Moving Forward on Military Intervention in Mali
noted on Reason 24/7, the United Nations Security Council
unanimously approved a French-backed military intervention in Mali.
plan is for regional ECOWAS forces to enter in the north to
quell a Tuareg rebellion turned Islamist insurgency. Al-Qaeda is,
naturally, suspected of
Though the Tuareg are indigenous to northern Mali, where the
insurgency is spreading, the country was considered by USAID as
â€œone of the most enlightened democracies in Africaâ€ as recently as
earlier this year. The collapse of the Qaddafi regime in Libya,
with help from the West, created an influx of Libyan Tuareg
fighters, who Qaddafi had kept in his employ, as well as Islamists
fresh from the experience of toppling a government in Tripoli. The
Tuareg rebels in the north
declared independence in April, a coup followed, and elections
scheduled for later that month never happened.
As a former French colony, the situation in Maliâ€™s been closely
monitored in France, where the recently elected Socialist president
has been at the forefront of a push for military intervention,
sending surveillance drones last
month. France and the U.S. (because Al-Qaeda!) have also been
pressuring Algeria to back an intervention in Mali. U.S.
officials have been visiting all year long, with Hillary Clinton
going in October.
While the U.S. is projecting a limited role in the now seemingly
imminent intervention in Mali, it did
confirm earlier this month that it was
working closely with West African countries in planning the
actual military operation. A few days later UN Ambassador Susan
Rice reportedly told other UN-based officials the plans for
intervention were â€œcrap,â€
the fear being the ECOWAS countries (led by Nigeria) did not have
the military resources or experience for a successful intervention.
The stage seems set for deeper involvement in a military
intervention moving forward not just by France but also the