Vince Crawley's Africa Blog

AFRICOM Nominee Ham’s Written Q&A on African Security Issues

Posted in Uncategorized by Vince Crawley on November 18, 2010

Below are written answers to questions submitted by the Senate Armed Services Committee to General Carter Ham as part of his confirmation process to be considered as the next commander of U.S. Africa Command. The 105 questions and answers were released by the committee during Ham’s confirmation hearing Nov. 18, 2010.

Gen Carter Ham, nominated to be the next commander of U.S. Africa Command, testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Nov. 18, 2010

Some questions are procedural, but others are essay questions based on some of the top issues facing U.S. foreign policy in Africa. Ham’s answers often don’t have a lot of detail — he’s been deeply immersed in his current duties and says, if confirmed, he will spend time assessing AFRICOM programs and learning about Africa. But the questions themselves offer a wealth of detail on matters that include counter-terrorism and countering violent extremism, contractors, AQIM, Sudan, Somalia, and the Lord’s Resistance Army, inter-agency cooperation in Africa, counter-narcotics, security assistance, and health programs.

Asked about Africa’s challenges and opportunites, Ham replied, “As President Obama stated in his remarks in Ghana, ‘Africa’s future is up to Africans.’ Addressing these problems will require the coordinated actions of USAFRICOM, other U.S. government organizations, multilateral organizations, and our African partners. If confirmed, I will continue the overall approach of assisting our partners in the region based on shared interests seeking African solutions to African problems. I will also closely review and assess USAFRICOM’s existing programs, policies and strategy before taking any actions.”

The questions and answers were originally posted earlier today in a PDF document on the Senate Armed Services Committee website.