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The Role of Private Military Companies in US-Africa Policy
Review of African Political Economy (2008)
  • Emmanuel Kwesi Aning
  • Thomas Jaye
  • Samuel Atuobi
This article discusses the increasing use of private military companies (PMCs) in United States' security policy in Africa, and examines this phenomenon in relation to the US' various military training programmes on the continent. We argue that the increasing use of PMCs in US security policy has evolved due to two critical and mutually dependent developments; African state weakness and resource stringency on the one hand, and the US's overwhelming security commitments around the world, combined with military downsizing, on the other. The article further argues that the involvement of PMCs is to a large extent informed by US concerns about access to African resources, especially oil, in the face of stiff competition from China. We conclude that the increasing US engagement in Africa is highly militaristic and state-centric, and that it is primarily conditioned by US strategic interests and does not necessarily reflect African security concerns: human security for development.
  • private military companies,
  • national security,
  • military education,
  • petroleum,
  • africa,
  • united state,
  • china
Publication Date
December, 2008
Citation Information
Emmanuel Kwesi Aning, Thomas Jaye and Samuel Atuobi. "The Role of Private Military Companies in US-Africa Policy" Review of African Political Economy Vol. 35 Iss. 118 (2008)
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