Uganda, Oil, and the U.S. Military

Is there any connection between the recent discovery of oil in Uganda, which will make it a major oil industry player in Africa beginning in 2012, and the escalation of the US military's role in the area? Only recently discovered, this summer it was officially announced that oil deposits may actually be double previous estimates (and possibly even on the order of Saudi Arabia's, if a prior estimate by one analyst can be belived). The US has reportedly been involved in the area militarily through AFRICOM for several years, helping in the fight against the LRA, and has denied that oil is a factor in the recent escalation and maintained that this is purely a humanitarian mission. The same line was of course used for Iraq and Libya and has become a standard explanation for military interventions. Another prolonged conflict is expected from what is a war of choice, not necessity.

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