from France openly began their military campaign earlier this month under the guise of fighting “Islamic extremism.”

"Obama, the U.K. government, and a motley assortment of African tyrants — most of whom continue to be propped up with Western taxpayer money — quickly joined the battle as well. But within days of the military operation to crush rebels in the north, disturbing reports of gross human rights violations perpetrated by Western-backed forces began to emerge from across the region.

“This series of grave abuses confirms the concerns that we have been expressing for several weeks,” said President Souhayr Belhassen with the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), a Paris-based umbrella group representing more than 160 organizations around the world. “These acts of revenge together with the extreme tensions that exists between the communities constitute an explosive cocktail leading us to fear that the worst could happen, especially in the context of the reconquering the North.”

"According to FIDH, which said it is “very alarmed by the increasing number of summary executions and other human rights violations committed by Malian soldiers,” an immediate investigation is needed. The umbrella organization said an independent commission should be established to assess the scope of the crimes and bring the perpetrators to justice. The group said it had already confirmed dozens of reports of extrajudicial murders in various towns, and that other reported atrocities were still being investigated.

"Even in Bamako, where the corrupt regime styling itself the “government” of Mali is based, ethnic Tuaregs who have nothing to do with the secession movement in the north are being brutalized. According to reports, their homes are being invaded and plundered. Simply failing to produce valid identification documents is apparently justification enough to brutalize or even murder the victims.


"Human Rights Watch, another prominent organization, echoed the findings of other human rights groups, saying it had received credible reports of wanton slaughter of civilians being perpetrated by the UN- and Obama-backed regime in Bamako. Among the most ruthlessly persecuted, the organization explained, are Tuaregs and Arabs — the ethnic groups associated with the independence movement in the north.


"While the press has been largely barred from conflict areas by the French government, even establishment journalists have documented the slaughter by UN-backed forces. A Reuters reporter, for example, “saw at least six bodies in two areas of the Walirdi district of Sevare. Three of them were lying, partly covered in sand, near a bus station and showed signs of having been burned. Three more had been thrown into a nearby well.”


"... According to the sources, Malian soldiers were massacring anyone suspected of having ties to the rebels in the north.

"“They gathered all the people who didn’t have national identity cards and the people they suspected of being close to the Islamists to execute them and put them in two different wells near the bus station,” one of the witnesses was quoted as saying by the AP. After being dumped in the wells, Malian troops poured gasoline on the bodies and set them ablaze, probably to conceal the evidence of their crimes.


"It is hardly the first time in recent memory that the UN, the French government, and the Obama administration have supported barbarian forces to achieve their geopolitical aims. In Libya, for example, NATO-backed forces — many with admitted leadership roles in al-Qaeda — engaged in ethnic cleansing, wiping entire towns of black people off the map while torturing and murdering survivors. Even NATO itself was investigated for war crimes by the self-styled “International Criminal Court” for slaughtering civilians and destroying critical infrastructure."


"As countless analysts have pointed out, the current fiasco in Mali is simply blowback from the recent destruction of Libya during Obama’s lawless UN-approved war there and other U.S. "foreign policy" schemes. Even the UN admitted that al-Qaeda was able to secure huge stockpiles of military weapons that will continue to wreak havoc worldwide for generations."

"... Meanwhile, the Obama administration has pledged its full support to the war effort, ensuring once again that the United States will continue creating new enemies for itself for generations to come. "

best, libby
Thanks, Libby, for this excellent link. The other thing that really gets me is that US arms merchants are also making a mint by selling weapons to both sides.