Contact Us Press Releases AFRICOM Portal
Africa Center for Strategic Studies Welcomes Next Generation of African Military Leaders
The Africa Center for Strategic Studies, based on the campus of National Defense University at Fort Lesley J. McNair, welcomed 57 military officers representing 34 African nations to its 2009 Next Generation of African Military Leaders Course,
The Africa Center for Strategic Studies, based on the campus of National Defense University at Fort Lesley J. McNair, welcomed 57 military officers representing 34 African nations to its 2009 Next Generation of African Military Leaders Course, January 27, 2009.



The four-week program, which runs through February 20, will focus on enhancing professionalism, ethics and leadership in African militaries. The officers will examine Africa's contemporary and emerging security threats and analyze civil-military relations on the continent to determine the role and place of professional military officers in advancing national security in democratizing states.



General Owoye Azazi (retired), former chief of the Nigerian Defense Staff and keynote speaker at the opening session of the course, spoke about Africa's security challenges and the importance of senior military leadership in the region.



The officers, mostly majors and lieutenant colonels, were selected by their countries to attend the course because of their significant command experience or staff responsibilities as well as their recognized leadership potential. The program is being conducted simultaneously in English, Portuguese and French.



The course has been offered at least once a year since it was first established in 2005. The bulk of this year's program is devoted to leadership in the context of issues relating to civil-military relations, security/terrorism studies and defense economics.



"Since 1990, African states have been democratizing at an unprecedented rate," said Ambassador (retired) William M. Bellamy, Africa Center director, "yet instability threatens many countries, including some once thought to be stable. Strengthened military professionalism can safeguard reforming governments, while relatively unprofessional armed forces can undermine stability."



Bellamy added that the true value of the course may not be realized for several years; however, it is expected that the African officers will assume positions of greater responsibility and their countries will benefit from their ability to develop solutions to national and Africa-wide security challenges.



Pointing out that the course is accredited, with eligible officers receiving three semester hours of graduate-level credit, Monde Muyangwa, Ph.D., the Africa Center's dean, said, "The accreditation of our Next Generation of African Military Leaders Course further establishes the Africa Center as a solid academic institution focusing on strategic-level African security and policy issues."



Complementing the rigorous classroom work taught by African, American and European experts, the African officers will also travel to the Army War College at Carlisle, Pennsylvania.; Quantico Marine Corps Base; the Pentagon; State Department and Congress to learn more about effective civil-military cooperation, good governance and democratization.

PARTNERSHIPS OPERATIONS READINESS