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African Issues: What Is Going On In Algeria, Libya, Sudan

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African Issues: What Is Going On In Algeria, Libya, Sudan

A site of the Il-76 crash in Algeria

Written by Evgeny Satanovsky; Originally appeared at VPK, translated by AlexD exclusively for SouthFront

Events in Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen and Saudi Arabia’s confrontation with Iran are by no means exhausted in what is happening presently in the Middle East. The situation, observed in the Maghreb and the Horn of Africa, are no less important for understanding the situation in the region.

The present article, based on materials from A. Bystrov, is a look at what is going on in Algeria, Libya and the Sudan.

Algerian Oil Guard

Units of the government National People’s Army (NPA) of Algeria located and destroyed the terrorists’ secret safe haven in the province of Jijel in the north-east of the country. The Minister of National Defence of the republic published about this in a message on April 18. The security forces succeeded in arresting two individuals who supported terrorist groups in the province of Boumerdès. Such reports appear regularly indicating increased extremist activity in Algeria, associated with the rise of radical groups in the Sahel and Libya. At the same time, nothing is heard about major terrorist attacks inside Algeria, typical of the mid-90s.

The country faced the problem of terrorism when the armed conflict between the authorities and the radical Islamist groups began in 1992. The reason was the annulment in the result of parliamentary elections, won by the Islamic Salvation Front (ISF). In response, the Islamists launched a terrorist war, the victims of which were more than 200 thousand people. The level of violence has decreased because of the policy of civic accord pursued by the President of Algeria, Abdelaziz Bouteflika. The Charter for Peace and National Reconciliation, approved by referendum in September 2005, brought an end to the conflict. However, in 2015, the security services of Algeria destroyed 157 terrorists, and in 2016, nearly 130. Now, the Special Services are focusing their efforts on neutralising threats, posed by groups operating inside the country and the extremist movements that have established bases in the Sahel and the Sahara.

The Algerian military’s attention is focused on securing the borders with these regions and strengthening the protection of the oil fields. The NPA command has revised the concept of protection of the main hydrocarbon deposits in connection with which it plans to conclude large-scale contracts with the American company Lockheed Martin and Italian company Leonardo. The emphasis on the safety of oil and gas fields is obvious, since this industry provides the main income for the military budget items. The leadership of the national Algerian company Sonatrach initiated the programme of modernisation of protection and monitoring of oil fields. The purchase of air monitoring tools and equipment is carried out by the army, but is funded by Sonatrach.

Analysts predict serious risks and want to minimise the threat of attacks such as committed in 2013 at the Sonatrach-BP-Statoil base camp in In Amenas by the Murabitun group, which penetrated into Algeria from Libya. Nearly forty people were killed and the volume of hydrocarbon production sharply decreased. At the time, the company’s management invited the military to participate in the modernisation of the oil infrastructure protection system, but it took five years to develop an air surveillance strategy and inventory of technical capabilities needed for this.

Lockheed Martin should conclude negotiations with the authorities for the order of five observation balloons in the near future. Negotiations have been underway since 2015. Presently, there are only disagreements on the price of the contract ($375 million), which the US side wants to increase. The SASA-Aerostat Project will provide Algeria with an air monitoring system similar to that used by the US to secure bases in Afghanistan and on the border between the US and Mexico. The Italian company Leonardo is ready to supply the Algerian army a few twin-engine King-Air aircraft intended for surveillance.

AgustaWestland negotiates with the NPA on the supply of helicopters to transport troops and air cover for operations to neutralise militant raids on the country’s oil infrastructure. The Algerian military has a dozen AW-139 helicopters, which are in service with the police, the National Gendarmerie and the Civil Guard. The company intends to build a helicopter assembly plant in Setif. In doing so, the NPA has initiated a programme to strengthen its air surveillance capabilities. Plans to purchase six C27j Spartan helicopters from Leonardo can be realised in June. The purchase of three Gulfstream G550 aircraft from the American group Defence Raytheon for almost a billion dollars looks more problematic. The subcontractor of this company, Field Aerospace is facing technical difficulties in the integration of monitoring sensors on the plane.

Some sources believe that the contract can be renewed, but the crash of the army’s Il-76 on April 11 may lead to a review of the priorities of the NPA expenses. Prior to the air catastrophe, where 257 people died, the Algerian Air Force, because of poor technical maintenance, have lost nearly twenty aircraft since 2007. The tragedy in Boufarik can push the Air Force commander of the NPA Abdelkader Lounes to accelerate the decommissioning of the obsolete Il-76 and C-130s Hercules with the renewal of the fleet and the establishment of adequate technical maintenance. This will certainly require adjustments to the procurement programme, abandoning some contracts for the purchase of reconnaissance and monitoring aircraft in favour of transportation aircraft.

Not Brothers of Haftar

The Libyan National Army (LNA) is prepared, without coordination with Western countries, to launch an operation to liberate the city of Dema, which is still being held by terrorist groups. The official representative of the LNA command Colonel Ahmed al-Mismari stated this. He noted that the exception is Egypt, with which contacts are maintained to ensure the security of borders between the two countries. Neither the Egyptian military nor the French, on which the main emphasis was placed, will participate in the operation. Thus the success of the operation is questionable, because instead of the Egyptian aviation attacking, the LNA aviation will cover, and these were agricultural aircraft converted with the help of the UAE, operated by crews of mercenaries from Blackwater. At the same time, Khalifa Haftar’s forces managed to take Benghazi with the help of the French Special Forces.

The port-city of Derna on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea is the last stronghold of extremists beyond the control of government forces in Eastern Libya. The majority of “Afghan veterans” came from Derna, where the headquarters of the groups controlling the cross-border smuggling, the illegal migration and hostage-taking operations for ransom is located. Derna was captured by the extremists more than four years ago and is controlled by the al Qaida affiliated Alliance of the Shura Council of Derna Mujahideen. Since September 2014, militants of the Islamic State have established control over the city, but they left Derna in the spring of 2016 after fighting with local Islamists and militias. The LNA unsuccessfully stormed Derna a few times, as well as with the help of Egyptian Special Forces.

This city is a key hub of communication. Through it passes a strategic highway linking Benghazi to Egypt. Derna uses the Qatari for a guerrilla war on the Egyptian territory, diverting forces and means from the counterterrorist operation in the Sinai. It is unlikely that a new offensive on the Islamist stronghold will be carried out without the active support of Egypt and the UAE. The Commander-in-Chief of the LNA Haftar held talks in Cairo last February with President of Egypt al-Sisi on financial support and cover for his forces from the air (despite the fact that the unsuccessful actions of the Egyptian Air Force failed to storm Derna last October). He was refused. The Egyptian Air Force at the time was fighting in the Sinai.

At the same time, Ahmed al-Mismari visited Paris, where he met with French officials. His goal was to obtain financial and technical assistance to Haftar to seize Derna. It seems that he was able to agree on support, but the French lied. Their Special Forces, together with helicopters, have gone to the Sahel, Côte d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso, where the situation has deteriorated dramatically. And not because of Islamists, but because of the riots and discontent of local security forces.

This forced Haftar to cancel the assault. Attempts to conduct reconnaissance also failed. Cairo and Abu Dhabi suggested concentrating forces on establishing control over the administrative centre of the southern region of Fezzan, which fell under the Tripoli control zone of Prime Minister of the National Consensus Government Faiza Sarajj and, behind him, the Italians. In the end, the negotiations between Haftar and local tribes was blocked and the rebellion of the 6th Battalion began, who swore allegiance to Sarraj, more precisely, was bought with Italian money. As a result, Fezzan remained outside the control of the LNA forces. Thus, six years of efforts by Haftar and his foreign sponsors to build a powerful military force led to very controversial results.

The LNA continues to be a hindrance to the armed militias, which operate according to their own agendas and views of the territory. It includes the Qaddafi supporters, eastern and southern tribal militias, Salafi brigades and mercenaries of the Darfur-based SLM M. Minawi faction and Chadian opposition groups. They are united by their common hostility to Islamist groups, Ansar al-Sharia or Islamic State. The main opponents of the Field Marshal are the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood, or rather, the Misurata and Tripoli clans, who do not want the strengthening of Cyrenaica. If Haftar leaves the scene, the remaining commanders of the LNA will do everything possible to keep it from collapsing, but the policy of Haftar for the failure of the Alliance with the Tripolitania tribes ensures the beginning of a competitive struggle for the leadership among his successors.

