WASHINGTON, D.C., Mar 17, 2009 —
Testifying for the first time since U.S. Africa Command achieved Unified Command Status, General William E. Ward outlined the command's activities, strategies, and programs before the Senate Armed Services Committee, March 17, 2009.
The same written statement was presented March 18, 2009, to the House Armed Services Committee.
Below is Ward's prepared testimony statement:
Publicly released by the Committee on March 17, 2009
STATEMENT OF GENERAL WILLIAM E. WARD, USA
UNITED STATES AFRICA COMMAND
BEFORE THE SENATE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE
17 March 2009
SENATE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE -- WRITTEN STATEMENT
Transnational Threats and Crime
Other States and Organizations Operating Within the AOR
AFRICA COMMAND STRATEGY AND SECURITY ASSISTANCE
Interests, Endstates, and Objectives
Continent Wide Africa Programs, Activities, and Plans
Regional African Programs, Activities, and Plans
COMPONENT AND SUBORDINATE COMMAND ACTIVITIES
U.S. Army Africa (USARAF)
U.S. Naval Forces, Africa (NAVAF)
U.S. Air Forces, Africa (AFAFRICA)
U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Africa (MARFORAF)
U.S. Special Operations Command, Africa (SOCAFRICA)
Combined Joint Task Force- Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA)
THEATER INVESTMENT NEEDS
Theater Infrastructure and Posture Requirements
Theater Command, Control, Communication, Computer (C4) Systems
Quality of Life Programs
Building Partner Capacity
Support for Regional Programs
It is my privilege as Commander of United States Africa Command to present to Congress our Posture Statement for 2009. The men and women of U.S. Africa Command have ensured the successful, rapid, and on-schedule activation of our nation's newest Unified Command--the sixth geographic command within the Department of Defense (DOD). The establishment of U.S. Africa Command provides a single focus for all DOD activities in Africa, and today we conduct sustained security cooperation programs in support of U.S. foreign and national security policy on the African continent and its island states.
Unified Command Status (UCS) on 1 October 2008 was possible due to the extraordinary efforts of our impressive team. By UCS, a total of 172 missions, activities, programs and exercises were effectively transferred to U.S. Africa Command from U.S. European Command, U.S. Central Command and U.S. Pacific Command. I am grateful for the sustained congressional support to U.S. Africa Command during its formative time, and I thank you for your continued support as we prepare to meet future challenges.
Development, diplomacy, and defense programs are integrally linked, and U.S. Africa Command is implementing the National Defense Strategy's vision of a new jointness by supporting and improving collaboration with other agencies and departments across our Government, as well as improving coordination with international, intergovernmental, and nongovernmental organizations. We achieve the greatest effect for our nation when we coordinate and harmonize our collective efforts in support of our common objectives.
Africa is on a positive course in reducing conflict, building democratic institutions, and promoting sustainable livelihoods for its people, but in each of these areas, the hard-won gains are fragile. Strengthening African security, both in individual nations and regionally, is necessary for its communities to flourish. I am convinced that building African security capability and capacity is the best path to assisting the people of Africa to achieve long-term stability and security.
In the months since UCS, U.S. Africa Command has been serving the interests of our nation, while also addressing the security and stability challenges confronting our African partners. In this report, I provide a brief overview of the strategic environment in Africa, explain our strategy, and underscore how our coordinated security assistance efforts are promoting stability in Africa in support of U.S. foreign policy objectives.
The U.S. Africa Command's area of responsibility (AOR) presents difficult security challenges that should be viewed along with the opportunities available to the people of Africa. These challenges are juxtaposed against abundant natural resources that, if properly managed by African states and institutions, can provide great economic and social benefits to all Africans. Our task is to assist our African partners so that they can provide for their own security in ways that permit realization of their capacity and potential.
Africa is a complex environment requiring a new and different approach. Its unique challenges demand a long-term rather than a near-term focus. For example, two of the most demanding challenges for African coastal nations are the security of their territorial waters and the regulation of their fishing industries. Today, the waters off Africa's west coast are being over-fished at an alarming rate by a variety of entities aware of Africa's inability to monitor and regulate this activity in their economic zone. If this continues, some forecasters predict that the ecological system that supports the fish population, the primary source of protein for many African states, could fail by 2045. Without the ability to secure their maritime spaces and regulate fishing, the nations of Africa will lose this important source of food and revenue for their people. The United States must adopt a long-term view towards creating programs that will help solve such problems. Failing to do so today means our activities will only produce short-term effects.
The greatest security threats facing Africa include enduring conflicts, illicit trafficking, territorial disputes, rebel insurgencies, violent extremists, piracy, and illegal immigration. While rich in both human capital and natural resources, many African states remain fragile due to corruption, endemic and pandemic health problems, historical ethnic animosities, natural disasters, and widespread poverty. Compounding these challenges, difficulties imposed by geography, climate, and a lack of infrastructure are hindering states' efforts to develop in an ever-globalizing international environment.
Despite these difficulties, a holistic picture of Africa taken over time shows some progress and significant promise. Six major wars have ended in the past seven years (Liberia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Angola, Burundi, Sierra Leone, and the North-South conflict in Sudan). Democracy is growing in Africa, with more than 60 elections in the past six years. Almost three-quarters of Sub-Saharan nations are now classified by Freedom House as "Free" or "Partly Free"--up from less than half in 1990. Though the global economy is enduring a down-turn, previous economic growth on the African continent was at an eight year high, and 20 countries have registered positive growth for each of the past five years. Growth in real per capita income was over 3 percent in 2008--a marked change from the declines in growth across the continent in the 1980s and 1990s. Still, the amount of human suffering directly attributable to conflict on the African continent is unacceptably high, and the 2009 Freedom House report on Sub-Saharan Africa notes that, "[O]verall, Africa has seen notable increases in freedom over the past generation, but has experienced some troubling setbacks in recent years."
In addition, African states are working hard to develop their own ability to deal with security challenges. Today Africans are sharing the burden of international peace and security by supplying 32 percent of United Nations (UN) peacekeeping forces worldwide. As of March 2009 there are more than 33,000 African peacekeepers deployed in support of UN and African Union (AU) peacekeeping missions. Five African countries--Nigeria, Rwanda, Ghana, Ethiopia, and South Africa--rank amongst the top 15 UN troop contributing nations.
Although Africa is on a positive trajectory, progress remains fragile and easily reversible.
Africa has the world's highest birth rates and the largest percentage of projected population growth. The continent's population of over 900 million is growing by approximately 2.4 percent annually and is projected to double by 2050. Today, 43 percent of Sub-Saharan Africa's population is below the age of 15. Rapid population growth and this "youth bulge" exceed most governments' ability to provide basic services and the capacity of their growing economies to provide jobs. This pool of undereducated and unemployed youth present a potential source of social and political instability.
Africa has experienced large migration flows in recent decades, often in response to economic problems, civil unrest, or natural disasters. Africa generates 49 percent of the world's internally displaced persons (IDPs). Many migrants settle in urban slums, further straining government services and contributing to the spread of infectious disease. Rapid urbanization also increases competition for limited jobs, housing, food, and water.
Transnational Threats and Crime
The United States and many of our African partners face a number of transnational threats in Africa. Violent extremism, piracy, and illicit trafficking are enabled by or directly contribute to instability. Somalia, Sudan, and vast open areas of countries across the Sahel region provide sanctuary for violent extremists. Al-Qaeda increased its influence dramatically across north and east Africa over the past three years with the growth of East Africa Al-Qaeda, al Shabaab, and Al-Qaeda in the Lands of the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). At the same time, the general level of support for violent extremism among most Muslims in Africa remains very low.
