• The Long Game of the Saudis and Ethiopia.

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    The Saudis have been radicalizing the hinterland and are now militarizing the borderlands i.e. the Red Sea and the rest of it. The only difference this time around is the unambiguous projection of hard power. Africa needs to elevate the Saudi menace to the top of its security agenda and galvanize regional instruments and mechanisms towards disabling this existential threat.

    As is usually the case I was asked to give a presentation on Jihadist movements in Africa. Seeing statements such as the new Saudi threat to Ethiopia or the Horn of Africa by regional observers gave me an abrupt comeback to the same urgings I have been making for more than a decade about what I call as Corporate Radicalization, that is Saudi Arabia and the threat it poses to the region. It also gave me a rush of intense memories and emotions, for it was here that I spent the last fifteen years. So, this presentation, though provoked by a talk I recently gave at a forum provided by Wilton Park and African Leadership Centre might look very personal.

    Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 April 2016 08:17
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  • I Love the U.N., but It Is Failing

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    Anthony Banbury

    Six years ago, I became an assistant secretary general, posted to the headquarters in New York. I was no stranger to red tape, but I was unprepared for the blur of Orwellian admonitions and Carrollian logic that govern the place. If you locked a team of evil geniuses in a laboratory, they could not design a bureaucracy so maddeningly complex, requiring so much effort but in the end incapable of delivering the intended result.

    Last Updated on Sunday, 20 March 2016 08:17
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  • Islamists and Commercial Banks

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    A debate is raging in Somaliland on the issue of Commercial Banks. The historical and contemporary aspects of the debate are caught by Adem Musa Jibril (below). But here is my take:Such a discourse is long overdue and Somaliland should not have been hard-pressed to stick to a pathetic financial order. The argument by Islamists not to allow Commercial Banks in Somaliland on religious grounds is, to say the least, disingenuous. It is manifestly insincere to apply a peculiar standard to Somaliland while Commercial banks do exist in other Muslim countries, even in those who claim to be the forbearers of radical Islam: from Saudi Arabia to Egypt. Islamists should not be allowed to push Somaliland into political and economic obscurity.

    Last Updated on Monday, 15 February 2016 14:22
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  • It is all Negative Energy: How External Mediation Becomes the Actual Problem.

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    Peace making and peace building in Africa is on the edge of disaster. It is obvious where the road they(Africa's peacemakers) are on would lead, but those in charge of the task could not (or would not) see it. IGAD leaders continued to engage in the habitual attempts at ‘peace making’ efforts without recognizing and/or discerning what mistakes they had made and how they could keep from making them again. As a result the story of President Kiir’s doomed military and political position has been replaced by the story of his inevitability as the real decider in the peace process.

    Last Updated on Tuesday, 01 March 2016 16:29
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  • South Sudan : power to the most violent or survival of the crookedest ?

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    What can we make from this comedy of errors where almost not one of the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle seems to fit its supposed neighbour ? The possibility is of course of a grand replay of all the previous failed peace agreements , complete with massacres in the streets of Juba and a return to fighting in the three northern provinces.

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