Humans and gold have been intrinsically linked for thousands of years. This dense, soft and noble metal is also used in an ever-increasing number of applications, from a method of wealth accumulation and a symbol of prosperity & power, to an important component of many electronic devices. More than 150 thousand tonnes of pure gold have been produced in the history of humankind. Production methods have continuously evolved from a straightforward search for gold nuggets and gold panning, to high-efficiency mines, pits, ore preparation plants and refineries. Filmed across two continents, this picture report showcases the gold production process at mines owned and operated by Nordgold, a leading internationally diversified gold producer with assets in West Africa, Russia and Kazakhstan.Русская версия репортажа: http://gelio.livejournal.com/226150.html1. Gold production continues to increase alongside global population. From 705 tonnes in 1912, gold mining production to just over 3000 tonnes in 2016 (Source: Statista.com). Russian gold producer Nordgold has been a major contributor to this overall rise.. Established in 2007 initially as a division of Russian steel giant Severstal before splitting out in 2009, Nordgold has grown to become one of the world’s leading gold mining companies producing over 850 koz of gold a year.2. Nordgold currently operates nine mines, including one each in Guinea (Lefa) and Kazakhstan (Suzdal), three in Burkina Faso (Taparko and Bissa-Bouly hub) and four in Russia (Berezitovy in Amur Oblast, Neruyngri in Yakutia, and two assets in the Republic of Buryatia—Irokinda and Zun-Holba).3. Global gold production soared in the 1980s and 90s driven in particular by a sharp growth in open pit gold mining (the share of open pit mining increased globally from 30% to 70% between 1988 and 2003). Six of Nordgold’s nine mines are open pit operations. Underground mining is only used in Buryatia and Kazakhstan.4. Open pit mining starts with the drilling rigs. 400 holes need to be drilled to blast 100 thousand tonnes of rock. The rig normally drills holes up to 6 meters deep.5. Controlled blasting in an open pit is a very exact process requiring the carefully calculated placement of charges.6. Blasting not only makes the pit deeper but also produces cutbacks.7. The last seconds before detonation. Employees are evacuated to a safe location. Only the most experienced staff are trained to control blasting from remote terminals. Directional blasting technology is used in open pits. Directional blasting technology is used in open pits. Tens of thousands of tonnes of rocks are pushed by the blast in a predetermined direction to a precise distance.8. The heavyweights take their turn after the blast. Haul trucks are used to remove the rock.9. The Sides of the pit are carefully planned to support a haul road for the safe operation of the loaded trucks.10. A mining excavator continues to load blasted rock into a haul truck.11. With a 60-cubic-meter body, the Cat 777D can haul over 90 tonnes of rock.12. Open pits operate 24x7.13. The open pit at the Berezitovy mine in Amur Oblast is 450 meters deep after 10 years of mining. As the pit gets deeper, mining becomes more expensive, so the mine is gettinbeing prepared for underground mining to access the deeper deposits; the decline will go 100 meters deeper to provide access to the ore. Final exploration and licensing activities are already underway in preparation for the switch.14. The Komatsu PC1250-7 excavator has a 4.5 cubic meter bucket able to load over 4 tonnes of rock and it weighs 110 tonnes.15. Launched in 2013, Bissa mine in Burkina Faso was Nordgold’s first greenfield asset, a mine which Nordgold had developed from scratch to full production. Nordgold built the mine on time and on budget and it reached full capacity well ahead of schedule, making Bouly a flagship asset for the company. In late 2016, Bissa was expanded to mine gold from the nearby Bouly deposit, which has also exceeded expectations.16. There’s no idle time for haul trucks at Nordgold’s African mines. A tonne of ore might only contain a few grams of gold (for example, the head grade of Lefa ore in Guinea was 1.05 g/t in 2016). However, even lower grade ores can be economically feasible depending on their depth and properties.17. A modern mine is a high-technology facility relying on state-of-the-art information technology, far removed from outdated preconceptions about open pit mining. Here, a real-time tracking system is used to monitor the location of the mining fleet in the pit, improving safety and utilisation of the fleet.18. Mining trucks need to adapt to an extreme range of operating temperatures, from the Artcic conditions in some Russian mines, to the heat of Africa.19. 