Other trends pose serious challenges to U.S. interests. Foreign fighter recruitment and support networks are present across northern and eastern Africa, assisting extremists fighting coalition and government forces in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Vast coastal areas provide havens for smuggling, human and drug trafficking, illegal immigration, piracy, oil bunkering, and poaching of fisheries. For example, large-scale oil theft by disparate groupings of armed militants in the Niger Delta is a significant problem. Observers estimate that Nigeria's oil exports have been reduced by 20 percent due to banditry fostered by lingering societal and political grievances. Theft of oil within the country costs the state untold revenues that could be used to improve services for the population.
Africa is a piracy flashpoint, with incidents occurring in Somali waters, the Gulf of Aden, and the Gulf of Guinea. In the first nine months of 2008 alone, paid ransoms may have exceeded $30 million. Maritime security will remain a challenge, particularly along the Horn of Africa, Swahili Coast, Mozambique Channel, and, to a lesser extent, in the Gulf of Guinea, where littoral nations continue to lack the ability to patrol and protect their waters.
According to a recent U.S. Department of State (DOS) report, trafficking in persons is a significant and widespread problem throughout Africa. Especially prevalent are trafficking in children (including child military conscription), women for commercial sexual exploitation, and males for forced labor. As of 2008, there was only one African country in compliance with the U.S. Trafficking Victim's Protection Act of 2000.
Illicit trafficking of narcotics poses a significant threat to regional stability. According to the DOS International Narcotics Control Strategy Report 2008, and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Western Africa has emerged as a critical trans-shipment point for South American cocaine destined primarily for European markets. The presence of drug trafficking organizations in West Africa as well as local drug use create serious security and health challenges. The strong Euro currency, increased European cocaine demand, and successful interdiction in the Americas contribute to West Africa's place in the narcotics trade. The UN estimates that 27 percent of all cocaine annually consumed in Europe transits West Africa, with trends rising significantly. In addition to the health and medical problems resulting from the distribution and spread of narcotics along the trafficking routes, the presence and influence of traffickers in the West African region has had a profoundly corrosive effect on the rule of law in many West African states. It must be noted that the narcotics trafficking from Southwest Asia through the islands into East and Southern Africa also remains a significant a concern. Although there is a degree of political will within many African states, efforts to combat narcotics trafficking are hampered by resource shortfalls, law enforcement and judicial capacity, and corruption.
Other Nations and Organizations Operating Within the AOR
As Africa's importance is recognized, more non-African countries and international governmental organizations seek to develop, maintain, and expand relations with African states. China, India, Brazil, Turkey, Japan, Russia, European states, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU) have all focused increasingly on Africa's potential and its strategic significance.
European leaders remain committed to working with their African counterparts on a broad range of developmental issues. Specifically, in the peace and security arena, the EU has mounted several security sector reform operations in Africa, including in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Guinea Bissau, Chad, and the Central African Republic. NATO airlifted African Union (AU) peacekeepers into Darfur and Somalia and NATO supports development of AU peacekeeping capability with U.S. and other NATO officers embedded into AU Peace Support Operations Division. Recently, both NATO and the EU initiated Horn of Africa counter-piracy operations and they coordinate their counter-piracy efforts with U.S Central Command's Combined Task Force-151.
Other European nations without historic ties with Africa, such as Switzerland, Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, have increased their support for UN operations, and have bilateral assistance efforts that contribute to capacity building. U.S. Africa Command continues to build cooperation with European partners to coordinate programs and contribute to a focused, collaborative approach to capacity building.
Additionally, it is important to note China and India's ongoing efforts in Africa. Over the last ten years, China's interests in Africa have increased significantly. China is the world's leading consumer of copper, steel, cobalt and aluminum, and is second only to the United States as an importer of African oil. India, as of April 2008, pledged to invest $500 million over the next five years in development projects in Africa, and also pledged to double financial credit to African countries from $2 billion dollars during the past five years to $5.4 billion over the next five years. The actions and contributions of both of these nations demonstrate the active role they play in Africa today.
U.S. AFRICA COMMAND STRATEGY
U.S. Africa Command's strategy of sustained security engagement focuses our military-to-military (mil-to-mil) programs on conflict and crisis prevention rather than reaction. The Command, in accordance with U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives, creates, sustains, and supports opportunities to assist our African partners in their efforts to build enduring security capacity to prevent or mitigate the catastrophic effects and costs associated with instability, conflict, transnational threats, and humanitarian disasters.
Interests, Endstates, and Objectives
The National Defense Strategy objectives of defending the homeland, promoting security, deterring conflict, and winning our nation's wars define U.S security interests in Africa. U.S. Africa Command, in developing its command strategy, identified the following as our theater strategic interests:
- Prevent attacks against Americans by transnational threats emanating from Africa;
- Prevent acquisition, transfer, or transit of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) material or expertise;
- Maintain our freedom of movement into and through the AOR;
- Foster the prevention, mitigation, or containment of conflict;
- Foster sustained stability;
- Mitigate the effects of significant humanitarian crises or natural disasters;
- Deter and contain pandemic influenza in the AOR.
The DOD Guidance for Employment of the Force specifically directs three strategic endstates as guidance for U.S. Africa Command's activities. These are:
Endstate 1: African countries and organizations are able to provide for their own security and contribute to security on the continent.
Endstate 2: African governments and regional security establishments have the capability to mitigate the threat from organizations committed to violent extremism.
Endstate 3: African countries and organizations maintain professional militaries that respond to civilian authorities, respect the rule of law, and abide by international human rights norms.
U.S. Africa Command's primary effort is building African security capacity so our partners can prevent future conflict and address current or emerging security and stability challenges. This approach reinforces African states' gains in improving governance, and enables the United States to help improve the effectiveness of current African supported UN and AU peacekeeping missions.
The Command-developed theater strategic objectives are designed to: 1) support the achievement of the theater strategic endstates, 2) protect or advance U.S. interests in Africa, and 3) provide focus for the Command's engagement activities. The primary mechanism for meeting the following objectives is building African security capacity.
U.S. Africa Command theater strategic objectives are:
- Defeat the Al-Qaeda terrorist organization and its associated networks;
- Ensure peace operation capacity exists to respond to emerging crises, and continental peace support operations are effectively fulfilling mission requirements.
- Cooperate with identified African states in the creation of an environment inhospitable to the unsanctioned possession and proliferation of WMD capabilities and expertise;
- Improve security sector governance and increased stability through military support to comprehensive, holistic, and enduring USG efforts in designated states;
- Protect populations from deadly contagions.
U.S. Africa Command's strategy of security capacity building will support long-term African stability, while also fostering the development of African forces that can address contemporary and future conflicts. Our strategy allows the Command to provide support to efforts led by other U.S. Government (USG) agencies responsible for development and diplomacy. Most importantly, this strategy allows U.S. Africa Command to defend the Homeland and secure U.S. interests abroad.
Continent Wide Programs, Activities, and Plans
To meet our theater strategic objectives, U.S. Africa Command implements and supports programs that span the whole of Africa, as well as programs specific to regions and countries.
Support to the Fight Against Violent Extremism
Combating violent extremism requires long-term, innovative approaches, and an orchestration of national and international power. By strengthening our partners' security capacity, we will deny terrorists freedom of action and access to resources, while diminishing the conditions that foster violent extremism.
Operation ENDURING FREEDOM-TRANS-SAHARA (OEF-TS) is the DOD contribution to the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP). This partnership uses the capabilities of U.S. Government (USG) agencies to counter terrorism in North and West Africa. The OEF-TS component of TSCTP is designed to assist participating African nations as they improve control of their territories and thus deny safe havens to terrorist groups. Cooperation strengthens regional counter terrorism (CT) capabilities and reduces the illegal flow of arms, goods, and people through the region. The military train and equip component of TSCTP is primarily funded with DOS Peacekeeping Operations (PKO) funds. PKO funds for TSCTP are a critical component of the long-term strategy for OEF-TS and TSCTP.
