The Fletcher School of International Affairs, Tufts University, hosted Countering Terrorism in Africa through Human Security Solutions to “explore counterterrorist solutions”. Of course terrorism is only a problem in Africa if you define every kind of conflict as terrorism. Or, terrorism becomes a problem when you define any opposition to your interests as terrorism, as the US is doing in Africa.
Preparing the way for imperial intervention Dr. Pauline Baker of the Fund for Peace made the rather chilling statement:
“What we really have is not just the threat of failed states, but failed regions”
That statement is a permission slip for intervention and recolonization.
Interestingly, the person who sounded the most rational from the written account:
. . . was LTC Scott Womack, the U.S. Army’s foreign area officer for Sub-Saharan Africa.
Womack said that his best recommendation was to pay attention to the inhabitants of the African states as opposed to being caught up in military or diplomatic measures.
But that does not really change the nature of the conference, which sounded like it was preparing foundations for imperial intervention.
Africa Action published African Voices on AFRICOM a clear and concise summary of the positions on AFRICOM taken by African leaders to date, which includes:
Ezekiel Pajino of the Center for Democratic Empowerment in Liberia, calls AFRICOM “a deadly plan of U.S. military expansion on African soil.” Pajino states, “AFRICOM will be the legacy of Bush’s failed foreign policy that threatens future generations throughout our continent.“
Other African civil society leaders, academics, bloggers and journalists across the continent share this unease. Ikechukwa Eze in Nigeria’s Business Day writes, “Apprehension exists about the extent to which AFRICOM may violate rules of sovereignty and its attempts to replace the AU.” This comment and others like it raise a number of issues, including the sovereignty of African countries, the role of private military contractors (PMCs), the function of the U.S. military in administering development assistance, and U.S. interests in controlling access to African resources at the expense of ordinary Africans.