The Intercept has reported that since 2008, at least eight successful military coups have occurred in Africa led by US trained soldiers: Guinea, Mauritanea and the Gambia, and also three times each in Burkina Faso and Mali.

Three of these countries have been suspended by the African Union: Burkina Faso, Guinea and Mali with Ghana's president, Nana Akufo-Addo saying:

The resurgance of coup d'etats in our region is in direct violation of our democratic tenets and represents a direct threat to peace, security and stability in West Africa.

Q. Did these coups occur with the direct assistance of the USA, whether overt or covert?

  • 1
    Coupled with the immediate follow-up question, I believe both are asked to promote a political cause.
    – o.m.
    May 9, 2022 at 4:18
  • US trained soldiers... the US trains a LOT of people. There is a difference between US trained and US backed, supported, etc.
    – CGCampbell
    May 9, 2022 at 12:37

2 Answers 2


I can't be bothered to look at all the other "recent" allegations that span 14 years, but it's doubtful the US backed the Mali coup since they newly installed military government kicked the French out (seemingly after they pestered them with returning to democracy) and invited the Russians in.

It's true that the 2020 coup leader had some kind of training in the US, but that's not saying much, really. Goita was also disillusioned with the lack/pace of success against the Islamists. Apparently he thought the Russian playbook (Syria etc.) might work better. The US [military] also publicly disapproved of the coup, when it happened:

“The act of mutiny in Mali is strongly condemned and inconsistent with U.S. military training and education,” said Marine Corps Lt. Col. Anton T. Semelroth, a Pentagon spokesman.

The Malian military will receive no more support from the United States until further review, he added.


This is just a tentative answer since I'm just begun looking at this - why else would I ask a question?

Foreign Policy in Feb 2022 had an article where they write:

Since 2009, the USA has been supporting Burkino Faso's military with funding, weapons and training as part of Washington's post 9-11 counter-terrorism efforts. That support, while not directly responsible for ladt weeks coup, helpwd lay the groundwork for the country's increased militarism - and ultimately the coup it produced.

The New York Times also reported that the American Green Berets were training soldiers in Guinea when their charges left in the middle of a training session to mount a coup deposing the 83 year old president, Alpha Conde. Some of the green berets were videoed celebrating - which caused serious embarassment to the US government.


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .