An analyst says the flames of the US-and-British-backed France-led war on the West African country of Mali are going to spread “chaos and destruction” throughout North Africa.
The comment comes as thousands of people in Mali have been forced to flee their homes amid the French war, which involved some 3,500 troops on the ground supported by warplanes, helicopters and armored vehicles.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that more than 5,000 Malian refugees have arrived in Mauritania alone since January 11, when France launched the war under the pretext of halting the advance of the fighters in the African country.
Analysts believe that behind the military campaign are Mali’s untapped resources, including oil, gold, as well as the uranium in the region.
Press TV has conducted an interview with Lawrence Freeman, with the Executive Intelligence Review (EIR) weekly magazine’s Africa Desk to further discuss the issue. What follows is a rough transcription of the interview.
Mr. Freeman how do you interpret the war on Mali especially with the media blackout there?
What I’ve seen from the beginning of this conflict and the intervention by the French I think on January eleventh is this is a continuation of a long-standing policy of genocide against the African people and disruption and attacks on nation states and causing chaos throughout the region. There is no way that this intervention by the French which is being supported by the United States and Great Britain is going to solve the problem.
These terrorist groups, these insurgents, these rebels are supported by Saudi Arabia; they’re supported by Qatar which is also working with the British royal family.
Al-Qaeda in the Maqreb itself came from a group called the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC) which was funded out of Saudi Arabia and the overthrow of Gaddafi by the French, by the British, by President Obama precipitated a new level of this conflict.
So this is not going to solve any problem but is going to throw all of North Africa into chaos and destruction.
Indeed and how much will that be the spread of the violence to other neighboring African countries? I mean how serious will the refugee crisis be?
The refugee crisis is already several hundred thousand people don’t forget before the so called French intervention you have reports of 13 to 15 million people in food insecurity in the Sahel. You’ve already had this now spread into Algeria. You have Mauritania, Niger; Niger borders Nigeria.
So this thing is going to spread throughout the entire North Africa region and there is not going to be any solution to it by military means. You are going to have to go after the funding of these groups, the sponsors of these groups, the cocaine and smuggling and drug money and ransoming that goes to funding these groups if you are going to shut them down but this is not going to do it; this is going to increase the chaos and destruction throughout North Africa.
So what you’re saying is that we’ll see foreign intervention too in other African states?
Well, you have already seen it. Today you have an escalation. Now the British are slowly sending more forces in, more trainers. This will escalate; the United States now says it is setting up a new drone base on the border of Niger and Mali. You have the French flying their Sorties out of the capital of Chad. So you are going to see this thing spread country by country and the flames are going to go everywhere.