Friday, March 23, 2012

Coup in Mali

A few months ago the world had watched as the armed Touareg moved from Libya and spread into Mali. With the Touareg waging war in Mali for past three months, peace has been torn apart. Having this armed group enter Mali was trouble enough.
The national army of Mali was fighting these intruders only to have sections of its own force turn against the government of Mali.  This treason was due to the fact that the Mali government was blamed for not doing enough to fight the Touareg.  Not sure how that logic works. Never the less we have to deal with a situation of unknown chaos for the time being. This is such a loss because Mali was on its way to a peaceful transition of power and stability.
How can we see this as a positive? First of all we have to understand that this is clearly an outside invading force.  Next we have to understand what the leader of the coup wants. Once we have that we can build the bridges of peace. Peace was known in Mali and it can return very quickly. Another point I see is the strengthening of the African Union.
The situation in Mali is one where the African Union can take a leadership role as peacekeepers, peace brokers, and transitional government oversight. Even as these positives are known, we have to accept that the leader of the coup may not leave peacefully. This situation may take a very long time. How long it takes depends on the current leadership that has forced Mali into this situation.
What are the options for peace? For whatever reason, the leader of the coup saw the need to overthrow the current government rather than fight the invaders.  This reality will be a challenge to most options for regaining peace. No matter what course is taken there has to be discussion on how to regain the peace. Somehow the chaos of violence needs to end and the legitimacy of the government has to be returned as well.
With the reality of the situation the United Nations Security Council needs to sanction all weapons trade with the country. The borders, mostly in the north have to be strengthened. With the assistance of the African Union and the United Nations Security Council
Should the people protest in massive rallies?  I would have to say that such a tactic would be met with force. Although it is a sad reality I do think the people need to protest such an action even though a protest will be violently put down by the current coup leadership.
Let us work to see a return of peace in this country.

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