6.1 million tonnes of gold ore were mined at Lefa in Guinea in 2016. The mine is now upgrading its fleet to reach 7 million tonnes in 2017.20. The Bissa pits in Burkina Faso were expanded in 2016. Cutbacks were necessary to provide access to high-grade ores.21. A haul truck exits the Lefa pit at Lefa Mine in Guinea.22. 23. Underground mining is used when open pit mining is not feasible for environmental or economic reasons. Mine development starts with the decline that is built to provide the mine fleet with access to ore bodies.24. After that, drilling rigs take turns making cylindrical holes ready to place blasting charges in the rock.25. Drilling rock underground can result in significant dust. Water is sprayed on the mine face to reduce risks to the operator and to wash the blast holes.26. The mine fleet control station at Buryatzoloto. Irokinda and Zun-Holba are older mines (over 25 years in operation) that prior to Nordgold ownership relied mostly on inefficient manual labor. Today, full-scale automation is underway.27. An important feature of underground mine equipment is their low profile. These machines are designed to work in confined spaces.28. An underground loader operator at the Zun-Holba mine in Buryatia.29. Geologists routinely take rock samples and log their properties.30. Conveyors play an important role in gold production. Once mined rock is delivered by haul trucks and crushed, it is fed for further treatment using conveyor belts.31. Crushed ore on its way to the mill circuit. The diameter of ore fragments after crushing depends on each individual mine. Large fragments are sifted out and returned for secondary crushing.32. One method of the gold production process is “heap leaching” whereby crushed rock is placed into a leach solution that is later used for gold extraction. Nordgold added a heap leaching pad at Bouly in 2016 to expand the capacity of its Bissa flagship mine. The new Bouly mine reached full capacity just two months after launch and was Nordgold’s second greenfield project33. Crushed ore is stacked into a huge pile for further treatment.34. Large fragments of crushed ore are transported to the mill.35. The underground loader at Lefa, Guinea.36. 37. At the final stage of preparation, ore is milled into flour-like fine powder.38. The waste filtration station. Every ore preparation plant produces and stacks waste called “tailings”. At the final stage of gold production, ore solution is filtered after gold extraction. Water and reagents are removed from the slurry and returned to the preparation plant in a closed cycle. After removal of the water, tailings are stacked in special tailing ponds.39. Taparko preparation plant, Burkina Faso.40. Ore mills at Berezitovy, Amur Oblast.41. In 2016, Nordgold mined over 129 million tonnes of rock and processed more than 25 million tonnes of ore.42. Ore stockpile at Lefa, Guinea.43. Crushed ore is delivered to the stockpile on a conveyor belt.44. Head grade (quantity of gold contained within the ore) has been constantly reducing globally since late 19th century. New technologies are fine tuned for more thorough and efficient gold recovery and waste recycling. Suzdal mine in Kazakhstan is only the second facility worldwide to use the latest HiTeCC (High Temperature Caustic Conditioning) technology to improve recovery. This technology is also used to retreat tailings.45. Ore hydrotreatment where milled ore undergoes high-pressure water washing.46. The Berezitovy ore preparation plant in Amur Oblast uses automated treatment processes. An operator monitors the compliance with technology requirements.47. Flotation process pland.48. Flotation is the process of extracting gold from rock. Chemical agents dissolve ore powder and produce foam which is then separated from the rest of the solution, with gold remaining in the foam bubbles.49. Controller’s computerized workplace looks virtually the same across Nordgold’s global operations. Here, an operator is monitoring the Bissa preparation plant in Burkina Faso.50. Borax is used to improve gold recovery. This white powder is widely used in households in cleaning agents, teeth whitening products, etc. Though Borax is safe, it is mandatory for the operators to use personal protective equipment.51. A gold smelter operator’s protective equipment resembles a fireman’s gear. Gold melts at 1064°C and boils at 2856°C.52. The gold smelter at Zun-Kholba, Buryatia.53. The mines produce gold doré Doré bars are sent for refining in gold refineries that accept alloys with at least 70% combined gold