The Supreme State Council of Libya under Sarraj elected a new head on April 8. It was Khalid al-Mishri, nominated by the Justice and Construction Party, the political wing of the local branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. The elections were held at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Tripoli with the participation of 115 members of the State Council. Initially, four candidates presented themselves for the post of speaker, following the results of the first round, two of them dropped out, so that Khalid al-Mishri and former Chairman of the Council Abdelrahman Al-Sweihli moved to the second round. In the final vote, the latter received 45 votes and the Islamist al-Mishri, 64. Six other members of the council abstained from participating in the elections.

The Supreme State Council plays an advisory role. It began its work in April 2016 in pursuance of the Libyan Political Agreement, signed under the patronage of the UN in December 2015 in Skhirat, Morocco. The majority of its members are deputies of the General National Congress (GNC, former interim parliament), which was dominated by the Brotherhood. It lost its legitimacy with the election of a permanent legislative body, the House of Representatives, which is now sitting in the east of the country. Abdelrahman Al-Sweihli, who heads the Union for Homeland party formed in 2012, was first elected to the post of head of the Council in 2016 and then re-elected for a second term in April 2017.

If we analyse these personnel rotations, it should be noted that they mean the return to power to the State Council extreme elements of the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood. al-Mishri, was born in Zawiyah, the stronghold of the Muslim Brotherhood. At the time, Qaddafi was serving a sentence for Islamist activities in the Abu Salim prison, where he met with the leadership of the Brotherhood and one of the leaders of the Libyan combat group (LBG), which is considered affiliated with al Qaida, A. Belhaj. In 2012, he was elected to the PJC party from the political formation created by the Brotherhood. He was close to the radical mufti of Libya, Sadiq al-Ghariani and former Prime Minister of the Caliph al-Gwali. Al-Mishri is a staunch opponent of any alliance between Tripoli and Haftar. He broadcast this position on April 9 at a meeting with UN Special Envoy to Libya Hasan Salaam. With his election, experts link the execution by the Islamists, with the help of Ankara and Doha, of the scenario of blocking the upcoming elections. As the head of the State Council, he will be able to make the elections dependent on the organisation of the constitutional referendum, which is now insisted on by the leader the Libyan Brotherhood Ali Sallabi. So the influence of the pro-Qatari radicals in Tripoli will grow, which means the failure of international sponsors to reach a national consensus.

As for Haftar, the latest news about him is related to his severe illness. Egypt and the UAE have serious doubts about the return of the Field Marshall to power. At the same time, after the next phase of escalation in recent weeks, tensions between the Tubu and the Awlad Suleiman communities in Sebha are diminishing. Following the signing of the ceasefire agreement on April 10, the Tubu removed the sand barriers that had been built on the road between Sebha and the southern part of the country. These events took place on the eve of the Niamey talks organised by the Minister of the Interior of the Niger, Mohamed Bazoum. The Libyan Tuaregs are expected to participate. The chief architect of the round of consultations is the President of Niger Mahamadou Issoufou, increasingly active in the Libyan situation. The process of reaching a national consensus in Fezzan could be hampered by renewed confrontation between the 6th Battalion, led by the chief Awlad Suleiman, General Khalifa Abdelaziz and the Tubu. The battalion headquarters is located in the old Fort of Sebha, in the heart of Tubu territory, and they demand that they evacuate.

President Idriss Déby of Chad became involved in the Libyan situation. He intends to hold a summit with the Niger and the Sudan on the security of Libya’s southern border in N’Djamena (Chad) in June. The summit, which will be attended by ministers of the interior and defence, as well as the Libyan delegation, should be the continuation of the meeting held in Niamey (Niger) on April 4. Déby plays a more limited role in resolving the Libyan problems than his Nigerien counterpart. The latter heads the Sahel Regional Anti-Terrorist Alliance of the G5 and tries to establish himself as the main inter-tribal mediator in southern Libya. Déby is an ally of Haftar, who helps track down the Chadian rebels who took refuge in Fezzan. This explains in part the tension that has been blowing up the region for nearly two months. The Chadians are fighting on the side of the Tubu, and Haftar’s attempts to neutralise this threat somehow did not bring success.

