Having Trouble viewing this email or clicking on links and opening target pages? Copy and paste the following URL to your browser to access the ACSS Media Review on our Website: http://africacenter.org/

Africa Center for Strategic Studies 

Media Review for November 2, 2012   

Libya mission was mainly CIA operation: report
The U.S. mission in Benghazi that came under attack by militants on September 11 was mainly a secret CIA operation, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday, shedding new light on the deadly assault. The Wall Street Journal said the mission was mainly a CIA operation, adding that of the 30 American officials evacuated from Benghazi following the assault, just seven worked for the State Department. AFP on The Daily Star Lebanon


In Benghazi timeline, CIA errors but no evidence of conspiracy, by David Ignatius
11:11 p.m.: An unarmed military Predator drone arrives over the compound to provide aerial reconnaissance. The drone had been diverted from a mission over Darnah, about 90 minutes away. But without weapons, it can't help much. 11:56 p.m.: CIA officers at the annex are attacked by a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms. Sporadic attacks continue for about another hour. The attacks stop at 1:01 a.m., and some assume the fight is over. The Washington Post


The Swahili coast- Contagion of discontent: Muslim extremism spreads down east Africa's coastline
The Swahili coast, named after a language created by the cohabitation of inland Bantu tribes and Arab traders and slavers, was at various times divided between four colonial countries: Britain, Germany, Italy and Portugal. Their vast possessions in the hinterland eventually became Kenya, Tanzania, Somalia and Mozambique. Yet in terms of culture, religion and geography the coastal strip, especially its swathe in the middle, has retained a distinct identity. To that now add rising discontent. Inequality, land grabs and corruption have soured many coastal communities in recent years. In radical Islam some now find an outlet for their anger. The Economist


Kenya among Africa's top spenders on military
Kenya has been ranked among the countries with the highest defence budgets in Africa, thanks to two decades of a steady increase in military expenditure. It is ranked seventh behind Algeria, South Africa, Angola, Libya, Nigeria, Egypt and Morocco, having surpassed Tunisia last year. Business Daily


Rwanda's Kagame slams critics over dictator claims
Rwanda's President Paul Kagame has spoken out against his critics who claim he is a dictator and behind a rebel group destabilising the DRC. Mail and Guardian


Is Rwanda Exportable?
For a period of about 100 days in 1994, the people of Rwanda were embroiled in a murderous rampage that left an estimated 800,000 dead-the chilling memories of which are enshrined in the Kigali Memorial Center built at a site where 250,000 victims of the genocide are buried. Eight years after the genocide [...] I was then impressed by the determination of the people of Rwanda to forge ahead as one country notwithstanding the bitter memories of the recent past. Brookings  


Somalia: Mass Kismayo arrests of 'Islamist supporters'
Nearly 400 people have been arrested in a major security operation in the Somali port city of Kismayo, officials there have told the BBC. African Union troops, the Somali army and a pro-government militia gained control of the strategic port last month from al-Qaeda-aligned militants. BBC


Gatekeepers and Evictions: Somalia's Displaced Population at Risk
There are currently 1.36 million Somalis displaced within their own country. These internally displaced persons (IDPs) face major protection challenges - including abuse and aid diversion by camp gatekeepers, as well as the threat of forced evictions. These vulnerabilities are not new to Somalia's displaced population, but the context is changing. Refugees International recently conducted assessments of IDP settlements in Mogadishu and Hargeisa, Somaliland. Refugees International


'It's Basically Over': The Sudanese Dictatorship's Dwindling Options  

[...] To that end, the Sudanese government spends $4 million a day, and, according to Elmahdi, 88 percent of its budget, on defense and security. One of the regime's top priorities has been to maintain its control over a vast and compartmentalized security apparatus. For instance, as Magdi El Gazouli, an economist and fellow at the Rift Valley Institute explains, the government maintains a bank "dedicated to giving cheap loans to junior military officers and security officers. The Atlantic


Surviving in Niamey: Malian refugees struggle to get by in the big city
At the beginning of this year, Omar was studying to become a French teacher in Timbuktu. Today, he is a refugee in neighbouring Niger and working as a tailor to earn enough money to keep his family alive in the city. Omar never imagined a future outside Mali. But that all changed when conflict erupted in January in northern Mali between government forces and a rebel Tuareg movement, plunging the West African nation into chaos and causing more than 200,000 people to flee to neighbouring countries, mainly Burkina Faso, Mauritania and Niger. UNHCR


Message from South Africa: Ghana, can we have your democracy?
We like to think we're special in South Africa, especially compared to our African neighbours. Trouble is, we're not so special. There's plenty that Africa can teach us, and Ghana's presidential debates are an excellent place to start.[...] Nigeria is about to overtake us as Africa's biggest economy. Although no one wants to admit it, Madiba is not much longer for this world. Even our status as Africa's strongest, most stable democracy is coming under threat: from Ghana, a country that is quickly becoming a country whose lead South Africa should follow, rather than vice versa. Daily Maverick


