Press TV: China to take over strategic US military base in Djibouti

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Camp Lemonnier in the tiny African state of Djibouti is the largest US military base in the entire African continent. (file photo)
Camp Lemonnier in the tiny African state of Djibouti is the largest US military base in the entire African continent. (file photo)

Editor’s note: Another story totally unreported in the US media, partially confirmed in the UK and elsewhere. This would be a crushing blow to the US, perhaps more symbolic than real. The US has 4 other covert bases in Africa but is also aware that participation in the broad shooting war going on would make what happened in Iraq look like child’s play. With very confirmed reports, especially from Cameroon, showing France as fully complicit in the terrorism in West Africa, one might wonder what role the US could have been playing in the first place.

The tiny African state of Djibouti has reportedly ordered the US to vacate its secondary Obock military base in the nation in a bid to turn over the installation to the Chinese military and its contingent of 10,000 troops, raising major concerns in Washington, which holds the largest military base in Djibouti, Camp Lemonnier.

“The announcement, made the day after US Secretary of State John Kerry visited Djibouti last May, is deeply worrying for Pax Americana, for it comes on top of a major package of economic investments by China that has Djiboutian President [Ismaïl Omar] Guelleh openly talking about the importance of his new friends from Asia,” US-based magazineCounterPunch wrote in an article on Monday.

According to the report, the US is about to lose one of its military bases in Djibouti, home to America’s largest permanent military installation in Africa that includes 4,000 troops and a fleet of US assassination drones that run bombing missions in regional Muslim countries as part of Washington’s official targeted killing program.

The Horn of Africa nation, strategically located in the critical entrance from the Indian Ocean to the Red Sea, lies at the gateway to the busy Suez Canal waterway and provides a port to neighboring landlocked Ethiopia.

The report further points out that the US Defense Department pays Djibouti nearly $63 million per year for the use of the Camp Lemonnier military base, which also serves as one of the world’s largest drone bases.


China, the report adds, has offered Djibouti a far more generous offer, namely the completion of a $3-billion railroad project from the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa to Djibouti.

“[Beijing] is also investing $400 million in modernizing Djibouti’s notoriously undersized port,” the CounterPunch article added.

According to the article and recent Western press reports, the Chinese military presence in Djibouti has introduced – among other possibilities – the prospect of US schemes to organize a ‘regime-change’ effort in the African nation under the pretext of democratic change.

UK-based Daily Telegraph highlighted the concerns of Pentagon officials regarding China’s deepening commercial involvement in Djibouti in a report last May, saying the development may prompt Washington “to relocate sensitive intelligence-gathering operations to more secure locations outside Djibouti where they are better protected from interception by the Chinese.”

US military installation Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti is the key base of Washington’s assassination drones.The British daily further said that there are “fears” that President Guelleh may seek “to impose restrictions on the US military’s access to Camp Lemonnier, such as placing limits on the movement of military personnel and military operations conducted from the base.”

The daily also quoted a “senior US official” as saying that the “trade deal between Djibouti and China has raised serious security concerns with regard to Camp Lemonnier. There are fears that if President Guelleh gets too close to China then he may be tempted to impose restrictions on US access to the base, which would seriously affect the West’s attempts to collect intelligence on Islamic State (Daesh) and al-Qaeda.”

Pointing to a potential US scheme to plan a regime-change operation in Djibouti, the British daily added, “American diplomats are also resisting attempts by Mr Guelleh to stand for re-election next year, which they argue is unconstitutional. Mr Guelleh has been in power since 1999, and by law should stand down. If he does so then Washington hopes a more reasonable leader will be elected, one more aligned to the Pentagon’s interests.”


Moreover, in an April 23 article titled “China Comes to Djibouti,” US journalForeign Affairs wrote that “Washington would need to band together with other allies such as France, Germany and Japan to try and counter China’s growing influence in Djibouti.”

“If it doesn’t, Washington might find that the country hosting its only military base in sub-Saharan Africa owes more favors to China, its rising global rival, than to the United States itself,” the magazine emphasized.

