Africa is home to many problems, many of which pose both local and global security threats.
Since its founding, Africa has had its fair share of conflict, just like the rest of the world. And like the rest of the world, it required the support of outside states.
A continent largely colonized by Europeans, Africa has been no stranger to foreign military presence throughout its history.
Whether in the form of a peacekeeping mission or a hostile foreign threat, Africa has a history of interacting with troops that fly none of its native flags and have no familiar military personnel.
Most of Africa at one time experienced some form of association with soldiers from France, Britain, Germany, Portugal, Spain and Italy. But what is rather interesting is the fact that the armed forces of the most powerful army in the world have also set foot on the soil of the continent.
The United States, which has the most advanced and comprehensive military in the world, has sparked interest in some of Africa’s military affairs.
Although not as widespread as its European counterpart, the US military has established bases in Africa to foster joint operations against a common enemy or to protect its interests, using its weapons systems, such as drones, radars, military vehicles, etc.
The United States also often shares common security threats with Africa and has shown that it will be relentless in suppressing any enemy that threatens its affairs, even if that threat lurks in Africa.
Below is a list of five US bases that have been set up somewhere in the homeland
Djibouti (Camp Lemonier): In the East African nation of Djibouti is a US military base that was originally established as a garrison for the French Foreign Legion. The base would then be leased by Djibouti to the United States in 2002. In May 2014, US President Obama and Djiboutian President Guelleh signed a 20-year extension to the US lease, at $63 million per year in rent. The location has since been a base site in Africa for the War on Terror.
Kenya (Manda Bay): This vacation spot in Kenya has been used for years by US troops as a base of operations. In 2006, this base became an airfield with an increase in personnel, aircraft and operations. According to the United States, this base was set up to train African partners, respond to crises and protect American interests. On January 5, 2020, approximately 30 and 40 al-Shabab fighters launched an attack on the Manda Bay Cooperative Security Site, resulting in the deaths of three Americans, US officials, the injury of three people and the destruction of six American planes.
Niger (Air Base 101, Niamey, and Air Base 201, Agaedez): These two airbases are located in Niger, a West African country. Both bases are operated by the US military as drone bases. U.S. forces assigned here are tasked with sharing intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) data with allied and partner nations and training local military units to fight terrorists on the ground. According to the United States, the presence of troops in Niger has helped to suppress terrorist activities in the region.
Egypt (MFO Camp South): The Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) is an international peacekeeping force based in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. This team was created to ensure that the 1979 Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty between Israel and Egypt is respected. The US military also operates a naval medical research unit in Cairo known as Namru. This database is used for research on infectious diseases and their prevention.
Cameroon (Garoua emergency location): It is yet another US military base that has been set up to help Africa fight a common enemy. Based in the West African region of Cameroon, the US troops sent there are on a mission to assist the Cameroon Defense Forces in their effort to counter regional violent extremism.