Rumsfeld favors U.S. military command for Africa

By Will Dunham

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said on Friday he favors creating a new U.S. military command responsible for Africa, as the Pentagon aims to guard against potential threats to U.S. security arising from the continent.

Rumsfeld said he and Marine Corps Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have pressed the military for six months for a proposal on setting up a command focused solely on Africa. Pace said Rumsfeld is due to receive a formal recommendation within a couple weeks.

"Pete and I are for it," Rumsfeld said during a question-and-answer session with Pentagon employees.

The U.S. military assigns responsibility for specific parts of the world to regional commands such as Central Command, which handles the Middle East, Central Asia and Horn of Africa and currently oversees operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Responsibility for Africa is fractured among three of these: European Command, Central Command and Pacific Command.

Pentagon officials have expressed an awareness of the growing strategic importance of Africa and potential threats to American security emerging from the continent's many war-ravaged regions and huge expanses of ungoverned territory.

Pace specifically voiced concern about the al Qaeda network's designs on Africa, among other regions.

"That challenge is there. We need to arrange ourselves in a way to address that challenge," Pace added
Good idea, but one I am rather surprised is not already in place.
I'm always a bit dubious about the term 'Region' Command.

It could almost, if one were so inclined, to be interpretted as the belief of being in command of the region.

I think US Military Command (Africa) is much more friendly and, importantly, accurate.

You could even do it the RN way and make it into the world longest and most pointless acronym (STANAVFORMED).

USMCOMMAF, anyone?

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