Wednesday, March 10, 2010

PLN 16

I read the article “Africom Assists Security, Stability Efforts,” By John Kruzel. What matters is The United States Africa Command, a U.S.-led response to requests by African nations for maritime training, is now in its fifth deployment as it expands its range along the African coastline, the commander, Major General William E Ward said. An estimated 80 percent of Europe’s cocaine supply transits through West Africa. Much of it originates in Latin America before being shipped across the Atlantic Ocean. In sub-Saharan Africa, roughly $1 billion is lost annually to illegal fishing. Meanwhile, both the western and eastern coasts continue to be troubled by piracy, specifically in Nigeria and Somalia, which accounted for nearly 70 percent of the worldwide total in 2008. Meetings with the African governments by the Africa Partnership Station are designed to support and strengthen regional capabilities on the continent and represent one means for building comprehensive maritime security in Africa. The program is inspired by the belief that maritime safety and security will contribute to development, economic prosperity and security ashore. If Africa can stop these problems with the help of the United States Africa Command it may stop a lot of conflicts in Africa such as “conflict diamonds”(hint hint) and also bring the countries together. That would lead to a conflict free, poverty free Africa. Describing other components of the U.S. mission on the continent, Africom personnel are assisting African partners in building their capacities to counter transnational threats from violent extremist organizations (RUF and UNITA are examples), to stem illicit drug trafficking, to support peacekeeping operations and to prepare for natural disasters. “Supporting the development of professional and capable militaries contributes to increased security and stability in Africa, [and] allows African nations and regional organizations to promote good governance, expand development and provide for their common defense and better serve their people,” Major General William E Ward said. The United States promotes its interests by helping African states build capable and professional militaries that respect human rights, adhere to the rule of law and more effectively contribute to stability in Africa.

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