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Terrorism & Security

How US special forces help in the hunt for Joseph Kony (+video)

Some 100 Special Forces soldiers are advising and training regional troops searching for Joseph Kony, leader of the Lord's Resistance Army, in central Africa.

By Correspondent / April 30, 2012

U.S. Army special forces Captain Gregory, from Texas, right, who would only give his first name in accordance with special forces security guidelines, speaks with troops from the Central African Republic and Uganda, in Obo, Central African Republic, Sunday, April 29. Obo was the first place in the Central African Republic that Joseph Kony's Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) attacked in 2008.

Ben Curtis/AP


Among those hunting for Joseph Kony and his Lord's Resistance Army in central Africa are 100 US Special Forces soldiers spread out in four bases in Central Africa. The American troops' primary mission there is to advise and train regional forces as they search for the warlord who has evaded capture since 2008.

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What role do US Special Forces play in the hunt for Joseph Kony?

“Kony is definitely still a threat. He's been on the run. He's on the decline, and in survival mode, but he is still dangerous and he's going to be dangerous until the LRA are eliminated,” said a US Special Forces soldier during an interview with CNN. Special forces soldiers are not allowed to use their name in media interviews. “We help our partner nation forces ask the right questions – the who, the what, the when, the where, and the why – to get all the information.”

US military officials say they were partially influenced to recommit troops to the effort to target the LRA after a March 2012 video by the organization “Invisible Children” went viral, drawing renewed attention onto Kony and the LRA, reports the Wall Street Journal. President Obama announced the special forces deployment in October 2011

Despite the present attention now focused on US support of African forces pursuing the LRA, which was originally based in Uganda, the US has provided support to the Ugandan military to help their efforts against the group for years now. Much of the efforts have been shrouded in secrecy due to the complicated relationship between the US and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, who is accused of arresting and harassing political rivals and engaging in corrupt electoral practices.


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