and silver content.54. A doré bar may weigh 15 to 25 kilograms. Bar weight and precious metal content depend on the individual mine.55. Molten gold is poured to create gold dore bars.56. A doré bar cooling down after smelting at Bissa, Burkina Faso.57. In Russian, the word for gold is derived from the words yellow and green. If you look at a new gold bar, you will see that it shows both of these colors. Here a gold bar is being cleaned at Bissa, Burkina Faso.58. Doré bars are polished as they naturally have a rough surface.59. After polishing, bars are stamped. In this case, it is the stamp of Lefa Mine in Guinea.60. A doré bar with the Bouly stamp, before shipping to refinery where it will be refined to the ultimate 999 fineness.61. Nordgold has increased production of refined gold from the 21 thousand ounces in 2007 to 869 thousand ounces—more than 27 tonnes—in 2016. As of early May 2017, one ounce of gold is worth US$1250 in the London bullion market.62. China was the world’s largest producer of gold in 2016 (over 450 tonnes), followed by Australia (270 tonnes) and Russia (approximately 250 tonnes). Nordgold expects to produce 28 to 29.5 tonnes of refined gold in 2017.63. Bouly was the second mine in Burkina Faso built by Nordgold from the ground up. 2017 will be its first full year of operation. Nordgold is actively developing its third greenfield project, Gross, in Russian Yakutia.Gross will become Nordgold’s largest asset in Russia producing around 7 tonnes of gold per year over 17 years. Nordgold also has multiple promising early exploration projects and licenses in Burkina Faso, Russia, French Guiana and Canada.64. Humankind has produced over 150 thousand tonnes of gold in recorded history. Approximately half of that was used in jewelry and more than 10% in technology. The rest is accumulated in sovereign gold reserves and private estates. It is said that smelting all the world’s gold together would make a 20-meter-sided cube. That is a five-story house of gold!Русская версия репортажа: http://gelio.livejournal.com/226150.html
The closely-watched and long-delayed trial of Blaise Compaore, Burkina Faso's former president, and members of his cabinet has been adjourned for a month after his lawyers claimed that he would not receive a fair hearing. Compaore, who fled to neighbouring Ivory Coast during a popular revolt in 2014 against his attempts to change the constitution and extend his 27-year-rule, is being tried in absentia. Along with 34 ex-government ministers, Compaore faces assassination charges for allegedly authorising the use of force against unarmed protesters during the uprising that toppled him, killing at least 24 people. Al Jazeera's Nicolas Haque, reporting from outside the court in the country's capital, Ouagadougou, said that defence lawyers had launched an appeal questioning the format of the trial. - Subscribe to our channel: http://aje.io/AJSubscribe - Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AJEnglish - Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aljazeera - Check our website: http://www.aljazeera.com/
From the BBC via google translate: At 28 years old, the young Burkinabe engineer develops Laafi Bag, a refrigeration bag capable of keeping the vaccines at the proper temperature for four days.His invention will certainly help many health workers who vaccinate children living in remote and hard-to-reach areas of Africa.More hereThe ACP also reportsThe laafi bag is a light cooling bag, for the transport of vaccines, laboratory samples and perishable goods. Equipped with a photovoltaic module to conserve and regulate the temperature inside, it allows vaccines and other sensitive products to be delivered into the most critical or inaccessible areas without interruption of the cold chain...[more]
Burkina Faso's ex-President Blaise Compaore faces trial The trial of Burkina Faso's ex-President Blaise Compaore is due to start on May 15 following long delays. Compaore and 34 of his ministers are accused of authorising the killings of unarmed protesters in the uprising that brought down his regime. If convicted, the High Court is expected to request the extradition of the former leader from Ivory Coast. Thirty three people were killed and hundreds injured in October 2014. Al Jazeera's Nicolas Haque reports from the capital, Ouagadougou. - Subscribe to our channel: http://aje.io/AJSubscribe - Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AJEnglish - Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aljazeera - Check our website: http://www.aljazeera.com/
(This story has been corrected at para 10 to show trial to resume on Monday, May 15, not Thursday.)