11 COMMENTS

  1. Asa long as the neocons and their constituent supporters maintain their control over the U.S., all areas of America will suffer and be steadily diminished. They certainly are NO friends or loyal citizens of America.

    Finance, global reputation, technological superiority, education, moral standing, trade, infrastructure, Wars, false-flags, truthfulness in the news reporting, you name it…all in decline and steadily increasing.

    Anyone connected to the dreadful few suffer as their status and benefits continue to surge. Don’t give a sucker an even break, I guess. Sorry but I see this continuing unless we have a very effective purge worldwide.

  2. Too many bases for the banksters and hustlers from which to create murder and mayhem. In the name of democracy by way of death and destruction for all. Leave people alone, wait you don’t know how it’s not in your dna mission statement.

  3. Excuse the festive mood, as I indulge in a bit of shadenfreude at the Administration’s predicament. No wants to play with the lying, cheating and broke US anymore. Exactly, what has the US done for Djibouti anyway? Or for that matter, what has the US done for Africa? Lots of infrastructure?? Water projects?? Things Africa really needs?

  4. “There are fears that if President Guelleh gets too close to China then he may be tempted to impose restrictions on US access to the base, which would seriously affect the West’s attempts to collect intelligence on Islamic State (Daesh) and al-Qaeda.”

    Oh give me a break!

  5. “which would seriously affect the West’s attempts to collect intelligence on Islamic State (Daesh) and al-Qaeda.”

    Hollow propaganda, typical b.s. What utter nonsense by the “war machine” morons. The US is one of the sponsors and “runners” of Daesh and al-Qaeda. Everyone in the world not brainwashed by the war moguls controlling mass media knows or suspects that, so what “intelligence” is there to gather? Logic tells me that the “collect intelligence” effort is directed at everyone, friend, foe, neutral, whatever to be used when needed for regime change, infiltration, etc. Meanwhile the continental US continues putting off facing it’s domestic decline. Doesn’t b.s. have a shelf life?

  6. China builds up infrastructure in Africa, a lot of nations. I can’t say i blame the goverment in Djibouti taking the chinese offer. One has to question what will happen now if there is a chinese base there.

  7. So if this is a hot war in that region, any changes that the war will finally become a open war, for all to see and feel in europe and the states? After seeing the crater left in China port city last week and how the economy is acting of late with everything going nuts i am left to wonder.

  8. the people MUST also hold the JOYSTICK MURDERERS to account for their bloody handiwork all over the world.
    remember JUST FOLLOWING ORDERS is not a defence.
    peace and justice for ALL. mylo

  9. Please do not use the term “Pax Americana” when describing describing the abuses of our military overseas. It is a Roman term, and the Romans held their military in the highest respect. The Romans built up every region they conquered, Romanized them all with social order, commerce, law, health, communication, and so forth. This in turn brought peace, hence the term.

    We use our military to destroy entire regions, and for building nothing but narcotics transport stations. Then we abuse the vets upon their return home. Roman soldiers were salaried and their vets got paid in land.

    These morons in DC use our military as disposable pawns in a game that serves them and weakens America. Be mindful that when several of the Emperors got slap happy stupid with power and threatened Rome, the Praetorians took care of business.

    • This is a brief article on the Pax Romana—
      http://www.historyguide.org/ancient/lecture12b.html

      There will be no Pax Americana until we are at peace with ourselves, and governed by leaders who believe in America and work toward prosperity and security for all its citizens. We are being willfully turned into warring tribes vying for ever diminishing resources, neglecting social infrastructure and capital improvements, and squandering military lives in places that have nothing to do with us by venal officials who are hostile to our Constitution.

      The residual strength of the Pax Romana lasted long after Rome’s Vestal Fire was officially extinguished because Romans had a such strong core sense of identity, whereas we are losing ours. Even the lousiest Romans would never dream of being anything but Roman, yet our officials hold split loyalties whilst calling themselves American. Any chance we had to coin the term Pax Americana as an era was lost in 1913 when we were sold to the Federal Parasite Reserve.

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