Twenty years ago al-Qaeda bombed two U.S. embassies in Africa.

August 08, 2018


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    Twenty years ago I was a young Special Forces 18C working as an LNO in the American Embassy in Kigali Rwanda when this attack happened. I just arrived a few weeks prior to this event taking place. Being an 18C, I was working as the Liaison Officer for the Rwandan National Demining Office (NDO) and the American Embassy. This was my third trip back to this awesome country teaching the RPA how to rid their country of all the Unexploded Ordinances (UXO) and Landmines that were scattered all over the country side during the civil war in the 90’s. We also conducted several Joint Combined Exercises for Training (JCETs) teaching Small Unit Tactics and creating a Commando Unit that participated in the First Congo War in 1996.   The current ambassador at the time was very anti-military and really did not support us while we were there. The Rwandan people and government loved us being there helping them with rebuilding their military and forming it into a professional force. The funny thing was, when this event happened all the non-supporting, politically left individuals wanted my input and and in some cases reassurance that the US military will send more security if required. This attacked event escalated their worries due to the Second Congo War kicked off a week earlier. 

    Now days most people think Al Qaeda is dead and not a threat. All these islamic extremist terrorist organizations all have one goal, that is to destroy the United States and Israel. So this top of event can and will happen again if we are not careful about our security at home and overseas. Since this attack in Kenya and Tanzania, the US government has relooked their security practices and locations of their current embassies. They began moving them outside of the city centers and beefing up the perimeters and stand off to minimize damage from such attacks. Don't get this confused with Benghazi, That was not an Embassy or an official  Consulate. Several years later I would be assigned to a team that would go around and conduct Threat and Vulnerability Assessments of government facilities throughout Africa and a few times in the Middle East and Mexico. This is where I gained a ton of knowledge on how the US government prioritizes security upgrades and the process on how it is all accomplished. 

  I want to close with a link to a good article about how Iran is a facilitator and enabler to terrorist organizations through out the world. Iran had a important role in the Africa Attack, from planning to execution. 

The Al Qaeda - Iran Connection

Lani Ringeisen
Lani Ringeisen


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