Nation & World News

U.S. Sending More Troops To Hunt For Ugandan Warlord Joseph Kony

By Mark Memmott on March 24th, 2014

The U.S. is sending 150 Air Force special operations personnel to central Africa this week — more than doubling the number of American troops on the ground who are assisting in the search for infamous Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony, The Washington Post reports.

Also heading there: at least four CV-22 Osprey aircraft that can ferry troops long distances and “are equipped with .50-caliber machine guns for self-defense,” the Post says.

Kony, as we’ve reported over the past two years and as NPR’s Michele Kelemen puts it, “has been terrorizing Uganda and surrounding nations for decades.” Although his Lord’s Resistance Army is thought to have only a couple hundred fighters, it is known for its brutal attacks on civilians and for turning young captives into child soldiers. Kony is wanted by prosecutors at the International Criminal Court for his tiny army’s “brutalization of civilians by acts including murder, abduction, sexual enslavement [and] mutilation.”

In early 2012, the activist group Invisible Children used YouTube, Twitter and other savvy marketing tools aimed at American teens and college students to turn Kony and the atrocities he’s accused of committing into a social cause in the U.S. and other nations.

The organization’s “Kony 2012″ video has now been viewed more than 99 million times.

President Obama first sent about 100 U.S. troops to assist in the search in October 2011. Those forces and the additional troops can defend themselves but are primarily there to advise and assist African Union forces. The search area includes parts of Uganda, the Central African Republic, South Sudan and Congo.

As the Post says, Kony’s army “poses no threat to the United States, but the administration sees assistance to the [African Union] mission as a useful way to build military and political partnerships with African governments in a region where al-Qaida and other terrorist organizations are rapidly expanding, as well as to demonstrate adherence to human rights principles.”

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

This entry was posted in News from NPR. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.

 

More Stories in News from NPR

President Obama is renaming Alaska's Mt. McKinley in an effort to strengthen cooperation between the Federal Government and Alaska Native tribes. The peak is returning to its traditional Alaska Native name, Dinali.

Obama Renaming Continent’s Highest Peak From Mt. McKinley To Denali

Efforts to change the mountain’s name back to Denali date back to 1975. The White House says changing the name back “recognizes the sacred status of Denali to generations of Alaska Natives.”


China Arrests Nearly 200 Over ‘Online Rumors’

The rumors ranged from a man leaping to his death in Beijing over stock losses to highly inflated death tolls in the Tianjin industrial blasts.


Workers wrap protective materials around a statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis as they prepare to move the sculpture on the University of Texas campus in Austin, on Sunday.

Jefferson Davis Statue Comes Down At University of Texas

The larger-than-life sculpture of the president of the Confederacy was removed after an appeal to block the move was rejected last week.


Inspektor Jan Gieber of Austrian police shows the inside of the large van outside the police station in Braunau, Upper Austria, on Sunday, where the children were found among 26 migrants trying to reach Europe.

Refugee Children Rescued In Austria Reportedly Disappear From Hospital

The three Syrian children, aged 5 and 6, were near death from dehydration when they were discovered by police in the back of a minivan on Saturday.


This undated photo provided by the Harris County Sheriff's Office on Saturday shows Shannon J. Miles. Prosecutors in Texas are charging the 30-year-old man with capital murder in the killing of Darren Goforth, a sheriff's deputy who was gunned down from behind while filling up his patrol car at a suburban Houston gas station.

Motive Still Sought In Fatal Shooting Of Texas Sheriff’s Deputy

Authorities have charged 30-year-old Shannon J. Miles in the “execution-style” murder of Deputy Darren Goforth, but investigators have yet to make public any motive for the killing.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments