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AFRICOM: The Recolonization of Africa by Uncle Sam

Message Wayne Madsen
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The spirit of John F. Kennedy's Peace Corps, a civilian program without any ties to the U.S. military or intelligence community designed to help steer newly-emergent nations, mostly in Africa, to self-sufficiency and development, is officially dead.

George W. Bush's Africa Command (AFRICOM) not only places oil and global military strategy as the number one and two goals of America's Africa policy but places the State Department's assistance program for Africa firmly under Pentagon control.

In Pentagon-speak, AFRICOM, created on October 1, 2007, is currently a sub-unified command under the European Command (EUCOM) in Stuttgart, Germany. On October 1, 2008, AFRICOM will become a separate unified command. AFRICOM is still looking for a permanent base in Africa but there is a likelihood that it will be scattered as a "distributed command" across the continent to further extend America's military presence into every region, Saharan and Sub-Saharan.

Moreover, the militarization of America's Africa policy, begun under George H. W. Bush and continued by Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, will continue in a Hillary Clinton administration. That is because there is a group of militaristic U.S. African "experts" in the Pentagon, State Department, and in-waiting at pro-Hillary Clinton think tanks like the Center for American Progress (CAP). Ironically, these "experts" are mostly woman and they include current Assistant US Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for African Affairs Theresa Whalen, and Bill Clinton's Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Susan Rice, who is currently with CAP.

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Bill Clinton with one of Africa's most corrupt and blood thirsty dictators, Paul Kagame, in 2006. Bush I-Clinton I-Bush II-and possible Clinton II Africa policies are carbon copies of each other.

The militarism of America's policy on Africa centers on propping up dictators who have bought into the globalization agenda and who have offered up bases for the U.S. military incursion into Africa that seeks to recolonize the continent.

This neo-colonization of Africa is evident in the Bush administration's soft policy towards the incumbent President of Kenya, Mwai Kibaki, who has just stolen the presidential election from his progressive opponent Raila Odinga, the son of the first Vice President of Kenya, who later became an opposition leader and was jailed by the government. Raila Odinga heads the opposition Orange Democratic Movement, but this "themed" and "color-connected" popular movement does not buy into the neocon line and therefore received no support from the corporate-funded think tanks and the corporate media in the United States and elsewhere.

US ambassador to Kenya Michael Ranneberger actually showed his support for Kibaki's "Florida-style" election "victory," before backing down to a small extent. Ranneberger, a career Foreign Service officer, has been active in various hot spots where U.S. intelligence and the military have also been active, most of the time not for the betterment of the nations involved: Sudan, Cuba, Somalia, Mali, Angola, Namibia, Mozambique, El Salvador, Haiti, and Paraguay.

The militarization of U.S. Africa policy is highlighted by the fact that Agency for International Development (USAID) [closely linked to CIA covert activities in Africa and elsewhere] and State Department officials are to be assigned to the AFRICOM headquarters. AFRICOM commander, US Army General William E. "Kip" Ward, will be assisted by military and State Department Foreign Service deputies. As with the top militaristic foreign policy "expert" in the Bush administration, Frazer, an African American, the selection of Ward, also an African American, is a shameless attempt by the Bush administration to mask the true intent of AFRICOM among Africa's black population.

AFRICOM will serve as a major pass-through for U.S. covert operations in Africa, mainly because U.S. civilian assistance funds will be funneled through AFRICOM's budget, and, therefore, be controlled by the Pentagon. The funding mechanisms for AFRICOM will also permit private military contractors like Blackwater USA, Dyncorp, and Triple Canopy to extend their operations in Africa.

It is clear that the necons are planning to turn Africa into the next war zone by providing military aid for the crushing of secessionist, tribal, and democracy movements. We see U.S. military- and law enforcement-provided weapons now being used against political protesters in Kenya and Ethiopia.

