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    UNEXPECTED TRAGEDY

    1 American Soldier Killed, 4 Wounded in Somalia Attack

    FEISAL OMAR/ REUTERS

    One American Special Operations soldier was killed and four were wounded in Somalia Friday during a gun battle with Islamic militants, reports The New York Times. The attackers belong to an Al Qaeda affiliate known as the Shabbab, which the Times reports “has been fighting American forces in East Africa for more than a decade.” The attack occurred near a Somali outpost, where the American soldiers worked alongside local troops. A source familiar with the matter tells The Daily Beast that the soldiers in Somalia were assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group, based at Fort Bragg. The death is the first widely published combat casualty in Africa since an October ambush in Niger that killed 9 people. Friday’s attack occurred at an unfortunate time, the Times reports, as the “American military looks to [draw] down counterterror forces in Africa as part of a larger Pentagon plan to pivot its focus on combating Russia, China and other great powers.”