U.S. politicians voted against withdrawing from Somalia just weeks after it voted against withdrawing from Syria.
The proposal from Florida Representative Matt Gaetz would have removed war powers from President Biden and mandated that he order troop withdrawal within a year. President Biden has increased troop presence in Somalia but has used special war powers to keep exact numbers undisclosed.
“The future of Somalia must be determined by Somalia,” Gaetz said on the House floor ahead of the vote. “I would argue that the African Union is far better positioned to build a stronger sense of national identity and national unity among clans that have been warring in Somalia for generations than U.S. troops.”
Indeed. According to DefenseNews.com:
“U.S. troops are stationed in Somalia under a 2001 military authorization, which Congress passed in the wake of the 9/11 attacks to target al-Qaida in Afghanistan.
Four presidents have since used the 2001 military authorization to justify at least 41 military operations in at least 19 countries across the globe.”