n Conflict Trends - The role of AFRICOM : observer, enforcer or facilitator of peace?

Volume 2007, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1561-9818


The creation of the Pentagon's new Africa Command (AFRICOM) has elicited much debate, outrage, concern and interest since the announcement was first made that the United States of America plans to formalise its presence and operations on the African continent. AFRICOM appears, at first glance, to be a radical departure from the stated foreign policy intentions of the Bush administration towards Africa, upon assuming office in 2001. The Bush foreign policy team castigated the Clinton administration as having pursued an overly idealistic and ultimately unsuccessful 'feel good' policy towards Africa. Throughout the Cold War, United States (US) presidents traditionally devoted less attention to Africa, compared to other regions of perceived greater concern. During the election campaign, presidential candidate George W Bush noted that the continent did not "fit into the national strategic interests" of the US, as far as he could envision.

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