US Taxpayers Pick Up Tab For US Military Missions In Mali "Assisting" The French

Tyler Durden's picture


As reported previously, not only are there currently US boots on the ground in the latest geopolitical "anti Al-Qaeda" snafu in Mali, but it turns out a US presence had been secretly in place for many months prior to the recent escalation in French-led hostilities against the western African nation. And while this would likely have opened up numerous media inquiries under any other administration, so far these has been zero interest as to just why the US is "assisting" the French in this latest military deployment of military forces outside of the US: after all, one of the biggest complaints about US spending is that so much of it goes for military purposes (ignoring that all the tax revenues can't even cover just the monthly entitlement spending of the nation).

Perhaps one reason is that, at least to date, the general consensus was that since the French operation in Mali is spearheaded and organized by the French, it is also funded by them. As it turns out that is not the case.

As Reuters reports, "The U.S. military has flown five C-17 cargo sorties into the Malian capital to help bring a French mechanized infantry unit into the fight against al Qaeda-affiliated militants in the north of the country, Pentagon officials said on Tuesday." But surely the French are paying for these sorties which are there only to help the French, right? Wrong. "Little said the United States had decided not to seek compensation or reimbursement from France for the flights." Luckily, the US is in such a healthy financial position it can afford to not only open one more front in the war against "Al Qaeda", but will sign for the French tab too. With Joe Sixpack's money of course.

More from Reuters:

A small group of U.S. military troops, including two communications personnel, have been on the ground at the airport at Bamako temporarily to help coordinate the logistics for the C-17 flights, a military official said.


Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said last week that while the United States supported France's decision to put troops into Mali to stop the advance of al Qaeda affiliated troops toward Bamako, the Pentagon had no plans to put U.S. combat troops on the ground there.


Pentagon spokesman George Little said the United States had been providing France with intelligence since the outset of the operation. He said the Pentagon had now begun providing airlift capacity and was still reviewing a request for aerial refueling tankers.


"We stand by our French allies. At this point we are providing airlift support to the French and as of January 22 ... the United States Air Force has flown five C-17 sorties moving French personnel, supplies and equipment into the country," Little said. "We have carried more than 124 tons of equipment and supplies and more than 80 passengers."


Another spokesman said the U.S. flights were helping to carry a French mechanized infantry unit to Mali.

And the punchline:

The Wall Street Journal reported over the weekend that the issue of payment had caused friction between the two sides. "Compensation and reimbursement is always a point of discussion when it comes to these operations, with the French or other allies for that matter," Little told reporters on Tuesday. "In this instance we have made a decision at this time not to seek reimbursement or compensation," he said. "The focus right now is not on money but is on achieving our shared goal of thwarting militants in northern Mali."

At least they have not discovered Weapons of Mass Destruction. Yet.

Of course, who cares about what the costs of peace, and war, are when it is the Federal Reserve's monetization of the budget deficit, and countless future born and unborn US citizens, who are paying the price.

In other news, the US has a "not enough taxation" problem.

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Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:00 | 3176289 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

Ooer I'm so scared of the invisible boogerman Al Qaeda.

In the future, kids will ask their parents to check for Al Qaeda under their beds before going sleepies.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:01 | 3176295 Say What Again
Say What Again's picture

This is but a small expense.  Afterall, we have platinum coins.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:02 | 3176306 PSEUDOLOGOI

First, they need to invade some African country to get the platinum.

Only then, they can mint that Trillion dollar coin.

you can't mint the trillion dollar coin out of paper, you know...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:04 | 3176312 SamAdams
SamAdams's picture

Thare's gold in them thare hills!  Gold dad-nam-it!!!!

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:06 | 3176317 Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

Assisting the French in acquireing Germany's gold!

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:06 | 3176321 The Juggernaut
The Juggernaut's picture

Do you remember your representative asking you if they should send support?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:10 | 3176338 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

The only thing a US representive asks you the taxpayer to support is his nutsack on your chin.

For everything else, there is the Electoral College, Parliamentary Procedure, Committee, due process, etc.


Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:13 | 3176352 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

So that's why they had to requisition Pelosi's plane...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:27 | 3176413 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Lend-Lease, bitchez!

