Publication year: 2009

The period subsequent to the end of the Cold War in 1989 marks a significant rise in the number of failed states in East Africa.  During the same period, a dramatic increase in anti-American sentiment (AAS) developed in that region.  Accordingly, in 2002 the U.S. National Security Strategy (NSS) reported that failed states present the greatest threat to U.S. national security in the twenty first century.[1]  Unlike twentieth century conflicts such as World War II, which destroyed much of Europe, and pitted America against sovereign states with recognizable and legitimate governments, future conflicts could pit America against impoverished, disease laden regions with scarce natural resources that are ruled by terrorist organizations, drug dealers, and warlords that blame America for their social and political deterioration, and consequently seek revenge against the West.  Given the above-mentioned conditions, if the U.S. government were to apply existing conflict resolution strategies to East Africa, would it establish the level of political-economic stability necessary for East African citizens to profit from their natural resources; end the human rights and environmental atrocities that often result from a desire to control those natural resources; and simultaneously reduce the of AAS sufficiently to reduce the threat to U.S. national security?

Ever since the early 1990’s, East African conflict has escalated to a level that is more common, more destructive, and more dangerous than during any other period in its history, thereby creating an anarchical environment in many East African states, which in turn effects the entire region.  Although some of East Africa’s conflict results from a combination of past and present external forces, or a lack thereof, most of it stems from internal strife over control of its natural resources.[2]  Notwithstanding the many cultural and social differences between modern-day East Africa and post World War II Europe (1945-1950), they both share certain characteristics: a multi-million refugee population, crushed economies, broken governments, and widespread moral disintegration.  However, post-World War II Europe recovered from those conditions for three primary reasons; first, the infusion of cash through the Marshall Plan provided the Europeans with the funds they needed to recover from the devastation of the war; second, the fact that most pre-World War II European governments (with the exception of Nazi Germany) embraced the concepts of good governance, which greatly facilitated integration and economic growth; and third, the enactment of the Schumann Declaration of 1950: a successful joint economic relationship between France and Germany that reduced the likelihood of war between the two former rivals, which in turn persuaded other European states to join them after they witnessed the positive effects of that partnership.[3]

A conflict-free Europe represented an economic growth opportunity to the U.S. after World War II; hence, the installment of the Marshall Plan was consistent with U.S foreign policy, which purports the, “importance of trade.” (Mead, 2004, p. 34)  However, despite the growing level of AAS, and the large number of failed states in East Africa (eleven out of thirteen East African states meet the requirements of a failed state), the U.S. has done little to reduce East African conflict for two primary reasons.  First, intervention in impoverished regions is inconsistent with U.S. foreign policy because it offers little economic opportunity; and second, U.S. policy makers are unable to create an appropriate conflict resolution policy because they lack a comprehensive definition of a key term: the negative spillover effect.  Negative spillover is characterized by negative socioeconomic, political, and cultural conditions that a region such as East Africa typically absorbs when a neighboring state fails.

The success of the Schumann Declaration illustrates why policy makers require a comprehensive definition of the effects of spillover in order to create appropriate policies.  For example, Robert Schumann, the French prime minister from 1947 to 1948, could not have developed a policy that specifically targeted the conflict between post World War II France and Germany without a comprehensive understanding of the potential positive effects, or positive spillover, of such a policy.  Schumann correctly identified the potential positive effects that a merged economic interest would have on the entire European region.  Similarity, present-day policy makers require a comprehensive definition of negative spillover in order to design an appropriate policy that will ease the negative socioeconomic, political, and cultural effects that a region such as East Africa typically absorbs when a neighboring state fails.  Nevertheless, a truly comprehensive definition of the term negative spillover as it pertains to failed states is virtually non-existent in contemporary political science research, hence, policy makers that rely on academia as a source of conflict and failed state information will likely produce ineffective polices because their prescriptions will be partially based on incomprehensive data.

Reducing conflict in East Africa is important because it is consistent with America’s Global War of Terrorism (GWOT); the international campaign initiated by the Bush administration shortly after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington to fight terrorism worldwide.  In order to reduce conflict in East Africa there are three primary conditions that the U.S. government must meet.  First, the U.S. government must accept that conflict resolution is necessary in East Africa; second, it must work to reduce AAS in East Africa; and third, East African nations must develop a shared common interest similar to the EU’s that will provide them with economic opportunity. If the U.S. government can accomplish those three tasks, it would likely establish the level of political-economic stability necessary for East African citizens to profit from their natural resources; end the human rights and environmental atrocities that often result from a desire to control those natural resources; and reduce the threat to U.S. national security.

Present-day East Africa might best be characterized as a resource-dependant region that is rich in natural resources, yet is unable to convert those resources into a profit that is beneficial to all of its 259 million citizens because it lacks good governance.  The political-economic environment of a resource-dependant nation (or region) is defined by its reliance on its natural resources, which subjects it to volatile fluctuations in international commodity prices that typically result in, “economic underperformance, and governance failure.”  (Le Billon, 2005, p. 7)  ‘Resource rents’ (harsh penalties imposed on citizens by corrupt leaders that attempt to control and personally profit from their regions natural resources) exacerbate poor governance by sustaining authoritarian and corrupt regimes, thus enabling the leaders of failed states to carry out brutal tactics, such as genocide, as a means of controlling their societies.[4]  The fear of genocide typically ends in a protracted refugee situation (PRS), as demonstrated by the thousands of refugee’s that were forced from their land by Mobutu Sese Seko, for example, who profited from his control over the coltan, cassiterite, and diamonds in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and used the proceeds to purchase arms and fund his military regime.[5]  Although governmental leaders of failed resource-rich nations frequently profit from the military regimes they establish to protect their commodities, its citizens are typically subjected to environmental damage, genocide, and starvation, thereby demonstrating that natural resources are not necessarily an asset.[6]  In fact, the, “resource curse” (Le Billon, 2005, p. 8) occurs when states are plentiful in natural resources, but lack the political infrastructure necessary to generate revenues, investment capital, and jobs from those resources, while simultaneously uphold the internationally accepted standards of human and civil rights.  For example, compared to other sub-Saharan states, Botswana exhibits a better political-economic growth rate (per capital GDP of $9200); nevertheless, sixty percent of Botswana’s citizens live on, “less than $2 a day (Le Billon, 2005, p. 8) because its government is unable to effectively control the production of its natural resources, which in turn negatively effects its citizens.  Similarly, resource rich East African nations experience poor economic growth, low standards of living (particularly in mineral and oil dependent nations), malnutrition, low health care budgets, low adult literacy rates, and high levels of corruption.[7]  Le Billon argues that those conditions exacerbate AAS in East Africa because it makes it easier for terrorists to convince displaced individuals living in refugee camps that America is to blame for their troubles.[8]  In other words, terrorists exploit the situation created by resource rents as a means of recruiting new terrorists to commit acts of terrorism against foreign lands that they deem responsible for their sorrows.[9]  Consequently, the premise that the U.S. could reduce the threat of international terrorism (and safeguard U.S. national security) by working with East African nations to redevelop their governmental structure is supported by the aforementioned fact that protracted refugee movements and genocide result in the type of socioeconomic and cultural environment that attract terrorists.[10]  Simply put, improving the conditions in East Africa would likely make it a less attractive environment for terrorists.

The primary goal of conflict resolution is to reduce, or eliminate, conditions that are consistent with the above-mentioned socioeconomic and cultural conditions that often result from poor governance.[11]  An example of an effective long-term conflict resolution policy is demonstrated by the current economic performance and political stability in the European Union (EU).  Post World War II Europe was laden with economic, social, and cultural problems that left its political-economic institutions desperate for change.  As previously mentioned, the conditions in post World War II Europe, such as a collapsed economy, a multi-million-refugee crisis, governmental degeneration, and widespread moral disintegration, were in many ways similar to the conditions in present-day East Africa.[12]  Many post-World War II (1945-1950) Europeans were motivated to merge the European nations into one political unit that would promote economic growth and create stability without sacrificing individual identity.[13]  In 1950, Robert Schumann proposed that France and Germany enter into a joint economic agreement to combine their coal and steel industries as a means of creating a mutual partnership that would reduce the likelihood of war between the two former rivals.[14]  The Schumann Declaration successfully laid the groundwork for the present-day EU, a twenty-five nation political-economic unit that expanded the European Communities political power, especially in the area of foreign and security policy; led to the creation of a central European bank and a common currency; and created the worlds largest consumer market.[15]  Although there are obvious cultural, social, and religious differences between post-World War II Europe and present-day East Africa, the previously mentioned similarities, combined with the EU’s demonstrated success suggests that if a similar policy to the Schumann Declaration were initiated in East Africa it would likely improve its political-economic environment, which in turn could drastically reduce AAS that originates from the perception that the U.S. is responsible for its troubles, and is exacerbated by terrorists seeking to recruit disgruntled individuals.

The above-mentioned political-economic success of the EU demonstrates that effective governmental change can produce outstanding positive results.  However, government sponsored changes can also create a situation where individuals lose their sense of nationalism: a political principle which indicates that the, “political and national unit should be congruent.”  (Gellner, 1983, p. 14)  Nationalism also involves a feeling of loyalty that citizens exhibit towards their native land, and it includes highly personal issues such as native languages and customs that combine to create an individual’s identity.[16]  PRS destroys that sense of identity because it forcibly removes an individual from his or her homeland, and subsequently displaces them into a region where the language and customs are ‘strange.’  According to Le Billon, terrorists are able to exploit individuals that exhibit signs of personal grief and weakness that result from an attack on their identity because they are vulnerable and needy. Hence, policy makers should consider the effects of nationalism when they create a conflict resolution policy that targets East African conflict.

The creation of the EU inspired the development of numerous theories vis-à-vis the best manner to facilitate a successful European integration, one that preserves individual identity, or nationalism, while providing each member-state with the opportunity to participate fully in the EU’s economy.  Perhaps the most relevant concept that emerged from European integration theories, one that can be applied to modern-day East Africa, is the concept of spillover.  Customarily, the term ‘spillover’ is used to describe the behavioral changes that states undergo when they witness the positive economic results of neighboring nations that have benefited from a shared economic interest.[17]  As those socioeconomic and cultural benefits increase, the effects ‘spillover’ into the weaker nations who eventually join the original members in order to receive similar benefits.  Indeed, the aforementioned economic success of the EU demonstrates the benefits of successful spillover; hence, it is reasonable to suggest that other regions exhibiting similar characteristics, such as East Africa, could also benefit from similar policies.  Nevertheless, the U.S. (and arguably most of the West) does not seem concerned with resolving East African conflict as it did with the EU, primarily because it offers no economic benefit.

A more general definition of the term spillover suggests that virtually any overwhelming condition, positive or negative, can affect neighboring nations sufficiently to create a broad-based phenomenon that it not necessarily desirable.  For example, as mentioned above, East Africa’s problems are a collective result of its socioeconomic and cultural collapse that originates largely from a lack of good governance.  Because a society cannot exist without citizens to run it, and because citizens require a stable, well-functioning government in order to live their lives productively, it can be argued that any type of forced displacement of a population is synonymous with a forced displacement of a society, hence the term IDP (internally displaced person) could be broadened to IDS (internally displaced society).  When a population is subjected to long periods of exile, which can last for decades, conflict and instability are also extended.  Those conditions also cause a spillover effect; however, unlike the positive effects of a shared common interest (the EU), the results are clearly negative, as evidenced by the negative socioeconomic, cultural, and political ramifications that host nations (nations that are forced to absorb refugees and their associated problems, which in turn increases unemployment, and places a greater demand on natural resources such as food, fresh water, and shelter) experience when they absorb IDP’s from refugee camps.[18]  For example, Kenya hosted a, “significant numbers of Somali and Sudanese refugees since 1991” (Loescher and Milner, 2005, p. 158), and Tanzania hosted, “hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing successive wars in Burundi and Rwanda since 1959.”  (Loescher et al., 2005, p. 162)  As a result, in 2004 the NSS identified both Kenya and Tanzania as potential terrorist threats; Kenya’s and Tanzania’s economy has suffered because it instantly increased the unemployment rate, it created a massive humanitarian and environmental crisis; and drug dealers, warlords and terrorists currently exploit those weakened conditions to conduct illegal activities while hiding behind the humanitarian veil of the UN sponsored refugee camps.[19]  Hence, by reducing protracted refugee movements in East Africa, America could reduce the threat to international terrorism because it would reduce the number of locations where terrorists hide.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) there are approximately thirteen million IDP’s in Africa; more than seventy percent are located in East Africa.[20]  Additionally, the U.N. reported thirty-eight protracted refugee situations in 2003, noting that the average length of displacement, “has increased from nine years in 1993 to 17 years at the end of 2003,” (Loescher et al., 2005, p. 163) thereby indicating that societies are also remaining repressed for extended periods. Indeed, the majority of protracted East African refugees include, “Sahrawis, Burundians, Liberians, Eritreans, Somalis, and Southern Sudanese,” (Loescher et al., 2005, p. 165) and they have been displaced for a decade or more.[21]  Fear of genocide forced those individuals into protracted refugee camps in Kenya, Tanzania and other African states where they typically encounter the individuals that are currently at war with the United States: arms traffickers, drug smugglers, traffickers of women and children, recruiters of suicide bombers, and, “child soldiers and mercenaries.”  (Loescher et al., 2005, p. 170)  As previously-mentioned, international terrorists exploit states that exhibit conditions of poor governance, corruption, and weak social institutions because it allows them to conduct illegal activities, such as drug and diamond trafficking, that is used to fund terrorist activities worldwide.  Consistent with the above-mentioned general definition of spillover, those large refugee movements, and their associated negative characteristics (terrorists that seek to enlist suicide bombers, deal illegal drugs and diamonds, and traffic women and children), “spill-over into neighbouring countries” (Loescher et al., 2005, p. 170) that attempt to dissuade them in order to avoid the negative conditions that typically follow them. Indeed, the term spillover is not necessarily a positive event.

The term positive spillover is widely noted in political science research.  For example, positive spillover refers to, “a political momentum that continues for some time,” (Tsoukalis, 1997, p. 155) thereby alluding to its endurance.  Positive spillover also has a, “positive influence on international economic situations” (Jovanovic, 1997, p. 65); a positive influence on local disputes, which, “enhances community relationships” (Zielenbach, 2000, p. 247); it is a condition that, “positively affects national defense expenditures” (Leitzel, 1993, p. 84); or it is an effect that is inevitable, because the original objective, which is to reduce conflict, “can only be realised through such spillover.” (Murray, 1996, p. 11) From those definitions it can be ascertained that although positive spillover pertains to many topics, its effects are clearly beneficial to society.  By contrast, the term negative spillover, which is widely used on other social science fields such as geographic sciences (Cox, 1972); computer sciences (Goldsmith, 2003); child psychology (Segrin & Flora, 2005); microeconomics (Rødseth, 2000); macroeconomics (Bell, 2003); and sociology (Field, 2003), is nonetheless generally absent from contemporary political science research that attempts to define, analyze, and ultimately resolve East African conflict, or conflict in any failed region.