The Ghanaian Presidential Debate, A View From An American
As an American who visits Ghana frequently, and takes an active interest in the political culture of both countries, I watched last night's first Ghanaian Presidential Debate with great curiosity and anticipation. Much like the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) in the United States organizes fora at which the candidates can square off, the Institute for Economic Affairs (IEA) performs the same function in Ghana. Last night's debate was the first one featuring the presidential candidates, while in a week's time the vice presidential nominees will square off, and finally a last battle between the Presidential contenders will take place on November 20. Daily Guide Ghana


Alleged member of radical Islamist sect Boko Haram in Nigeria sets peace talk conditions
An alleged member of the radical Islamist sect Boko Haram set conditions Thursday for peace talks with Nigeria's government, asking that negotiations to end its bloody guerrilla fight be held outside of the nation and that a former military ruler be involved. The Washington Post


Nigeria: Security forces out of control in fight against terror of Boko Haram
The brutal actions of Nigeria's security forces in response to Boko Haram's campaign of terror are making an already desperate situation even worse, Amnesty International said in a report released today. The report, Nigeria: Trapped in the cycle of violence, documents the atrocities carried out by Boko Haram as well as the serious human rights violations carried out by the security forces in response, including enforced disappearance, torture, extrajudicial executions, the torching of homes and detention without trial. Amnesty International


ANC: Freedom for Swazis in their lifetime
The ANC has called for Swaziland to be "liberated" as part of the outcomes of an International Solidarity Conference the party hosted last week. Mail and Guardian


Foreign Farmers Undermine Food Security in Zambia
Increased agricultural development in Zambia will actually compromise the country's food security as peasant farmers continue to be driven off their customary land to pave the way for large-scale local and foreign agribusiness, according to the University of Zambia's dean of the school of agriculture, Dr. Mickey Mwala. "Smallholder farmers are the people responsible for food security in Zambia. So, evicting them could have a long-term effect on the country's food security situation, if prolonged and extended," he told IPS. IPS

Mali militant affiliated with al Qaida easy to track 

Andrew Lebovich, a researcher on security in West Africa, said the al Qaida-linked leadership in charge of northern Mali appeared unconcerned at the moment about being tracked."They've been in the cities; they've been talking to people. They're not trying to hide in any way," Lebovich said. "You have to assume at a certain point that if they are doing things like this, it is at least in some part intentional." McClatchy


Algeria wins Berber help to root out al-Qaida
Weary from years of kidnappings, the inhabitants of Algeria's rugged Kabylie mountains are finally turning against the al-Qaida fighters in their midst and helping security forces hunt them down. And that turnaround is giving Algeria its best chance yet to drive the terror network from its last Algerian stronghold. AP


Guinea-Bissau: Leader Ousted, Nation Is Now a Drug Haven
When the army ousted the president here just months before his term was to expire, a thirst for power by the officer corps did not fully explain the offensive. But a sizable increase in drug trafficking in this troubled country since the military took over has raised suspicions that the president's sudden removal was what amounted to a cocaine coup. The military brass here has long been associated with drug trafficking, but the coup this spring means soldiers now control the drug racket and the country itself, turning Guinea-Bissau in the eyes of some international counternarcotics experts into a nation where illegal drugs are sanctioned at the top. The New York Times


Africa mulls Obama's presidency
Four years ago Africa greeted Barack Obama's election with rapture, predicting America's first black president would smother the continent with attention. But instead of warm hand-holding, Africa got hard-headed, security-first policies. Africa's response to Obama's election in November 2008 was nothing short of ecstatic. A Nigerian foreign minister wept, Nelson Mandela hailed it as proof that people should "dare to dream", and Kenya declared a national holiday. News 24


China's Investments in Africa by Ambassador David Shinn
There is agreement among those who follow China-Africa relations that state-owned and private Chinese companies have become major investors in Africa over the past 10 years. Even Chinese individuals are investing small amounts in enterprises ranging from restaurants to acupuncture clinics. It is possible that in the past several years, China was the single largest bilateral source of annual foreign direct investment (FDI) in Africa's 54 countries. China US Focus



FOR THE RECORD - AFRICA - U.S. Government Events, Statements, and Articles
A weekly compilation by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies (ACSS) .
 Find us on Facebook         Follow us on Twitter          View our photos on flickr
Please note: The following news items are presented here for informational purposes. The views expressed within them are those of the authors and/or individuals quoted, not those of the Africa Center for Strategic Studies, the National Defense University, or the Department of Defense.
The Africa Center is the pre-eminent Department of Defense institution for strategic security studies, research, and outreach in Africa. The Africa Center engages African partner states and institutions through rigorous academic and outreach programs that build strategic capacity and foster long-term, collaborative relationships.