Our partners' enthusiasm and support for these efforts was evident during Exercise FLINTLOCK in November 2008, when nine African and four European partners came together to conduct a CT exercise spanning an area larger than the continental United States. The principal purpose of the FLINTLOCK exercises is to improve military interoperability, and strengthen regional relationships.
COMBINED JOINT TASK FORCE - HORN OF AFRICA (CJTF-HOA) is the second named operation ongoing in Africa. Discussed in greater detail in the Component and Subordinate Command Section, CJTF-HOA employs an indirect approach to counter extremism. Through a strategy of Cooperative Conflict Prevention, the task force builds security capacity, promotes regional cooperation, and protects coalition interests.
OPERATION OBJECTIVE VOICE (OOV), known previously as OPERATION ASSURED VOICE - AFRICA (OAV-A), is an operation that strikes at the heart of violent extremist efforts--ideology. OOV is a proactive effort where multiple agencies partner with African governments to broadcast messages to counter extremist propaganda. Military Information Support Teams, in conjunction with DOS public diplomacy, have demonstrated success in several countries including Nigeria, Mali, and Kenya. We continue to work with participating nations, Embassy Country Teams, and DOS to enhance this program.
Theater Security Cooperation (TSC) programs remain the cornerstone of our persistent, sustained engagement. These programs build lasting relationships, promote common interests, and enhance partner capabilities to provide safe and secure environments. Our mil-to-mil programs assist our allies and partners in maturing their capabilities to conduct operations with well-trained, disciplined forces that respect human rights and the rule of law. Our cooperative security efforts provide essential peacetime and contingency access and infrastructure, improve information sharing, and are vital to U.S. Africa Command's support of U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives.
International Military Education and Training (IMET) programs provide education and training to foreign military and civilian personnel. IMET is a critical form of security cooperation in theater. A robust IMET program is a long-term investment in the future and directly supports U.S. interests.
The target audience of IMET is future military and civilian leaders. IMET provides education and training for both military and civilian personnel to help militaries understand their role in a democracy. IMET exposes countries to our democratic principles, but achieving long-term results is impeded if these programs are not sustained over a long period. If we are perceived as unreliable, African states may pursue training with countries that do not share our values, including our commitment to respect for human rights, good governance, and transparency, and this could impact our relationship with a state's security forces--a relationship that might not recover for a generation. The long-term benefit of IMET cannot be overstated. Forty-six of fifty-two African states and one organization (Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)) are expected to have IMET programs in Fiscal Year (FY) 2009.
Foreign Military Financing (FMF) provides critical U.S. military equipment and services to partner countries. U.S. Africa Command seeks to align FMF programs to enhance security capacity building by including FMF as part of our long-term strategy to procure compatible systems that increase interoperability, effectiveness, and efficiency of training. FY 2008 FMF numbers were approximately $18.7 million for 53 countries, with most of this going Tunisia and Morocco. If we are to achieve our endstates and avoid undesirable strategic consequences, we must continue to closely monitor our strategic use of FMF and cooperatively work together to ensure its distribution contributes directly to our long-term goals.
IMET and FMF are critical to accomplishing the United State's mission in Africa and constitute long-term investments in critical relationships. Both programs are fundamental to our strategy of preventative rather than reactive response.
Foreign Military Sales (FMS). Goods bought through FMS have improved interoperability with countries that benefit from the program. Vehicles, watercraft, aircraft, and equipment purchased through the program are often the same materials currently being used by U.S. forces. Countries that are eligible to receive FMS are eligible to receive Excess Defense Articles (EDA) as well. Trucks supplied to the Senegalese military through the EDA program will be instrumental during the deployment of Senegalese Battalions in support of their peacekeeping operations in Darfur.
Continental peace support operations and military-to-military programs
The Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI) is a U.S. State Department-led initiative to enhance global capabilities to conduct peace support operations, with a particular emphasis on building African capacity. This program is expected to train 75,000 peacekeeping troops worldwide by 2010, develop a transportation and logistics architecture to facilitate peacekeeping deployments, and establish an international training center for the training of formed police unit trainers. In Africa, GPOI funds are primarily used to support and expand the pre-existing Africa Contingency Operations Training and Assistance (ACOTA) program. Since FY2005, ACOTA has directly trained more than 68,000 African soldiers, including approximately 3,500 military trainers. U.S. Africa Command supports the ACOTA program by providing military mentor teams. The U.S. military has provided approximately 350 mentors over the life of the ACOTA program, and we are actively seeking ways to provide additional support.
In 2009, the GPOI program is expected to support and expand our communication initiatives on the continent. In West Africa, specifically, GPOI will expand the ECOWAS Regional Information Exchange System (ERIES) satellite network enabling its 15 partner countries to communicate and exchange information.
GPOI programs such as ACOTA and ERIES are critical to our efforts to develop and improve our African partners' security capacity.
The Mil-to-Mil Contact program is a pillar of U.S. Africa Command's security cooperation activities in African countries. Since 2003, over 400 mil-to-mil events have helped host nations address such fundamental topics as integration of women in the military, civilian control of the military, establishment of military legal codes, and programs to develop professional officer, noncommissioned officer (NCO), and chaplain corps. Funding for mil-to-mil operations uses Traditional Combatant Commander Activities (TCA) funds. In FY 2008, $3.3 million of TCA monies were spent on Africa mil-to-mil activities. We plan to expand this critical program, with $6.1 million in TCA budgeted for FY 2009.
The National Guard State Partnership Program (SPP) remains a superb, effective TSC program. Linking U.S. states and territories with African countries, the SPP helps build long-term relationships, promotes access, enhances African military professionalism and capabilities, interoperability, and promotes healthy civil-military relations. U.S. Africa Command currently has seven state partnerships: Tunisia-Wyoming; Morocco-Utah; Ghana-North Dakota; South Africa-New York; Nigeria-California; Senegal-Vermont, and Botswana-North Carolina. The unique civil-military nature of the National Guard enables it to interact consistently, over time, with all security forces, and, when appropriate, African civilian officials. We are seeking support from Adjutant Generals to expand this valuable program.
Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS) Programs and Humanitarian Assistance (HA)
U.S. Africa Command's Partner Military HIV/AIDS Program is a successful program focused on a source of suffering and a hindrance to sustained development and stability in Africa--the HIV/AIDS pandemic. HIV/AIDS is a military force generation and sustainment problem for African forces and is a risk to African security and stability. The Command addresses HIV/AIDS in the military context through technical program assistance and implementation from the Department of Defense Executive Agent (DOD HIV/AIDS Prevention Program Office) and the Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator using three funding sources: the DOD HIV/AIDS Prevention Program Office using a congressional supplemental provided via the Office of the Secretary of Defense Health Affairs Defense Health Program; the DOS Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator using the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR); and the DOS, using the HIV/AIDS Military Health Affairs FMF program. The Command's Partner Military HIV/AIDS Program implemented and executed by the DOD HIV/AIDS Prevention Program Office in collaboration with PEPFAR, provides strategic direction and oversight for designated countries to further U.S. Africa Command strategic objectives.
