A U.S. State Department cable composed in Dec. 2009 sheds yet more light on the murky relationship between the Obama administration and the Ugandan government, pointing to an information sharing agreement that prohibits the Ugandan regime from engaging in certain combat operations against the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) without U.S. permission.
Specifically, the cable states that Ugandan forces may not utilize U.S. intelligence to engage enemies without first consulting U.S. officials. That goes double if their engagement might happen outside “the law of armed conflict” — which is to say, Uganda must seek U.S. permission before committing to operations that could result in war crimes, or face the possibility of being cut off from U.S. support.
“The Ugandan People’s Defense Force (UPDF) uses this intelligence in planning and conducting offensive operations, including both capture and lethal operations, against the LRA in Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Southern Sudan, and the Central African Republic (CAR),” the cable explains. “Furthermore, Uganda understands the need to consult with the U.S. in advance if the UPDF intends to use U.S.-supplied intelligence to engage in operations not governed by the law of armed conflict. Uganda understands and acknowledges that misuse of this intelligence could cause the U.S. to end this intelligence sharing relationship.” [Emphasis added.]