How the US transformed a tiny African state into a hub of imperial aggression

From Djibouti, the US trains proxies and bombs strategically-important countries in the name of democracy and counterterrorism. To justify the country’s militarization, Washington hypes fears over China’s regional ambitions.

In a blatant threat to China’s presence, Djibouti recently hosted the US-led “Allied Appreciation Day,” in which Britain, France, and Japan showcased “a variety of equipment that is part of their military operations in the Horn of Africa” (HOA). The Pentagon’s Combined Joint Task Force-HOA reported that the events fused Armistice, Remembrance, and Veterans’ Days. Attendees participated in “demonstrations featuring a variety of allied military capabilities to include a military flyover.”

Successive Djiboutian regimes have clung to power by promoting their small country in the Horn of Africa as a vital tool in the West’s quest for global dominance. During Europe’s late-19th century Scramble for Africa, the French colonists understood the strategic importance of the region for trade ships and naval deployments. After the Second World War and particularly after the September 11, 2001 attacks on the US, the Pentagon seized France’s imperial mantle and expanded a major military base, Camp Lemonnier (which, for many years, the US misspelled by leaving out an “n”).

Today, American military and political planners fear the presence of China in what they consider to be “their” African territory. In 2017, China opened its first, and at the time

— source | TJ Coles | Dec 31, 2021

Nullius in verba

What Happened to the Young Woman Refused to Serve in the Israeli Army

Atalya Ben-Abba decided to refuse to serve in the Israeli military, due to her opposition to the occupation and Israeli policy. She tells Haaretz why there are more female than male conscientious objectors and the prices she paid for her decision.

23 year old Israeli Atalya Ben-Abba actually dreamed of becoming a combat soldier. When she was little, she loved to watch the TV show “Xena: Warrior Princess,” to see the fearless Amazon fighting the Greek gods and mythological creatures, and to fantasize about how one day, she herself would become a warrior princess: a courageous heroine who would rescue people and fight for justice.

At a certain point, when she got a little older and had to adapt the fantasy to reality, the closest she could get was the idea of being a combat soldier. But as her draft date drew nearer, the dream began to crumble. Ben-Abba realized that as a combat soldier in the Israel Defense Forces, she wouldn’t really fight for justice, but would be required “to help a system that oppresses people, denies their rights and maintains a regime that is racist, discriminatory and belligerent,” she explains. “And if I want to work for justice, apparently [the IDF] isn’t my place.”

Ben-Abba is the protagonist of the documentary “Objector,” which reveals how she arrived at her decision to refuse to serve, as an act of protest against the Israeli occupation

— source Jews For Justice For Palestinians | Nov 29, 2021

Nullius in verba

Climate Crisis Cannot Be Solved Without Addressing US Military Emissions

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday denounced the exclusion of military emissions from national decarbonization pledges, arguing—in concert with scores of climate justice advocates—that ignoring a key source of greenhouse gas pollution makes it impossible to fully understand and tackle the planetary emergency. Abby Martin, host of “The Empire Files,” in response to the journalist’s question about whether greenhouse gases (GHG) emitted by the U.S. armed forces should be included in President Joe Biden’s vow to cut carbon pollution in half from 2005 levels by the end of the decade. The Pentagon is a larger polluter than 140 countries combined and annual U.S. military spending is approaching $780 billion dollars, Abby added.

— source | Nov 11, 2021

Nullius in verba

U.S. Military Carbon Emissions Exceed 140+ Nations

The Costs of War project estimates the U.S. military produced around 1.2 billion tonnes of carbon emissions between 2001 and 2017, with nearly a third coming from U.S. wars overseas, including in Afghanistan and Iraq. By one account, the U.S. military is a larger polluter than 140 countries combined, including numerous industrialized nations, such as Sweden, Denmark and Portugal.

However, military carbon emissions have largely been exempted from international climate treaties dating back to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, thanks to lobbying from the United States. At the time, a group of neoconservatives, including future vice president and then-Halliburton CEO Dick Cheney, argued in favor exempting all military emissions.

I participated in the invasion of Iraq in 2003. As part of that invasion, which was a crime, I was able to witness the sheer destruction of Iraq’s infrastructure, of its water treatment plants, of sewage. And it was something that I couldn’t live with myself and I couldn’t continue to support. So, after leaving the military, I had to speak up and to oppose U.S. militarism in every shape, way or form that it shows up in our

— source | Nov 09, 2021

Nullius in verba