Battle and death in a foreign land: Ugandan peacekeepers in Somalia. America's Expanding Presence in Somalia - Global. On Monday, the U.S. pledged $5 million to assist Somalis battered by a severe drought that has, in the words of U.N. refugee agency chief Antonio Guterres, precipitated the "worst humanitarian disaster" in the world right now.
But over the last couple weeks we've learned that the U.S. is increasingly getting involved in Somalia for another reason: counterterrorism. In an article for The Nation yesterday, Jeremy Scahill reported that the CIA has set up two secret facilities in Mogadishu as part of America's fight against the Al Qaeda-affiliated Islamic militant group Al Shabab: a fortified compound near the capital's airport for training Somali intelligence agents in counterterrorism and a prison in the basement of Somalia's National Security Agency headquarters for detaining suspected Shabab members.
Shift in Militant Strategy: The CIA believes Al Shabaab is increasingly communicating and partnering with Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen, CNN notes. U.S. official: CIA interrogating terror suspects in Somalia. By Barbara Starr, CNN Pentagon Correspondent July 13, 2011 -- Updated 0137 GMT (0937 HKT) A senior U.S. official says the CIA has gone to Somalia to help interrogate terrorism suspects.
Official: CIA believes al Qaeda in Somalia increasing links to al Qaeda in YemenCIA was at questioning only "one or two times," official saysCIA gets assurances that detainees will not be mistreated, official says Washington (CNN) -- CIA operatives have secretly traveled to Mogadishu, Somalia, to help interrogate terrorism suspects about operations in East Africa and Yemen, a senior U.S. official told CNN Tuesday. The official, who was not authorized to speak publicly, stressed any suspects were under the control of Somali forces and the CIA was present only in "support" of interrogations in recent months. "Only on very rare occasion does the CIA support debriefings of suspected terrorists who are in TFG (Transitional Federal Government) custody," the official told CNN. The CIA's Secret Sites in Somalia. Renditions, an underground prison and a new CIA base are elements of an intensifying US war, according to a Nation investigation in Mogadishu.
Nestled in a back corner of Mogadishu’s Aden Adde International Airport is a sprawling walled compound run by the Central Intelligence Agency. Set on the coast of the Indian Ocean, the facility looks like a small gated community, with more than a dozen buildings behind large protective walls and secured by guard towers at each of its four corners. Adjacent to the compound are eight large metal hangars, and the CIA has its own aircraft at the airport.
The site, which airport officials and Somali intelligence sources say was completed four months ago, is guarded by Somali soldiers, but the Americans control access. About the Author Jeremy Scahill Jeremy Scahill, a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow at The Nation Institute, is the author of the bestselling Blackwater... Also by the Author.