The Sudan Says Goodbye to the Minsiter

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has removed Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour from his post. This decision was announced less than three hours after the President returned from Saudi Arabia, where he participated in the 29th summit of the League of Arab States. The formal reason for the resignation of the Foreign Minister was his speech in Parliament accusing some government circles of seven months’ delay in the salary of the diplomatic corps. It should be noted that it began in February when he submitted his resignation in protest against the appointment of former Oil Minister Awad al-Jaz as an assistant to the President and chief curator of Sudan’s relations with China and Turkey. Al-Jaz belongs to the old guard of the Islamists and was one of the architects of the military coup in 1989, which led al-Bashir to power. He was a liaison between the military and Islamists in the preparation of the coup and is among the presidential commissioners.

Ghandour’s main mission as Minister of Foreign Affairs was the removal or weakening of the American sanctions. His main partners were Saudi Arabia and the USA. Ghandour was actively lobbying for the strengthening of relations with Riyadh. The sanctions were partially lifted, but the Sudan continues to appear on the lists of the US State Department as state sponsors of terrorism. The need for the too independent Minister disappeared; thanks to the relationship with Riyadh with its unwillingness to support the economy of the Sudan with regular financial tranches to the Central Bank of the country became strained. Saudi Arabia was replaced in this role by the UAE, the prospect of strengthening their relations with the Sudan was jealously perceived in the KSA. In this regard, Ghandour’s fate has become uncertain, increasing the tension in relations between Khartoum and Washington.

The point of no return for al-Bashir was the visit in November of last year to Sudan of the US Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan. He said during a meeting with Ghandour (the American officials do not meet with al-Bashir due to the verdict of the International Criminal Court) about Washington’s negative attitude to the current President’s decision to run for election in 2020. Ghandour informed the Prime Minister, but not the head of state.  The latter suspected of trying to remove him from power with the support of the United States (“Not a pound of Khartoum”). It was this episode that prompted the Sudanese President to initiate the idea of creating a Russian military base as a signal to Washington. Ghandour’s resignation put a stop to the crisis of relations with Egypt, which could have turned into a military conflict. The Minister was able to reduce tensions between the countries, although a number of senior Sudanese official and al-Bashir himself believed that fighting within the Alliance with Ethiopia against Egyptian presence in Eritrea is necessary. So, the President of Sudan does not need Ghandour anymore.

Evgeny Satanovsky, President of the Middle East Institute

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  • Michał Hunicz

    Damn, what the absolute mess. Send Russian or better Chinese (they must try a real combat) forces to stabilize Libya and other unstable African countries.

    • velociraptor

      you can be colunteered. dont send others to die for your joy.

      • Goodoldinandout

        Shut up, 🦃

    • MichaH

      And why should Russia again clean up the mess of the NATo-Gang, and then secure the southern border of the EU while constantly smeared by the western politicians and MSM.

      I could imagine what they would say and write about a Russian intervention -it was all so peacefull and doing well, having real real progress, but then Russia came in and blew it up, lets do us more sanctions on the Russian Federation-

      • Hide Behind

        WHY should Russia?
        Because Russia itself is. u see attack, and not just by US but by all Eurocentric nations and their tassel states.
        So even what see.s as of no economic or even strategic value o. the srface, accordi g to Eurocentric political and financial propaganda outlets,, weaker s those financial economic geopolitical entities.
        By their doing so also gives smaller nations an increase in ow. sovereign power..
        THEY are not at mercy, when it comes to terms of one sole power block.
        The Empire was delayed in its atte.pts of total world hogimity by Soviets and aChina during cold war period.
        The collapse and withdrawal of Soviet Republcs into sellf, let the e.pire use its power to let loose dogs of war.
        Eurocentrics sanctions against Russia is a warfare tactics, and as a weapon been used against many nations, Iraq, and Iran, Venezuela.

    • Vitex

      Wherever the Chinese go in africa they steal everything of value.

      • Bob

        Actually, the Chinese have invested in, and built, considerable infrastructure in Africa – railways, roads etc. The Chinese have their own acute understanding of the western colonialism project – they were, of course, violently subjugated to its exploitation and ravages. Accordingly, the Chinese as a developing nation, do not necessarily perceive their current economic pursuits in Africa as being in the same category as those of the western powers and the latter’s legacy of (violent) colonial plunder.

