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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:AFRICOM: hard or soft power initiative
Author:Tella, Oluwaseun
Periodical:African Security Review (ISSN 2154-0128)
Geographic terms:Africa
United States
Subjects:foreign policy
foreign forces
international relations
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/10246029.2016.1225588
Abstract:The United States (US) Africa Command (AFRICOM) was launched in 2007, ostensibly to foster African security. Rather than focusing on traditional military operations, AFRICOM also embraces non-military activities such as humanitarian aid and African development. This begs the question as to what type of power (hard or soft) the US intends to wield through AFRICOM. Several US official statements have emphasised the soft power attributes of this military project. To this end, this article seeks to respond to two fundamental questions. First, is AFRICOM a soft power project? Second, how, if at all, has AFRICOM enhanced perceptions of the US in Africa? The article concludes that sceptical and negative perceptions of AFRICOM inhibit its soft-power objective of winning the hearts and minds of the African people. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]