Who are These “Jihadists” Who Are Defeating the French Army in the Sahel?

by Rémi Carayol The French army takes pride in regularly announcing “victories” in the Sahel, where it has been operating for five years under the name “Operation Barkhane.” These may be the destruction of munitions dumps, motor vehicles or camps… Continue Reading  

Burkina Faso: Islamic State and al-Qaeda’s New Sanctuary

by Giorgio Cafiero and Daniel Wagner For many years, violent extremists have exploited the impoverished and lawless Sahel region of Africa. Salafist-jihadist militias have frequently transited through the region’s porous borders, easily taking advantage of local grievances to establish a… Continue Reading  

Trump’s Africa Policy Is a Continuation of Clinton’s, Bush’s, and Obama’s

by Herman J. Cohen President Trump’s Africa policy appears to be off to a bad start. First, there was the unfortunate leak of a remark made privately to a group of U.S. senators in February in which the President referred… Continue Reading  

Burkina Faso’s Alarming Escalation of Jihadist Violence

by Rinaldo Depagne Attacks on the Burkina Faso army headquarters and the French Embassy on 2 March 2018 were better organized, involved heavier weapons and were more sustained than anything seen so far in Burkina Faso. In this Q&A, our West Africa… Continue Reading  

Saudi Arabia and Iran Compete in the Sahel

by Javad Heiran-Nia and Somayeh Khomarbaghi  Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirate are supporting the Sahel Joint Military Force, the latest indication of a competition for influence with Iran in West Africa. The force falls under the rubric of… Continue Reading