        • Shylo Duffy

          The West has demonized China for as long as I’ve been alive so in truth we don’t the true story, and we all know the west doesn’t speak a single word of truth…From what I’ve discovered it seems China is making all types of deals that appear legit.I happen to agree with you’re comment.

        • Vitex

          Is that a thoughtfully-worded way of saying the same thing? I think you are right though, they have applied the same approach in little old NZ

        • psychodrill

          The truth lies somewhere between China “understands Africa” and “steals everything they touch. During the 1880’s countries like Germany for example arrived in ports of what became their Africa possessions. They built massive infrastructure which is the base for all infrastructure to this day in much of Sub Saharan Africa. Railroads, ports, paved streets, and aside from Portugal, the Europeans gave it up without a protracted military struggle. Only to pioneer a new style of domination which was perhaps even more insidious.

          In that period the USSR like China today was only able to make allies by offering better deals to the Third World. In short my point is China does not have some special empathy and is no longer developing in the way which that word is used as a platitude for the post-colonial nations who are robbed clean. China is the most ancient continuous polity in existence. They’ve had periods of invasion and interregnum before a new dynasty took over and rebalanced China’s power once again. China learned with their “century of national humiliation” as they teach the history, to tread carefully with the West and they have shown a geopolitically brilliant strategy for dealing with an adversary looking for any cause to launch an attack.

  • The Latin Mass

    Why does Putin sanction Sudan in the UN. The rabbis tell Putin to do so.

    • MichaH

      What are you talking about? You seem a little bit confused my friend.

      • Daniel Castro

        You don’t understand, that is his job, to create confusion.

        That’s the new tactics of zionist, noone believes them anymore, so they pretend to be the opposition and spread all sorts of intrigues to generate mistrust among us.

        • The Latin Mass

          So you are saying Putin has been kicked out of the UN and has no more veto power.

        • matt

          you really believe that utter nonesense you posted??

        • Rizzzzzzz

          Tired of people’s naive arrogance and stupidity . 1st off sudan is not some anti west resistance regime .Sudan is part of the Gulf Gang. 2 .You fools keep falsely accusing Putin of being pro zionist supporter. GET .YOUR FACT STRAIGHT. PUTIN IS A DEVOUT RUSSIAN NATIONALIST WHO SERVES RUSSIAS INTEREST WHEN HE CHALLEGES AMERICAN HEGEMONY IN A GEOPOLITICAL CHESSGAME IN WHICH ODDS ARE AGAINST HIM . HES NOT PRO NOR ANTI ZIONIST. RUSSIA FOREIGN POLICY IS SELF SERVING AND PRAGMATIC . JUST INTERVENING ON BEHALF OF SYRIA WAS A MAJOR BLOW TO ISRAELI AMERICAN PLANS.

          • Jacek Wolski

            Finally someone who speaks with integrity.

          • Daniel Castro

            I was not talking about Putin, I was talking about Latin Mass, he is here to creat confusion, don’t let him be successful.

            Kudos from Brazil.

      • The Latin Mass

        Erdogan is an anti-zionist, hates the jews, would nuke them if he could. And everyone on this message board hates Erdogan because he is a nationalist putting Turkey first.

        Putin is a zionist, wanted to move the embassy to West Jerusalem, does not defend the Palestinians, will fight ISIS like jewamerica, sanctions Muslim countries from defending themselves from jewamerica attacks… and then pretends to be a friend of the free Muslim people.

    • The Latin Mass

      UN Sanctions on Iran, all approved by Putin:

