Saying that the United States of America is conducting the most comprehensive aggression against the world might seem like an overreaction. However, when declassified intelligence reveals that the belligerent power in decline has launched proxy wars and illegal military-intelligence operations, better known as "black ops", in at least 23 countries in as little as 3 years, that's when we realize that this American aggression against the world is very real. According to The Intercept, an American non-profit news organization, the Pentagon spent at least $310 million on launching 23 proxy wars and major black ops between 2017 and 2020, targeting Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Tunisia, Niger, Somalia and many other countries.
The US has used the secretive 127e authorization protocol to "legally" conduct the 23 proxy wars in those 3 years. Naturally, the US definition of "legal" is questionable at best, given its horrendous track record of illegal invasions across the globe and thousands, possibly even more, illegal detention centers around the world, run by the CIA, NSA and numerous other US three-letter intelligence agencies. The self-proclaimed exterritoriality of US laws is as illegal as it could possibly be. And yet, the US insists it can dictate other countries to comply with those same laws, despite the fact that there is no conceivable mechanism to make this belligerent approach legal.
According to The Intercept, it obtained the relevant documents through the Freedom of Information Act. According to their report, this is the first official confirmation of America's participation in the so-called "127e programs", of which 14 were in the Middle East, with the rest focused on the Asia-Pacific region. The Intercept claims to have received additional confirmation of this from sources in the US government who are familiar with those programs.
The Intercept reports that 127e is one of the virtually unknown powers that Congress has given to the US Department of Defense in the last two decades. The act gives US special forces the authority to conduct "counter-terrorist operations" in cooperation with foreign and even "irregular forces" (i.e. terrorists) around the world with minimal oversight by officials of the countries in which they are being conducted. The program allows Americans to arm, train and provide intelligence to these forces. However, unlike similar, more traditional forms of cooperation with other countries, the purpose of 127e is to make "partner" forces unequivocally follow orders from Washington DC and carry out missions to further US interests, effectively serving as proxy armies of the Pentagon.
The Intercept states that almost no information about these operations was disclosed to Congress or State Department officials. It is generally unknown where such operations are being carried out, how often, what the stated goals are and even the identity of foreign forces with which the US cooperates through this authorization. While the release of these documents sheds more light on the 127e, it remains largely unknown to the public and even members of Congress itself, who are almost never briefed on the programs implemented through the authorization. Sources of the American non-profit news organization even claim that most members of Congress do not even have the authority to see reports on such programs, and those who do, hardly ever ask for it.
"Authorization 127e is designed to prevent surveillance," explained one source from the government.
"The Pentagon prefers to conduct operations with minimal oversight or interference from Congress and has done so for years. Special operations units like their autonomy very much, but it's a problem when something like that becomes normal," Stephen Semler, a foreign policy expert, told The Intercept.
Semler says that attention should be paid to the powers that enable military cooperation, whether it is for special "black ops" units or the regular military, because it is through them that endless wars can be "sold" to the public. Other critics also state that in this way the US risks being involved in human rights violations and foreign conflicts, without the knowledge of Congress or the American people. On the other hand, Pentagon officials familiar with these programs claim that they are "essential for the fight against terrorism".
The knowledge on 127e authorization became somewhat more available to the general public in 2017, when four US soldiers (presumably Navy SEALs) were killed in action in Niger, which is why more senators asked for information on why the US military was operating in that country. The Intercept states that it has been waiting for more than a year for the White House to reply to their requests regarding the 127e. The Pentagon and Special Operations Command declined to comment on the matter, citing that it is classified information.
Naturally, the use of the "it's classified information" argument can be applied to deny the public any knowledge of numerous illegal activities the US government and military are conducting across the globe. Even in the cases when US personnel are killed in such proxy wars, the American public should not limit itself to cheap quasi-patriotic moralizing about the US servicemen "defending America". The public should hold its government accountable for conducting illegal military operations in other countries in the first place.