Since September of 2001 the U.S. began to build a large network of bases throughout Africa. Documents from 2019 details 29 different U.S. bases on the continent that span 15 different territories and countries. Last month the Commander of AFRICOM, Stephen Townsend, claims they maintain a “light and relatively low-cost footprint” in the area. The number of troops and locations, however, are saying otherwise. Violent extremism and terror attacks have also been on the rise in recent years with around 25 active Islamist extremist groups operating throughout the continent. Reported fatalities have also increased by 7% in the past year, an estimated 10,460 deaths.