February 8th, 2012 22:26 EST
My Reply to AFRICOM, the Defense/Military Arm of America Operating in and Around Africa
My Comprehensive Planning Tools and African Partnership Plans cannot solve all the issues; however, I think the following can answer the questions that you ask me U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) Thanks @Harvey Carroll for sharing this article. This article emphasizes the importance of partnership between the west and African nations. What effect would open-door policy, developmental and security training have on local development and cross-border security?
AFRICOM/USAID TECHNICAL/FUND can solve many of the various African Border Issues... You can look at any African country/border you wish; however, I would just mention that the Borders of Sudan because they have Oil Funding that could make such projects work, Somalia as they are of security concern and are of strategic shipping rout importance. The violence flare ups in Nigeria which also has vast Oil funds to contribute to such projects. Lastly the reconstruction of Libya and Egypt; however, I think this will have to be a more AU/UN led mission to maintain a presence. One step closer at the African/Egypt Border is Israel and they have the opportunity to develop in a more constructive and peaceful manner as well.
Is there, and will there continue to be a problem with Drugs, Guns, Black Market Goods and Illegal Immigration, and terrorism flowing across the various African Borders? YES; however, Diplomatic Relations between the United States and Africa can turn these economic, and immigration issues into something constructive, if we try...
So with that in the open, how can we provide jobs, opportunities that benefit American Foreign Policy, benefit Africa and deal with the various cross-border immigration and security issues. Keep immigrants from radicalizing and resorting to terrorism and/or crime that overpopulates jails. How can poor African nations improve worker skills, and bridge language issues?
My solution is AFRICOM/USAID TECHNICAL/FUND.
AFRICOM/USAID TECHNICAL/FUND could be a U.S./Africa Joint Venture, as well as a UN Development Project; whereby, worldwide capital market funds syndicated to develop vast growth projects throughout Africa. AFRICOM/USAID TECHNICAL/FUND could increase African labor opportunities, as well as spur economic development, and investment opportunities to increase jobs in America via trade and commerce...
Large scale projects such as building ring and railroads around key cities spurs growth and economic development... Perhaps build new Cities in joint venture near key African borders like example "The Venus Project" and this more lengthy part 1 and part 2. In addition, they have a website.
New ring and rail projects provide many new sites for land developments such as office, logistics/industrial, apartments, housing communities as well as retail shops. Africa has the resources to build such facilities, they just need to be trained in understanding Professional Public Administration, as well as Land Development, and Finance. A focus on a few key projects, cost analysis and the like could make such things more of a cookie cutter type process.
It took me years to develop such skills after I got out of the Military and not to show and disrespect to the Military, but most do not posses these capabilities either. When they deploy they do so quickly and cost associated with such operations are usually not scrutinized. Defense spending over 2 billion a day has little to show for it in the form of real improvements to societies. Alexander the Great hundreds of years ago still have more to show in the form of building cities and contributing to cultures via growth and development. Granted he did so by strong-arming, but he built and influenced the building of great cities.
I feel that American funds could and should have much more to show for our Foreign Policy expenditures and even gain a return on our hard working Taxpayer Dollars. AFRICOM working with USAID/UNDP, could develop a mass organized migrant open-door and/or cross-border worker/labor program concept where thousands of Africans are allowed to cross-borders and stay in "Infrastructure Development Camps.
AFRICOM/USAID TECHNICAL/FUND camps could develop infrastructure projects much like large scale Military/Corps of Engineer projects or the TVA New Deal era projects of the post Depression days. AFRICOM knows such projects are possible. While in the Army, I used to participate in mass mobilization of tens of thousands of troops, and the rail heading of hundreds of tanks across XXXXX in just a few short hours... Once there the mission went into effect. Some times that involved establishing temporary housing, and the building of roads, airfields, and so forth... Now entire Military Cities have been developed to accomplish military missions, such as in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Therefore, I think it is reasonable to use the same concept to successful develop mass infrastructure projects throughout Africa in and around key cities and/or borders... Here is the basic concept of more developed housing as the plan progresses. Rail Road or low cost prefab or tent housing; (I am not talking about the WWII Cattle Cars filled with slave labor and would be appalled to think that projects would not be grand enough in scale to show real pride by those that are given a job). I am talking about decent mobile housing that can be railed into areas, and/or trucked/airlifted in and set up.
This mobile housing can establish jobs for African workers. Such mobile labor movement can add real value by developing African infrastructure projects that will spurs growth and development in all facets of the economy. These mobile employment camps would supply reasonable wages in safe and secure surroundings, as well as provide respect and pride in U.S./Africa relations, instead of disputes over border issues.
Before, people start thinking this is silly. I again remind you that the American Military and the U.N. has built mobile cities in Iraq and Afghanistan using Military forces, and contract labor to build infrastructure in those areas today... So, why would it not work in Africa as well? All while increasing America`s investments in Africa, providing new Tax Base Jobs for Cross Cultural Workers, and Americans alike, as well as creating investment opportunities for World Wide Capital Markets in Key City and/or Border Projects...
Per my story, Economic Powerhouse America Spreads-its-Influence-on-Africa-and-Other-3rd-World-Nations, I hope that I have answered your questions and exceeded your expectations.
Harvey Carroll, Jr.
PS; here is a sample of some grant projects example "The Venus Project" and this more lengthy part 1 and part 2. In addition, they have a website. .
NOTE: I feel that there are a lot of practical concepts here that would work in African and throughout the World, but there are also a number of aspects that would require rethinking and sound economic and finance principles applied.
Photo Credit: WikiMedia Commons