There is an implicit and important comparison between the effects of negative spillover in East Africa, and the effects of positive spillover in post-World War II Europe.  European Neo-Functional integration theorist Ernst Haas originally identified the positive effects of spillover during the European integration after WWII.[22]  As previously mentioned, Europe’s economic success is partly attributed to the willingness of the individual member states to relinquish some of their political decision making power to a central authority: the European Union.  The socioeconomic and moral conditions of modern-day Africa are in many ways similar to those of post World War II Europe.  Notwithstanding the cultural and social differences, the primary political difference between Europe and East Africa is that even at their weakest point, European nations, with the exception of Nazi Germany, possessed a superior governmental system, one that facilitated its recovery from the horrors of war through the adoption of sound policies such as the Schumann Declaration.  By comparison, African governments are, with rare exception, best characterized as failed.[23]  Although there are many definitions within academia that attempt to define a Failed State, the best definition by far was developed by Dr. Pauline Baker of the Fund for Peace, (a non-profit organization that attempts to define and resolve the causes of conflict and war).  Baker identifies twelve qualitative characteristics that are assigned a numerical equivalent as a means of both defining and ranking a failed state.  According to Baker, a failed state is best characterized as a government that:

1- exhibits mounting demographic pressures

2 – massive movement of refugees and IDPs

3 – legacy of vengeance-seeking group grievance

4 – chronic and sustained human flight

5 – uneven economic development along group lines

6 – sharp and/or severe economic decline

7 – criminalization or delegitimization of the state

8 – progressive deterioration of public services

9 – widespread violation of human rights

10 – security apparatus as “state within a state”

11 – rise of factionalized elites

12 – intervention of other states or external actors.[24]


Other definitions of a failed state suggest that they contain a government that has, “completely collapsed” (Ayoob, 1995, p. 91); that it is a situation requiring the U.S. to, “recognize, after years of experience with failed states, that good governance and legitimate forms of popular representation are essential to development” (Mccallie, 2002, p. 50); or it is a state that, “either never had a strong central government, or whose moderately strong central government has been undermined by economic or political developments.” (Nye, 2004, p. 74) Indeed those definitions are vague compared to Bakers not only because they fail to address the connection between failed states and conflict, but also because they fail to provide a system that policy makers can utilize to rank the level of failure.

The status, or rank, of a failed state is equally important to the creation of an appropriate policy because without knowing that level of failure, it is impossible to determine an effective strategy.  For example, Cote d’Ivoire is currently ranked 1st on the Failed States Index (FSI) because it exhibits the highest level of political and economic deterioration and conflict.  By contrast, India is currently ranked 76th on the FSI (or last place).  Indeed, any policy designed to resolve conflict in the former would most likely be different from one that addressed the latter simply because the internal political-economic, cultural, and social conditions of Cote d’Ivoire greatly differs from those in India.  Similarly, any policy designed to reduce conflict in Somalia (currently ranked 5th and the highest ranked East African state on the FSI) would likely differ from one that would be effective in Eritrea (currently ranked 55th and the lowest ranked East African state on the FSI). The FSI provides both a comprehensive definition and a method of determining the level of failure, hence, it is the simply the best measurement of a failed state.

One of the reasons that so many East African states have failed is because they are resource-dependant nations that are ruled by corrupt governments.  There are currently many opinions within the academic world vis-à-vis the importance, or lack thereof, of scarce natural resources to a nation’s economy.  For example, Sampson (2002) argues that fewer scarce natural resources are required to produce the same level of [economic] output in East Africa, thereby suggesting that East African governments could manage their natural resources more efficiently.  Additionally, Ederington (1994) argues that because East African countries with scarce natural resources can impose export taxes on raw materials but not on worked products, economic growth is affected, which in turn leads to conflict.  Any time economic growth is negatively affected in East Africa, it creates a situation that is completely inconsistent with its most urgent requirement, which is, “to improve the situation of the most vulnerable people at risk.” (Smith, 2004, p. 101) East African citizens rely on imported food, medical support, and disease control, “whilst competing with the local people for scarce natural resources, such as fuel-wood and water.” (Smith, 2004, p. 101) Additionally, IDP’s suffer because of the, “conflict over scare natural resources,” (Loescher and Milner, 2005, p. 169) which creates serious, life-threatening problems within the refugee camps. Conditions within the refugee camps are dangerous, particularly for women that leave the campground in search of scarce natural resources, such as firewood.  In turn, violence often ensues and spills into neighboring states, as young, unemployed men frequent the camps, steal whatever they can find, and rape the women.[25]  The consensus from the academic world suggests that natural resources are not necessarily an asset, nor are they necessarily related to economic growth in East Africa.  Consequently, East African governments, along with the aid of the U.S and other developed nations, should develop policies that are consistent with good governance in order to reduce conflict.  Indeed, the aforementioned conditions are inconsistent with the positive effects of spillover and therefore require an effective conflict resolution policy.

Ever since the end of World War II the U.S. government has implemented several conflict resolution policies designed to reduce the threat to U.S. national security.  Economic containment strategies that were developed by George Kennan shortly after the end of World War II were ultimately successful in reducing conflict between the former Soviet Union and the U.S., thereby eliminating a major threat to U.S. national interests.[26]  Containment had been the U.S. government’s preeminent policy until the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, D.C.  However, the U.S. National Security Strategy (2002) implemented a, “a fundamental shift in tactical thinking, force deployment, and resource mobilization” (Smith, 2003) the most striking of which was the, “dismissal of containment as the backbone of US security thinking.”  (Smith, 2003, p. 227)  According to Smith, “Jihadism is the new Communism, and the new Soviet Bloc,” consists of, “increasingly religiously dogmatic states in the Middle East, Africa, and Central and Southeast Asia.”  (Smith, 2003, p. 228)  However, the Bush administration believes that if the U.S. were to apply those containment strategies against contemporary terrorism, it would lose the GWOT because the behavior and tactics of modern-day terrorists so greatly differ from the Soviet’s that containment policies are virtually useless.  Simply put, it is pointless to offer a ‘carrot’, or economic incentive, to an enemy whose values are completely different from Americas, or to threaten them with a ‘stick’, or superior weapon, when they cannot be easily identified by a common uniform, language, or geographic location, as was the case during the Cold War.  Consequently, instead of implementing containment policies against East African nations, or specifically, the Horn of Africa, the Bush administration developed the Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa (CJTFHA), whose purpose is to, “deter, preempt, and disable terrorist threats,” (Lyman and Morrison, 2004, p. 153) immediately after Somalia, Kenya, and Yemen were identified as posing an immediate threat to national security.  Nevertheless, the CJTFHA has been no more effective in reducing conflict than were the economic containment strategies as evidenced by the increase in terrorist activities since 1998; therefore, neither containment nor the CJTFHA are consistent with East Africa’s needs.

