2013, Al Qaeda, Ansar al Dine, conflict, counter-terrorism, counterinsurgency, France, Islamist, Mali, North Africa, war
“I’d like the crisis to come to an end so we can go back home” (0:48).
Six months is not a “crisis”.
Six months is a tragedy.
Governments had launched plans for a push-back for September 2013, but as has happened about six years ago in Somalia, the Al Qaeda-type forces (Al Shabaab in Somalia; Ansar Al-Dine in Mali) have wasted little time flexing their muscles in a weak state.
Ever hard to see starting out, “jihadists” have a way of becoming seen as they become entrenched.
One may note that in either space, Somalia or Mali, or elsewhere, if they pick up hard assets in machinery, such become visible and more easily draw retributive fire and associated thumping, but the same have the option of then responding with a lower visibility, Iraq-style, brush fire type of insurgency, provided redoubts and hideouts of one sort or another.
“Paris has already acknowledged that the rebels have turned out to be better armed than originally thought.” (0:48)
Later, same video with reference to the revolution in Libya:
” . . . a lot of the ones trained by the U.S. defected when they were needed most, taking guns, and trucks, and their new found skills to the enemy in the heat of battle. . . .”
So here we go.
NATO (unintentionally) armed and trained them, and today, with unrepentant and stung Malian citizens ready to fight, with French boots on the ground and welcomed, and with African forces in training, perhaps God Almighty himself has devised a demonstration for so unnatural a turn in humanity.
Deliberately ambivalent and ambiguous in the above statement — an indirect comment on language — I nonetheless wish the French, the Mali, and all of North Africa much luck and God’s grace in shutting down “Al Ansar” — as far from The Answer or any answer as can be (and the true translation “The Helpers” has a merciless and remorseless absurdity to it) — and the malevolent obscenity they have put before the witness of humankind.
All Africa. “Mali: French Fighter Jets Pound Mali, Top Islamist Leader Reported Killed.” January 13, 2013.
France24. “The Plunder of Timbuktu: “What Can We Do Against Armed Men?” December 26, 2012.
Front Page Magazine. “Mali’s Sharia Nightmare”. September 28, 2012.
Magharebia. “Maghreb countries strengthen border security.” January 14, 2013.
Radical Islam. “Mali Islamists Threaten 60 More Amputations”. August 29, 2012.
UPI. “Algerian Forces Train to Fight Jihadists.” January 7, 2013.
UPI. “French push Algeria to join Mali incursion.” December 17, 2012.
Wally, Omar. “Gambia. Counter-Insurgency Training Wraps Up at GAF Training School.” All Africa, December 17, 2012.