It is a presumptive fact that in the short term, the US does not have vital interests at stake in most of Africa.  Thus, Africa has not been a priority for previous administrations, but as we look down the road – five or ten years – we can see that Africa will offer amazing opportunities for entrepreneurs, innovators, and for rapid development based on its young and growing population and through the increasing interconnectedness of the continent. The United States should not miss the opportunity to partner with Africans to promote stable growth and good governance, factors that will mitigate the humanitarian challenges from desertification.  Alternatively, in five to ten years – we can predict that there will be massive humanitarian problems in Africa – starvation, desertification, declining water resources, pandemics, migrations, state failure and the growth of war lords, tribalism, terrorism and violence. We will look away at our own peril.

The committee will examine the impact that these crises are likely to have on the American tradition stemming from WWII of global engagement and commitment to the assistance of others facing insurmountable challenges.  Is it enough for the US to remain disinterested and passive?  The United States needs a strategy to use available assets to shape a future more favorable for national interests.

The list of guiding themes below will drive our approach:

  • The role of AFRICOM and the US military in protecting our security interests in Africa
    • Growth of terrorist opportunities in the Sahara, the Sahel, Sudan and Mozambique
    • Freedom of navigation
    • Collapse of health systems and the role of national and international organizations in meeting the pandemic challenge.
    • Climate change, poverty, deforestation, desertification, and water allocation
    • Competing with China and Russia.

ACNSL Publications – Africa

ACNSL Op-Eds – Africa

Africa Committee Chair

Vicki Huddleston, Ambassador (retired)


Edward Walker, Ambassador

Ricardo Aponte, Brig. Gen., USAF

Hank Cohen, Ambassador

Andrew Davis, MGen, USMC

Cameron Hume, Ambassador

Dennis Jett, Ambassador

Mike Kraft, SES

Frederick Martin, Maj. Gen., USAF

Steven McGann, Ambassador

Rick Olson, Ambassador

Robin Rene Sanders, Ambassador

Harry Thomas, Ambassador

John M. Jones, Ambassador
Sanford E. Holman, MGen, USA