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:31 | 3176432 Boris Alatovkrap
Boris Alatovkrap's picture

Is no different than Soviet cost of Afghanistan, Czech, Albania, DKR. Welcome to Soviet States of Amerika! Even Lend-Lease just is euthanasia for military imperialism.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:34 | 3176451 john39
john39's picture

yeah, but americans got to vote on this mali invasion thing.... oh wait...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:38 | 3176467 Boris Alatovkrap
Boris Alatovkrap's picture

VOTE!? Hahahaha - Boris is eject vodka through nasal cavity! Vote? Vote? Even Boris is understandable  of Constitutional Republik! But, when is Congress vote on Mali? This is question of import!? When is Congress to vote on Libya!? When is vote on Granada!? When is vote on Bay of Pigs!?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:55 | 3176548 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

"Unborn citiizens" - that's right wing code for "war on women"

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 16:14 | 3176632 bigkahuna
bigkahuna's picture

same as it always was...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 17:03 | 3176800 Pure Evil
Pure Evil's picture

No wonder the French raised tax rates on the rich to 75%.

Somebody has to pay for all these little military adventures.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:28 | 3176418 redpill
redpill's picture

Ladies and gentlemen, your Nobel Peace Prize winner aka King Kinetic Military Action Enabler.  If it wasn't so gross and real it would be funny.



Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:42 | 3176487 Boris Alatovkrap
Boris Alatovkrap's picture

Nobel Peace Prize is code word for "Patting-on-back-of-supporter-for-Global-Agenda-of-International-Banker-to-Control-Earth-and-subjecting-mankind-to-serfdom". Examples is Barry Soetoro, Paul Krugman, Henry Kissinger, et al. But what is Boris know, simple serf.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 18:15 | 3177033 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

I say we invoice the French now and give 'em 30 days.

If they don't pay, grab an equivalent portion of their yellow metal at the NY Fed and replace with tungsten in the event they want to audit their own stock.

If they have a problem wit that, we all know that possession is 99% of the battle...and they have no means for repatriating their yellow metal.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 22:00 | 3177612 ZeroAvatar
ZeroAvatar's picture

Who run Bamatown?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:51 | 3176523 Fortunate Fool
Fortunate Fool's picture

Good Tyler, you're making progress in no longer calling the french intervention a "disaster" as you did in your previous posts.

Since it hurts you to communicate the progress made on the ground, let me do that for you...

The french intervention was started when the islamists took the city of Konna, on where on their way to Bamako, the capital city. You will be pleased to know that this city, as well as Diabali (which you were the only one to proclaim it as "strategic"), and Douentza have been taken back by the "malian army", with the help of the french one...

As far as this intervention is concerned, we can say that France is partly clearing up the mess left in Mali by the US, which spent $600 million to train and equip the Malian army to fight Al Qaida in the Sahel desert. As a friendly gesture, those "allies" decided to turn their back on the US and use their news skills and US made equipment to do a military coup, led by Amadou Sanogo, which the US knows pretty well (from Wikipedia: "He received a thorough military training in the United States between 2004 and 2010, first in a basis of the Air Force at Lackland in Texas, then an intelligence officer training at Fort Wachica Arizona finally, from August 2010 to December 2010 in the training of infantry officers of the Army at Fort Benning in Georgia"). This shows how much the US mess up with anything they touch in Africa... (remember Somalia?)

You also seem to be ignoring this fact: the french intervention is done under UN resolution 2085, voted on Dec 20, 2012, which authorizes military intervention in the country. As it is the case under these kind of circumstances, an international coalition is put together. It turns out that due to the emergency of the situation, the french had to intervene before the Islamists could make it to Bamako. They did it because they were prepared, and more experienced that anyone else, including the US, in that region. However, the french requested its allies, NATO members, to provide some support. The US is helping with intelligence and logistic support, but so is the UK. Canada, Germany and many others are also providing logistical support. I don't see where your problem is with that.

When the French sent troops to Afghanistan, I  don't recall the US footing the bill for it, or for any other ally. This is how things have always worked. You want to contribute? you pay for it! But hey, that doesn't make up for a good story, eh? 


Tue, 01/22/2013 - 16:15 | 3176628 earleflorida
earleflorida's picture

Mali is not a democratic government, period!

A UN coalition is a different animal!

... and, on another front: India warns Kashmiris of Possible Nuclear Attack! [Packistan on verge of Civil War?]

Flight to safety???

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 16:31 | 3176679 Fortunate Fool
Fortunate Fool's picture

"Mali is not a democratic government, period!"


Like the vast majority of the countries in the world. So what?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 17:16 | 3176811 earleflorida
earleflorida's picture

the french were in vietnam before the U.S. and what a mess was left... and by whom, for who[uhm] to clean up?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 20:43 | 3177444 Raynja
Raynja's picture


i assume you assume this western intervention into a civil war will go better than libya

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 17:21 | 3176872 RallyRoundTheFamily
RallyRoundTheFamily's picture

You must mean those "Canadian" Islamists, right


Tue, 01/22/2013 - 18:19 | 3177056 A Humble Man
A Humble Man's picture

Crap.  Does that mean Canada is next on the invasion list?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 18:26 | 3177073 Boeing Boy
Boeing Boy's picture

Another great post FF, keeping ZH Honest...As someone with direct experience with french air force, can honestly say they are crazy sons of bitchez.  They'll do a job on the zealots intent on exterminating christians.  They don't have strategic lifters, so I personally see no problem with them catching a ride on UK/USA C17s.   

