Free Markets, Free People

The reason for the mess in Mali?

One word: Libya. Seriously…   many of the armaments and fighters came from Libya and their fight there to overthrow the government. All, of course, aided and abetted by the Obama administration and their brilliant foreign policy.

Over the last four years, the United States has spent between $520 million and $600 million in a sweeping effort to combat Islamist militancy in the region without fighting the kind of wars it has waged in the Middle East. The program stretched from Morocco to Nigeria, and American officials heralded the Malian military as an exemplary partner. American Special Forces trained its troops in marksmanship, border patrol, ambush drills and other counterterrorism skills.

Then:

But all that deliberate planning collapsed swiftly when heavily armed, battle-hardened Islamist fighters returned from combat in Libya. They teamed up with jihadists like Ansar Dine, routed poorly equipped Malian forces and demoralized them so thoroughly that it set off a mutiny against the government in the capital, Bamako.

A confidential internal review completed last July by the Pentagon’s Africa Command concluded that the coup had unfolded too quickly for American commanders or intelligence analysts to detect any clear warning signs.

And finally:

Then an American-trained officer overthrew Mali’s elected government, setting the stage for more than half of the country to fall into the hands of Islamic extremists. American spy planes and surveillance drones have tried to make sense of the mess, but American officials and their allies are still scrambling even to get a detailed picture of who they are up against.

Now, in the face of longstanding American warnings that a Western assault on the Islamist stronghold could rally jihadists around the world and prompt terrorist attacks as far away as Europe, the French have entered the war themselves.

Exceptionally well done, no? /sarc

That’s what leading from behind brings you — oh, that and “Arab spring”.

Can you imagine what will happen when Syria finally collapses?

~McQ

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28 Responses to The reason for the mess in Mali?

  • Can you imagine what will happen when Syria finally collapses?
    >>>> As long as it involves baby Asaad swinging from the end of a rope, I’ll find a way to live with it  :)

  • The reason for the mess in Mali?

    The roaring success of Islamism in the face of the weakness of SoftPower(tm), and the regime’s insistence on ignoring reality.

    • I honestly don’t believe they ignore reality.  I think they are incapable of understanding it.  It’s never the policies that fail.  The policies have a predetermined outcome and any outcome that differs was not a failure of the policy but a failure to implement the policy.

      • It’s humiliating to admit that the French are trying to clean up a mess that is — partly — caused by our president …

        On a fundamental basis, this is correct, but our Pres**ent was asked by the French and Italians to help make that mess.
        His inability to look beyond the immediate crisis, to see the bigger picture, ultimately only let it unfold, when he could have possibly found something better, if he hadn’t been “leading from behind.”
        The problem with “leading from behind” is that you always get it up the a$$.

  • “Can you imagine what will happen when Syria finally collapses?”
     
    Weak Horse rides again.  Perhaps it’s really a case of – What’s a few chemical and bio weapons amongst Islamist friends?   Big Ears IS a demonstratively firm supporter of our Israeli allies.
     
    Entertaining how the French flipped the UN and NATO the bird on this one isn’t it?
     
     

  • So basically we’ve fallen to the point where the French are more militarily pro-active than us.  Ouch. 

    • You have to remember that Africa is France’s colonial playground. They intervene there all the time.

  • I think these situations like Libya and Syria are “damned if you do, damned if you don’t.”
     

    • These are situations where we have to do the adult thing and sort out a devil of lesser nature to back, because they’re mostly devils.    Course that doesn’t work for the moonpony children, and you get what you have in Egypt and Libya (and probably Syria soon) as a result.

      • If you do that, and back Qadaffi, then you will look like you support oppression, and face a risk if he loses.
        Best to choose to not back anybody.
        In Syria, its the same thing. I guess I could see offering sympathy and some non-lethal aid. If they want more, keep pointing at their Islamist brigades…
        Egypt is a harder case as they were already an ally and the Israel issue is so big.
        But what would happen if we had supported Mubarak who was quite old, and then he dies and the revolution happens anyways? Then its virulently anti-American and won’t even listen to us at all because we backed the bad guy to the hilt. (Ed: As if they could hate America even more than now!)
        Again, I think there is no good answer, except to not back authoritarian governments at all if you have a choice. Recognize them, fine, but no need to be sending them tanks.
         
         

        • Any time Muslim extremists are in the mix we almost HAVE to back someone.  Or not, and then we can spend money trying to get them to kill each other I suppose, or wait for Europe to perceive it as a threat and let them sort of deal with it.  Aw what the hell, just let them unit into a Caliphate and be done with it.   Then we can go about the business of blowing them back to their preferred 12th century life style when they go on Jihad towards Vienna or Lisbon again…   Sigh.
           
