Super-tough, nearly bomb-proof trucks are all the rage in Iraq these days. But in Africa, these “Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected” vehicles, or MRAPs, have been standard for thirty years. The armored rides with the v-shaped hulls first hit the road in the 1970s during a brutal war in what is now Zimbabwe. Today, they’re the truck of choice for another bloody conflict: the 17-year-old series of civil wars and invasions and insurgencies in Somalia.
I went riding with the Ugandans today. Fifteen hundred of them deployed to Mogadishu eight months ago under an African Union banner, and with U.S. funding, in a bid to seize and hold the key infrastructure that some future international force would need to begin stabilizing the embattled city.
Read the whole post over at Danger Room.