Mali

Belgians and Danes Join French-Led Mali Intervention With American Goodies

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The French-led intervention in Mali is gathering more support. British, American, and Canadian support was offered in the form of transport planes as well as communication and intelligence assistance. Today, Denmark and Belgium offered to help with the growing mission in Mali. 

The Danes are sending a C-130 Hercules transport plane, which will not take part in combat operations but will be providing logistical support. Danish Foreign Minister Villy Søvndal said he thought that sending assistance was necessary despite possibly making Denmark a target of terrorism:

I think we let the people of Mali down if we don't go in and help in the situation. We also risk Mali becoming the next hotbed of terrorism and extremism, and I don't want any part of that,

Belgium has offered to send two C-130 Hercules transport planes, two helicopters, and 75 troops. A meeting of E.U. ministers is scheduled for Thursday when it is expected that a 400 to 500-strong European force will be announced.

While the number of countries getting involved in the intervention in Mali is growing it is important to remember which country produces much of the equipment they are sending. The British, Canadians, Danes, and Belgians are all sending transport planes made by American companies. The C-17 Globemaster III, used by the Royal Air Force and the Royal Canadian Air Force, is made by Boeing and the C-130 Hercules is made by Lockheed Martin.

There have been concerns that the French intervention could lead to terrorist attacks in Europe, concerns that seem justified in light of recent warnings from the Taliban. France has tightened security since the start of the intervention, a move that included sending 700 troops to Paris. 

French President François Hollande has said that he doesn't want France to have a permanent presence in Mali and that French troops will leave once an African force is ready to take over. Officials from ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) will finalize their plans relating to Mali on Friday. Only after the plans are made will Hollande get a better idea of how long French troops will be staying in Mali.

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  1. French troops will leave once an African force is ready to take over

    The US will leave Afghanistan once an Afghan force is ready to take over.

  2. If Europe has all this firepower to spare that they can send it into Mali, why then is the United States footing so much for their defense?

    1. Fist of Etiquette| 1.15.13 @ 5:12PM |#
      “If Europe has all this firepower to spare that they can send it into Mali…”

      Not sure the Euros do. I recall reading an article on the Somalii pirates where the US had to fuel parts of the French fleet so the French could ‘assist’.
      How you gonna pay for all those 8-week vacations and early retirements if you pay for defense?

    2. I wouldn’t call a handful of cargo planes, a few helicopters and 400 to 500 troops a lot of firepower. In fact that’s pretty pathetic. Probably because they don’t have to pay for their own “defense”.

    3. They have practically no military these days. They have the U.S.

      1. Pro Libertate| 1.15.13 @ 6:43PM |#
        …”They have the U.S.”

        For which they pay zero and at least under a Repub administration, they get to gripe about the damn ‘cowboys’ saving their sorry asses.

        1. It’s really a great deal for Europe. Until we go imperial and annex their asses. But they should enjoy it while they can, I say.

          1. Ya know, I’d propose Putin save their sorry asses, and they get what they’ve always wanted; a release from making any moral decisions at all!
            They can become the same idiotic slime as shithead and let the government tell them what is correct thought! And, let them get the result.

        2. I thought Germany, Japan, and S. Korea had to pay us for their defense.

  3. “Belgium has offered to send two C-130 Hercules transport planes, two helicopters, and 75 troops.”

    And France offers two guys and a pop-gun.
    WIH is this? The Shootout at the OK Corral?

    1. Nope. Those guys had guts and conviction.

      Also, remember that Belgium is just an itty-bitty France with a German accent.

      1. Whatever, dude. The Belgians kept the Congo under their boot for a century.

        1. And that gives you an imperialism boner, doesn’t it? They behaved so badly the Germans took time from machinegunning tribesmen in S.W. Afrika to object.

      2. Dutch accent man, Dutch.

  4. Hey armchair generals, what is the size of the enemy force in Mali? Maybe they don’t need a carrier group and the 101st Airborne to deal with a ragtag bunch of dudes with RPGs and AKs.

    1. I’m thinking just due to area concerns they need some pbodies. The breakaway provinces are what, 315,000 square miles? You ain’t handling that without air cover or bodies.

      1. Their military is 7,000 men. If Belgium and France want to try knocking ’em back with a few platoons and a dozen SAWs (or equiv.), I approve of the minimalist approach.

        Of course, real minimalism would be to let them go to hell their own way.

  5. It’s very disappointing how over the years the word intervention has taken on a positive tone.

  6. I’m goin’ back to Mali
    To Mali, to Mali
    I’m goin’ back to Mali.

    I don’t think so.

  7. Ladies and gentlemen, attention please
    Come in close so everyone can see
    I got a tale to tell
    A listen don’t cost a dime
    And if you believe that we’re gonna get along just fine

    Now I’ve been travelin’ all around
    I heard trouble’s come to your town
    Well I’ve got a little somethin’
    Guaranteed to ease your mind
    It’s call Snake Oil y’all
    It’s been around for a long, long time

    Say, your crops’ll burn if it don’t rain soon
    Ain’t seen a drop since the tenth of June
    Well I can open up the sky
    People never fear
    If you ain’t impressed yet, just tell me what you wanna hear

    Well you lost your farm so you moved to town
    You get a job, they shut the factory down
    Now you sit around all day long feelin’ sad and blue
    You need Snake Oil y’all, tell you what I’m gonna do

    I can heal the sick, I can mend the lame
    And the blind shall see again, it’s all the same

    Well ain’t your President good to you
    Knocked ’em dead in Libya, Afghanistan too
    Now he’s taking his show a little further down the line
    Well, ‘tween me and him people, you’re gonna get along just fine

    1. The goddam infantile belief in pixy-dust!
      For pete’s sake, grow up and act like a moral agent!
      (not aimed at you, GS)

      1. That song encapsulates the current political zeitgeist pretty damn well, considering it was written 25 years ago.

        Hell, all I had to do to update it was change a single word.

