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Security

Before the G-8 Summit at Camp David over the weekend President Obama took the time to launch a new initiative towards Africa. 

This initiative which has a cost of $ 3 Billion will address the contentious issue of Food Shortages in Africa. The specific areas that will be addressed are food security and increasing food production across the continent.  The President was quoted " There is no reason why Africa cannot feed itself". This sentiment is not relatively new however. There are those of us who remember Live Aid back in the 1980s that was organized to address the situation within Ethiopia.

The President also stated that "its a moral imperative, its an economic imperative and its a security imperative as well. The best case for it being a security imperative as well is in the Sahel. It is believed that Niger may just have enough food to last through to the end of the Calendar year. However if the current influx of refugees fleeing post-coup Mali and the Insurgent ridden Northern part of Nigeria increases than the date of dread may have to be moved up sooner.

Having Private US interests invest in Agricultural Projects are a great first step. The State Department should act as a facilitators not as shills. We have seen evidence of that through the Wikileaks Cable particularly on behalf of Monsanto in the African Great Lakes region. But this effort should be more cost effective in the long run then banking AU and UN Peacekeeping Missions throughout Africa.

Speaking of Security Elements of the Texas National Guard conducted a training exercise for Burundian Troops preparing to deploy to East Africa. The Texans were preparing these forces for duty in Somalia. The area of training which occurred in late March and Early April dealt with First Aid in a Combat Situation. 

AFRICOM and USAID also recently took part in program in Burkina Faso. The purpose of this was to assess how the Country could respond to a Pandemic situation. The situation in Burkina Faso does not get the proper coverage that it should. During the Crisis in Ivory Coast last year the Country faced more than one mutiny by the Military over lack of pay, had a crackdown against both students and the Press that was shielded by the International Media.

Burkina Faso is a key country right now in an unstable region of Africa. It will be affected by the coup in Mali just like the election crisis in Ivory Coast affected it last year. We in the West may not see it directly but the question is when will we hear about this?



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