DOD activities supporting African militaries' fight against HIV/AIDS have been very successful and now reach 39 countries in Africa. When DOD's program began in 2001, few African militaries had yet tested their forces for HIV infection, and only a small number had programs or policies addressing HIV/AIDS. Today, as a result of past joint efforts between DHAPP, PEPFAR and U.S. Africa Command, many militaries in Africa now test their forces for HIV and have active programs for HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment. In the past year, U.S. Africa Command's programs have reached 497,000 African troops and family members with prevention messages, and provided testing and counseling and testing services for 102,000 service members and their families. In addition, 800 senior military leaders have been trained on HIV/AIDS policies in their countries, and 7,000 peer educators and 5,000 health care workers received training. About 19,000 individuals are on antiretroviral treatment as a result of these collaborative efforts. These programs and voluntary counseling and testing are helping to affect behavioral change by reducing the stigma often associated with HIV/AIDS in Africa.
Humanitarian Assistance Programs. Interagency coordination multiplies the effectiveness of Humanitarian Assistance (HA) programs. U.S. Africa Command coordinates its humanitarian efforts with those of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and DOS to ensure its HA efforts on the continent complement and support USAID's lead on development initiatives in a country. U.S. Africa Command Humanitarian and Civic Assistance (HCA) events are undertaken when they support the security and foreign policy interests of the United States, the security interests of the country in which the activity is performed, and promote the specific operational readiness skills of the U.S. forces that participate. Humanitarian Assistance-Other (HA-O) programs are another means for the Command to complete projects that benefit the civilian population of a host nation and support overall development priorities. The command's FY 2008 projects included providing veterinary and medical care, building and furnishing schools and clinics, digging wells, providing clean water in rural and austere locations, and help in delivering disaster relief. Such activities have proven successful in the Horn of Africa.
A variety of innovative HA activities support our long-term interests by building partnerships with African nations and establishing good working relations with international and non-governmental organization (NGO) partners. In Tunisia for instance, the HA program funded architectural and engineering services and partial construction of a new educational facility for marginalized autistic children, while French partners supported construction and training by an international NGO for special educators. In Burkina Faso, from August to October 2008, both the Humanitarian Civic Assistance (HCA) and Excess Property Programs were used in combination to conduct a three-phased Medical Civic Action Program (MEDCAP) to combat eye disease. The Burkina Faso Ministry of Health and Ministry of Defense, with support of the U.S. Embassy, and the Burkina Faso Ministry of Defense, worked jointly to achieve this mission. In another program, fully adjustable, self-prescribing glassesssssÃ?-fine tuned by U.S. military personnel--have been distributed during U.S. military medical outreach projects. In Botswana, HA funds doubled the size of a facility used by an international NGO to provide after-school services for orphaned children. All of these activities contribute significantly to well-being while complementing development efforts that serve the interests of our nation and U.S. Africa Command.
Over the next year, U.S. Africa Command will work closely with Country Teams to ensure HA resources are used to complement other USG funding and achieve overall USG foreign policy objectives while continuing to further American and African security objectives. HA resources are a flexible tool to complement larger humanitarian and development programs implemented by USAID, PEPFAR, and Millennium Challenge Corporation.
Pandemic Response Programs
In light of the important role national militaries are likely to play in pandemic response globally, Congress provided FY 2008 funds to enable USAID and the U.S. Africa and Pacific Commands to partner to develop host nation militaries' pandemic response capacity. Our Pandemic Response Program will help develop and exercise African military pandemic response plans that compliment civilian activities during a pandemic. Our assessment teams are beginning to work in East and West Africa to develop national and regional activities that focus the military role on maintaining security and communications, providing logistic support for provision of food, medicine, and other commodities, as well as providing augmented medical care. This program will build local capacity to respond to other disasters as well.
Interagency Cooperation and Partnership
U.S. Africa Command's interagency efforts are of critical importance to the Command's success. The Command has three senior Foreign Service Officers in key positions as well as numerous personnel from other USG agencies serving in leadership, management, and staff positions throughout our headquarters. From piracy off the coast of Somalia to supporting the UN Africa Union Mission in Darfur, embedded interagency personnel are involved in the earliest stages of U.S. Africa Command's planning. These invaluable experts help the Command ensure its plans and activities complement those of other USG agencies.
The Command's development of its Theater Strategy and supporting campaign plan is another example of its extensive interagency cooperation. Through collaboration among departments and federal agencies, we strive to ensure that our collective activities are integrated and synchronized in pursuit of common goals. In developing the U.S. Africa Command Theater Campaign Plan (TCP), a plan that accounts for peacetime activities over the next five years, the Command has involved interagency experts from the very beginning of the planning process. In the summer of 2008, U.S. Africa Command planners met in Virginia with representatives from 16 agencies in a series of workshops designed to gain interagency input on Africa Command's Theater Strategy and TCP. Representatives from other agencies have also participated in Theater Strategy and TCP discussions and most remain involved in a planning effort designed to complete the TCP by the spring of 2009.
The growth and development of our interagency team depends on the human resources of our partner agencies. USG agencies and departments have been supportive of our requests to fill our interagency billets, and we remain flexible in defining the role and participation of these agencies as we continue to grow and evolve. Today, all senior executive interagency positions at U.S. Africa Command have been filled, and we continue to work with the interagency to fill additional positions. A total of 27 interagency personnel are assigned to Africa Command from the Department of State, Department of Commerce, Department of Homeland Security, Department of the Treasury, USAID, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Open Source Center. The Department of Energy and Department of Justice both have pending assignments. Other agencies, such as U.S. Geological Survey and the Department of Agriculture, have sent representatives to U.S. Africa Command to examine the possibility of placing people at the command permanently.
U.S. Africa Command is aggressively pursuing new, innovative processes and relationships to improve DOD collaboration with other USG agencies in order to maximize the effectiveness of all U.S. activities in Africa.
Regional African Programs, Activities, and Plans
Many of the programs we are currently implementing were transferred from the commands previously responsible for portions of U.S. Africa Command's AOR. As we move forward, we will synchronize this collection of programs across the five regions of Africa so that, together, they enable us to implement the coherent approach outlined in U.S. Africa Command's Theater Strategy. The command's definition of the five regions of Africa mirrors that of the African Union. The regions are: North Africa, West Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, and Southern Africa.
While Egypt remains within U.S. Central Command's AOR, we recognize the importance of Egypt's influence throughout the continent. Egypt's partnerships with other African nations contribute to their stability and the professionalization of their militaries, and Egypt has expressed a desire for a close relationship with U.S. Africa Command. As a result, we participated in the U.S.-Egypt defense talks in 2008, and we have concluded a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with U.S Central Command that ensures synchronization and coordination between commands whenever U.S. Africa Command missions require engagement with Egypt.
Regarding Libya, the lifting of Section 507 sanctions and the recent signing of a MOU on defense contacts and cooperation provide a solid foundation upon which we can build our bilateral military relationship. My staff is diligently preparing a proposal for engagement activities with the Libyans. In February of 2009, we conducted a site visit to determine ways to assist Libya's Coast Guard, advise them on the procurement of English Language labs in preparation for attendance in our professional schooling, and to conclude a foreign military sales contract enabling Libya's purchase of border patrol vehicles. We approach this new relationship carefully, deliberately, and with the intention to improve military relations consistent with U.S. foreign policy guidance and national security objectives.
U.S. Africa Command will seek opportunities in this region for increased collaboration in the areas of counterterrorism, border, and maritime security. The U.S. SIXTH Fleet, along with several European and North African navies (Malta, Turkey, Greece, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Mauritania, France, Italy, Spain, and Portugal), conducted PHOENIX EXPRESS 2008, a multilateral naval exercise. PHOENIX EXPRESS concentrates on operations that directly contribute to safety and security in the maritime domain, focusing on maritime interdiction, communications, and information sharing. U.S. Africa Command's naval component, U.S. Naval Forces, Africa (NAVAF) will expand PHOENIX EXPRESS 2009 to include navies from Algeria, France, Greece, Italy, Malta, Morocco, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia, Turkey, Senegal, and possibly others.
