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Sun Feb 10, 2013, 03:27 PM

Gunbattle Rocks Gao After Rebels Surprise French, Malians

Source: Reuters

(Reuters) - Islamist insurgents launched a surprise raid in the heart of the Malian town of Gao on Sunday, battling French and local troops in a blow to efforts to secure Mali's recaptured north. Local residents hid in their homes or crouched behind walls as the crackle of gunfire from running street battles resounded through the sandy streets and mud-brick houses of the ancient Niger River town, retaken from Islamist rebels last month by a French-led offensive.

French helicopters clattered overhead and fired on al Qaeda-allied rebels armed with AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades who had infiltrated the central market area and holed up in a police station, Malian and French officers said. The fighting inside Gao was certain to raise fears that pockets of determined Islamists who have escaped the lightning four-week-old French intervention in Mali will strike back with guerrilla attacks and suicide bombings.

After driving the bulk of the insurgents from major northern towns such as Timbuktu and Gao, French forces are trying to search out their bases in the remote and rugged Adrar des Ifoghas mountains, far up in the northeast.

But with Mali's weak army unable to secure recaptured zones, and the deployment of a larger African security force slowed by delays and kit shortages, vast areas to the rear of the French forward lines now look vulnerable to guerrilla activity.



Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/02/10/us-mali-rebels-idUSBRE91902V20130210

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Reply Gunbattle Rocks Gao After Rebels Surprise French, Malians (Original post)
Comrade Grumpy Feb 2013 OP
daleo Feb 2013 #1
Catherina Feb 2013 #2

Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:28 PM

1. It's tough for a foreign army to battle a (more or less) indigenous force

The French may recall this from Vietnam Nam, Algeria, etc.

The French weren't that crazy for German guests in the early 1940's.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:39 PM

2. The French, the Brits, the Canadians, the Saudis and the US

all of them in Mali now because everyone wants part of the loot. Militarization, Reoccupation and Re-colonization 2013 for all those raw materials.

What a racket! These quotes from Wolfowitz (at the end) when he was heading the World Bank, another criminal organization, made it so clear that the response from Mali government officials was to call him what he is, a "neo fascist".

And Hollande, the cypto-imperialist masquerading as a Socialist, shame on him. Killing people and then saying they didn't do it. Bloody, bloody hell.

France cannot be held responsible for the deaths of civilians in Mali, a representative of the Ministry of Defense told RT. France denies reports of civilian casualties in military airstrikes, stating it has no evidence to support the claims.

Amnesty International has called on the French government to conduct a probe into reports of civilian deaths during the Mali campaign, which began on January 11. The organization claim at least five civilians, including a woman and her three children were killed during an offensive on the town of Konna.

...


A child shows a heavy machine gun bullet on February 5, 2013 that he found in the ruins of a building destroyed by French air strikes in Douentza. (AFP Photo/Pascal Guyot)

Bukhard categorically denied involvement and said that according to French intelligence the attacks that killed civilians were carried out at around 11am local time and French forces only began their assault at midday. He suggested that clashes between the Malian security forces and terrorist groups in the area were to blame.

...

http://rt.com/news/france-civilian-mali-french-704/





Wolfowitz quotes on Prospects for Africa

The one continent that has been conspicuously left behind by the promise of change is Africa. While so much progress was made against poverty in other parts of the world, the number of poor in Africa nearly doubled from roughly 160 million 25 years ago to 300 million today.

But helping Africa is also in our self-interest. It’s simply not a healthy or safe world when so many people in an important region are allowed to fall behind. And it’s certainly not a world we want our children to inherit.

Today we cannot walk alone on the path to prosperity. We cannot afford to turn our backs on the pain and poverty that consume entire nations and communities.

You may have heard that the situation in Africa is hopeless…that aid to Africa is money wasted…or that if only African governments would be more responsible and accountable, they wouldn’t need our help at all.

I’m here to tell you that none of those things are true, or at least they’re no longer true.

What most people don’t know is that already, quietly and almost without notice, the landscape across Africa is changing.







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