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U.S. Confronts Failures as Terrorism Spreads in West Africa

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US anti-terrorism assistance failedIn the shadow of the 9/11 attacks, the United States rushed troops and military aid to a swath of West Africa to help French forces stop the spread of al-Qaida and other terrorist groups.

More than a decade later, and with hundreds of millions of dollars in security assistance spent, that regional counterterrorism effort has largely failed.

Groups that have declared allegiance to al-Qaida and the Islamic State group are on the march. Military coups have toppled civilian-led governments in Mali, Chad, Burkina Faso and Niger. The new leaders have ordered U.S. and French troops out, and in some cases invited Russian mercenaries in to take their place.


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