|When:||Friday, May 18, 2012|
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
|Where:||620 Library Place, conference room
Evanston, IL 60201 map it
|Audience:||- Faculty/Staff - Student - Public|
(847) 491-7323 |
|Group:||Program of African Studies|
|Category:||Lectures & Meetings|
Defense, Development, & Diplomacy: The Future of Complex Operations in Africa
a two day conference
Africa can no longer be viewed in terms of isolation from the international community. Transnational forces—particularly organized crime, terrorism, refugee flows, and trafficking in drugs, arms and human beings—have made Africa’s challenges our own, and vice versa. Most of these problems are multifaceted, and must be met with comprehensive solutions. For example, countering the effects of drug trafficking in a place like Guinea-Bissau extends beyond reforming the country’s military to include efforts to eradicate corruption throughout government, support other livelihoods for citizens, and promote cooperation with regional organizations. In Kenya, complex operations includes assistance in extending social services to areas close to the Somali border and reform of business practices, alongside better monitoring of borders. These are the kinds of challenges that the extension of complex operations is intended to address.
Complex operations have had a mixed record in Africa. Kenya’s government has been a willing participant in these programs, accepting security sector assistance alongside conventional development support. Complex operations have been more problematic in Ethiopia, where the government has suspected US military and civilian contingents of undermining its control. Sierra Leone and Liberia have been major focuses of coordination between security sector reform, institution-building and development assistance in preparation for the departure of UN peacekeepers. But in both cases, serious questions remain concerning the durability of complex operations results. In other cases it is thought that governments appreciate (and citizens suspect) that complex operations assistance can help to entrench authoritarian regimes, as in Uganda.
Thus the future of complex operations on the continent has never been more uncertain. What will be the fate of complex operations in Africa given this new strategic environment? To address these and other questions we will bring together practitioners, faculty, and students from the Defense and Development communities. To structure the dialogue on complex operations in Africa, the conference will consist of two strands. The first half of the conference will assess the place of these complex operations within America’s larger foreign policy agenda, and will consider the ethical, logistical, and tactical challenges associated with conducting complex operations in Africa. The second strand of the conference will focus on African perspectives about recent turns in us foreign policy and the role that complex operations (and AFRICOM) play in it.
Ultimately, this conference aims to produce analytical frameworks for understanding important developments in this area of policy. An associated aim is to generate a set of guidelines for use by the government, non-profit, and academic sectors when considering the present and future of US policies toward the African continent.
Sponsored by Program of African Studies and School of Education and Social Policy (SESP).
Friday May 18th
12:00-1:00 Lunch at the Program of African Studies, Conference Room, 620 Library Place
12:15 Welcome from Dean Mary Finn
1:30-3:00 “The American Perspective” on Africa & Abroad
McCormick Tribune Center, Forum Room, 1870 Campus Drive
Claire Metelits – analyst and field expert, formerly attached to AFRICOM
Lt. Paul Knudtson – Civil Affairs officer, Military Intelligence (Army)
Lt Col Jean-Philippe Peltier - Air Force Academy
Discussant: Jeff Rice, advisor, WCAS and lecturer, History
~ Break for coffee ~
3:30-5:00 “The African Perspective”
Abdeta Beyene – PhD student, PhD student, Department of Political Science, Northwestern
Fantahun Ayele – visiting scholar, Program of African Studies
Moses Khisa - PhD student, Department of Political Science, Northwestern
Discussant: Mark Birhanu
Saturday May 19th
8:15 Breakfast at the Program of African Studies, Conference Room, 620 Library Place
9:00 – 10:30 “Bringing it All Together: Complex Operations Post-War on Terror”
Michael Miklaucic - editor of PRISM
Mike Bittrick Deputy Director, Office of Regional and Security Affairs, Department of State, Africa Bureau
Col Patrick de Vathaire , Africa Center for Strategic Studies
Discussant: Will Reno, Professor, Political Science, Northwestern University
11:00 – 12:30 General Discussion
The future of Complex Operations & what we should do next? Possible projects: a civil – military cooperation at the academic level to investigate these matters?
1:00 – 2:30 Lunch and conclusion