        1. Don’t recognize it from the lyrics; title, please?

  8. Would it be better/different/anything if they were using Airbuses? Or Russian planes?

    Are Americans supposed to feel guilt or some such because Danes bought some airlift capacity and are using it to fight Al Quaeda in Mali?

    Seriously, Reason?

    Is the headline remotely relevant?

    I mean, if the US Government had given the Danes those planes, that’d be one thing, but it sure looks like they just purchased them from Boeing like anyone else.

    Who cares?

    1. “I mean, if the US Government had given the Danes those planes, that’d be one thing, but it sure looks like they just purchased them from Boeing like anyone else.”

      Uh, are you familiar with foreign government weapons procurement rules and ‘assistance’?
      It’s probably true that the things were not turned over at zero cost to either of the countries, but it’s an odds-on bet that the US taxpayer is on the hook for at least half of the stated cost.

    2. The C-130 is actually made by lockheed martin, and is one of only 5 aircraft ever to have been continually used by its origional primary customer (U.S.) for more that 50 years. Boeing, however, is responsible for converting them to AC-130 gunships, which are incredibly badass. Imagine that plane in the picture decked out with a 105mm howitzer and a couple 40mm cannons. Now thats some fucking air support.

  9. The Belgians, huh. Well, they’ve never done anything bad in Africa.

    1. Buddy Holly, “Ben Hur”, space monkey, Mafia
      Hula hoops, Castro, Edsel is a no-go

      U-2, Syngman Rhee, payola and Kennedy
      Chubby Checker, “Psycho”, Belgians in the Congo

    2. Such as, most recently, pull out the Belgian peacekeeping contingent during the Rwanda Genocide and let the Hutus massacre the Tutsis. [Rothbard]Because, after all, if a Hutu wants to kill a Tutsi, that’s between the two of them, and nobody elses’ business. Protecting the Tutsi would be wicked interventionist empire-building imperialist hegemony. And a violation of national sovereignty — but please overlook the bizarre contradiction of an anarchist shedding tears over the rights of nation-states.[/Rothbard]

    3. I just see them riding their bikes around in the mud, a FN F2000 awkwardly balanced in the straw basket.

  10. There have been concerns that the French intervention could lead to terrorist attacks in Europe

    No, it can’t be possible! How are all of these Islamists going to get into France? Oh, that’s right, they are already there, and they burn a few cars now and then, just for fun.

  11. Sometimes dude, you j\jsut gotta throw \your hands up in the air man.

    http://www.make-anon.tk

  12. Go Europe! Go Europe!

    I bet their pilots are playing some Kraftwerk as they bomb the violent Islamists to death.

    Okay… let’s be real. They’re bombing these guys to Tiesto or some such.

    Suck it Islamists!

  13. There have been concerns that the French intervention could lead to terrorist attacks in Europe, concerns that seem justified in light of recent warnings from the Taliban.

    Completely irrespective of whether they should be fighting there, the one thing no one should do is make a decision because of terrorist’s threats. Or are you advocating going to sharia law because terrorists said they would attack us otherwise?

    1. Reason itself said fuck you to blowback and published the Mohammad Cartoons and celebrated draw the Prophet Muhammad day.

      Yet, now they’re bellowing about the blowback that might happen in France by people already living there.

      Reason needs to sort its staff out I think.

      1. Not sure how that argument supports your beliefs. You and your ilk are more of the opinion that Muslims hate America more for things like defaming Muhammad than say, occupation, supporting dictators, and drone strikes.

        1. What’s my ilk again?

          1. Bloodthirsty paranoid psychopath chicken hawks. That’s your ilk.

            1. Bloodthirsty psychopath maybe, but chicken hawk never!

              And bloodthirsty psychopaths are the very people who control Timbuktu today. Exciting prospect for so many innocents there, especially the women. Heads will roll and limbs will be severed. Yay, the citizens of Timbuktu shouldn’t be paranoid or anything.

              1. No no no. You just don’t understand, Lyle. If Party A initiates forces against Party B, that doesn’t justify Party C using force to stop Party A. It’s nobody’s business but Party A and Party B. And if Party C does stop Party A, and Party D, disappointed at not seeing Party B exterminated, uses force against Party C, well, Party C deserves it. Blowback, don’t you now? Serves Party C right for being so unlibertarian as to… err… do something about initiation of force. I think.

      2. Umm, dude, you do realize that there is a difference between drawing cartoons and blowing the fuck out of actual people and their families, don’t you?

        I am not sure what you are trying to say, but let me sum it up for you what I am saying.

        You can’t take a joke? Fuck you. You don’t like me blowing up your family and killing them? I am fair game.

        Do you get it now? There is a difference between free speech and aggression resulting in death.

        I am sure that anyone outside of retard liberals understand that.

        1. Dude you do understand there is difference between killing some to protect others and just killing them to kill them.

          If Reason was willing to risk some violence against themselves for posting some Islamist upsetting cartoons, it should cut France and others some slack we’re willing to risk some violence to save the people and culture of Timbuktu.

          Western civilization… what fucking side is Reason really on? They need to make their mind up.

            1. … and for, not we’re. goddamn i’m a sloppy typist.

  14. PFFT! Wake me up when the Norwegians get involved.

  15. “Thank God the Belgians are here!”

    –No one, ever.

  16. I am wide open to the possibility that “it is important to remember which country produces much of the equipment they are sending.”

    But I haven’t the faintest idea why Matthew Feeney thinks it is important. In fact, he wasn’t even clear whether it was important in a good way or a bad way.

    Any help would be appreciated.

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