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 21:06 | 3177492 WTFUD
WTFUD's picture

BB stop fisting FF. FF allow me the pleasure, merci! 2 ting ist ting french intervention in anything is Disaster especially in Afrika West 9/10 would agree ( well the african section anyway ). no.2 the nigerian un pisskeepers will be happy to do the butchering on mali soil as the internal politics of subjecting over the top violence against Boko is scrutinised.

To summatise :
Wether the French ( Ariva )uranium spills in Niger over last 50 years and plight of the Touareg Peoples in particular ( stillborns handicapped contaminated water etc etc ) or the decades of oil spill in Nigeria by the Big Boys ( incidently which make bp's gulf of mexico look like a barbecue gone wrong ) this recent swarry into mali is Catastropheeeee in the making.
That whole sahara corrider (think of Wild Wild West and Multipy by JPM's silver contract shorts) and from mauratania algeria libya chad mali burkina and niger we Never See Peace Again!

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 22:57 | 3177728 earleflorida
earleflorida's picture

"Shell Oil - The Awful Truth" _ a subsidary of Rothschild INC!

,... this is why the indigenous folks of Nigeria, and... the-oh-so-lucky?' energy producing African countries feel such exuberance coupled with a strange ephemeral tingling-- so wildly ecstatic and giddy are they-- knowing quite well, how favorable there short-live'd future's fortunes look beyond yonder's Serengeti?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:14 | 3176353 Its_the_economy...
Its_the_economy_stupid's picture

@P A Flash

Let's not forget Congressional Re-Districting.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:28 | 3176419 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Of course, we could all use a good lube-free gerrymander, as we are herded into voting machines and forced to "assume the position" as soon as the curtain draws close.  Why good citizen, you don't want your share?  Here, have some extra.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:14 | 3176354 The Juggernaut
The Juggernaut's picture

What if the rep is a female?  Or are they just really men.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:28 | 3176415 rguptatx
rguptatx's picture

Pelosi has nutsacks!

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:43 | 3176491 Boris Alatovkrap
Boris Alatovkrap's picture

When plastic surgeon is move eye sacks, must is go somewhere!

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 16:22 | 3176656 giddy
giddy's picture

ummmm... me likey you...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:11 | 3176345 Spider
Spider's picture

Where's the patriotism???  We have to SUPPORT the troops fighting for our freedom!  After all if Al Qaeda takes Mali then we could lose it all!  I mean that 7.5% increase in the defense budget isnt going to justify itself...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:18 | 3176374 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

think of the children

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 18:02 | 3177007 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

And for just $65, your donation can annihilate villages for a year.

Give now.  Operators are standing by (pun intended).

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 16:55 | 3176500 AgAu_man
AgAu_man's picture

Congressional Approval? LMAO. That would be so 'Barbaric'.

Isn't that done out of Tradition? Like The Fed having "that barbaric relic" Gold out of tradition?

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:22 | 3176387 SamAdams
SamAdams's picture

I hear rumors this will be a long term conflict, possibly 7 or 8 years....

Wed, 01/23/2013 - 01:05 | 3178036 logically possible
logically possible's picture

Iraq was only going to be six months, according to GWB. We had been bombing the crap out of them for more than a year before he said that.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:32 | 3176443 Boris Alatovkrap
Boris Alatovkrap's picture

Platinum, Titanium, Gold... same is different in Government reserves when completely empty.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 17:14 | 3176844 Jacks Nipple
Jacks Nipple's picture

Since it's all about the control of Natural resources and their refinement, we should take all of the dead, be it the bad guys, the good guys, fuck it, throw all of them in,  and put them through the process of Thermal Depolymerization, we should not waste any of the scraps if the C-17's are flying. Any little bit helps.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:07 | 3176297 Say What Again
Say What Again's picture

Forget the French.

We should simply ship everyone in prison over there.  England did that with Australia years ago, and that didn't turn out so bad.  We could save a bundle on reduced prison expenses.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:15 | 3176358 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Prisons are one of the few moneymakers in todays eCON-o-me...

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:05 | 3176314 xtop23
xtop23's picture

Isn't it obvious? It's pro-bono. The US will be expecting it's cut of the spoils.

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 15:11 | 3176348 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture


Tue, 01/22/2013 - 16:12 | 3176621 markar
markar's picture

I think that's quid pro quo

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