What Is Behind Obama's New Africa Strategy?

20 Jun 2012

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President Obama has unveiled a new US strategy for Africa. The strategy promises to strengthen democracy and encourage economic growth through trade and investment. Though the strategy does mention the importance of countering al Qaeda across the continent, there is no mention of the role of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM), which was established in 2007 under George W Bush.

Yet, under the Obama presidency the US has expanded its military footprint and its secret intelligence operations across Africa, as well as establishing a series of small bases to launch spy missions and drone strikes.

All this as America watches China building its strategic and commercial ties on the African continent, which is rich with resources.

As the US deploys drones, covert special operations forces and private military contractors across the continent, can it really lecture Africans about democracy and accountability?

© Al Jazeera

Editor's Note: You might also be interested in Into Africa: The Global War on Terror's Last Frontier by Professor Michael Brenner of the University of Pittsburgh.

You can find this page online at http://sacsis.org.za/site/article/1339.

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