In June 2008, the Marines that have since become U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Africa (MARFORAF) conducted exercise AFRICAN LION in Morocco. This annual bi-lateral exercise focuses on small-unit infantry tactics, staff training, and humanitarian assistance. In 2009, U.S Africa Command's Army component, U.S. Army Africa (USARAF), will support the joint exercise, AFRICAN LION, in Morocco.
U.S. Africa Command's air component, Air Forces, Africa (AFAFRICA), is responsible for four exercise related construction projects in Morocco totaling over $1.2 million. These projects will improve runway capability and construct exercise reception facilities to support current and future Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff exercises in Africa. Additionally, AFAFRICA HCA programs in Morocco have awarded contracts for veterinarian clinic supplies, water wells and school construction.
An excellent model for future USG whole-of-government cooperation can be found in North Africa. In October 2008, one of Africa Command's senior USAID representatives traveled to Morocco to help integrate DOD HA activities into the U.S. Embassy's Country Assistance Strategy (CAS). Working closing with the Embassy team, a MOU between U.S. Africa Command's Office of Security Cooperation (OSC) and USAID's Mission Director was completed. This MOU is designed to align and focus programs and activities to provide for a coordinated, consistent USG response in pursuit of shared policy goals. As strategic partners, U.S Africa Command and USAID are implementing a program that targets the number-one goal of the U.S.-Embassy's CAS--"Mitigating the factors of youth disaffection and marginalization." This coordinated interagency approach facilitates a whole-of-government, preventative approach to the problem of disaffected youths, with each agency working closely together, within their mandated areas of responsibility, to achieve a greater effect than had they acted alone.
This project serves as an interagency model for other U.S. Embassies while reemphasizing that, while U.S. Africa Command does not have the lead in the development sphere, it plays an important supporting role to U.S. Mission Strategic Plans.
As with much of Africa, West African states are confronted with porous maritime and territorial borders contributing to illegal trafficking in narcotics, persons, and counterfeit goods, illegal fishing and extraction of resources, and other criminal activities. There is also ethnic, religious, and social strife, and a lack of adequate infrastructure to support populations and foster economic development. Often, a crisis in one country affects surrounding countries; likewise, a threat to one country often emanates from or rapidly proliferates to neighboring countries. This requires a multilateral approach to improve security, stability, and development. Despite the success achieved by ECOWAS and the ECOWAS Standby Force, various threats continue to inhibit the sustainment of security and prosperity in West Africa. U.S. Africa Command is working with bilateral partners, ECOWAS, USG agencies, and non-African nations active in the region to address these threats for the mutual benefit of West Africa, the United States, and the international community.
U.S. Africa Command has partnered with several countries in West Africa to develop plans to counter regional threats. In Mali, Niger, Senegal, and Nigeria, the TSCTP and its military element, OEF-TS, are the U.S. lead programs in countering violent extremism in the Sahel. U.S. Africa Command cooperates with the British in their efforts to develop the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces, and, through MARFORAF, also supports the Security Sector Reform program to mentor and develop the new Armed Forces of Liberia.
We have seen significant progress in Liberia during its transition to peace and stability following a 14-year civil war. The Armed Forces of Liberia are completing basic training of their new 2,000 soldier army, but the work here is far from finished. We must continue to provide adequate IMET for officer and non-commissioned officer development, and we must provide additional FMF and Peacekeeping Operations (PKO) funding if we are to sustain the SSR program, mil-to-mil engagements, and develop the Liberian Coast Guard. Additionally, the other security sector elements, police and judiciary, will need significant assistance if they are to successfully replace the departing UN Police Units and improve their legal system. In recognition of the pending UN withdrawal, Liberia was our number one Security and Stabilization Assistance request for West Africa in FY 2008. DOS requested funds to support the restructuring of the Liberian National Police. Security Sector Reform, supported by IMET and FMF along with persistent and sustained engagement are essential if we are to secure the gains made in establishing peace and security--the essential foundation for national reconstruction and economic development.
In Ghana, the professionalism of its armed forces demonstrated during the December 2008 presidential and parliamentary elections is to be noted. The planning, coordination, and exercises conducted with the Ghana Police and other security forces during the run up to the election were critical to its success. While there were a few instances of election related violence, the security forces quickly and professionally restored order. While domestic security is a police task in Ghana, the military is tasked to provide support when requested, and their recent performance was a positive example of what we intend to support when we work with a partner as they seek to professionalize their military forces. Ghana provides a clear example of an African military force respecting and supporting civil authority.
NAVAF's focus on security cooperation activities in this and the Central Region has been through its key initiative, Africa Partnership Station (APS). In recognition of this important effort, both the Senegalese Minister of Defense and the U.S Ambassador attended the opening meeting of the APS-hosted Oil Spill Prevention Workshop in Senegal. In Liberia, fifteen U.S. Marines along with five soldiers from USARAF and a U.S. Navy corpsman are working with the new, U.S.-trained Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL). They are training 350 AFL members on basic officer and non-commissioned officer leadership, logistics and vehicle safety, martial arts, and non-lethal weapons and riot control procedures. Other U.S. Marines, along with their Spanish and Portuguese counterparts, are in Ghana providing similar training there. Our African partners see APS as a successful maritime initiative and are eager to participate and improve this valuable program.
Also in the maritime domain, joint Law Enforcement Detachment operations were conducted to enforce maritime law within the Cape Verde waters in 2008. This was done with support of the host nation, our State Department, the French Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard. In 2009, we hope to continue to build these capabilities with other interested countries, such as Senegal.
Additionally, MARFORAF conducted the bilateral exercise SHARED ACCORD in Ghana in June 2008. This annual U.S. and West African exercise focuses on small-unit infantry tactics, staff training, and HA. In July 2008, exercise AFRICA ENDEAVOR 08 in Nigeria improved communications and information systems interoperability between U.S. and African partner nation militaries. Exercise MEDFLAG 08, a joint medical exercise with the Malian Armed Forces that included HA to the Malian people, was conducted during July in Mali.
Throughout 2008, MARFORAF African Logistics Initiative events provided Senegal, Ghana, and Liberia with an array of logistics training. In May 08, MARFORAF Intelligence conducted the Military Intelligence Basic Officers Course for Africa. MARFORAF also provided military mentors in support of the ACOTA program and expanded mil-to-mil programs in Senegal and Ghana
One of AFAFRICA's key programs for all of West Africa is the Air Domain Safety and Security program. The Air Domain Safety and Security program is a long-term, steady-state, general purpose Air Force Program of Record. Utilizing general purpose air forces, AFAFRICA is working together with interagency and host nation representatives to enhance the safety and security capacity of civil and military air domains comprising four mutually supporting elements of infrastructure, personnel, situational awareness, and response.
Additionally, AFAFRICA supports an exercise program that included SHARED ACCORD 08 in Ghana and Liberia. One of the highlights of SHARED ACCORD 08 was the treatment of 2,323 pediatric, 961 optometry, 558 dental care and 2,686 adult care patients. AFAFRICA also participated in MEDCAP, DENTCAP, and Civil Affairs outreach projects in Ghana in Feb 2008. Over 758 dental screenings with 361 patients receiving treatments and 666 child preventative dentistry screenings were conducted.
The Central Region is rich in natural resources. However, resource wealth has brought corruption and the misuse of government funds, which in turn can lead to weakened government institutions, and thereby hinder growth and prosperity.
Active rebel movements persist in the DRC, Burundi, Chad, and the Central African Republic. Despite years of efforts for a negotiated settlement in Northern Uganda, the Lord's Resistance Army, operating out of Eastern DRC, threatens the sub-region. Additional areas of concern include movement of transnational terrorist organizations and drugs, as well as the flow of refugees, IDPs, and arms from conflict zones.
