Obama's strategy envisions 'innovative' US military role in Africa, Latin America

“Across the globe," it reads, "we will seek to be the security partner of choice” — an apparent signal to China an Iran, which have been increasing their military, economic and diplomatic efforts in Africa and Latin America, respectively.

Obama’s strategy says Washington will pursue “new partnerships with a growing number of nations — including those in Africa and Latin America.”

“Whenever possible, we will develop innovative, low-cost and small-footprint approaches to achieve our security objectives, relying on exercises, rotational presence and advisory capabilities,” according to the strategy.

At several points during a Thursday Pentagon briefing unveiling the strategy, Defense Department officials referred cryptically to “innovative” partnerships and “small deployments.”

Those typically are terms reserved for special-operations forces, and the Obama plan makes clear it will expand the military’s special-operations forces.