Though officials insist that the plans are still in “notional” stages and aren’t close to being approved, reports coming out of the Pentagon suggest that a major realignment of the assorted regional commands is possible, with an eye on budget shortfalls.
The realignment would eliminate two commands outright, with AFRICOM on the chopping block and both NORTHCOM and SOUTHCOM, the Western Hemisphere commands, potentially merging into a single command. No name has been reported for the new command.
AFRICOM would be a particularly big surprise, as the command was only established six years ago, and the US has been pumping massive amounts of money into it recently, with a promise to focus on combat.
Under the plan, the bulk of Africa would be ceded to EUCOM, and the Horn of Africa would go under CENTCOM control. The other surprise is that CENTCOM, the theater for all major US wars recently, could be losing one under the plan, with Afghanistan and Pakistan being transferred to PACOM, which had previously ended at India and China.