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HONORING A HERO

 

 

 

Staff Sgt. Alexander W. Conrad

26-year-old U.S. Army soldier killed in action in Somalia.

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Staff Sgt. Alex Conrad

  • AZ native – joined Army in 2010.
  • Deployed to Afghanistan twice.
  • Recently completed French language course – assigned as intel noncommissioned officer.
  • First fatality of a U.S. service member in Africa in 2018; 14th fatality overall this year.
  • 4 other soldiers wounded.
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Why Is U.S. In Somalia?

  • al-Shabab: al Qaeda-affiliated group continues to grow in power in East Africa.
  • U.S. soldiers working with local forces when attacked. Their mission: “to clear al-Shabab terrorists from contested areas, liberate villages from al-Shabab control, and establish a permanent combat outpost” (DOD).
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Why al-Shabab Matters:

  • al-Shabab = “The Youth”
  • Terrorist Islamist group; wants to rule with Sharia law.
  • Attacks/murders innocent civilians in Kenya, Somalia & East Africa.
  • U.S. recently expanded operations against al-Shabab due to concerns the group will gain more territory & power in Africa and launch attacks on Americans, either overseas or in U.S.
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"US Special Operations Forces often work in the shadows in Africa. The public is largely unaware of Special Operations on the continent until casualties are taken." - The Long War Journal.

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