          We can’t always find a good answer, because it’s real life and there’s not always going to be a ‘good’ answer.  You have to weigh it and decide if you can find an ‘acceptable’ answer knowing full well you may end up with Manuel Noriega before you’re done.  The object is to try and counsel your chosen scum bag into being less scummy in exchange for something we can provide.   Too often the west sends people with the savy of Neville Chamberlain to decide who we can deal with and who we can’t deal with.   I wasn’t wild about Qadaffi, but did it really end up BETTER?  Is it really that much better for the people?  Or is it just the same, or worse, with the old agendas and feuds and a rotation of who top dogs are, and who suffers this time around?   Only now more real estate is blown to crap and the infrastructure is fragged beyond the level they’ll repair in anyone’s lifetime.
           
          And when they’re done and they emerge on the world stage, are they going to be rational?  All I see is a version of Palestine or Lebanon without the Jews as handy neighbors to blame for their hellish existence.

          • Were we more competent I’d say our play would be to arm both sides and have them blow each other to hell

          • @The shark That was my hope during the Iran/Iraq war during the 80s. Arm them both, make sure that neither gets the upper hand, and just let them have at it.

          • I’m not happy with Islamic radicals either, but when they win sweeping elections, what’s the choice?
            Read Totten’s piece…these countries are not full of nice liberal types, but truck loads of nationalists, socialists, and Islamists – and the assorted blends.
            These dictators need to mimic China where they have an informal rule for a new guy for his 10 years of dictatorship. This keeps the populace less disgruntled as they can see the back of the last asshat.

          • The asshats keeping everyone in poverty, except themselves and their buds is a tremendous problem.   When people have a slice of the pie it gives them hesitation about screwing up the system with radical maneuvers.
             
            We’re working on that here in case you haven’t noticed, by promising to take the pie away from the haves and give it to others.   A large under population that can be controlled and aimed is necessary for any kind of sweeping social change.

          • Aw what the hell, just let them unit into a Caliphate and be done with it.   Then we can go about the business of blowing them back to their preferred 12th century life style when they go on Jihad towards Vienna or Lisbon again…   Sigh.

            .
            This pretty much sums up my view at this point.  Time for the Christians, animists, and whatever elses to bail out and let the Muslims stew in their own barbarian juices.  They want Islam, let them have it.  They want sharia, let them have it.  I wish them all the joy of the backward hellhole they’ll create.  We do no trade and we send no aid, and any heads they poke out of their self-made ghetto we blow up.
            .
            (Plus, the more they bunch up, the easier they are to hit en masse.)
             

        • I don’t think anyone was backing Quadaffi.  He was the head of state.  A previously rogue state that was cow’ed.  I don’t think he was our boy by any means.  We simply didn’t have to support the rebels either especially when they had ‘islamists’ written all over them. 

          • The difference would be what you see ongoing in Syria where various parties are running around behind the scenes far less visibly supporting one side or the other than we were in Libya.   Libya might still be ongoing if we hadn’t bombed Quadaffi’s military and infrastructure.
             
            What was it about the Libyans that we felt a ‘humanitarian’ need to bomb the government forces, that we don’t feel in Syria.  Could it be direct Russian support of Assad?  I don’t think we’re going to ultimately find the new Libya to be any more ‘free’ than the old Libya was.  The ruthless dudes usually win, which was why we blasted the Libyan army into powder because they were likely to frost the hell out of Libya’s ‘Arab Spring’.  And after all, ‘Arab Spring’ was going to bring freedom and democracy to every country that had Twitter.
             

          • I’m not sure the difference in ruthlessness was based on anything more that opportunity. 

            We replaced a devil we knew with the devil we didn’t.  Under that scenario I don’t see the compulsion to act.  Where they any less ruthless to Quadaffi & Quadaffi’s forced upon victory? 

          • I expect old Momar would have been pretty ruthless once he regained control, I make no pretensions to the contrary.   And that’s why we blasted him because that was the expectation, and he was a known ruthless quantity.
             
            But the idea that the new set of rulers wasn’t going to match him was foolish.

  • “American Special Forces trained its troops in marksmanship, border patrol, ambush drills and other counterterrorism skills.”
     
    Just phreeking lovely. What was it Lenin supposedly said about selling capitalism the rope with which communism will hang them?
    But then I am overlooking the incredible ‘Strategic Importance’ of which gang of thugs runs a pseudo-nation that will need a century or two to evolve enough to become a ‘failed nation’ covering as few million square miles of dessicated, disease and bug  infested dirt.
     
    Isolationism is starting to look good, or at least better than spending big gobs of money and lives on places like Mali.
     

  • A confidential internal review completed last July by the Pentagon’s Africa Command concluded that the coup had unfolded too quickly for American commanders or intelligence analysts to detect any clear warning signs.

    … but wait (from Instapundit) …

    Remember when the press mocked Mitt Romney for bringing up Mali in a debate? Because, you know, they had no idea anything was brewing there. I keep saying that we have the worst political class in our history, and we do, but today’s press is the very worst part of the worst political class in our history.