No kidding – this is not our headline, but Newsweek’s: “US Special Forces School Publishes New Guide For Overthrowing Foreign Governments” – and as far as we can tell they are the only major mainstream outlet to have picked up on the fact that the US military is now essentially openly bragging on past and future capabilities to foster covert regime change operations.
The 250-page study entitled “Support to Resistance: Strategic Purpose and Effectiveness” was put out by the Joint Special Operations University under US Special Operations Command, which is the Army’s official unified command center which overseas all joint covert and clandestine missions out of MacDill AFB, Florida.Via “Rare Historical Photos”: The CIA sent 2,300 Stinger missiles to various mujahedin outfits throughout Afghanistan over the course of the Afghan-Soviet war.
“This work will serve as a benchmark reference on resistance movements for the benefit of the special operations community and its civilian leadership,” the report introduces.
The study examines 47 instances of US special forces trying to intervene in various countries from 1941-2003, thus special attention is given to the Cold War, but it doesn’t include coups which lacked “legitimate resistance movements” — such as the case of ‘Operation AJAX’ in 1953 which overthrew Iran’s democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh.
Though infamous disasters such the abortive CIA-backed Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba are highlighted, the US military report (perhaps predictably) finds that among those nearly fifty covert interventions surveyed, most interventions were “successful”.
“One thing common to all 47 cases reviewed in this study is the fact that the targeted state was ruled either by an unfriendly occupying force or by a repressive authoritarian regime,” the author, Army Special Forces veteran Will Irwin wrote. The study focuses on historical regime change operations but in parts hints at the future, saying, “Russia and China have boldly demonstrated expansionist tendencies.”
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