Middle East & North Africa

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GoodFellows: Stable . . . And Stagnant?

interview with John H. Cochrane, Niall Ferguson, H. R. McMastervia Fellow Talks
Thursday, September 23, 2021

Europe’s future includes a post-Merkel Germany, the fallout over the AUSUK technology deal, a shaky NATO alliance post-Afghanistan, Ukraine’s uncertain outlook, plus Russian control of natural gas supplies. Hoover senior fellows Niall Ferguson, H. R. McMaster and John Cochrane discuss the mood on the other side of the Atlantic, as well as President Biden’s UN address and China’s financial reckoning.

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A Lost War: A Conversation with Victor Davis Hanson and H. R. McMaster on Afghanistan’s Past, Present, and Future

interview with H. R. McMaster, Victor Davis Hansonvia Uncommon Knowledge
Monday, September 20, 2021


In this frank, no-holds-barred conversation, General H. R. McMaster and Victor Davis Hanson discuss the United States’ mission in Afghanistan: how it began, how it was conducted, and its ignominious end. 

Featured AnalysisFeatured

The Sahel After Afghanistan

by Russell A. Bermanvia The Caravan
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The Sahel and the states bordering it are sites of significant jihadist activity that will derive considerable encouragement from the Taliban victory in Afghanistan: Islamism will be on the upswing everywhere. In the Sahel in particular, such violent extremism plays out against the backdrop of weak political structures, poor governance, intercommunal conflicts, and profound economic challenges. These are poor states with growing populations.

Featured AnalysisAnalysis and Commentary

France In The Sahel Is A Policeman Trying To Escape From Prison

by Michel Goyavia The Caravan
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

On the 10th June, 2021, President Macron announced 'the end of Operation Barkhane' in the Sahel, but he did not announce France's withdrawal from the war against Salafi-jihadist organisations in the area. This is simply a new avatar of France's military engagement in the Sahel after Nicolas Sarkozy's ‘Sahel plan’ and the start of the Special Forces' Operation Sabre in 2009, operation Serval in 2013 and operation Barkhane in 2014. 

Featured Analysis

The Sahelian Matrix of Political Violence

by Heni Nsaibia, Clionadh Raleighvia The Caravan
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The Sahel is one of the most active conflict theatres on the African continent and has become a major node in the "Global War on Terror'' over the past twenty years. After nearly a decade of foreign military intervention through overlapping counterterrorism, stabilization, and military and security training missions, the conflict is often referred to as a ''Forever War'' alongside other Western-led military interventions in the Middle East and Africa. As military campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan draw to a close, attention is increasingly shifting to Africa as the next battlefront— where the Sahel remains a key geopolitical dilemma.

Featured Analysis

From the Middle East to the Sahel and throughout Africa: How Russia pushes Western Powers towards the Exit

by Isabelle Lasserrevia The Caravan
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Sub-Saharan Africa, the Sahel, the Middle East, Afghanistan. Like an octopus, Russia has extended its tentacles to every crisis riddled corner, filling the void created by the withdrawal of Western forces. Occasionally partnering with Turkey to better share the imperial burden, Vladimir Putin has once again inserted Moscow as a major player on the international scene. To what extent can it take the place of democratic powers?

IntroductionAnalysis and Commentary

Sahelian Islam’s Shift Towards Salafism And Its Implications For Regional Terrorism

by Joshua Meserveyvia The Caravan
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The Sahel region of Africa stretches east from Senegal’s Atlantic coast into Sudan, covering a vast space in which the Sahara Desert peters out southward into savannah. It is predominately Muslim, and specifically Sufi, a type of syncretic Islamic practice that emphasizes the mystical experience of God.


Al Qaeda Versus ISIS

by Cole Bunzelvia Foreign Affairs
Tuesday, September 14, 2021

The Taliban’s rapid takeover of Afghanistan has raised fears that the country will once again become a safe haven for Islamist militants intent on perpetrating acts of international terrorism. In light of the Taliban’s history of harboring such radical groups, these fears are justified. But the two movements vying for influence in the country, al Qaeda and the Islamic State (also known as ISIS), both face serious obstacles in their quest to use Afghanistan as a platform to bolster their strength and launch a new wave of terrorist attacks.

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What We, The United States of America, Want | The Haqqani Network Must Not Be Allowed to Hold U.S. Interests Hostage

by Melissa Skorkavia The Caravan Notebook
Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Over the last half-century, the Haqqani network has grown from a relatively small, tribal-based jihadist network into one of the most powerful terrorist syndicates in South Asia. And now, with the return of its Taliban allies to government in Afghanistan, this designated foreign-terrorist organization holds significant political power


It Is A Delusion To Believe The Taliban Rebrand: These Child Abusers Are A Threat To Humanity

by H. R. McMastervia The Times
Monday, September 13, 2021

[Subscription Required] The surrender of Afghanistan to the Taliban is the result of an extreme case of collective amnesia and self-delusion that continues to undermine the international response to the unfolding catastrophe there. Motivated by the desire to justify that surrender and rationalise the humiliating retreat from Kabul, western military and political leaders have forgotten who it was we fought in Afghanistan and Pakistan for two decades.