Updated: May 01, 2017
Updated: May 01, 2017
Французские военные в ходе наземной операции и авиационных ударов ликвидировали более 20 боевиков на западе Африки.
French forces fighting extremism in Africa’s Sahel region say they have killed at least 20 jihadists in a forest on the border between Mali and Burkina Faso.
DAKAR (Reuters) - France has killed more than 20 militants hiding in a forest near the border between the West African countries of Mali and Burkina Faso this weekend, its regional force said in a statement.
DAKAR (Reuters) - France has killed more than 20 militants hiding in a forest near the border between the West African countries of Mali and Burkina Faso this weekend, its regional force said in a statement.
Cross-posted with TomDispatch.com General Thomas Waldhauser sounded a little uneasy. “I would just say, they are on the ground. They are trying to influence the action,” commented the chief of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) at a Pentagon press briefing in March, when asked about Russian military personnel operating in North Africa. “We watch what they do with great concern.” And Russians aren’t the only foreigners on Waldhauser’s mind. He’s also wary of a Chinese “military base” being built not far from Camp Lemonnier, a large U.S. facility in the tiny, sun-blasted nation of Djibouti. “They’ve never had an overseas base, and we’ve never had a base of... a peer competitor as close as this one happens to be,” he said. “There are some very significant... operational security concerns.” At that press conference, Waldhauser mentioned still another base, an American one exposed by the Washington Post last October in an article titled, “U.S. has secretly expanded its global network of drone bases to North Africa.” Five months later, the AFRICOM commander still sounded aggrieved. “The Washington Post story that said ‘flying from a secret base in Tunisia.’ It’s not a secret base and it’s not our base... We have no intention of establishing a base there.” Waldhauser’s insistence that the U.S. had no base in Tunisia relied on a technicality, since that foreign airfield clearly functions as an American outpost. For years, AFRICOM has peddled the fiction that Djibouti is the site of its only “base” in Africa. “We continue to maintain one forward operating site on the continent, Camp Lemonnier,” reads the command’s 2017 posture statement. Spokespeople for the command regularly maintain that any other U.S. outposts are few and transitory ― “expeditionary” in military parlance. While the U.S. maintains a vast empire of military installations around the world, with huge ― and hard to miss ― complexes throughout Europe and Asia, bases in Africa have been far better hidden. And if you listened only to AFRICOM officials, you might even assume that the U.S. military’s footprint in Africa will soon be eclipsed by that of the Chinese or the Russians. Highly classified internal AFRICOM files offer a radically different picture. A set of previously secret documents, obtained by TomDispatch.com via the Freedom of Information Act, offers clear evidence of a remarkable, far-ranging, and expanding network of outposts strung across the continent. In official plans for operations in 2015 that were drafted and issued the year before, Africa Command lists 36 U.S. outposts scattered across 24 African countries. These include low-profile locations ― from Kenya to South Sudan to a shadowy Libyan airfield ― that have never previously been mentioned in published reports. Today, according to an AFRICOM spokesperson, the number of these sites has actually swelled to 46, including “15 enduring locations.” The newly disclosed numbers and redacted documents contradict more than a decade’s worth of dissembling by U.S. Africa Command and shed new light on a constellation of bases integral to expanding U.S. military operations on the African continent and in the Middle East. A map of U.S. military bases ― forward operating sites, cooperative security locations, and contingency locations ― across the African continent in 2014 from declassified AFRICOM planning documents (Nick Turse/TomDispatch). A Constellation of Bases AFRICOM failed to respond to repeated requests for further information about the 46 bases, outposts, and staging areas currently dotting the continent. Nonetheless, the newly disclosed 2015 plans offer unique insights into the wide-ranging network of outposts, a constellation of bases that already provided the U.S. military with unprecedented continental reach. Those documents divide U.S. bases into three categories: forward operating sites (FOSes), cooperative security locations (CSLs), and contingency locations (CLs). “In total, [the fiscal year 20]15 proposed posture will be 2 FOSes, 10 CSLs, and 22 CLs” state the documents. By spring 2015, the number of CSLs had already increased to 11, according to then-AFRICOM chief General David Rodriguez, in order to allow U.S. crisis-response forces to reach potential hot spots in West Africa. An appendix to the plan, also obtained by TomDispatch, actually lists 23 CLs, not 22. Another appendix mentions one additional contingency location. Today, according to an AFRICOM spokesperson, the number of these sites has actually swelled to 46, including “15 enduring locations.” These outposts ― of which forward operating sites are the most permanent and contingency locations the least so ― form the backbone of U.S. military operations on the continent and have been expanding at a rapid rate, particularly since the September 2012 attack on the U.S. Mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. The plans also indicate that the U.S. military regularly juggles locations, shuttering sites and opening others, while upgrading contingency locations to cooperative security locations in response to changing conditions like, according to the documents, “increased threats emanating from the East, North-West, and Central regions” of the continent. AFRICOM’s 2017 posture statement notes, for example, a recent round of changes to the command’s inventory of posts. The document explains that the U.S. military “closed five contingency locations and designated seven new contingency locations on the continent due to shifting requirements and identified gaps in our ability to counter threats and support ongoing operations.” Today, according to AFRICOM spokesman Chuck Prichard, the total number of sites has jumped from the 36 cited in the 2015 plans to 46 ― a network now consisting of two forward operating sites, 13 cooperative security locations, and 31 contingency locations. Location, Location, Location AFRICOM’s sprawling network of bases is crucial to its continent-wide strategy of training the militaries of African proxies and allies and conducting a multi-front campaign aimed at combating a disparate and spreading collection of terror groups. The command’s major areas of effort involve: a shadow war against the militant group al-Shabaab in Somalia (a long-term campaign, ratcheting up in the Trump era, with no end in sight); attempts to contain the endless fallout from the 2011 U.S. and allied military intervention that ousted Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi (a long-term effort with no end in sight); the neutralizing of “violent extremist organizations” across northwest Africa, the lands of the Sahel and Maghreb (a long-term effort with no end in sight); the degradation of the Islamist militant group Boko Haram in the Lake Chad Basin nations of Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon, and Chad (a long-term effort ― to the tune of $156 million last year alone in support of regional proxies there ― with no end in sight); countering piracy in the Gulf of Guinea (a long-term effort with no end in sight), and winding down the wildly expensive effort to eliminate Joseph Kony and his murderous Lord’s Resistance Army in Central Africa (both live on, despite a long-term U.S. effort). The U.S. military’s multiplying outposts are also likely to prove vital to the Trump administration’s expanding wars in the Middle East. African bases have long been essential, for instance, to Washington’s ongoing shadow war in Yemen, which has seen a significant increase in drone strikes under the Trump administration. They have also been integral to operations against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, where a substantial (and deadly) uptick in U.S. airpower (and civilian casualties) has been evident in recent months. In 2015, AFRICOM spokesman Anthony Falvo noted that the command’s “strategic posture and presence are premised on the concept of a tailored, flexible, light footprint that leverages and supports the posture and presence of partners and is supported by expeditionary infrastructure.” The declassified secret documents explicitly state that America’s network of African bases is neither insignificant nor provisional. “USAFRICOM’s posture requires a network of enduring and non-enduring locations across the continent,” say the 2015 plans. “A developed network of FOSes, CSLs, and non-enduring CLs in key countries... is necessary to support the command’s operations and engagements.” According to the files, AFRICOM’s two forward operating sites are Djibouti’s Camp Lemonnier and a base on the United Kingdom’s Ascension Island off the west coast of Africa. Described as “enduring locations” with a sustained troop presence and “U.S.-owned real property,” they serve as hubs for staging missions across the continent and for supplying the growing network of outposts there. The U.S. military’s multiplying outposts are also likely to prove vital to the Trump administration’s expanding wars in the Middle East. Lemonnier, the crown jewel of America’s African bases, has expanded from 88 acres to about 600 acres since 2002, and in those years, the number of personnel there has increased exponentially as well. “Camp Lemonnier serves as a hub for multiple operations and security cooperation activities,” reads AFRICOM’s 2017 posture statement. “This base is essential to U.S. efforts in East Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.” Indeed, the formerly secret documents note that the base supports “U.S operations in Somalia CT [counterterrorism], Yemen CT, Gulf of Aden (counter-piracy), and a wide range of Security Assistance activities and programs throughout the region.” In 2015, when he announced the increase in cooperative security locations, then-AFRICOM chief David Rodriguez mentioned Senegal, Ghana, and Gabon as staging areas for the command’s rapid reaction forces. Last June, outgoing U.S. Army Africa commander Major General Darryl Williams drew attention to a CSL in Uganda and one being set up in Botswana, adding, “We have very austere, lean, lily pads, if you will, all over Africa now.” CSL Entebbe in Uganda has, for example, long been an important air base for American forces in Africa, serving as a hub for surveillance aircraft. It also proved integral to Operation Oaken Steel, the July 2016 rapid deployment of troops to the U.S. Embassy in Juba, South Sudan, as that failed state (and failed U.S. nation-building effort) sank into yet more violence. Libreville, Gabon, is listed in the documents as a “proposed CSL,” but was actually used in 2014 and 2015 as a key base for Operation Echo Casemate, the joint U.S.-French-African military response to unrest in the Central African Republic. AFRICOM’s 2015 plan also lists cooperative security locations in Accra, Ghana; Gaborone, Botswana; Dakar, Senegal; Douala, Cameroon; Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso; and Mombasa, Kenya. While officially defined by the military as temporary locales capable of being scaled up for larger operations, any of these CSLs in Africa “may also function as a major logistics hub,” according to the documents. Contingency Plans The formerly secret AFRICOM files note that the command has designated five contingency locations as “semi-permanent,” 13 as “temporary,” and four as “initial.” These include a number of sites that have never previously been disclosed, including outposts in several countries that were actually at war when the documents were created. Listed among the CLs, for instance, is one in Juba, the capital of South Sudan, already in the midst of an ongoing civil war in 2014; one in Bangui, the capital of the periodically unstable Central African Republic; and another in Al-Wigh, a Saharan airfield in southern Libya located near that country’s borders with Niger, Chad, and Algeria. Officially classified as “non-enduring” locations, CLs are nonetheless among the most integral sites for U.S. operations on the continent. Today, according to AFRICOM’s Prichard, the 31 contingency locations provide “access to support partners, counter threats, and protect U.S. interests in East, North, and West Africa.” AFRICOM did not provide the specific locations of the current crop of CLs, stating only that they “strive to increase access in crucial areas.” The 2015 plans, however, provide ample detail on the areas that were most important to the command at that time. One such site is Camp Simba in Manda Bay, Kenya, also mentioned in a 2013 internal Pentagon study on secret drone operations in Somalia and Yemen. At least two manned surveillance aircraft were based there at the time. Chabelley Airfield in Djibouti is also mentioned in AFRICOM’s 2015 plan. Once a spartan French Foreign Legion post, it has undergone substantial expansion in recent years as U.S. drone operations in that country were moved from Camp Lemonnier to this more remote location. It soon became a regional hub for unmanned aircraft not just for Africa but also for the Middle East. By the beginning of October 2015, for example, drones flown from Chabelley had already logged more than 24,000 hours of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions and were also, according to the Air Force, “responsible for the neutralization of 69 enemy fighters, including five high-valued individuals” in the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. AFRICOM’s inventory of CLs also includes sites in Nzara, South Sudan; Arlit, Niger; both Bamako and Gao, Mali; Kasenyi, Uganda; Victoria, the capital of the Seychelles; Monrovia, Liberia; Ouassa and Nema, Mauritania; Faya Largeau, Chad; Bujumbura, Burundi; Lakipia, the site of a Kenyan Air Force base; and another Kenyan airfield