Africa and the US AFRICOM

Authored by: Jack Mangala

Handbook of Africa’s International Relations

Print publication date:  August  2013
Online publication date:  September  2013

Print ISBN: 9781857436334
eBook ISBN: 9780203803929
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9780203803929-34

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Abstract

Since its inception, the African Union (AU) has made the building of regional peace and security institutions a cornerstone of the comprehensive vision of development embedded in its Constitutive Act. 1 The establishment of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) in 2004 represented an important step in AU’s quest for continental security governance. 2 Over the past few years, the PSC has assumed a more prominent role and it has come to epitomize both the possibilities and weaknesses of an increasingly self-confident AU in responding to the continent’s peace and security challenges. 3 Against this backdrop, the George W. Bush Administration’s decision to establish the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) was rightly perceived as counter-cyclical to the AU’s own efforts in providing a strategic response to African conflicts. 4

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