In a surprising move, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky asked Joe Biden and Lloyd Austin, the Defense Secretary, to explain the situation in Niger, where there are currently US troops. Due to the recent coup d'état in the country, the situation in the region has become unstable.
Senator Rand Paul raised concerns about the training that the US conducted in Niger, specifically regarding the involvement of Moussa Salaoui Barmou, the leader of the coup that occurred in the country. This revelation highlights the potential contribution of the training to the current dangers that American troops face. Furthermore, he noted that the US troops were exposed to combat situations during the 2017 ambush in Niger, which resulted in the deaths of four US soldiers.
In his letter to Joe Biden, Senator Paul noted that there is currently no authorization for the use of force in Niger. The deaths of four American soldiers in the country in 2017 should have prompted the US to end its operations in the region. However, Biden still maintains that the presence of troops in the country is necessary due to the AUMF.
According to Senator Paul, the Biden administration's interpretation of the 2001 AUMF has resulted in the US conducting military activities in other countries with little accountability and oversight.
Senator Paul is a citizen of the United States and believes that the public should be informed about the activities of the Armed Forces. In his letter to Austin, he asked for details about the training mission in Niger and the number of casualties that the US has suffered in the country since 2013.
In addition, Senator Paul demanded transparency regarding the legal and funding conditions that were used to authorize the operations in Niger and other countries.
Despite the deadline being passed, it is still not clear if the Biden and Austin administrations will be able to provide the necessary answers to Senator Paul. It is clear that US troops are being exposed to dangerous situations and are not being held accountable. This issue highlights the need for better oversight and management of military activities.