at Wajir that was upgraded and expanded by the U.S. Navy earlier in this decade, as well as an outpost in Arba Minch, Ethiopia, that was reportedly shuttered in 2015 after nearly five years of operation. A longtime contingency location in Niamey, the capital of Niger, has seen marked growth in recent years as has a more remote location, a Nigerien military base at Agadez, listed among the “proposed” CSLs in the AFRICOM documents. The U.S. is, in fact, pouring $100 million into building up the base, according to a 2016 investigation by the Intercept. N’Djamena, Chad, the site of yet another “proposed CSL,” has actually been used by the U.S. military for years. Troops and a drone were dispatched there in 2014 to aid in operations against Boko Haram and “base camp facilities” were constructed there, too. The list of proposed CLs also includes sites in Berbera, a town in the self-declared Republic of Somaliland, and in Mogadishu, the capital of neighboring Somalia (another locale used by American troops for years), as well as the towns of Baidoa and Bosaso. These or other outposts are likely to play increasingly important roles as the Trump administration ramps up its military activities in Somalia, the long-failed state that saw 18 U.S. personnel killed in the disastrous “Black Hawk Down” mission of 1993. Last month, for instance, President Trump relaxed rules aimed at preventing civilian casualties when the U.S. conducts drone strikes and commando raids in that country and so laid the foundation for a future escalation of the war against al-Shabaab there. This month, AFRICOM confirmed that dozens of soldiers from the Army’s 101st Airborne Division, a storied light infantry unit, would be deployed to that same country in order to train local forces to, as a spokesperson put it, “better fight” al-Shabaab. Many other sites previously identified as U.S. outposts or staging areas are not listed in AFRICOM’s 2015 plans, such as bases in Djema, Sam Ouandja, and Obo in the Central African Republic that were revealed, in recent years, by the Washington Post. Also missing is a newer drone base in Garoua, Cameroon, not to mention that Tunisian air base where the U.S. has been flying drones, according to AFRICOM’s Waldhauser, “for quite some time.” The command’s physical footprint may, in fact, have been its most jealously guarded secret. Some bases may have been shuttered, while others may not yet have been put in service when the documents were produced. Ultimately, the reasons that these and many other previously identified bases are not included in the redacted secret files are unclear due to AFRICOM’s refusal to offer comment, clarification, or additional information on the locations of its bases. Base Desires “Just as the U.S. pursues strategic interests in Africa, international competitors, including China and Russia, are doing the same,” laments AFRICOM in its 2017 posture statement. “We continue to see international competitors engage with African partners in a manner contrary to the international norms of transparency.” Since it was established as an independent command in 2008, however, AFRICOM itself has been anything but transparent about its activities on the continent. The command’s physical footprint may, in fact, have been its most jealously guarded secret. Today, thanks to AFRICOM’s own internal documents, that secret is out and with AFRICOM’s admission that it currently maintains “15 enduring locations,” the long-peddled fiction of a combatant command with just one base in its area of operations has been laid to rest. “Because of the size of Africa, because of the time and space and the distances, when it comes to special crisis-response-type activities, we need access in various places on the continent,” said AFRICOM chief Waldhauser during his March press conference. These “various places” have also been integral to escalating American shadow wars, including a full-scale air campaign against the Islamic State in Libya, dubbed Operation Odyssey Lightning, which ended late last year, and ongoing intelligence-gathering missions and a continued U.S. troop presence in that country; drone assassinations and increased troop deployments in Somalia to counter al-Shabaab; and increasing engagement in a proxy war against Boko Haram militants in the Lake Chad region of Central Africa. For these and many more barely noticed U.S. military missions, America’s sprawling, ever-expanding network of bases provides the crucial infrastructure for cross-continental combat by U.S. and allied forces, a low-profile support system for war-making in Africa and beyond. Without its wide-ranging constellation of bases, it would be nearly impossible for the U.S. to carry out ceaseless low-profile military activities across the continent. As a result, AFRICOM continues