Three high-definition television screens, a bank of green military radios and detailed maps line the walls. Laptop computers cover three rows of tables. And military officers like Lt. Cdr. Victor Cooper keep 24-hour vigil, tracking terrorists from afar. The Joint Operations Center, tucked inside a former French Foreign Legion post, is the heart of the Bush administration’s quiet battle against Islamic militants operating in six nations in East Africa and Yemen. From here, the U.S. military monitors Marine beach landings, Navy warships, Army infantry maneuvers and Air Force flights, keeping in close communication with Central Command headquarters in Qatar and troops in the field. And there are secret operations no one will talk about. The goal: to detect, disrupt and defeat the bad guys. On a recent day, U.S. soldiers trained with local troops in rural Ethiopia, civil affairs officers helped with rehab projects in Kenyan towns and Marines landed on a deserted beach in Djibouti. Full Story
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