The DRC, due to its immense size and strategic location, is a focus of effort because instability there has wider regional implications. An OSC was opened in DRC in the fall of 2008 to manage and coordinate growing theater security cooperation activities. One of our security cooperation focus areas is the Defense Institute of International Legal Studies, which works to develop a viable and transparent military judicial system. We have a great deal of work ahead of us in DRC, and we are taking steps to address the security issues of this important region.
Regarding other U.S. Africa Command efforts in the Central Region, MARFORAF is expanding mil-to-mil programs in Cameroon. Likewise, AFAFRICA has been instrumental during the initial planning for Exercise AFRICA ENDEAVOR 2009, which will bring together 37 countries and 2 international organizations in Cameroon, Gabon, and Senegal.
In 2008, APS featured the successful deployments of USS FORT MCHENRY and HSV-2 SWIFT with an international staff comprised of representatives from 10 countries (United States, United Kingdom, France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Gabon and Cameroon) that engaged 14 West and Central Africa countries, conducted 35 port visits, and engaged more than 1700 African maritime professionals in courses custom-tailored to each nation's maritime governance needs. In 2009, the centerpiece of APS engagement is the deployment of USS NASHVILLE. France, United Kingdom, Germany, Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands, Cameroon, Gabon, Senegal, Nigeria and Ghana are providing staff members and training teams, complemented by participation or support from the U.S. Coast Guard, embarked Department of State Political Advisors (POLADS), and other governmental and non-governmental organizations.
MARFORAF also supported the 2008 APS deployment aboard the USS FORT MCHENRY. Throughout the APS deployment, U.S. and Spanish Marines conducted non-commissioned officer leadership training with African military personnel from Liberia, Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and Sao Tome and Principe.
The Regional Maritime Awareness Capability (RMAC) Project serves as another excellent example of interagency coordination. RMAC provides awareness of maritime threats to the Coast Guard of Sao Tome and Principe. This project has become the catalyst for other assistance, including U.S. Navy Seabee construction of a pier next to the RMAC facility, U.S. Navy mapping of the port, Defense Institute of International Legal Studies assistance in developing maritime laws, and U.S. Treasury Department and Customs assistance in developing laws against money laundering.
East Africa includes the Horn of Africa and the Great Lakes region, portions of both the Swahili Coast and Mozambique Channel, and regional island nations. Kenya is returning to stability and economic growth following the aftermath of the post-election turmoil of December 2007. Ethiopia, host of the AU and a key USG CT partner, faces an unresolved border dispute with Eritrea and continues to conduct counter insurgency campaigns in the Ogaden. Situations in Sudan and Somalia destabilize the entire region. The government of Sudan has been implicated in genocide in Darfur and continues to pose a threat to the Government of Southern Sudan despite the conclusion of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) following 20 years of civil war. Somalia, a weakly governed state, provides a haven for extremists and a base for piracy operations. However, we are fortunate amongst the problems of this area, to have a solid and reliable partnership with Djibouti. With accepted presence and mature relationships, Djibouti is invaluable as we conduct our Theater Security Cooperation (TSC) activities with our African partners. A stable friend in a fragile region, Djibouti provides the only enduring U.S. military infrastructure in Africa.
In recent years, incidents of piracy on the high seas off the coast of Somalia have received global attention. In 2008, over 120 attacks occurred off Somalia, which has a long and sparsely populated coast that poses challenges to international counter-piracy operations. Approximately 10 percent of the world's shipping passes through the Gulf of Aden or into and out of the Red Sea. While most of the incidents here have occurred in the eastern Gulf, pirates have struck as far as 450 nautical miles off the Horn of Africa. Crew abductions are common, and ransoms are generally paid within a month of capture. The average ransom has tripled since 2007--as has the number of ships seized.
To address regional instability, the USG, with U.S. Africa Command's support, is leading an international community effort to conduct an effective Security Sector Reform program for Southern Sudan. The goal of U.S. Africa Command's support to the Sudanese People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) is to professionalize their army and increase their defensive capabilities. These improvements are intended to help facilitate implementation of the requirements of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Also, our Air Force component continues to provide transport support to peacekeeping forces destined for Darfur.
Despite the security and humanitarian challenges facing East Africa, our military-to-military professionalization efforts, bilaterally and through our support to ACOTA, have enabled Ethiopia, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, and soon Tanzania to contribute to peacekeeping missions in Somalia, Sudan, and elsewhere. Also, USARAF will conduct a multilateral, regional, disaster relief exercise with Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania (NATURAL FIRE) in 2009. Increasing the capabilities of our partner nations allows them to address instability and the enabling effects it has on piracy and violent extremism.
Additionally in East Africa, and as part of our overall professionalization efforts, U.S. Africa Command works with partners to promote stability and security through support to professional schools. Five U.S. military instructors currently teach and assist in curriculum development for Ethiopian senior officers at the Ethiopian Defense Command and Staff College. In Kenya, we are supporting Kenyan efforts to develop a professional NCO corps. In Uganda, CJTF-HOA provides twelve instructors for their NCO Academy, as well as guest lecturers at the Command and Staff College in Jinja.
CJTF-HOA conducts security cooperation programs throughout the Horn of Africa, East Africa, and the regional islands. The CJTF focuses its operations on building regional and bilateral security capacity to combat terrorism, deny safe havens and material assistance support to terrorist activity, and prepare for other challenges such as natural and manmade disasters. The effect of CJTF-HOA is maximized by close coordination with our OSCs, coalition members, partner countries, other USG agencies, and NGOs operating in the region.
Mil-to-mil engagement is the foundation of building security capacity in the East African Region. CJTF-HOA mil-to-mil activities includes Staff Officer and NCO mentoring, ACOTA mentors, counter-terrorism training, Peace Support Operations, Maritime Engagement Team activities, disaster response, and Standard Operating Procedures development. CJTF-HOA invests in regional institutions to ensure Africans are on the leading edge of solving their own challenges.
Civil-military activity and development are also pathways to security capacity building for CJTF-HOA. The presence of Civil Affairs (CA) teams in the region help partner nations improve their civil-military relations with local communities. These teams provide CJTF-HOA the ability to access high risk areas, thereby helping advance USG and host nation development priorities. In coordination with USAID and DOS, civil affairs activities help mitigate the stresses that contribute to regional instability.
CJTF-HOA is a model for multinational and interagency collaboration, and its presence in the region is critical to accomplishing U.S. Africa Command's mission.
With the exception of Zimbabwe, the southern African countries are relatively stable but face significant challenges in improving living standards, reducing government corruption, and developing strong democratic systems. The political and humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe has had spillover effects on the region, with refugees and disease moving across borders. While HIV/AIDS afflict the entire continent, Southern Africa has the highest infection rates in the world. Security forces across this region are compromised by the disease, which reduces their ability to conduct operations.
Additionally, with the exception of South Africa, coastal countries here lack the ability to monitor and control their territorial waters. As a result, the region is vulnerable to illicit trafficking and continues to lose important economic resources through illegal fishing.
Despite these regional challenges, South Africa remains the economic powerhouse of Sub-Saharan Africa, producing over 40 percent of the sub-continent's gross domestic product and exporting strategic minerals throughout the world. South Africa's contributions to Africa's stability are not only economic; its professional and capable military provides over 3,000 soldiers to UN and AU missions. U.S. Africa Command is developing a growing and improving relationship with the South African National Defense Force (SANDF). We had a productive pre-planning meeting with SANDF in November of 2008 as we worked together to prepare for the upcoming U.S.-South Africa Defense Committee meetings scheduled for this summer. We look forward to co-chairing the military relations working group with SANDF during these bilateral Defense Committee meetings. In addition, NAVAF completed staff talks in February 2009, and we have a MEDFLAG scheduled by USARAF in Swaziland for this year.
