NELSON INSTITUTE DIRECTOR’S COLUMN OFFERS GUIDELINES FOR THINKING ABOUT TERRORISM IN AFRICA

January 10, 2008

HARRISONBURG—In his weekly “Strategic Interests” column for the World Defense Review, Dr. J. Peter Pham, Director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs at James Madison University, offers “several pointers which policymakers and analysts, both military and civilian, ought to keep in mind when approaching terrorism and other security challenges on the continent” as the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) is stood up during the current federal fiscal year.

The five “guideposts” suggested by Dr. Pham are:

1. Approach Africa and its security challenges realistically…2. Calibrate properly the challenges and the responses…3. Think broadly about potential partners…4. Address Africans’ perceptions of their security needs…5. Develop a comprehensive national strategy for Africa.

Dr. Pham concludes: “In the end, the establishment of AFRICOM is only one step in a process of continent-wide security-building that will likely be generational in length and scope. Nonetheless it is a significant advance for U.S. strategic engagement of Africa, one for which 2008 will be a decisive year.

To read the full text of Dr. Pham’s article, “Thinking about Terrorism and Other Security Challenges in Africa,” click here.