Posted on October 28, 2012.
October assessment & premonitions: Western powers seem to now want Algeria to cast their lot in the anti-Islamist sanctioning and targeted military ‘action’ in regards to the Mali rebellion/secessionist movement, though seemingly an optimal opportunity to force open cracks in a government that’s faired well through the social upheaval of the Arab Spring. With Sudan having been bombed this past week by Israel and the acceptance as public knowledge that Djibouti now acts as the proxy by which American air power is projected into the region, having openly flown sorties in Libya and Somalia in recent weeks, it seems North Africa is the new preferred theatre of covert, stealth warfare being conducted by western powers with US AfriCom, France & Britain serving as the trinity of western intervention with intel, air power, and diplomacy being the trifecta used to establish effective power projection in the region.
In Algeria as in Sudan, street and web-based protest were affectively halted and suppressed; the verdict is still out as to whether they were genuinely indigenous or fomented and instigated by NGOs, western agents or local provocateurs. With Algeria remaining deeply entrenched and committed to retaining influence over nongovernment local and regional power players ie. militias and crypto-jihadi movements, it remains to be seen if they will hold ground, pay lip service, or cut losses in reference to North African groups that are seeking autonomy and increasingly politically active elements of armed groups. Sudan seems hamstrung, between playing the UN Game of Nations in regards its ongoing dispute over Abyei and its southern border and its role as the southern flank of regional ‘Islamic’ integrity and its need to respond however assiduously to Israeli air strikes on a military intallation, it stands to lose much from being labelled an aggressive and belligerent regional player, as well as holding the stigma of being politically stagnant in times of sociopolitical awareness on behalf of the masses if citizenry with a President much maligned in national and international forums.
Its northern neighbor Egypt stands as case in point that the old vanguard of regime integrity has yet to be eradicated and that ‘Islamist’ political parties/movements are belittled by a power structure that is beyond their ability to affect meaningful change. The fact that these new proto-democratic regimes and the remaining dictators are still besmirched by their inability to maintain stable economies outside the purview of the IMF, Worldbank, and the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) stands as tantamount proof of their utter servitude to monetary structures of efficacy. Iran and Syria are now affectively insolvent in terms of their monetary power in the global financial market, which has backed them in the Russian corner, leaving Emperor Putin as Kingmaker in the Levant and Persia. This divisive cycle has stirred up volatile sectarian divisions and long standing rivalries that stand the get much worse before they get better with the Kurds playing honorable mention as the wildcard of greater Sham and Mesopotamia region and the Azerbaijan military cooperation with Israel offering insidious elements inside Iran massively increased training and funding capability. Israeli politics has taken a turn towards a zero-sum equation with war-hawks attempting to trump a scrambling centrist non-coalition of defunct, bereft & headless parties on early elections, having decided to forego war with Iran till after the November election.
With no meaningful October surprises this election season, no expressed venting of conflictual angst, the stakes have quadrupled for regional influence and the quantifiable ability of any players to decidedly determine outcomes has diminished.
2013 will be a year to remember. The pieces are set up for a contest of fortitude and a conflict of attrition. May God have mercy on the weak and the barren, for the mercy of mankind has dried up as of late.