      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1696
      – passed on 31 July 2006. Demanded that Iran suspend all
      enrichment-related and reprocessing activities and threatened sanctions.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1737
      – passed on 23 December 2006 in response to the proliferation risks
      presented by the Iranian nuclear program and, in this context, by Iran’s
      continuing failure to meet the requirements of the International Atomic
      Energy Agency Board of Governors and to comply with the provisions of
      Security Council resolution 1696 (2006).[12]
      Made mandatory for Iran to suspend enrichment-related and reprocessing
      activities and cooperate with the IAEA, imposed sanctions banning the
      supply of nuclear-related materials and technology, and froze the assets
      of key individuals and companies related to the program.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1747 – passed on 24 March 2007. Imposed an arms embargo and expanded the freeze on Iranian assets.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1803
      – passed on 3 March 2008. Extended the asset freezes and called upon
      states to monitor the activities of Iranian banks, inspect Iranian ships
      and aircraft, and to monitor the movement of individuals involved with
      the program through their territory.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1835 – Passed in 2008.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1929 – passed on 9 June 2010. Banned Iran from participating in any activities related to ballistic missiles,
      tightened the arms embargo, travel bans on individuals involved with
      the program, froze the funds and assets of the Iranian Revolutionary
      Guard and Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, and recommended that
      states inspect Iranian cargo, prohibit the servicing of Iranian vessels
      involved in prohibited activities, prevent the provision of financial
      services used for sensitive nuclear activities, closely watch Iranian
      individuals and entities when dealing with them, prohibit the opening of
      Iranian banks on their territory and prevent Iranian banks from
      entering into relationship with their banks if it might contribute to
      the nuclear program, and prevent financial institutions operating in
      their territory from opening offices and accounts in Iran.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 1984
      – passed on 9 June 2011. This resolution extended the mandate of the
      panel of experts that supports the Iran Sanctions Committee for one
      year.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 2049 – passed on 7 June 2012. Renewed the mandate of the Iran Sanctions Committee’s Panel of Experts for 13 months.
      United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231
      – passed on 20 July 2015. Sets out a schedule for suspending and
      eventually lifting UN sanctions, with provisions to reimpose UN
      sanctions in case of non-performance by Iran, in accordance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

      • The Latin Mass

        Putin could have vetoed any one of those.

      • Rizzzzzzz

        since Iran’s accelerated nuclear program was discovered in September, few observers have been optimistic that China and Russia would allow the United Nations Security Council to go forward with the tough economic sanctions sought by President Obama. Pessimism has since persisted that the president could secure the essential Russian and Chinese support; Russia has resisted and China has regularly hinted that it would consider sanctions, only to withdraw later. Obama’s failure to emerge from April’s nuclear security summit with a sanctions agreement, along with Iran’s recent deal to export some uranium to Turkey, reinforced fears that multilateral, Security Council-backed sanctions would be impossible. So Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s announcement today that Russia and China will support sanctions comes as a big surprise. It raises the question, why did the two states ultimately come around?

        In the past year, Russian leadership, particularly President Dmitri Medvedev, has made a concerted effort to strengthen diplomatic and economic ties to Europe and the U.S., slowly reversing the country’s nearly century-long antagonism with the West. Russia has pursued rapprochement with Poland, economic ties with France, a key military partnership with the Ukraine, and the historic nuclear non-proliferation treaty with the U.S. Last week, the Russian edition of Newsweek reprinted a secret government document stating a new policy of abandoning Putin-era isolationism for greater engagement and cooperation with the West. Russia had opposed anti-Iran sanctions because the Russian government did not wish to establish precedents of a strong UN and of punishing states that pursued globally unpopular security policies. But, in its new role of international cooperation, Russia has less to fear from those precedents and more reasons to support them.

        Russia also stands to make both economic and security gains from Iran sanctions. Because President Obama has rolled back President Bush’s pledge for Eastern European missile shields, Russia is less protected from the potential threat of Iranian weaponry. Ironically, the missile shields were designed to protect Europe from Russia as well as from Iran, but they indirectly benefited Russia by providing a layer of defense against possible Middle East-based missiles. With Russia more vulnerable to such attacks, it has a security interest in not just curbing Iranian nuclear weapons, but in preventing the Middle Eastern arms race that would likely result from a nuclear Iran. Economically, Russia and Iran are increasingly tense competitors in the natural gas market, which is central to both their economies. They are the world’s two greatest producers of natural gas. Iran’s 2001 deal to sell Turkey 10 billion cubic meters of natural gas was likely just the beginning. Iran has laid its pipeline into Central Asia. By extending its Turkey pipeline into Europe, Iran could compete with Russia in one of the world’s largest and most profitable energy markets. But economic sanctions against Iran would likely block it from selling in Europe and make Iran more reliant on its own energy, leaving it with less to export.

