Unacceptable foreign occupations by US forces

Interfering in the internal affairs of other countries is flagrantly illegal under the UN Charter and other international law—that’s automatically US constitutional law.

Yet throughout the post-WW II period and earlier, the US repeatedly waged war on nations worldwide by hot and other means.

Its forces occupy most world community countries, including by secret one-sided status of forces (SOFA) agreements—serving its own interests exclusively at the expense of (occupied) host nations and their people.

The presence of US occupying forces abroad assures trouble, including numerous instances of murder, rape, theft, drunken driving, and other crimes.

Local populations also endure unacceptable noise, pollution, environmental destruction, appropriated public land, along with breaches of domestic laws.

Locals lose control over their lives and welfare. They have no say and virtually no chance for redress against offenses harming them.

Wherever Pentagon forces arrive abroad, their mission is advancing US imperial aims, locals paying the price for their actions.

According to the Overseas Base Realignment and Closure Coalition, around 95% of foreign military bases are US ones.

In his book titled “Base Nation: How US Military Bases Abroad Harm America and the World,” David Vine explained that hundreds of Pentagon bases worldwide are off-the-books.

“Undocumented [they’re] immune [from] oversight by the public and often even Congress,” said Vine, adding, “Bases are a physical manifestation of US foreign and military policy, so off-the-books bases mean the military and executive branch are deciding such policy without public debate, frequently spending hundreds of millions or billions of dollars and potentially getting the US involved in wars and conflicts about which most of the country knows nothing.”

“US bases abroad cost upwards of $50 billion per year to build and maintain, which is money that could be used to address pressing needs at home in education, health care, housing, and infrastructure.”

Vine’s book was published in 2015.

Because of monumental Pentagon waste, fraud, and abuse, countless billions more annually most likely were poured down a black hole to maintain its empire of bases and conduct operations worldwide.

Countless trillions of dollars have gone missing from the federal budget for so-called national security at a time when America’s only enemies are invented.

According to investigative journalist Nick Turse, “Murder, sexual assault, and other crimes plague our military operations abroad,” adding that they’ve been involved in “massacres [of civilians], [other] unjustified killings… prisoner abuse, child rape, child sexual abuse, mutilations, and other crimes, as well as drug trafficking and the theft of government property…”

Time and again, US Green Berets, Rangers, SEALs, and other special forces are involved.

Despite documented “malfeasance, SOCOM’s Comprehensive Review… largely absolved the command and its commandos of responsibility for” criminality, Turse explained, adding, “With thousands of commandos operating—with little visibility—in scores of countries on any given day, it’s little wonder that discipline has eroded to a point where the command could neither fully gloss over nor cover it up”—despite going all-out trying.

The same goes for US forces in all Pentagon commands, especially in war theaters.

In his book titled: “Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam,” Turse documented atrocities committed by US forces during a decade of preemptive war on a nonbelligerent country threatening no one.

The same and similar things have gone on in all US wars.

In Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Syria, and elsewhere, countless numbers of noncombatant men, women, and children paid the ultimate price for US aggression, their lives lost.

In his book titled: “The ‘Good Soldier’ On Trial: A Sociological Study of Misconduct by the US Military Pertaining to Operation Iron Triangle, Iraq,” Professor Stjepan Mestrovic documented hundreds of lawless incidents.

They included brigade commander/Col. Michael Steele’s order to “kill all military age males” on sight.

Neither he or his superiors were charged with war crimes and other atrocities committed—nor their counterparts in other commands throughout Bush/Cheney’s war.

Corporate-controlled establishment media at least largely suppress this information.

Whenever the US goes to war, terror-bombings, mass killings by drones, search and destroy missions, free-fire zones, execution squads, kill anything that moves orders, take no prisoners, torture, and other atrocities reflect official US practices.

Rules of engagement are shrouded in secrecy, the rule of law ignored.

After Trump announced US troop drawdowns in Afghanistan, Iraq, and entirely removing them from Somalia—nations and others where none belong—establishment media questioned the moves.

The NYT warned of what it called “catastrophic consequences—such as when the United States pulled out of Iraq at the end of 2011, leaving a vacuum that fostered the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (sic).”

As followers of reliable alternative media know, the US created the Islamic State (ISIS), al-Qaeda, and likeminded terrorist groups— using them as proxy Pentagon forces in war and other theaters where they’re deployed.

Like other mass media, the Times questioned the drawdown of (illegally present) US forces from Syria, saying:

They’re “partly [in the country] to protect [sic] coveted oil fields held by American-backed Syrian Kurdish allies from being seized by the government of President Bashar al-Assad (sic).”

Syrian territory, oil, and other resources belong to the nation and its people.

Its legitimate government in Damascus is charged with protecting the nation’s sovereignty.

The presence of US forces and their terrorist proxies are major breaches of international law.

So is the theft of a nation’s resources—what the Times and other corporate media never explain.

They failed to report the grand theft of Syrian oil by US forces, transporting it cross-border for refining and sale.

The Times and other establishment media support all US preemptive wars on invented enemies, along with foreign occupations where Pentagon forces don’t belong—their presence unrelated to national security.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.” Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

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