Botswana is also one of Africa's success stories, rising from one of the world's poorest countries at independence to middle income status, and it recently celebrated 40 years of uninterrupted democratic governance. Botswana's military is professional and capable, but remains focused on potential regional instability that may arise from the collapse of the Zimbabwe government. Namibia and Malawi also contribute to UN peacekeeping missions in Africa and states such as Mozambique and Swaziland have also expressed an interest in contributing forces to UN peacekeeping operations.
At the request of the Chief of Staff of the Botswana Defense Force (BDF), Colonel Martha McSally, my Joint Operations Center Chief, has been assisting the BDF for 18 months as they integrated the first female officers into their force. She has led seminars for senior BDF leaders on good order, discipline, and professionalism in a male-female integrated military, and has also conducted seminars in Swaziland and Lesotho.
Advancing the U.S.-South Africa relationship and expanding military cooperation to focus on regional and continental security challenges is extremely important. NAVAF, expanding its maritime safety and security program, deployed the U.S. aircraft carrier USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT to South Africa this past year in an historic visit--the first U.S carrier visit since the end of apartheid.
U.S Africa Command Component and Subordinate Commands
U.S. Africa Command is comprised of four component commands, one sub-unified command, and the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa. The service components currently have no assigned forces and rely on forces provided through the Global Force Management and Request for Forces system.
U.S. Army Africa (USARAF)
In January of 2009, U.S. Africa Command gained operational control of U.S Army Southern European Task Force (SETAF), which now, as U.S. Army Africa (USARAF), serves as U.S. Africa Command's Army component. USARAF, in concert with national and international partners, conducts sustained security engagement with African land forces to promote peace, stability, and security in Africa. As directed, USARAF deploys as a contingency headquarters in support of crisis response. USARAF is currently manned at 67 percent of its approved personnel strength for military and civilian positions, with 244 of its 318 military positions and 44 of 110 civilian positions filled. USARAF capabilities center on planning, directing, and providing oversight of security cooperation activities and stability operations.
Recognizing the Army's important contribution to U.S. Africa Command's Theater Strategy, USARAF continues to execute engagement and exercise programs on a bi-lateral, multi-lateral, and regional basis. These programs are designed to help our African partners develop capable security forces that respect the rule of law, abide by human rights norms, are accountable to legitimate civilian authorities, and contribute to internal security and external peace operations.
U.S. Naval Forces, Africa (NAVAF)
NAVAF's primary mission is to improve the maritime safety and security (MSS) capability and capacity of our African partners. Beyond APS, law enforcement operations, and TSC activities mentioned earlier, NAVAF is working to enhance MSS by focusing on the development of maritime domain awareness, trained professionals, maritime infrastructure, and response capabilities.
A critical aspect of MSS is awareness of activities occurring in the maritime environment. Maritime domain awareness (MDA) provides participating states the capability to network maritime detection and identification information with appropriate national defense and law enforcement agencies. A widely accepted first step in achieving MDA is installation of the Automatic Identification System (AIS). AIS is similar to the U.S. Federal Aviation Association system for aircraft identification. Although AIS is used around the globe, the data has not been widely shared to date. In response to NAVAF initiatives, 18 nations in Africa now share unclassified AIS data through the Maritime Safety and Security Information System (MSSIS).
Partnering with our reserve components, NAVAF is assigning Maritime Assistance Officers (MAOs) to U.S. embassies. MAOs assist country teams in planning for maritime security cooperation activities. They provide insight into maritime culture, attitudes, and capacity--all of which are necessary for understanding where we can best assist each country in building MSS.
U.S. Air Forces, Africa (AFAFRICA)
AFAFRICA is the Air Force component to U.S. Africa Command. Its mission is to command and control air forces to conduct sustained security engagement and operations to promote air safety, security, and development.
AFAFRICA was activated at Ramstein Air Base, Germany on 1 October 2008. AFAFRICA is administratively assigned to the United States Air Forces Europe for organize, train, and equip (Title 10) support. However, AFAFRICA reports directly to U.S. Africa Command for operational taskings and support, and will be organized into an Air Force Forces staff and the 617th Air and Space Operations Center.
AFAFRICA's current command and control center was established on 1 October 2008 to provide a continuous command and control capability for all theater security cooperation exercise and engagement activities as well as on-going crisis response contingencies such as foreign HA, non-combatant evacuation operations, and humanitarian relief operations. Ultimately, this capability will evolve into a tailored air operation center, the 617th Air and Space Operations Center. Scheduled to reach full capability in October 2009, the 617th will be the lead command and control organization for air and space operations and will provide a common operating picture of all air missions within the AOR.
AFAFRICA's total force partnership coupled with an increased reliance on technologies and reach-back assets from Headquarters Air Force and lead major commands will ensure AFAFRICA is prepared for the challenges ahead.
U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Africa (MARFORAF)
U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Africa (MARFORAF) was established on 1 October 2008. MARFORAF is currently co-located with U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe (MARFOREUR), in Stuttgart, Germany. One dual-hatted Marine Corps general officer commands both organizations. The two Marine staffs, in addition to sharing facilities, also share common administrative support elements.
MARFORAF has assumed duties for the conduct of operations, exercises, training, and security cooperation activities in the U.S. Africa Command AOR. The preponderance of the Marine Corps' recent activity has been in West Africa and the Gulf of Guinea. With the establishment of U.S. Africa Command, MARFORAF is planning to expand its activities into other regions of Africa and execute more than sixty engagement events in FY 2009.
U.S. Special Operations Command, Africa (SOCAFRICA)
On 1 October 2008, SOCAFRICA was established as U.S. Africa Command's Theater Special Operations Command--a functional, sub-unified special operations command for Africa. SOCAFRICA contributes to U.S. Africa Command's mission through the application of the full spectrum of special operations forces capabilities including civil affairs, information operations, TSC, crisis response, and campaign planning.
In FY 2009, SOCAFRICA plans to conduct 44 engagement events with 13 countries in Africa. In addition to Joint Combined Exchange Training and bi-lateral training, SOCAFRICA will supplement its efforts by bringing senior officers and civil authorities from partner nations together to attend seminars and courses to promote exchanges about military aspects of good governance. In FY 2009, SOCAFRICA's information operations and civil affairs activities will focus on eroding popular support for violent extremist organizations--particularly in countries located within the Horn of Africa, Trans-Sahara, and Central Region.
Combined Joint Task Force Ã? Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA)
Since conception in 2002, CJTF-HOA's mission has migrated to building security capacity through cooperative conflict prevention. During this time, the country of Djibouti has become increasingly important in terms of significance to the U.S. military due to its strategic location. Our enduring presence at Djibouti helps build relationships which are the strongest mechanism for furthering U.S. objectives on the continent.
Responding to the expressed desires of African states, CJTF-HOA focuses its efforts with regional militaries on building state and regional security capacity. Regional security cooperation is fostered through coalition efforts with member countries of the East African Standby Force (We do not provide direct support to the East African Standby Force(EASF); we have bilateral relationships with EASF participating member countries), International Peace Support Training Center, and the International Mine Action Training Center--along with Liaison Officer support for ACOTA training. CJTF-HOA seeks to improve East Africa Maritime Security and Safety through the expansion of maritime domain awareness and implementation of an African Partnership Station East. Working with Partner Countries to develop a professional officer and NCO corps is a foundational element of CJTF-HOA capacity building. Professional Military Education development through engagements at Command and Staff Colleges and various Senior Leader Engagements support professionalization of militaries, and assist other USG agencies in helping partner states diminish the underlying conditions that extremists seek to exploit.