        Economic concerns may also be key for China’s decision to join in sanctions. Obama has looked the other way on currency manipulation, delaying a report which was expected to denounce Chinese currency policy and could have been a blow to the country’s vital trade income. Though China and the U.S. may experience periods of diplomatic tension, the fact is that the two states’ economic ties are essential for both economies. If China felt it had to choose between the benefits of U.S. trade and the unwanted international precedent of Security Council-led sanctions, the former likely won out. While China was happy to join with Russia in opposing sanctions, Medvedev’s months of cooperation with the West and his supportive signals on sanctions plausibly made it clear that China would have to stand alone or follow Russia’s support.

        Critics of Obama’s sanctions plan have persistently argued that sanctions don’t change state behavior, will not effectively deter Iran, or that Iran’s nuclear program is at this point inevitable. Whether or not they are right, China and Russia joining on sanctions could become a watershed moment for Obama’s mission to make rogue nuclear states synonymous with pariah states — and for the United Nations’ ability to take collective, multinational action. Even if this moment of international cooperation does not work, the precedent will make future cooperation easier and more likely

  • Sinbad2

    “What Is Going On In Algeria, Libya, Sudan”

    I can answer that, USA USA USA.

  • Hisham Saber

    The main reason that NATO took down Gaddafi and virtually destroyed Libya was because Gaddafi was cozing up with the Chinese a little too much.

    China had its eyes on Libya as an integral part of the One Road-One Belt initiative. China and Libya were about to sign some rather large deals that saw Libya’s outstanding light sweet crude delivered strictly to China.

    Another reason is Libya has enough natural gas to provide for the whole E.U. and more. And there were plans for a pipeline to Italy. Well, the scumbag Qatari’s and backstabbing Turks wanted their pipeline instead. One of the reasons for the conflict In Syria, with the primary reason being the Zionist apartheid state of course.

    • Joe Dirt

      NATO did Libya a favor, One Road-One Belt is a terrible deal.

    • Rizzzzzzz

      Not really. The reason NATO took out Gaddafi was not because relationship with China . Russia China naturally veto all American request at UN for war support but Libya was exception because of his vision of a pan Arab/Islamic, pan African banking system that would rival Wests and undermine world economy and world banks. Because it would be baxked by gold and natural resources of participating countries

      • Hisham Saber

        Yes, that’s another main reason. And after the dust settled from the NATO bombing of Libya, and Gaddafi was no more, Libya’s 140 tones of gold reserves mysteriously disappeared. Along with approx. 350 billion Libya had stashed in western banks, who wont give it back to cash-strapped Libya. Goldman Sach’s alone has, and wont give back 34 billion dollars of the Libyan peoples money.

    • Shylo Duffy

      Gaddafi was going to use gold backed money..The US didn’t like that..

  • purplelibraryguy

    In Algeria, let me get this straight . . . group A won the election. Group B annulled the election and kept on ruling anyway. Group A fighting this situation represents “terrorism”? Perhaps, but I’d want to say group B putting down the people who won the election represents “tyranny”.
    Oh, but group A are Muslims (while I’d wager group B are backed by respectable people like the French)! Ah, all is explained.

    • bobrah

      I bet Group A was founded by all those who you probably know.
      Group A allowed to their masters to improve the concept and they did. Success in Libya, Syria, Boko Haram, Sahel…

      • purplelibraryguy

        You don’ t get it. They won an election. Probably despite a good deal of corruption and ballot-stuffing intended to stop them from doing so. No matter who some central group may answer to or be funded by, there have to be a lot of annoyed people out there who don’t like the existing regime and whose aspirations group A represent. Fucking the people over isn’t OK, no matter what conspiracy one invokes for why the people shouldn’t be allowed to have their way.

        • bobrah

          I was there when I was a teenager.
          Imagine all of a sudden, you wake up one morning all men with beards, women are covered.
          It’s like your people is no more your people. Your city is no more your City …
          Too Fast, too radical changes…. to be “Natural”.
          Currently, I am 1000% sure It was planned to kill the possible emerging democracy.

  • Tom Tom

    All of these countries will provide cannon fodder to attack Israel and beyond, into Europe. The elites “win,” temporarily before they end up in hell.

  • NeoLeo

    Interesting text… Africa – forgotten continent.

  • Translation: Headchopping Orcs + FUKUS “advisors” and enablers = Clusterfuck of the nth magnitude!