Page 12 - FSJ June 2012

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12
F O R E I G N S E R V I C E J O U R N A L / J U N E 2 0 1 2
freezingMali’s bank accounts with sup-
port from the United States and
France
(
www.cnn.com
).
As a result of the international pres-
sure, the junior officers behind the
coup have been forced to step down
and sign an accord returning Mali to
constitutional rule. This does not
presage a return to power by Pres.
Touré, however, for he has now gone
into exile in Senegal.
National Assembly leader Dion-
counda Traore will serve as temporary
president for a maximum of 40 days to
organize elections, and has named for-
mer NASA astrophysicist CheickMod-
ibo Diarra as interim prime minister.
(Microsoft named Diarra its “ambas-
sador to Africa” in 2006.)
Nigeria’s strong support for sanc-
tions against Mali reflects widespread
fears that it could suffer a similar coup,
as has happened several times before.
Blogging for the Council on Foreign
Relations, Africa expert Jim Sanders
points out that Nigeria also faces a
rebel movement in its northern region
that poses a real threat to stability. The
frustration of younger officers who re-
sent the inaction of their civilian lead-
ers could trigger a similar reaction
there
(
www.blogs.cfr.org
).
Considered in a larger context, Mali
may also stand as an example of both
the fragility of African democracies
and the destabilizing potential of the
Arab Spring. Writing in the
Eurasia
Review
, Haverford College Professor
Emeritus Harvey Glickman says that
nearly every country in Africa with a
large Muslim population faces similar
challenges.
He adds that the Tuareg people are
spread out over Algeria, Morocco,
Western Sahara, Mauritania and Niger,
and many of them have supported
similar separatist movements in those
countries
(
www.eurasiareview.com
).
—David J. Barton, Editorial Intern
Your Council of Councils
The Council on Foreign Relations
(
www.cfr.org
) re
cently launched a
worldwide partnership made up of 19
of the world’s leading foreign policy or-
ganizations. The purpose of the broad
partnership, known as the Council of
Councils, is to find common ground on
shared threats, build support for inno-
vative ideas, and inject remedies into
the public debate and policymaking
processes of member states.
The 18 nations from which mem-
bers of the new organization hail are
similar to those in the Group of 20.
(The United Kingdom is the only na-
tion to have fielded two think-tanks:
ChathamHouse and the International
Institute for Strategic Studies.) Many
of the foreign policy bodies participat-
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50 Years Ago...
Tyler Thompson, referring to the speaker at the Foreign
Service luncheon on March 29, said: “Ed Murrow gave a
witty and impressive talk to a capacity audience. He began by confess-
ing that his voice had been described as a combination of a whisky
baritone and an unfrocked bishop.”
— From “Service Glimpses” by James B. Stewart, FSJ, June 1962.