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Obama Nominates New Chief for US Africa Command

Army General David Rodriguez, August 7, 2010
President Barack Obama has nominated a new chief for the U.S. military's Africa Command.

Army General David Rodriguez is being tapped for the post to replace Army General Carter Ham. Ham has led the command, known as AFRICOM, since March of last year.

The U.S. Senate must confirm the nomination.

Rodriguez previously led the Joint Command of NATO's International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.

AFRICOM oversees U.S. military engagements on the African continent except for Egypt. Under General Ham's command, it has been involved with counterterrorism efforts in Somalia and the NATO campaign to help rebels who toppled Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

The Washington Post recently reported the Obama administration is considering military strikes against al-Qaida militants in North Africa. It said General Ham has made stops in Mauritania, Algeria and other countries that could become part of a peacekeeping force for troubled Mali.