AFRICOM will also combine various U.S. military programs inj Africa under a single umbrella. These programs are:

Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Initiative/Partnership (formerly Pan Sahel Initiative) (TSCTI)Targeting threats to US oil/natural gas operations in the Sahara regionAlgeria, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Senegal, Tunisia, Nigeria, and Libya. First exercise, FLINTLOCK 2005, was the first for TSTCI
Africa Contingency Operations Training and Asssistance Program (ACOTA) (formerly African Crisis Response Initiative) (ACRI))Part of Orwellian-sounding "Global Peace" Operations Initiative (GPOI)Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia.
International Military Training and Education (IMET) programBrings African military officers to US military academies and schools for indoctrinationTop countries: Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa.
Africa Center for Strategic Studies (ACSS) (formerly Africa Center for Security Studies)
Part of National Defense University, Washington. Provides indoctrination for "next generation" African military officers. This is the "School of the Americas" for Africa.
All of Africa is covered

Foreign Military Sales ProgramSells US military equipment to African nations via Defense Security Cooperation Agency
Top recipients:
Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Zimbabwe.
African Coastal and Border Security Program Provides fast patrol boats, vehicles, electronic surveillance equipment, night vision equipment  to littoral states 
Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA)Military command based at Camp Lemonier in Djibouti. Aimed at putting down rebellions in Ethiopia, Somalia, and Somaliland and targets Eritrea.Ethiopia, Kenya, Djibouti
Joint Task Force Aztec Silence (JTFAS)Targets terrorism in West and North Africa. Joint effort of EUCOM and Commander Sixth Fleet (Mediterranean)Based in Sigonella, Sicily and Tamanrasset air base in southern Algeria
Gulf of Guinea Initiative, US Navy Maritime Partnership ProgramTrains African militaries in port and off-shore oil platform securityAngola, Benin, Cameroon, Congo-Brazzaville, Congo-Kinshasa, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Nigeria, Sao Tome & Principe, Togo.
Tripartite Plus Intelligence Fusion CellBased in Kisangani, DRC to oversee "regional security," I.E. ensuring U.S. and Israeli access to Congo's gold, diamonds, uranium, platinum, and col-tan.Congo-Kinshasa, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, United States
Base access for Cooperative Security Locations (CSLs) and Forward Operating Locations (FOLs)U.S. access to airbases and other facilitiesGabon, Kenya, Mali, Morocco, Tunisia, Namibia, Sao Tome & Principe, Senegal, Uganda, Zambia, Algeria.
Africa Command (AFRICOM) HeadquartersHeadquarters for all US military operations in AfricaNegotiations with Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, Djibouti, Kenya, and Libya. Only Liberia has said it would be willing to host AFRICOM HQ.
Africa Regional Peacekeeping (ARP)Liaison with African "peacekeeping" military commandsEast Africa Regional Integration Team: Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, Uganda, Kenya, Madagascar, Tanzania. North Africa Regional Integration Team: Mauritania, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya. Central Africa Regional Integration Team: Congo (Kinshasa), Congo (Brazzaville), Chad.
South Africa Regional Integration Team: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Angola. West Africa Regional Integration Team: Nigeria, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Niger, Western Sahara.
Africa Partnership Station (APS)Port visits by USS Fort McHenry and High Speed Vessel (HSV) Swift. Part of US Navy's Global Fleet Station Initiative. Training and liaison with local military personnel to ensure oil production securitySenegal, Liberia, Ghana, Cameroon, Gabon, Sao Tome & Principe

AFRICOM and its intelligence operations are hoping to attract a number of personnel with African language skills, including fluency in Bemba, Bete, Ebira, Fon, Gogo, Kalenjin, Kamba, Luba-Katanga, Mbundu/Umbundu, Nyanja, Sango, Sukuma, Tsonga/Tonga, Amharic, Dinka, Somali, Tigrinya, and Swahili. Speakers hired will find themselves doing everything from reading and translating local newspapers and web sites to translating telephone, fax, e-mail, and telex communications from National Security Agency (NSA) intercepts.
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