to prefer shadows to sunlight. While the command provided figures on the total number of U.S. military bases, outposts, and staging areas in Africa, its spokespeople failed to respond to repeated requests to provide locations for any of the 46 current sites. While the whereabouts of the new outposts may still be secret, there’s little doubt as to the trajectory of America’s African footprint, which has increased by 10 locations ― a 28% jump ― in just over two years. America’s “enduring” African bases “give the United States options in the event of crisis and enable partner capacity building,” according to AFRICOM’s Chuck Prichard. They have also played a vital role in conflicts from Yemen to Iraq, Nigeria to Somalia. With the Trump administration escalating its wars in Africa and the Middle East, and the potential for more crises ― from catastrophic famines to spreading wars ― on the horizon, there’s every reason to believe the U.S. military’s footprint on the continent will continue to evolve, expand, and enlarge in the years ahead, outpost by outpost and base by base. Nick Turse is the managing editor of TomDispatch, a fellow at the Nation Institute, and a contributing writer for the Intercept. His latest book, Next Time They’ll Come to Count the Dead: War and Survival in South Sudan, was a finalist for the 2016 Investigative Reporters and Editors Book Award. His website is NickTurse.com. Follow TomDispatch on Twitter and join us on Facebook. Check out the newest Dispatch Book, John Dower’s The Violent American Century: War and Terror Since World War II, as well as John Feffer’s dystopian novel Splinterlands, Nick Turse’s Next Time They’ll Come to Count the Dead, and Tom Engelhardt’s Shadow Government: Surveillance, Secret Wars, and a Global Security State in a Single-Superpower World. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.
Ну абсолютно актуальный опрос (от 1 марта прошлого года)На опрос натолкнул пост: http://burckina-faso.livejournal.com/1458093.html Должен сразу сказать, что цену разрушенного в деньгах, золоте и т.п. эквивалентах определить очень сложно. Объективный параметр это человеческие жизни и трудозатраты в рабочем временем при возведении этих объектов. Чтобы всё время не приводить данные Буркина-Фасо и не выглядеть необъективным и односторонним приведём Кричевского: http://nkrichevsky.livejournal.com/6569.html Ну а по разрушенным предприятиям в посту Буркины -Фасо цифры есть. Высказываемся.Заброшенный заводView Poll: Кто нанёс больший материальный ущерб России, фашисты или нынешний режим?Председатель Правительства РФ Д.А. МедведевНАЖМИЗато предлагается памятники Ленину сносить для полного счастьяЕсть ещё такой не очень новый, но наглядный материал: http://www.aif.ru/money/business/14353
The UN Web TV Channel is available 24 hours a day with selected live programming of United Nations meetings and events as well as with pre-recorded video features and documentaries on various global issues. Watch more Live and on-demand events in six languages directly from UN Web TV at: http://webtv.un.org UNTVchannel/ Live Schedule/ Wednesday, 26 April 10:00 16th Session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues 12:00 Daily Briefing, Guest: David Shearer, Special Representative for South Sudan and Head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) 3:00 Meeting: “Identifying and Mitigating Long-term Consequences of the Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster: Building the Case for Continued International Cooperation” Evening Schedule: 8:00pm Daily Briefing with Guest - IAEA – Protecting the Forests – Nuclear Science against Illegal Logging
The UN Web TV Channel is available 24 hours a day with selected live programming of United Nations meetings and events as well as with pre-recorded video features and documentaries on various global issues. Watch more Live and on-demand events in six languages directly from UN Web TV at: http://webtv.un.org UNTVchannel/ Live Schedule/ Friday, 21 April 10:00 General Assembly - Interactive dialogue on Harmony with Nature to commemorate the International Mother Earth 12:00 Daily Briefing 3:00 General Assembly - Interactive dialogue on Harmony with Nature to commemorate the International Mother Earth Evening Schedule: 8:00pm Daily Briefing - General Assembly – Mother Earth Day – AM Meeting - UNHCR: Refugee Innovators o Rwanda – Eco-friendly Stoves o Niger – Gas Stoves o Burkina Faso – Crafts and Design - Global Connections, Guest: Amrita Sietaram, ILO Bureau for Worker Activities
Burkina Faso police have staged a nationwide protest, calling it the first in a series of peaceful demonstrations against corruption and a lack of transparency among their leaders.
Prosecutors say the accused filmed himself touching two young girls in a hotel pool in Burkina Faso.