All of these efforts and activities provide collaborative opportunities for CJTF-HOA to better understand cultural dynamics and tailor programming and projects that support partner militaries while enhancing long-term security capacity building.
THEATER INVESTMENT NEEDS
Theater Infrastructure and Posture Requirements
U.S. Africa Command infrastructure and posture requirements are in two major areas: headquarters establishment, and theater operational support. The command's posture plan and facilities master plan are built around these two requirements.
Infrastructure: Headquarters establishment. For the foreseeable future, our headquarters will remain at Stuttgart. For the next five years, operational factors will be paramount, and we will benefit from the stability of staying in one location where we can polish our operational processes, cement relationships with our partners on and off the continent, and consolidate our gains.
Posture: Theater operational support. U.S. Africa Command seeks to posture itself via its Theater Posture Plan in a manner that enhances its peacetime mission, ensures access throughout the AOR, and facilitates the conduct of contingency or crisis response operations. The command's posture will support U.S. Africa Command's efforts to integrate and synchronize its theater engagement activities with the rest of the USG and key international partners.
Forward Operating Site (FOS) and Cooperative Security Locations (CSL) in U.S. Africa Command's AOR. The command's two FOSs are Ascension Island (United Kingdom) and Camp Lemonnier (Djibouti). Ascension Island, a major logistic node for the United Kingdom, is a newly identified node for U.S. Transportation Command in support of Africa Command.
Camp Lemonnier is the enduring primary support location for East Africa, and is an identified FOS. As U.S. Africa Command matures, Camp Lemonnier remains essential to supporting long-term TSC efforts and establishing strong and enduring regional relationships. Camp Lemonnier and CJTF-HOA operations have largely been resourced from the Global War on Terror emergency supplemental appropriations to establish expeditionary infrastructure and achieve operational needs. Current and programmed projects are an integral part of the Camp's installation master plan. These projects are necessary to support sustained security engagement activities and their supporting units. Camp Lemonnier is a critical part of supporting and developing regional African capability and capacity.
Also key to operational support is U.S Africa Command's Adaptive Logistics Network (ALN) approach to logistics on the continent. Our goal with ALN is to develop a flexible network of logistics capabilities that has ability to respond to logistic demands. The heart of the ALN will be comprehensive, real-time knowledge of available logistic capabilities and capacities across the continent of Africa. ALN will be the key to integrate the distributed network of FOS and CSL.
En-Route Infrastructure outside U.S. Africa Command's AOR. In addition to the facilities mentioned above inside our AOR, U.S. Africa Command has identified the main operating bases in Rota (Spain), Sigonella (Italy), and the CSL Cairo West as important logistic support facilities. Although these sites are located in other geographic combatant command areas of responsibility, they are critical intermediate nodes for logistics coming in and out of our AOR. Transportation Command requires these facilities to support U.S. Africa Command.
Quality of Life (QoL) Programs
Africa Command's QoL investments affirm our commitment to our team members and their families. Their sacrifices deserve our total dedication. The foundation for our success will be derived from the strength of our families. The Command is committed to providing a strong, supportive environment which fosters growth and excellence, while providing the highest quality of resources and services to our Africa Command family.
The Command has created a QoL office to manage and oversee QoL activities both in the headquarters location and on the African continent. This office will continuously assess the theater-wide environment in order to identify emerging and unusually sensitive QoL issues. Additionally, it will serve as an advocate for the well-being of our team members and families on the continent. Providing for our service members and their families living on the continent of Africa and at other European locations remain a high priority for the Command.
In March 2008, we held our first Africa Command Families on the African Continent meeting to address issues facing families living in Africa, followed by a second meeting in February of 2009. This will be an annual forum where we can address emerging issues and develop our QoL Action Plan. This will be particularly important as we incorporate CJTF-HOA and its mission. We must ensure that the quality of life for service and family members supporting CJTF-HOA meets their needs as U.S. Africa Command continues to develop. Our goal working with Department of Defense Education Activity and the Department of Defense Dependent Schools Ã? Europe (DoDDs-E) is to provide every student with an opportunity for a quality education.
To assist our team members and their families in solving problems resulting from deployment, reunions, and other family changes, U.S. Africa Command is implementing the Military and Family Life Consultant Program to support both the Command headquarters and the African continent. The program has obtained funding for FY 2009 which will provide licensed social workers and psychologists to the embassies, ensuring services are available as needed.
We must ensure that quality of life for our serving membersssssÃ?-wherever they are postedddddÃ?-remains a priority and is funded properly.
U.S. Africa Command Interagency Initiatives
We multiply effects and achieve greater results when we work closely with our USG interagency partners. Having interagency personnel imbedded in our Command enhances our planning and coordination, and the MOU signed between U.S. Africa Command and USAID in Morocco is a model we hope to replicate throughout our AOR. Also, the flexibility provided through partner capacity building programs enabled us to react quickly to provide security enhancing activities and support to U.S. Embassy plans and operations.
Building Partner Capacity
Partner capacity building programs have provided important tools for addressing emerging threats. We were able to put these funds to good use in assisting our partners in Africa in FY 2008, and sought greater funding--in one case twice the previous years amount--for FY 2009.
Our previously mentioned contribution to a U.S. Embassy's program for "Mitigating the factors of youth disaffection and marginalization" is a wise use of capacity building funds in an interagency fashion that best meets U.S. strategic, security, and foreign policy objectives. This program will reduce disaffected youths' exposure to extremist ideologies as well as the recruiters often found in prisons and elsewhere.
Likewise, use of partner capacity building funds in Liberia is intended to develop police force capabilities to maintain security and stability following the pending departure of UN police units. Support to USG security sector reform and rule of law activities is particularly important across the continent since personal security and stability provides the foundation for constructive economic development, and this development serves the interests of all the peoples of Africa.
Support for Regional Programs
Many of the security and stability challenges on the continent are transnational in nature and require regional, rather than national responses. For example, seasonal droughts and floods usually affect multiple countries and require regionally-based responses. Programs such as the USAID's Famine Early Warning System (FEWS) provide valuable data enabling improved preventive and response activities on the part of both civilian agencies and the U.S. military. FEWS and other regional programs, including various conflict early warning initiatives led by other USG agencies, demonstrate the advantages of a holistic approach to the problems of Africa.
Foreign language skill, cultural awareness, and regional proficiency are core competencies for U.S. Africa Command. The many bilateral and multilateral relationships that U.S. Africa Command maintains as we work with our partners depend on the language skills, advanced cultural awareness, and regional expertise of our forces. Effective interaction with regional partner's governments, militaries, and populations demands a robust ability to communicate on a face-to-face level. Growing and enhancing these language and cultural capabilities is vital for U.S. Africa Command.
Today United States Africa Command is serving effectively in support of U.S. national security and foreign policy objectives in Africa. As the newest unified command and the DOD's single focal point for activities in this important region, we are implementing the visionary concept of an integrated command, with key interagency personnel included in our organizational structure, to advance collaboration between DOD and other USG agencies to build greater security with our African partners.
Our priority remains the delivery of effective and sustained security cooperation programs designed to build African security capacity. Long-term security and stability in Africa is dependent on our partners' ability to address their own challenges, so that they can take action not only against security threats, but also to conduct regional humanitarian operations.
In this effort, the importance of our interagency partners cannot be overstated. Diplomacy, development, and defense all require time, funding, and people if we are to meet our obligations successfully. Your support to U.S. Africa Command, as well as to our interagency partners, is critical to our collective ability to meet our national objectives.
It is my honor to serve with the uniformed men and women, our DOD civilian employees, as well as our interagency partners who have made U.S. Africa Command a functioning reality in a very short time. Your sustained support will allow their good work to continue in service of our country.