Making a Difference Through Engineer Capacity Building in Africa
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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The purpose of this monograph is to examine a new way for the United States military to conduct theater security cooperation in sub-Saharan Africa in order to help address the infrastructure deficit found across this environment. This study will focus on examining the utility of establishing or expanding the engineer capabilities of select African militaries in order to help these nations develop their national infrastructure and help enable the African security brigades. This dual-use capability will help the United States indirectly achieve its national security objectives. Expanding national infrastructure will promote economic growth and stability. In times of crisis, it is envisioned that the engineer units can be used to help the regional brigades operate in the austere environment of sub-Saharan Africa. This aid program is purposefully designed to supplement the work of other aid programs being executed by the United States government and other key partners. Simply developing a tactical engineer capability is not enough. The tactical ability is designed to operate in a whole-of-government approach to reinforce the success of other programs. Targeted nations must demonstrate the potential to successfully maintain this capability and put it to good use before precious American tax dollars are spent. In order to analyze this proposal, the infrastructure of four sub-Saharan African nations will be examined to determine if a military engineer asset would prove useful. The analysis will conclude by showing that expanding the engineer capabilities of select African militaries is of marginal utility in expanding national infrastructure and increasing the operational effectiveness of the security brigades.
- Civil Engineering
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics