Page 4 of 22 FirstFirst ... 2345614 ... LastLast
Results 61 to 80 of 425

Thread: Mali mainly, 2012 coup, drugs & more

  1. #61
    Council Member J Wolfsberger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    806

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan View Post
    Stan,

    ...

    5. In conclusion, the US Military are not a humanitarian tool in the POTUS' kit bag. The AID agencies know far better how to abscond with funds and diddle about for centuries with no visible sign of progress. We should start by contacting our congress and senate and have them all committed for atrocities now and in the future
    As best I recall a quote from a South African journalist sometime in the late 1970s or early 1980s, "There is nothing quite so frightening as an American politician is search of a quick fix to someone else's problem." I think "American" and "politician" restrict the applicability too much.

    This seems like another good opportunity for us to let other people work out their differences on their own.

    (As for the contribution any of our prior activities might have made to the current situation, 'when you find yourself in a hole, the first step in fixing it is to stop digging.')
    Last edited by J Wolfsberger; 03-22-2012 at 04:57 PM.
    John Wolfsberger, Jr.

    An unruffled person with some useful skills.

  2. #62
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default

    ...and why shouldn't they?
    It is a legitimate aim (just like the Kurds), but it will result in the splitting of a couple of nations (Mali, Burkina Faso etc).

    That is one of the problems of the political structure of the African continent - a lot of split ethnic groups. However France (who really matters here) wants none of that, so it continues.

  3. #63
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan View Post
    Training a dictator's rogue military generally means (that training) will later be used against the very population it was intended to protect.
    Is AFRICOM still training the Congolese Army?

  4. #64
    Council Member Stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Estonia
    Posts
    3,817

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KingJaja View Post
    Is AFRICOM still training the Congolese Army?
    Hey Jaja !
    Well, if you wish to word it that way, yes, they are still training there.

    In reality, elements of the US Military are training Congolese soldiers, not staff members from AFRICOM.

    While I get where you are coming from (especially based on my post above), there are instances or training that does not necessarily adversely affect the local population. Such as humanitarian demining.

    There are probably more good examples, but success stories from the DRC are few and far between
    If you want to blend in, take the bus

  5. #65
    Council Member Uboat509's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    CO
    Posts
    681

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    ...and why shouldn't they?
    Because they are not a single homogenous group, but rather a series of affiliated tribes spread across several states. Even if they were to get an independent homeland, the lands that they traditionally inhabit are some of the least viable lands in the Sahel. They are heavily dependent on aid from the states that they inhabit and foreign (NGO) aid. Any new Tuareg state would just be another economic basket case that would require extensive aid just to survive, never mind grow.

    Most of the Tuareg that I knew in Niger harbored no particular interest in an independent Tuareg homeland. They just wanted to be better integrated into the states in which they lived. I can certainly sympathize with that. The Tuareg have had it hard. They do not fit in well with either the black Africans in the south nor the Arabs to the north. Niger's previous president liked to use the fear of Tuareg insurrection as a kind of wag the dog ploy. If memory serves, Mali's president did some of that as well. For their part, the Tuareg have been associated with many things that have not necessarily endeared them to the general public in the states they inhabit, including smuggling and slavery. Those associations are, of course, exaggerated but they are not totally unjustified, but then there are not many ways to make a living where many of them live.
    “Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.”

    Terry Pratchett

  6. #66
    Council Member Stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Estonia
    Posts
    3,817

    Default

    More from the front lines...

    Our correspondent says it is possible that the coup may falter, pointing out that the mutinous troops are poorly equipped, led by a mid-ranking soldier and they do not have the backing of all Malian forces.

    The well-trained and organized Red Berets unit is loyal to the president and he is believed to be under their protection, our reporter says.

    If those officers decide to push back, they could perhaps overturn the coup, he says.
    If you want to blend in, take the bus

  7. #67
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default

    Even if the coup falters, it will have an adverse impact on the Malian army. Coups led by senior officers tend to leave the command structure intact. Junior officers coups, on the other hand, tend to destroy the structure of the army.

    If ATT quells this coup, he'll have to restructure the army.

    All the better for the Tauregs/Al Qaeda.

  8. #68
    Council Member J Wolfsberger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    806

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KingJaja View Post
    All the better for the Tauregs/Al Qaeda.
    From what (admittedly) little I know, the Tuareg don't seem to have a culture that would be receptive to Salafist teaching and practices. Which leads to this question: Is Al Qaeda using the Tuareg, or are the Tuareg using Al Qaeda?
    John Wolfsberger, Jr.

    An unruffled person with some useful skills.

  9. #69
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default

    From what (admittedly) little I know, the Tuareg don't seem to have a culture that would be receptive to Salafist teaching and practices. Which leads to this question: Is Al Qaeda using the Tuareg, or are the Tuareg using Al Qaeda?
    A little of both.

    Nigerian Christianity wasn't an American "word of faith" style thing thirty years ago, it is today. You couldn't get a Nigerian Muslim to do suicide bombing ten years ago, you can today.

    Have you heard about Usman Dan Fodio? The Fulani weren't particularly known for piety in Northern Nigeria until he came around 200 years ago. (They aren't that well known for piety outside Nigeria - they are the "Jallows" and the "Diallos" )

    Circumstances change, people change. After seeing the rapid pace of change in Africa over my short lifetime, I believe that anything is possible.

  10. #70
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    13,349

    Default Context and detail by the BBC

    The BBC have a reporter in Mali:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-17474946

    A BBC analyst adds some context in 'Gaddafi's influence in Mali's coup':http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-17481114
    davidbfpo

  11. #71
    Banned
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Durban, South Africa
    Posts
    3,902

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KingJaja View Post
    It is a legitimate aim (just like the Kurds), but it will result in the splitting of a couple of nations (Mali, Burkina Faso etc).

    That is one of the problems of the political structure of the African continent - a lot of split ethnic groups. However France (who really matters here) wants none of that, so it continues.
    Its funny isn't it. We have African leaders bleating over the problems caused through colonial imposed boundaries... but are then prepared to maintain them through war if necessary.

    We have had post colonial boundaries changed for Eritrea and South Sudan... while there should have been more than 100 adjustments by now.

    Failing to recognise the aspirations of minorities is a recipe for disaster (especially if there is a mischievous neighbour willing to sow the seeds of discontent, supply weapons and sanctuary).

  12. #72
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default

    Its funny isn't it. We have African leaders bleating over the problems caused through colonial imposed boundaries... but are then prepared to maintain them through war if necessary.
    If there is oil/possibility of oil within those boundaries then they are motivated to keep the boundaries. That's Nigeria's problem. As soon as the oil runs dry, everyone is out.

  13. #73
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default

    The legacy of colonial boundaries has created all manner of mess, but going out and trying to preemptively adjust them would create even more mess... and who would do it?

    There have been adjustments, and there will continue to be, as the people involved force them to happen. They will continue to be very messy, and they will likely go on a long time.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  14. #74
    Banned
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Durban, South Africa
    Posts
    3,902

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Uboat509 View Post
    Because they are not a single homogenous group, but rather a series of affiliated tribes spread across several states. Even if they were to get an independent homeland, the lands that they traditionally inhabit are some of the least viable lands in the Sahel. They are heavily dependent on aid from the states that they inhabit and foreign (NGO) aid. Any new Tuareg state would just be another economic basket case that would require extensive aid just to survive, never mind grow.

    Most of the Tuareg that I knew in Niger harbored no particular interest in an independent Tuareg homeland. They just wanted to be better integrated into the states in which they lived. I can certainly sympathize with that. The Tuareg have had it hard. They do not fit in well with either the black Africans in the south nor the Arabs to the north. Niger's previous president liked to use the fear of Tuareg insurrection as a kind of wag the dog ploy. If memory serves, Mali's president did some of that as well. For their part, the Tuareg have been associated with many things that have not necessarily endeared them to the general public in the states they inhabit, including smuggling and slavery. Those associations are, of course, exaggerated but they are not totally unjustified, but then there are not many ways to make a living where many of them live.
    And the USA is a single homogenous group? Afghanistan (a country which the US seems to want to keep together at all costs) comprises a homogenous group?

    In my Southern African travels I have noted the one 'thing' that really gets Africans angry is the smart solutions for Africa's problems thought up by so-called 'smart' people in the US with little or no experience or understanding of Africa.

    If the Tuareg peoples (note the plural) consolidated into single 'homeland' would not be able to form a viable state (in your opinion) why would it be acceptable for their 'area' to be carved up among a handful of surrounding states where the Tuaregs would be 'looked after' like a parasitic minority by the (certainly not affluent) racially/ethnically/religiously (tick as applicable) different majority?

    I don't want to question your sources, or your reading of the local situation as I don't know what exposure you had in Mali... I have none. I would suggest that as a general comment the 'research' carried out by foreigners before forming an opinion is 99% too limited and as such leads to incorrect conclusions being drawn.

    (On this point I remember being told by a US female USAID worker that tribalism no longer existed in Mozambique. I asked her how she had arrived at that decision and she replied that her local driver (who she was screwing) had told her. For those who don't know there is a tendency among educated and semi-educated Africans to deny the existence of tribalism as this would somehow confirm the backward status of Africa.)
    Last edited by JMA; 03-23-2012 at 10:38 AM.

  15. #75
    Banned
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Durban, South Africa
    Posts
    3,902

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    The legacy of colonial boundaries has created all manner of mess, but going out and trying to preemptively adjust them would create even more mess... and who would do it?
    Dah... the countries who keep whining about the colonial legacy.

    PS: certainly not the US.

  16. #76
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default

    There isn't such a thing as a "homogeneous" ethnic group anywhere in Africa. (I should know, I belong to one).

    As to the boundaries, they will be adjusted and that will happen - watch what will happen to Africa when the French finally pull out.

  17. #77
    Council Member Stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Estonia
    Posts
    3,817

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    (On this point I remember being told by a US female USAID worker that tribalism no longer existed in Mozambique. I asked her how she had arrived at that decision and she replied that her local driver (who she was screwing) had told her. For those who don't know there is a tendency among educated and semi-educated Africans to deny the existence of tribalism as this would somehow confirm the backward status of Africa.)
    They (some of us) also deny the fact that cannibalism exists. At least until they see a body face down in a ditch with no meat on the calves
    The favorite sources for intel in Kinshasa were the cooks. I could barely wait for the Monday briefings having just drove around the city with Tom to make sure we actually saw what we would report on. Strange concept, knowing what you are talking about
    If you want to blend in, take the bus

  18. #78
    Council Member Uboat509's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    CO
    Posts
    681

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    And the USA is a single homogenous group? Afghanistan (a country which the US seems to want to keep together at all costs) comprises a homogenous group?
    My point was simply that these groups do not necessarily want the same things. Statements about what the Tuareg want must be viewed with some suspicion since there is a very real possibility that that they do not all want these things. Also the fact that they are so spread out begs the question of whose homeland do they want? In other words, do the Malian Tuareg want the homeland to be in what is now northern Mali? What about the Nigerien Tuareg? Are the Tuareg in others areas going to be willing to relocate to this new homeland?

    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    In my Southern African travels I have noted the one 'thing' that really gets Africans angry is the smart solutions for Africa's problems thought up by so-called 'smart' people in the US with little or no experience or understanding of Africa.
    Read my post again. I did not advocate any "fixes." I was, in fact, advocating against fixes imposed by foreign governments i.e. forcing existing states to cede sovereign land for the creation of a Tuareg homeland.


    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    If the Tuareg peoples (note the plural) consolidated into single 'homeland' would not be able to form a viable state (in your opinion) why would it be acceptable for their 'area' to be carved up among a handful of surrounding states where the Tuaregs would be 'looked after' like a parasitic minority by the (certainly not affluent) racially/ethnically/religiously (tick as applicable) different majority?
    My comment about the viability of the lands was regarding the terrain, weather and lack of resources. I do not think that I will get a lot of argument that the Sahel is one of the harshest places to live in the world. If they were to create a new state there how would that state feed its people, never mind establish a viable economy? I have no idea what the last part of your statement was about.
    “Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.”

    Terry Pratchett

  19. #79
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    789

    Default Mali mutineers loot, seek president as rebels advance

    This looks like total mayhem. It seems as if Mali has been set back a few years.

    BAMAKO (Reuters) - Bread and fuel ran low in Mali's capital Bamako on Friday as mutineering soldiers looted petrol stations and shops and hijacked cars, residents said, while coup leaders sought to consolidate their grip on power.

    The mutinous soldiers, angered by what they saw as President Amadou Toumani Toure's poor handling of a northern rebellion, roamed the streets of the capital after over-running the presidential palace and taking control of state television.

    But Tuareg rebels in northern Mali, aiming to capitalise on the confusion in the distant capital, pushed south to occupy positions abandoned by government forces, sources said.

    Captain Amadou Sanogo, the head of a body set up by the mutineers, suggested on Thursday that soldiers were trying to arrest Toure.

    The president's whereabouts were unknown, though unconfirmed reports said he was being protected by loyalist troops in the city.

    Despite Sanogo's calls to the soldiers to stop pillaging and respect private property, residents said looting was continuing and had caused shortages while fuel prices have doubled to over 1,300 CFA francs a litre in about 24 hours.

    "People are afraid because of the soldiers. Often (they take) what is in the car or they make you get out and take the car or sometimes the soldiers themselves just break into shops," said Bamako resident Adama Quindo.

    Around the city, most shops, petrol stations and businesses were closed while some residents ventured out in search of bread and petrol.
    http://af.reuters.com/article/topNew...120323?sp=true

  20. #80
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Denison, Texas
    Posts
    114

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KingJaja View Post
    BH has a huge support base in Kano. Is it possible for BH and AQIM to operate in the same city without both organisations comparing notes? It seems highly unlikely.

    In my humble opinion, this is the surest sign that BH and AQIM are collaborating. The timing is striking - a few days after BH mounted its most spectacular show of force, a german engineer was kidnapped, in the same town.
    AQIM is extending its reach throughout West Africa. Both BH and AQIM have everything to gain from this linkage. The Nigerian people have a lot to loose by it.

    AQIM is linked with the Malian rebels recently returned from fighting in Lybia. They were so well armed that the Malian military was unable to make any headway against them. The military says they were not properly resourced by the Toure's government in Bamako so they stood little chance of defeating the separatist rebels. That, at least in their statements, is the reason for the coup in Mali.

    I realize it is difficult to make comparisons between any two situations in the world, yet I cannot help but wonder if the Nigerian military and police feel under resourced by Goodluck Jonathan? How angry are they at being a frequent target of BH, yet seeming impotent to put BH to flight? Surely some have paid attention to what has happened in Mali.

    The Nigerian president has far too much support in the south for any security forces to take action against him. However, will the time come when the police say, enough is enough, we cannot carry on with such a lack of resources and simply walk away or go on strike.

Similar Threads

  1. Philippines (2012 onwards, inc OEF)
    By Dayuhan in forum Asia-Pacific
    Replies: 117
    Last Post: 03-14-2019, 05:57 PM
  2. Sudan Watch (July 2012 onwards)
    By AdamG in forum Africa
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 02-09-2019, 11:55 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •