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New US Commander Prepares for Africa Assignment
Issue 314
Front Page

A Controversial Conference Adopts Somaliland ICT Vision 2025

Visit of Somaliland Delegation

A Human Catastrophe Unfolds In Northeast Awdal Region

Western World Cannot Impose Democracy In Africa: Ethiopian PM

Finding Calm In The Most Unexpected Place

Three killed in Somali blast near presidential palace

Somalia, Iraq And The Price Of Defeat

Despite rivals' talks, at least 12 people die in Kenyan violence

In Eritrea, UN Mission Is Running Out of Fuel, While Council Mulls Six More Months of Staying

House Church Members Flee Somaliland Amid Government Crackdown

Regional Affairs

Another 132 dead in Gulf of Aden over weekend

Somaliland President Meets With Senior US Officials

Special Report

International News

New US Commander Prepares for Africa Assignment

Looking at the bigger picture

Somali man faces city centre sex assault charge


Hasan Sh. Momin: An Ordinary Man with Extra-ordinary Insight

Kenya tourism, economy devastated by violence

Gates Says He and Bono Discussed Africa Policy and AFRICOM

'When They See Us Coming They Must Be Scared'


Getting boots off the ground

Food for thought


The Tale Of Two Cities; One Is Isolated And The Other Is Rubbish:

Somaliland’s Search For Independence Will Continue


Beyond The Empty Gestures

A Reply To Mr. Jawaan's Article

Mr. President Please Hear Me Out

Failure To Dispose Off Municipal Wastes Safely Can Cause A Huge Public Health Disaster!

What Does It Mean The Removal Of SNM History From The Curriculum?

You Can Watch A Thief, Not A Liar

The U.S. military hosted an international exercise last week to help prepare the new commander of a coalition task force in East Africa for his deployment. The commander says his main goal is to help East African countries solve their own problems. VOA's Al Pessin reports from the Pentagon.

The Pentongon, 25 January 2008 - The exercise, involving hundreds of U.S. troops and several African liaison officers, was designed to help Rear Admiral Philip Greene and his staff prepare for their new assignment.

"I see our role as to enable African solutions to African problems," he said.

Admiral Greene will head the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa, based in Djibouti, providing training for African military forces and conducting humanitarian missions in 13 nearby countries. He told reporters in a conference call the goal is to help improve security and governance, and end poverty, in order to indirectly fight terrorism.

"Those play to creating a level of transparency and information sharing and, clearly, opportunities that get at undermining those elements that fuel extremism," said Admiral Greene. "And that's the approach that connects our mission set with the counterterrorism piece."

The current deputy commander of the U.S.-led Horn of Africa Task Force, Brigadier General Sanford Holman, says Admiral Greene's plans coincide with what the task force is already doing.

"The development side is the side that we emphasize with the drilling of the wells, the building of the schools and clinics, and we're trying to get at countering terrorism in that manner," he said.

General Holman says the Djbouti base facilitates some other military activities he won't talk about. There have been reports of U.S. special operations forces working from the base on counter-terrorism missions in Somalia and elsewhere. But the general says those activities are not the base's main purpose.

Admiral Greene says main goal is to develop partnerships and forge relationships, and he says that approach is the model for the new United States Africa Command. The command, which was established in October, is spending a year preparing to take responsibility for all U.S. military engagement throughout the continent.

"There is, I think, great synergy between what CJTF-Horn of Africa does now and what we're about and what AFRICOM will represent as a combatant command," said the commander.

The admiral expresses the mission as "the three Ds," development, defense and diplomacy," said Admiral Greene.

"In the end, our objective is to be participants in developing those partnerships and forging the relationships that help us improve the security and the stability, and help the Africans, in that sense, to address these very tough issues and own the solution sets to these problems."

Within a few weeks, Admiral Greene will take command of the five-year-old Task Force, made up of nearly two thousand troops and civilians from the United States and several coalition countries. He says one priority will be to try to help develop a standardized disaster response plan so African countries can work together better to respond to natural disasters themselves, and with international help when necessary.

But he says he will also be watching some of the region's hot spots for potential seeds of instability. He says those include the situations in Kenya, Somalia and Sudan's Darfur region, as well as tension on the Ethiopia-Eritrea border and piracy along the Indian Ocean coastline.

Source: VOA

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