U.S. Is Said to Expand Secret Military Acts in Mideast Region

The top American commander in the Middle East has ordered a broad expansion of clandestine military activity in an effort to disrupt militant groups or counter threats in Iran, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and other countries in the region, according to defense officials and military documents.

The secret directive, signed in September by Gen. David H. Petraeus, authorizes the sending of American Special Operations troops to both friendly and hostile nations in the Middle East, Central Asia and the Horn of Africa to gather intelligence and build ties with local forces. Officials said the order also permits reconnaissance that could pave the way for possible military strikes in Iran if tensions over its nuclear ambitions escalate.

While the Bush administration had approved some clandestine military activities far from designated war zones, the new order is intended to make such efforts more systematic and long term, officials said. Its goals are to build networks that could “penetrate, disrupt, defeat or destroy” Al Qaeda and other militant groups, as well as to “prepare the environment” for future attacks by American or local military forces, the document said. The order, however, does not appear to authorize offensive strikes in any specific countries.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Middle East, Somalia, Terrorism

5 comments on “U.S. Is Said to Expand Secret Military Acts in Mideast Region

  1. AnglicanFirst says:

    Well, thanks to those with a disregard for national security, what was SECRET is no longer SECRET.

  2. Pb says:

    I thought everything that Bush did was wrong.

  3. Cennydd says:

    I remember an axiom in football which says “Never telegraph your plays to the opposite team if you want to win the game.” I think General Petraeus telegraphed his plays.

  4. Cennydd says:

    Or some Big Mouth who can’t keep his or her mouth shut did.

  5. AnglicanFirst says:

    “I think General Petraeus telegraphed his plays.”

    If General Petraeus was the classifying authoritla then he could declassify what he calssified if he were the only source of the classified info in a classified document. This is unlikely. Especially for career senior officers whose second priority, after sucessfully carrying out their assigned duties, is usually their careers.

    This leak of “SECRET” info could have been done by proper authority for other reasons related to national security.

    Or, it is just another case of some person(s) taking it upon himself/themselves to pursue a personal/political/ideological agenda by illegally making public classified info.