Compellence, or coercive diplomacy, which involves the threat of force to persuade an opponent to call off or undo its encroachment; and deterrence, which involves attempts to dissuade an adversary from undertaking an action that has not yet been initiated, are other strategies used by the U.S. since 1945 to resolve conflict.  For example, coercive diplomatic measures were used by the Clinton administration in 1994 against North Korea (a failed state) after it refused to permit inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to examine its nuclear facilities.[27]  The U.S. attempted to employ strategies of coercive diplomacy; North Korea used coercion through brinkmanship tactics (the practice, especially in international politics, of seeking advantage by creating the impression that one is willing and able to push a highly dangerous situation to the limit rather than concede), the creation of deadlines, and threats of the use of force.[28] The U.S. emphasized diplomacy in the form of inducements and concessions, and threatened future UN sanctions and the use of force if North Korea did not accept benefits in exchange for its nuclear weapons program.  The Clinton administration believed that compellence strategies used against North Korea would resolve the problem and reduce the conflict.[29] However, compellence in that case proved an ineffective strategy, as evidenced by the fact that North Korea continues to threaten the world with the development of nuclear weapons.  Consequently, the Bush administration actually, “inherited from Clinton” (Carment and Schnabel, 2003, p. 13) a more compelling reason to switch to a preemptive strategy.

The U.S. intervention in Somalia in 1992 was the first major intervention since the end of the Cold War, and was intended to address humanitarian needs.  However, by 1993, U.S. switched its objective to include the capture of Mohamed Farrah Aideed, the most powerful Somali warlord.  On October 3, 1993, U.S. Army Rangers that were sent to capture Aideed encountered significant and unexpected resistance from the Somalis that resulted in the death of eighteen U.S. soldiers; the televised broadcast showed the Somalis dragging a dead soldier’s body through the streets of Mogadishu. The aforementioned events in North Korea and Somalia represent failed attempts by the U.S. government to resolve conflict, and exemplifies that intervention tends to fail when, “when the United States has weak or ambiguous interests.”  (Treverton, 2000, p. 47)  Treverton argues that it is important for policy makers to consider that fact when they attempt to create new policies designed to resolve conflict. Additionally, David Carment and Albrecht Schnabel argue that, “despite its post-Cold War faddishness, popular usage of this kind of conflict prevention,” can be traced to times that predate the modern state system and the Westphalian Treaty of 1648, and are therefore not effective in modern day conflict.  (Carment et al., 2003, p. 13)

Other theories that focus on conflict resolution analyze different forms of democracy that could feasibly be effective in resolving East African conflict.  For example, in Government Forms and Performance in Thirty Six Countries, (1999) Arend Lijphart analyzes thirty-six democracies (two of which are African; Botswana and Mauritius) from 1945 to 1996.  In addition to providing a qualitative distinction between the Westminster Model (or majoritarian model), which he models after the British parliamentary system, and the Consensus Model of Democracy, Lijphart provides an in depth quantitative methodology that examines, “two dimensions and ten basic variables” (Lijphart, 1999, p. 311) between 1945-96, and 1971-96.  Lijphart also provides a bi-variate regression analysis of the effects of consensus democracy on nineteen macroeconomic performance variables, and four indicators of violence, which assess overall economic growth, GDP, CPI, unemployment, strike activity, budget deficits, and riots as a means of understanding and resolving conflict.[30]  Lijphart advocates constitutional engineering as the primary focus of scholarly research that pertains to conflict resolution. The primary goal of constitutional engineering is consistent with the goal of conflict resolution: to reduce, or eliminate, conditions that are consistent with the socioeconomic and cultural conditions that often result from poor governance.  Although some contemporary literature recognizes Lijphart’s theories as offering, “practical power-sharing solutions” (Reynolds, 1999, p. 5) to the conflict in East Africa; Lijphart is not without opposition.  For example, according to Reynolds, Tim Sisk (University of Notre Dame) argues that, “constitutional engineering should not be the primary focus of research.”   (Reynolds, 1999, p. 5)  Sisk claims that, “most scholarship about democracy in divided societies centers too much on examining the best outcomes, as opposed to looking at the ways these outcomes evolve through bargaining processes.”  (Reynolds, 1999, p. 12)  Despite Sisk’s opinion, however, an example of effective constitutional engineering is demonstrated by the economic performance and political stability in the EU.  As previously mentioned, post-World War II Europe was laden with economic, social, and cultural problems that left its political-economic institutions desperate for change.  Similar to contemporary East Africa, post-World War II Europe was characterized by a collapsed economy, a multi-million-refugee crisis, and widespread moral disintegration as people questioned how Europe could once again be destroyed by war.[31]  Accordingly, Lijphart’s concepts on conflict resolution, and the importance of constitutional engineering to academia, offer a commonsensical approach and are therefore relevant to any policy that is designed to reduce conflict in East Africa.

Another possible solution to the conflict in East Africa might be found in a new form of federal government: a Federacy.  The intention of a Federacy is to provide stability to regions that are plagued by problems of self-determination through the establishment of a central authority that controls the military and foreign policy making of its member states.[32]  It might seem improbable that one central authority could satisfy all of the unique cultural, religious, and social requirements of East Africa sufficiently to evoke the level of nationalism required for effective good governance.  However, as mentioned above, nationalism is a political principle; it indicates that the political and national unit should be congruent.[33]  Along with that congruency lie feelings of loyalty that individuals hold towards their countries, or a loss of loyalty that occurs when a distinct ethnic, political, or racial group is forced to relinquish their authority to an outside force.[34]  Theoretically, the designation of a politically distinct region, or Federacy, in East Africa could reduce conflict throughout the entire region, while simultaneously providing a level of nationalism sufficient to effect positive socioeconomic and cultural change because the individual member states would benefit from a Federacy arrangement’s most appealing traits: its credible, difficult-to-alter, constitutionally entrenched final decision making powers.  Therefore, what is necessary in developing a governmental system sufficient to decrease East African conflict?

First, policy makers must determine which, if any, East African states might qualify to assume the responsibilities normally associated with a central authority. Ideally, East African nations that possess a Constitutional democracy; an average or better than average GDP real growth rate (as compared to the continental average of 5.085 %); an average or better than average per capita GDP (as compared to the continental average of $2400); and a legal system comparable to Western standards would make good candidates for a central authority because historically, those economic conditions are synonymous with stability.[35]  Geographic location of the central authority is also important not only because of East Africa’s vast size and population, but also because its infrastructure is poorly developed, thereby making travel between states very difficult.  Infrastructure is important because civil uprisings historically result from famines that are caused not by a lack of food, but rather by the inability of a government to efficiently transport food to agriculturally deprived regions. Hence, because Africa’s, “population growth continues at a very high rate” (Stearns, Adas, Schwartz, and Gilbert, 2004, p. 58) a government capable of developing an efficient infrastructure is vital in order to transport sufficient amounts of food, which would in turn maintain stability.

Religion is also a primary consideration in East African politics, and should therefore be considered in any proposed governmental change.  Although many Westerners would argue that religion and government ought to be separated, East Africa is primarily a Muslim continent that views both religion and politics as one issue.  Although pockets of predominately Christian populations exist in South Africa, Islamic law is highly prevalent in East Africa, and when conflict increases, or when the number of Christians compared to Muslims sharply increases in a particular region, individual states often feel threatened and initiate Shari a: the code of law derived from the Koran stating that under Islamic law there is no separation of church and state.[36]  Shari’a is currently enacted in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Nigeria; it has not yet been established in any East African state.[37]  However, East Africa’s deteriorating political-economic environment, combined with its high level of AAS, suggests that U.S. diplomats would likely be ineffective if they attempt to force Western views on African leaders because it would prolong the negotiation process.  In fact, doing otherwise would likely agitate many African leaders; increase AAS, and possibly result in further international terrorism.

