A Cunning Kony Plan

Golly, one of Africa’s most famous warlords (Joseph Kony of “recruit child soldiers and have them kill their families” fame) is snuggling between the horribly unstable Central African Republic and the somewhat unstable South Sudan.

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So the U.S. military/intel community is getting more involved in the region, deploying choppers and other “assets” ostensibly to “hunt Kony”. I agree Kony is a bad guy, and the LRA probably is well connected in the area with arms, intelligence and years of familiarity with guerrilla fighting. They do bad things and likely help other militias/criminals do more bad things.

But one thing he is not is an immediate threat to U.S. interests, at least not the way we’ve traditionally defined it. Otherwise we should be air striking every major militia leader/warlord on the continent.

Then again I guess it’s easier to justify setting up mini-bases, training facilities and predator drone airports as “hunting Kony” than “getting involved in a messy civil war where Muslim/Christian identity comes into play”.

The U.S. is not drawing down its presence on the African continent. Djibouti just agreed to host the USA military base there for another 30 years.

And apparently if you look where U.S. engineering companies contracted to the military are working, you see an even larger network being developed. 

But honestly, Kony is not the major destabilizing force in East Africa. Poverty and hunger are – or rather the lack of sufficient community-oriented food production and jobs.

A predator drone to blow up a car in the jungle costs a lot. A well coordinated sh*tload of $50-$100 microloans for farmers and entrepreneurs costs a lot less and would send a much more positive signal: Americans actually give a d*mn about African countries, Americans actually understand how economics works, and we think people in African countries are people like us.

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