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Archive for October 26th, 2008

Developing Story: UN Wants Special Forces in the Congo

Posted by African Press International on October 26, 2008

<By Scott A Morgan (API Correspondent)

In General it is not easy to have an Individual or Group admit that the Strategy that they were embarked upon was a Mistake. But If Certain People that deal with the Situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo have their way then some form of redress may soon be on the way.

Currently the Situation in the Eastern Part of the DRC is deteriorating. Large Portions of Three Provinces (North Kivu, South Kivu and Ituri) are controlled by Rebel Forces from Rwanda (FDLR),Uganda (LRA, ADF) and even the DRC itself (CNDP and FPJC). Despite the fact that Presidential and Parliamentary Elections have been held in the Country after one of the longest Conflicts since the Second World War Tensions in this part of the Country remains high.

Various attempts by the FARDC (Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo with Support from MONUC (United Nations Mission in the Congo) to reestablish a Government Presence have borne little progress. MONUC has been one of the UN Missions that has had a problem with Staff being involved in Controversies regarding Sexual Mistreatment of Refugees. Currently the Flood of Weapons flowing into the Region from Various Parties continues seemingly unabated.

So What has the UN Mission done wrong so far? From a Tactical Standpoint Using Heliborne Troops to support FARDC Missions have been successful. However from a Strategic Standpoint these efforts have yet to bear fruit. In Some Cases the Momentum of the Rebel Militias have not been checked. In some Instances the Rebels have moved to Avoid UN Peacekeepers.

Right Now the UN Wish List consists of Increased Intelligence Capability,Increased Tactical Support and Special Forces. Currently the Heads of Military Intelligence of the DRC, Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi Meet at least once every three Months with a Representative of the United States. The Reason for these Meetings is to Gather and Share Intelligence regarding Militia Activity and other concerns.

Most of the Tactical Support for the UN Mission has to receive its ok from the Headquarters in Kinshasa. This is after getting the Blessing from UN Headquarters in New York. Since Most of the Problems are Occuring in the East it would not be that much of a stretch to see if other regional actors could assist the Peacekeepers if they Get into Trouble.

The Most Interesting Request by Far has to be the Request for Special Forces. Most of the Special Forces of the Western Countries are involved with Chasing down the Taliban in Afganistan. However the Possibility of Having US Green Berets along with other forces searching for these Militias could actually change the Momentum of the Fighting. However the US and Several Other Nations are Leery to Support the UN due to the Concerns about the Mission Conduct.

So what is the status of the Mission? It appears that the Kinshasa Goverment and the UN Peacekeepers realize that they do not control the Eastern Part of the DRC. It wishes to change the Situation by Amending the Mandate of the UN Mission to allow for Special Forces to Operate in the Area. Whether or not if it will work remains to be seen but this may be a better path to choose than allow for another Regional War to Break Out.

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The Author also Publishes Confused Eagle on the Internet and Comments on US Policy towards Africa. Confused Eagle can be found at morganrights.tripod.com

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