Unfortunately, few East African states exhibit the previously mentioned ideal conditions that U.S. diplomats would consider qualified to assume the responsibilities of a central authority.  For example, only two African governments are classified as possessing a constitutional democracy: Ghana and Sierra Leone; however, neither is located in East Africa.  In fact, eleven of the thirteen East African nations are classified as a failed state.[38]  Additionally, drug and diamond smuggling is rampant in East Africa, and U.N. General Secretary Kofi Annan has warned that the, “temptation of the poisonous mix of diamonds and greed” (Le Billon, 2005, p. 11) can lead to civil war.  With the exception of Zimbabwe’s parliamentary democracy, (which is not part of East Africa) most other African nations do not qualify as a central authority for a variety of reasons, including low per capita GDP, or instances of civil unrest.  Other East African nations possess governments that are suitable only as member-states.  For example, a transitional government rules in Eritrea; an authoritarian regime in Sudan, and no government at all in Somalia.[39]  Undoubtedly, none of the East African nations are capable of, “stemming the tide of revolt and creating an environment of relative stability and effective governance” (Rezvani, 2004, p. 20) in a manner consistent with the expectations that member states have for their central authority.

Nevertheless, the notable lack of governmental control, combined with the loss of identity and nationalism that typically follows forced displacement, suggests that the majority of East Africans might be interested in establishing a new level of self-determination. In fact, some federacy arrangements have been effective in stemming the tide of revolt and creating an environment of relative stability and effective government.  However, other states, such as Uganda and Buganda (1962-67), Ethiopia and Eritrea (1952-62), and Southern Sudan and Sudan (1972-84) were unable to effectively allocate some credible final decisions making powers to a territory, and eventually, they succumbed to “regional conflict, terrorism, state fragmentation, and/or economic strife.” (Rezvani, 2004, p. 22)  Based on the aforementioned information, some might argue that a federacy would not be an effective form of conflict resolution in East Africa.  On the other hand, the fact that none of those federacy arrangements promoted a shared common economic interest similar to what the Schumann Declaration proposed suggests that Federacies fail when the citizens are not motivated to make it work, regardless of what their governments want.  For example, there was no shared economic interest between the Sudan and Southern Sudan from 1972 to 1984; hence, there was no motivation on both sides to make their government-made agreements work, even though they were, “directly linked to each other by a constitutional arrangement.”  (Rezvani, 2004, p. 20)

It is important to recognize that central authorities require much more than the ability to, “retain some final decision-making powers over their own internal affairs,” (Rezvani, 2004, p 21) or control over a particular land mass or population in order to be effective. The member, or periphery state, must be willing to relinquish some of its final decision making powers to the central authority in exchange for the opportunity to participate in the global economy, and maintain a stable society.[40]  Perhaps the missing component of a successful Federacy in East Africa is a shared common economic interest.  Indeed, the EU demonstrated that successful positive spillover requires commonly shared interests that are profitable for all members.  Hedley Bull (2002) argues that, “the maintenance of order in any society presuppose that among its members, or at least among those of its members who are politically active, there should be a sense of common interests in the elementary goals of social life.”  (Bull, 2002, p. 51) Humans are vulnerable to violence and prone to it, hence their common interest is to restrict violence,” (Bull, 2002, p. 51) and that, “human interdependence for material needs leads them to perceive a common interest in ensuring respect for agreements.”  (Bull, 2002, p. 51)  In fact, the idea of a shared common interest is consistent with the Democratic Peace Theory, a popular theory in political science that democracies are much less likely to go to war with each other because they share common interests and values.

As mentioned above, the primary goal of conflict resolution is to reduce, or eliminate, the negative socioeconomic and cultural conditions that often result from poor governance.  Because eighty-five percent of East African states are classified as failed or close to failure, it is reasonable to suggest that a policy designed to promote a common shared interest between those states would be consistent with the concepts of positive spillover, and could feasibly produce a result that is similar to the present-day EU. Geographically, East Africa is much larger than the EU (6,794,564 square miles vs. 3,976,372 square miles respectively).[41]  However, with a combined population of roughly 259 million, East Africa has a significantly lower population per square mile (the EU’s population is approximately 450 million).  Simply put, there are 113.16 citizens for each square mile in Europe, and 38.11 citizens for each square mile in East Africa. Combined with serious lack of infrastructure, heavy machinery, technology, and pharmaceutical companies in East Africa, the land/person ratio creates an additional problem in a region that relies on its natural resources as the primary source of economic growth and income. However, post-World War II Europe was characterized by similar conditions, including a proportional land/person ration, yet its superior governmental policies were able to effectively control that amount of land and people, and recover from the devastation of the war.  Consequently, it is reasonable to suggest that other nations could follow suit, particularly with European and American assistance.

Arguably, another difference between post-World War II Europe and present-day East Africa is the funding that the Europeans received from the Marshall Plan.  Indeed, Europe desperately needed that money in order to support a shared common interest until the economic effects of the Schumann Declaration were realized.  However, in June 2005 the G8 (Group of Eight: includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, the US, and Russia: holds annual economic and political summit to discuss the condition of the international economic community) provided $50 billion in debt relief to Africa, and promised more support. Nevertheless, even with additional monetary aid, it is unlikely that East Africa, or any region that is characterized by poor governance and corruption, will realize long term success without governmental change.  In other words, the key to East Africa’s long-term success is good governance that can facilitate the production of natural resources sufficiently to turn a profit; not a perpetual series of financial gifts and debt relief from nations that are pressured by liberal groups and ultimately concede merely to save face.

East Africa must take its cue from the EU, and considering the aforementioned refugee and economic similarities between present-day Africa and post-World War II Europe; the decision seems almost too simple.  Therefore, if East Africa’s political, economic, social, and environmental nightmare can be resolved simply by altering its geopolitical makeup, why are East African leaders not pursuing those options?  That answer, much to the dismay of many Western-minded non-interventionists, is that the United States must take the lead diplomatic role and convince each East African nation that they must consider serious governmental reform, even if it means a small loss of their individual identity.  One of the many tools that the U.S. can use to make its case is found within the concepts put forth by the spillover effect.  In less than fifty years, Europe was able to convert its economy from a post-war catastrophe to the worlds largest consumer market; increase its international diplomatic power; and perhaps most importantly, maintain the level of stability necessary to create a peaceful environment where its citizens thrive.  Additionally, European individuals do not believe they have sacrificed a significant amount of their unique cultural identifies.  The U.S. must convince East African leaders that by relinquishing some of their final decision making powers to a central authority, as the individual European nations have done with the EU, that they would not be sacrificing their individual identifies.  Additionally, they US must recognize that all thirteen East African nations have sufficient natural resources that could be combined to create both a shared common economic interest, and an attractive consumer market to the U.S.  Consequently, East African citizens would be taking the first step to a significantly improved socioeconomic and cultural existence, and the US government would be consistent with U.S. foreign policy.

