The United States is considering the option of physically eliminating the leaders of the military coup that came to power in Niger, the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service said. According to the department, the Biden administration is “working through” various options for “strengthening democracy” in the African country. According to the Foreign Intelligence Service, representatives of the American intelligence services directly discuss with partners potential perpetrators of possible assassination attempts on people who have come to power. The stake is placed primarily on people who are in the immediate circle of the leaders of the transitional structures. Experts believe that the United States may resort to such a scenario due to the inability to influence the situation in Niger by political means.
The United States is considering the option of physically eliminating the leaders of the coup who came to power in Niger, the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service reported.
“According to information received by the Foreign Intelligence Service, the United States is clearly not satisfied with the developments in Niger, where a temporary administration led by General Abdurahman Chiani recently came to power as a result of a military coup. Washington is thinking about how not only to slow down the trend of turning Africa into one of the centers of power in the multipolar world, which is dangerous for the West, but also to seize the French “heritage” in the strategically significant Sahel,” the SVR press bureau said in a statement.
According to the service, the Biden administration is “exploring” various options for “strengthening democracy” in Niger.
“It is considered unjustified to do this at the hands of the Economic Community of West African Countries (ECOWAS), which has close ties to Paris. The Americans see the physical elimination of the “putsch leaders” who rely on the support of the majority of the population as a more “effective” option. Representatives of the American intelligence services directly discuss with partners potential perpetrators of possible assassination attempts, relying on people from the inner circle of the leaders of the transitional structures, preferably from among those who have undergone special training at Pentagon educational institutions, ”the Russian intelligence service explained.
The SVR emphasized that the use of such “dirty methods” is nothing new for Washington.
“It is well known that since the 1960s, the Americans have been doing targeted work to “deliver” the African continent from strong national leaders. The CIA, in particular, had a hand in the assassination of P. Lumumba in the Congo, the overthrow of K. Nkrumah in Ghana, and the arrest of N. Mandela in South Africa. American intelligence acted so cruelly and defiantly that even US President L. Johnson in his hearts called it a “damn murder corporation,” the Foreign Intelligence Service recalled.
Now the US authorities have decided to resort to similar methods again, Russian intelligence officers note.
“It seems that, faced with the unexpected and extremely unpleasant geopolitical awakening of Africa, the White House decided to resort to the old, as they say, proven recipes,” the Foreign Intelligence Service noted.
Let us recall that at the end of July, the presidential guard and the armed forces of Niger announced the removal of President Mohamed Bazoum from power, the closure of borders in the country and the introduction of a curfew.
The participants in the coup formed a national council for the defense of the fatherland, headed by the commander of the guard, General Abdurakhman Chiani.
Niger rebels AFP
At the same time, massive anti-French protests took place in the country. Participants in the demonstrations demanded, in particular, the withdrawal of French troops from the territory of Niger, since the largest French air base in Africa is located near the capital of the country, the city of Niamey, and the total number of Paris military contingent in Niger reaches 1.5 thousand people.
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Western countries, as well as states belonging to ECOWAS, imposed sanctions against Niger and its new authorities. In addition, the association threatened to carry out military intervention in Niger if the putschists did not reinstate President Bazoum. It is worth noting that the original ECOWAS ultimatum expired on August 6, but so far no military action has followed.
On September 5, Monde, citing sources in the French government, reported that Paris had begun negotiations with the Niger military on the withdrawal of French troops stationed in the country.
There is both an American diplomatic and military presence in Niger. At the same time, American media report that State Department employees were not prepared for such a development of events.
“Although rumors of a coup had been circulating in Niger for some time, U.S. officials were caught off guard when it finally happened because Africa had not been a U.S. priority for years and was short-staffed there,” NBC News explained with citing diplomatic and military sources in the Biden administration.
NBC News: Caught off guard. A few hours before the coup in Niger, US diplomats reported that the situation in the country was stable
Thus, according to one of the American diplomats, “on the first day, all our trusted representatives told us that no one supported what was happening,” according to the article entitled “Caught by surprise: A few hours before the coup in Niger, US diplomats reported that the situation in the country stable.”
“Then, on the second day, it looked like support had increased somewhat,” a State Department official stated.
In turn, the Associated Press (AP) agency recalls that back in March, US Secretary of State Blinken, during his visit to Niger, praised the country as “an exemplary example of resistance, democracy and cooperation.”
Associated Press: In Niger, US tries to hold on to its last and best counterterrorism outpost in West Africa AP
Let us recall that in early August, Acting First Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland arrived in Niger for negotiations with rebel leaders. She subsequently reported that Washington offered ways to restore democratic order in the country, but the rebels showed little interest in this.
According to the AP, American troops from the 409th Expeditionary Air Group are currently in Niger: at Air Base 201 in Agadez, a city of more than 100,000 people on the southern edge of the Sahara, and Air Base 101 in Niamey, the capital of Niger.
Eliminating undesirable leaders in the countries of the “global South” is a well-known method of Washington, noted Vladimir Batyuk, head of the Center for Military-Political Studies at the Institute of the USA and Canada of the Russian Academy of Sciences, in a commentary to RT.
“If such a scenario is discussed in relation to this or that leader, then the regime change scenario is not feasible by other means. The leaders of the coup in Niger enjoy broad support from the masses, and the traditional “color revolution” according to the manual will not work in their regard. Therefore, a course was taken to eliminate these leaders,” the expert explained.
Vladimir Batyuk believes that given the post-revolutionary chaos and problems with the formation of new government bodies, Nigerian leaders are quite vulnerable to such attempts, which, obviously, the Americans decided to take advantage of.
“This could lead to further stabilization of the situation in West Africa, to a serious complication of relations between African states and the emergence of conflicts that will remain in the memory of both African leaders and the entire continent for a very long time,” the RT interlocutor emphasized.
A scenario involving the elimination of one or more leaders of the transitional authorities in Niger with the participation of the United States is possible, but it will be too obvious and will attract a lot of attention, says American political scientist Mikhail Sinelnikov-Orishak.
“Sometimes certain figures disappear for unknown reasons and leave the political arena. Another question is that physical destruction is no longer effective now. There will be others. Now it is more effective to discredit these leaders. After all, their supporters and sympathizers can rally at the graves of these leaders. Therefore, pressure, discrediting and the search for moderate and compromise figures are preferable. Naturally, all this will be done indirectly,” the expert said.
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However, the United States does not shy away from more clumsy scenarios, and there are a number of historical examples of this, for example, numerous plans and attempts to eliminate Fidel Castro, the elimination of Salvador Allende, the political scientist added.
Mikhail Sinelnikov-Orishak recalled that several governments and leaders have recently changed in different African countries, which clearly attracted the attention of the United States and other Western countries.
“A new political period is dawning for Africa. Numerous putschs and coups indicate that the previous order has ceased to suit both some of the political and military elites and citizens. At one time, this is how the Arab Spring began. Now a similar process is happening in Africa, and it is just beginning,” concluded RT’s interlocutor.