A Victory for UN Peacekeeping – Robert M. Holley

Robert M. Holley April 28, 2017 Generally, the first step in solving a problem is ensuring not to make it any worse. They say, if you are in a hole, stop digging. Doctors enjoin their professional colleagues to first “do no harm.” Grandpa always says, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Lately, there is something of a renewal of an idea we have heard before, now again in some ...

Islamic Finance in Morocco Supports Ongoing Growth – Jean R. AbiNader

Jean R. AbiNader, MATIC April 3, 2017 Almost all of the pieces are in place for Islamic finance to start offering products in the second half of 2017, adding yet another sector supporting Morocco as an investment destination. With Europe’s economic recovery still sputtering, the kingdom needs more sources to fund its impressive and ambitious economic development, from supporting consumer-focused enterprises to large-scale industrial projects. This is where Islamic finance ...

What to Make of the Latest Jihadi Reorganization in the Sahara/Sahel – Caitlin Dearing Scott

Caitlin Dearing Scott March 27, 2017 Earlier this month, three of the Sahel’s leading  jihadist groups – Ansar Dine, al-Mourabitoun, and Katiba Macina — announced a merger with al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) under the leadership of Ansar Dine chief Iyad Ag Ghaly and the banner “Nusrat ul-Islam” (group for the victory of Islam and Muslims). In a video announcing the merger, Ghaly appeared with Yahya Abou Hamam, emir ...

Western Sahara: Who Should Be Watching? Why Not Us? – Robert M. Holley

Robert M. Holley March 9, 2017 Where tensions are running high and opposing armed forces are facing off with one another, separated by only a couple of hundred meters, the risk of an accident with unpredictable and potentially terrible consequences also runs equally high. Such has been the case for the last several months in Western Sahara, where, until very recently, substantial deployments of the armed forces of Morocco and ...

What’s Wrong with the Arab Maghreb Union (AMU)? – Jean R. AbiNader

Jean R. AbiNader, MATIC February 21, 2017 Nearly 30 years after its 1989 founding,   the AMU is still unable to further its initial mission – to build economic cooperation among its member countries: Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, and Tunisia — let alone move towards greater integration of its transportation, communications, and energy sectors. While analysts point to the political tensions between members over issues such as the Western Sahara, migration, ...
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