Currently, East Africa is capable of producing large quantities of animal hides, bananas, beans, beef, camels, cashew nuts, cassava (tapioca), cattle, cereals, cloves, coconuts, coffee, copra, corn, cotton, cut flowers, dairy products, eggs, fish, fruits, goat meat, goats, groundnuts (peanuts), gum Arabic, hides, lentils, livestock, mangos, manioc (tapioca), milk, millet, oilseed, papaya, perfume essences, pork, potatoes, poultry, pulses, pyrethrum, qat, rice, sesame seeds, sheep, sisal, sorghum, sugarcane, sweet potatoes, tea, tobacco, vanilla, vegetables, and wheat.[42] Those agricultural products are plentiful in East Africa, and according to their production capabilities there are sufficient amounts available to drastically reduce the level of famine that has plagued Africa for decades.[43]

Additionally, East Africa has an abundance of aluminum, apparel, armaments, automobiles, beverages, boats, buildings, cement, chemicals, diamonds, edible oils, electrical machinery, fertilizer, food processing, furniture, glassware, gold and iron, sugar refining, lead, light consumer products, meat processing, metal products, non-electrical machinery, oil refining, oil, paper, perfume, petroleum, pharmaceuticals, plastics, printing, public works, salt, shoes, soap, steel, sugar, tanneries, textiles, tourism, transportation equipment, wireless communication, and wood products.[44]  Those industrial products and services, combined with the agricultural products, demonstrate that East Africa is not the barren, waste-land that the media often portrays.

Missing from East African business are pharmaceutical, computer, and technology corporations, and educational institutions, and for good reason.  Those industries are predominantly owned by wealthy Western countries (UK and USA), and Western corporations tend to avoid investing in unstable foreign lands that exhibit high levels of corruption because they fear that their money would be stolen.  In order to attract Western business to East Africa, East African governments must embrace the concepts of good governance, and demonstrate their ability to deal with internal conflict as it arises.  Nonetheless, East African nations can begin the process without foreign investment because they share  the following products, services, and industries: automobiles, lights trucks, beverages, boat and ship building, cattle, cement, coffee, clothing and textiles, diamonds, food processing, furniture, gold and iron, oil and petroleum, salt and salt mining, shoes, soap, sorghum, sugar, tobacco, and tourism.  If the East African governments were to create a shared business interest that combined any or all of those products, service, and industries in a manner that is consistent with the concepts put forth by the Schumann Declaration, it is feasible that the current level of conflict could be drastically reduced.  Doing so would give the East African citizens a chance to earn a living, and benefit from their natural resources, while at the same time maintain much of their individual cultures and customs.  Additionally, dangers within the refugee camps would be drastically reduced because it would provide unemployed men with an opportunity to remain busy and work towards developing their own lives, rather than stealing from others, and committing other crimes.  Finally, it can be argued that the development of a shared common economic interest in East Africa could reduce the level of AAS because the East African citizens would not be able to blame the U.S. for its troubles because their situations would drastically improve.

In order to determine if the level of AAS in East Africa actually presents a direct threat to U.S. national security this research conducted a stratified random sample (SRS) (a random sample of a population in which the population is first divided into distinct subpopulations, or strata, and random samples are then taken separately from each stratum) of the total number of incidents of Anti-American Sentiment in East Africa as reported by news wires from 1993-2005.  The advantage of a SRS is that it avoids response bias, or anything that influences the response, which in this case is the potential bias of the news agencies.  After the results of the SRS were gathered, a 10% random sample of the 377 articles that referred to AAS in East Africa was evaluated. Doing so further reduced the potential for bias by guaranteeing that the proportions of African nations will gain appropriate representation. (see below)


State                                              Population                          Total articles reviewed


Burundi                                         6,370,609                                            7

Comoros                                       476,703                                               0

Eritrea                                           4,561,599                                            5

Ethiopia                                        73,053,286                                          73

Kenya                                            33,829,590                                          34

Madagascar                                   18,040,341                                          18

Mauritius                                      1,230,602                                            1

Rwanda                                         8,440,820                                            8

Seychelles                                     81,188                                                 0

Somalia                                         8,591,629                                            9

Sudan                                            40,187,486                                          40

Tanzania                                       36,766,356                                          37


Additionally, this method reduces the variability of the results because it restricts strata, hence, additional samples are more like one another, and statistics calculated from the sampled values will vary less from one sample to another.  This is an important added benefit of stratifying.[45]  The potential for duplicate articles was addressed by simply reading the 26 articles (n = 26); no duplicates were found.  Random numbers were determined by submitting them on – a website that randomly chooses numbers based on input. The final results were as follows:

  1. Initially, 377 articles indicating AAS
  2. Stratified random sample of 11 nations (see chart above)
  3. Total population of those 11 nations – 259 million
  4. 259 entered into
  5. Randomly chose 26 out of 259 articles (
  6. 10% = 26
  7. n = 26
  8. 24 out of 26 articles indicated actual occurrences of AAS rallies and events. Examples are as follows:


  1. MOMBASA, Kenya, Sept 28, 2001 – “A splinter group held a demonstration, even as police gave no security guarantee to the rally in a spillover to the September 11 terrorist attacks in new York and Washington.  (Agence France Presse).


  1. NAIROBI, Feb. 24, 1993 – “U.S. FORCES OPEN FIRE IN ANTI_AMERICAN DEMONSTRATION” IPS-inter press service. “U.S. Troops shot dead at least one Somalian protestor during anti-American demonstrations in the capital Mogadishu today.”


  1. Khartoum, June, 20, 1993 – “about 5,000 Sudanese chanted anti-American slogans and voiced their support for Somali Moslem warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid” (the Xinhua general overseas news service).


  1. MOGADISHU, Sept 23, 2001 – “anti-us demo in Somalia as Muslims clergy condemn terrorism” (Agence France Presse)


  1. MOGADISHU, Somalia , may, 20, 2005 – “thousands of Somalia denounce alleged desecration of the Quran by U.S. Interrogators” (associated press Worldstream)


  1. Uganda, September 18, 1998- “eighteen people suspected of plotting an anti-American attack in Uganda have been arrested” (Agence France Presse)


  1. KHARTOUM, Aug. 21, 1998 – “angered Sudanese government officials have warned that the United States air strikes on a factory in the capital Khartoum are “unforgivable” and will not go unpunished. The streets of the capital are filled today with demonstrators chanting anti-American slogans”











Chart 1 (below) represents the results of the study.


The articles (above) represent a few of the examples analyzed in this research that demonstrates the presence of the type of AAS (as displayed on Chart 1) that presents a direct threat to U.S. national security.  The results of the above-mentioned study are consistent with the following warnings and statements from top diplomats and scholars.  Former assistant secretary of state for Africa Susan Rice warned that, “the fact that some of Islam’s most radical and anti-American adherents are increasingly active from South Africa to Sudan, from Nigeria to Algeria, ought to be of great concern to us.”  (Taylor, 2004, p. 285) Rice warns that, “[t]his concern is real, but while she understands that these issues go deeper than realpolitik, without the strong undercurrent of both the Hamiltonian traditions Africa risks becoming again a sidelined spectator vis-à-vis American foreign policy” (Taylor, 2004, p. 287)  Additionally, John Spencer, legal and foreign policy advisor to the emperor of Ethiopia, Aklilou Habte-Wold, warned the U.S. Government that if it continues, “to be perceived as less than fully committed to the general welfare of Ethiopia [it] could result in serious consequences for both U.S. Policy and private American interests in the African horn.”  (Yohannes, 1997, p. 148)  Spencer explained that, “a hardcore anti-American group within the imperial government was accusing Aklilou of operating by his own American sympathies rather than acting to promote fundamental Ethiopian interests.”  (Yohannes, 1997, p. 149)  And recently, some scholars have noted that, “The days immediately following 9/11…would be morally undermined by the formidable enemy of militant, anti-American Islam in the form of al Qaeda, apparently led by Osama bin laden.”  (Juergensmeyer, 2003, p. 88)

