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.

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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.