President Barack Obama told Congress on Friday that he will send 300 US troops to Cameroon. The troops will play a non-combat role in the war against Boko Haram. That war is currently led by a coalition of Nigeria and its African neighbors: Cameroon, Benin, Chad, and Niger.
The US troops will provide “airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance” to the African nations as part of a larger effort by the US to support fighting against the extreme Islamist insurgency. American drones will also be used to help Nigeria with one of the most expensive aspects of the mission, airborne reconnaissance.
Obama worries that, without US support, Nigeria and its African partners will be unable to beat back the insurgents. The Nigerian military has fought Boko Haram since 2009, and in recent years the government’s ineffectiveness has becomeapparent, as the insurgent group continues to execute high-profile attacks.
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