The results sufficiently support the premise that the type of AAS that currently exists in East Africa presents a threat to U.S. national security, and even though correlation does not prove causation, it is logical to suggest that if AAS (the variable) were to decrease, the threat to U.S. national security would also decrease.  Decreasing AAS is consistent with the primary U.S. policy for fighting international terrorism, the National Strategy for Combating Terrorism (NSCT) clearly indicates that America will defeat terrorists and their organizations; deny support, sponsorship, and sanctuary to terrorists; diminish the underlying conditions that terrorists seek to exploit; and defend U.S. Citizens and interests at home and abroad, thereby recognizing and eliminating threats before they present an, “immediate threat” (NSCT, 2003) of terrorism.[46]  Because the U.S. government has identified that AAS can result in danger to U.S. citizens aboard, it is logical to suggest that decreasing AAS would be beneficial.  The chart to the previous page displays America’s goal in the GWOT, which is to break the terrorist network down to the regional level where local law enforcement officials can deal with them accordingly.[47] Hence, it is consistent with U.S. policy to reduce the conflict in East Africa by suggesting a federacy arrangement that includes a shared economic interest because, simply put, that is the only way to reduce AAS, which in turn would reduce the threat to U.S. national security.

Unfortunately, in addition to the geographic, population and other previously mentioned external obstacles facing U.S. foreign diplomats; three internal obstacles impede America’s ability to work effectively with certain East African nations.  First, notwithstanding the existence of U.S. embassies in virtually every African nation, America lacks pertinent information that would otherwise ease the diplomatic process of trying to convince all East African states to accept the rules and regulations consistent with a federacy arrangement.  For example, until recently the absence of an American consulate in northern Nigeria, and an embassy representative who speaks northern Nigeria’s main language (Hausa) exacerbated AAS in that region.[48]  A similar situation exists in much of East Africa; consequently, any attempted diplomatic intervention by the U.S. might be perceived as a cultural or social threat to indigenous peoples that have little experience of Western cultures.  Second, and perhaps more problematic is the fact that many U.S. diplomats resist intervening in East Africa, partly because Americans are still haunted by the, “images of dead U.S. soldiers being dragged through the streets of Mogadishu” (Hamilton, 2005, p. 19) after the U.S. intervened in Somalia in 1992 for humanitarian reasons.  As mentioned above, the Clinton administration was unsuccessful in resolving that conflict with compellence and deterrence strategies. Third, there are only two African nations currently negotiating a federacy arrangement with a central authority: Sudan and Darfur; and the Western Sahara and Morocco.[49]  On the one hand, federacy arrangements in the Sudan and Morocco could ease some of the conflict in East Africa; however, on the other hand the Sudanese proposed federacy arrangement does not address Africa’s problems comprehensively.

Current academic research offers few answers to resolving the conflict in East Africa.  The most common method used to analyze East African conflict is the case study method.  Although case studies can be an effective means of analyzing virtually any social science situation, the most striking feature of current case studies that focus on East African conflict is their incomprehensive nature.  For example, Diehl and Gleditsch (2000) argue that, “the case study has been by far the dominant approach,” (Diehl & Gleditsch, 2000, p. 22) on topics that pertain to the environment and armed conflict, yet they fail to address specific issues involving failed states.  Other examples of case studies that focus on East African conflict indicate that they are irrelevant to internal conflict (Mazuri, 1995); offer ineffective solutions (P.Scherrer, 2002); or are incomprehensive, and fail to address the conflict as a regional problem (Morrison, Mitchell & Paden, 1989).  A common trait shared by those case studies is a notable lack of quantitative research, and a failure to address issues that are specific to internal conflict in East Africa. Clearly, more qualitative and quantitative research that focuses on East Africa is needed.

It is logical to suggest that the conditions in East Africa will worsen without U.S. intervention.  Whether or not U.S. diplomats become motivated to affect political-economic change and work towards a meaningful and long-term resolution to those problems depends on if policy makers are able to create an effective policy that will reduce both the internal conflict and the AAS. Doing so depends on the development of a comprehensive definition of negative spillover; a change in attitude towards East Africa; and a change in behavior within East Africa.  Doing otherwise would most likely result in additional international terrorism and international human suffering, and would in fact be inconsistent with the goals of the GWOT, which indicates that America will, “employ the use of diplomatic, intelligence, and information power to defeat terrorism.”  (National Strategy for Combating Terrorism, 2003)  Additionally, the above-mentioned Federacy arrangement would most likely be poorly viewed by the periphery states.  Reasons to resist such an arrangement might include the feelings of insecurity that a state typically experiences when it relinquishes, either willingly or by force, its national security, macro-economic decisions, and foreign policy making powers to an outside authority.[50]  However, through well-executed diplomacy, the U.S. could overcome East Africa’s hesitations by demonstrating the positive effects that could be realized from a shared economic interest, and an authority that possessed final decision-making powers that would not only represent East Africa on the international political arena, but it would also handle its military needs.  One of the primary responsibilities of a central authority is to, “exercise all of …the overall military and foreign policy powers” (Rezvani, 2004, p. 25) for the member states.  According to 2005 estimates, the total number of East Africans capable of military service (age 16 to 49 with no serious health problems) is 29,681,593.[51]  Although that would not create the world’s largest military, it is sufficient to create a sizeable force that is capable of supporting a stable governmental system, and ensuring that its vast natural resources and agricultural products were equitably distributed for the common good.  Simply put, the creation of a Federacy in East Africa that advocated a shared common interest that was protected by a well organized military could secure those products provided that the member states were willing to relinquish that power in exchange for purchasing, “constitutionally guaranteed sovereignty over their own internal affairs.”  (Rezvani, 2004, p.26)

Unfortunately, U.S. foreign policy is inconsistent with the needs of East Africa. Walter Russell Mead, the Henry Kissinger Senior Fellow for U.S Foreign Policy, provides a historical background on American foreign policy (AFP) in his book Special Providence (2004) that is relevant to the concepts of conflict resolution.  Mead enhances the concepts of hard and soft power that Harvard Professor Joseph Nye first developed in The Paradox of American Power (2002) by adding the elements of sticky power (American economic power that both seduces and compels), sweet power (American values, culture, and policy), and sharp power (U.S. Military power).  Mead argues that the twelve years between the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989 and the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 represent lost years in American foreign policy, and he defines the four distinct traditions in AFP; Hamiltonianism; Jeffersonianism; Jacksonianism; and Wilsonianism.  Mead asserts that all U.S. Presidents have, at one time or another, embraced one or a combination of those traditions, all of which are consistent in one way or another, with America’s grand strategy , which is to, “build a safer, peaceful, prosperous, and democratic world.”  (Mead, 2004, p. 138)  Those traditions are also consistent with the American Project, which is designed to protect U.S. National security while building a peaceful world order of democratic states that are linked by common values and a shared common prosperity.  Nevertheless, the primary goal of AFP is economic growth; hence the reason for the Marshall Plan, and the lack of intervention in impoverished East Africa.

As demonstrated above, the affects of spillover are clearly negative for the East African nations (particularly for Kenya and Tanzania) that were forced to accept the negative ramifications associated with the inflow of terrorists and drug dealers that accompany the millions of refuges fleeing their resource-rich nations in fear of genocide.  Conversely, the positive effects of spillover, as demonstrated by the EU’s success, combined with effective U.S. diplomacy that is designed to raise the awareness of spillovers negative effects might sufficiently convince at least a few East African nations to consider the long-term benefits of creating a Federacy.  America’s experience with war has caused many individuals to hesitate sending more troops into East Africa, and even though military intervention remains an option for the U.S., rather than send in troops to control the drug dealers and warlords, it would make sense to offer assistance to East Africa by helping them install new forms of government that would help to stabilize the regions.  However, US policy makers will not be able to create an effective policy without a comprehensive definition of negative spillover.  Nevertheless, Federacy arrangements provide nations that are burdened with socioeconomic and cultural collapse a means of creating a new and exciting form of government that can improve those conditions and maintain a significant level of nationalism and identity.  U.S. diplomats ought to consider taking the lead role in presenting the ideas of forming a Federacy in East Africa before conditions worsen because America has both a moral obligation to help the East African people, and a Constitutional duty to protect its own citizens.  Forgetting Africa will not make Africa forget us, and the terrorists that conduct illegal activities in failed East African states will not cease unless conditions change sufficiently to alter their behavior. Hence, it is in America’s best interest to work with East African governments to resolve the conflicts that have plagued that continent for decades.


It is not altogether clear to me that the presence of AAS readily translates into a potential threat of terrorism against the U.S. However, as you suggest, pervasive AAS in an environment of weak, if not entirely failed states, does raise some concern that such areas could become training grounds for terrorists. At the very least, the incapacity of some governments in East Africa to exercise full sovereign control over their own territory creates a permissive environment that could be exploited by organized sub-state actors. I like the Federacy approach, but I wonder whether East African states have sufficiently strong state and civil societies to make federation work. In terms of your method, you might consider using proportions rather than raw counts in your news analysis. Raw news counts can be deceiving because they tend to fluctuate broadly with large events, like the embassy bombings. Using proportions will help you mitigate this problem and provide a more accurate depiction about the trend in AAS. This is different than taking proportions of stories by country population. It certainly would not surprise me to see both the United States and Europe playing a far more active role in Africa in the coming decade. This might finally be a real and sustained change for the African continent.


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[2] see Le Billon, P. (2005). Fuelling War: Natural Resources and Armed Conflict. 4 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon, OX144RN: Routledge. (Original work published for The International Institute for Strategic Studies)

[3] see Schumann, R. (1950). The Schumann Declaration. Abstract retrieved from


[4] see Le Billon, P. (2005). Fuelling War: Natural Resources and Armed Conflict. 4 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon, OX144RN: Routledge. (Original work published for The International Institute for Strategic Studies)

[5] Ibid.

[6] Minerals in Conflict. (2005). Global Policy Forum. Abstract retrieved from

[7] see Le Billon, P. (2005). Fuelling War: Natural Resources and Armed Conflict. 4 Park Square, Milton Park,

Abingdon, Oxon, OX144RN: Routledge. (Original work published for The International Institute for

Strategic Studies)

[8] Ibid.

[9] Ibid.

[10] see Auty, R. M. (1993). Sustaining Development in Mineral Economies: The Resource Curse Thesis. New York: Routledge.

[11] see Lijphart, A. (1999). Patterns of Democracy – Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.

[12] see Stearns, P. N., Adas, M., Schwartz, S. B., & Gilbert, M. (2004). World Civilizations: The Global Experience

(Fourth ed., Vol. 2). New York, NY: Pearson Longman

[13] see Rosamond, B. (2000). N. Nugent, W. E. Paterson, & V. Wright (Eds.), Theories of European Integration. 175

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[14] see Schuman, R. (1950). The Schuman Declaration. Abstract retrieved from http://www.liv-

[15] Statistical Information (2005). Abstract retrieved from

[16] see Gellner, Ernest., Nations and Nationalism (Blackwell, 1983), Ch. 1.


[17] see Rosamond, B. (2000). N. Nugent, W. E. Paterson, & V. Wright (Eds.), Theories of European Integration. 175

Fifth Avenue, New York, NY  10010: Palgrave.

[18] see Loescher, G., & Milner, J.. The Long Road Home: Protracted Refugee Situations in Africa. Survival – The

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[21] see Loescher, G., & Milner, J.. The Long Road Home: Protracted Refugee Situations in Africa. Survival – The

               IISS Quarterly, 47(2), 153-173

[22] see Rosamond, B. (2000). N. Nugent, W. E. Paterson, & V. Wright (Eds.), Theories of European Integration. 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY  10010: Palgrave.

[23] see Baker, P.. The Failed States Index. Fund for Peace. Abstract retrieved from

[24] Ibid.


[25] see Le Billon, P. (2005). Fuelling War: Natural Resources and Armed Conflict. 4 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon, OX144RN: Routledge. (Original work published for The International Institute for Strategic Studies)

[26] see Gaddis, J. L. (1982). Strategies of Containment – A Critical Appraisal of Postwar American National Security Policy A Critical Appraisal of Postwar American National Security Policy. New York: Oxford University Press.


[27] see Art, R. J., & Cronin, P. M.. The United States and Coercive Diplomacy. 1200 17th Street NW, Suite 200 Washington D.C. 20036-3011: United States Institute of Peace.

[28] Ibid.

[29] see Campbell, C. & Rockman, B. A. (Eds.). (2000). The Clinton Legacy. New York: Chatham House.


[30] see Lijphart, A. (1999). Patterns of Democracy – Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries. New Haven and London: Yale University Press., p. 267

[31] see Stearns, P. N., Adas, M., Schwartz, S. B., & Gilbert, M. (2004). World Civilizations: The Global Experience

(Fourth ed., Vol. 2). New York, NY: Pearson Longman

[32] see Rezvani, David, A.. “On the Emergence and Utility of ‘Federacy’ in Comparative Politics.” (Working Paper, Harvard University, May 2004), pp. 1-30.

[33] see Gellner, Ernest., Nations and Nationalism (Blackwell, 1983), Ch. 1.

[34] Ibid.

[35] see Lijphart, A. (1999). Patterns of Democracy – Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.


[36] see Religion, A. (2003). 10 Antiglobal Religion. In Global Religions:  An Introduction, Juergensmeyer, M. (Ed.) (pp. 110-123). New York: Oxford University Press.

[37] see Liotta, P., & Miskel, J. F. (2004). Redrawing the Map of the Future. World Policy Journal.

[38] see Baker, P.. The Failed States Index. Fund for Peace. Abstract retrieved from

[39] The World Factbook (2005). Abstract retrieved from

[40] see Rezvani, David, A.. “On the Emergence and Utility of ‘Federacy’ in Comparative Politics.” (Working Paper, Harvard University, May 2004), pp. 1-30.

[41] The World Factbook (2005). Abstract retrieved from

[42] The World Factbook (2005). Abstract retrieved from

[43] see Stearns, P. N., Adas, M., Schwartz, S. B., & Gilbert, M. (2004). World Civilizations: The Global Experience (Fourth ed., Vol. 2). New York, NY: Pearson Longman.

[44] The World Factbook (2005). Abstract retrieved from

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[47] see Norwitz, J. (2002). Combating Terrorism: With a Helmet or a Badge? Retrieved from

[48] see Lyman, P. N., & Morrison, J. (2004). The Terrorist Threat in Africa. Foreign Affairs, 77

[49] see Rezvani, David, A.. “On the Emergence and Utility of ‘Federacy’ in Comparative Politics.” (Working Paper, Harvard University, May 2004), pp. 1-30.

[50] see Gellner, Ernest., Nations and Nationalism (Blackwell, 1983), Ch. 1.

[51] The World Factbook (2005). Abstract retrieved from