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France’s military operations in Mali are receiving wide support from French President Francois Hollande’s partners. European countries are worried Mali could become a terrorist state and destabilize the region. But there has also been criticism of a European intervention in Africa and some fear that it could turn into another Afghanistan.

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Originally an African-led military mission in Mali was planned. But the troops of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) now seem to be reliant on logistical support from outside.

The USA has offered to send unmanned drones. Germany, Britain and other European states have promised to supply transport planes and training. But most governments aren’t eager to commit their own troops even as the numbers of refugees increase.

Is a western military intervention the right strategy to help Mali avoid becoming a failed state? Will it be a short-term deployment? How much support is there among Mali’s population for a western intervention? Could the west be facing a protracted and costly war like in Afghanistan?

Tell us what you think: Mali Intervention - A High-Risk Mission


Our guests:

Charlotte Wiedemann – The award-winning journalist started her career at a local daily newspaper in Northern Germany and has worked for numerous other daily and weekly newspapers in Germany and Switzerland. She also teaches at various media academies and journalism schools. Charlotte Wiedemann began reporting on Islamic societies in 2003. Her research trips have taken her to Pakistan, Iran, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and to Mali.

Daniel GerlachHe is one of the editors of Zenith, a magazine that deals with the Middle East and the Arab world. He is also a co-founder of the German publishers Levante. Daniel Gerlach began his career as a freelance journalist after graduating in history and oriental studies in Hamburg and Paris. He has also made several TV documentaries about the Middle East and the Islamic world. In 2012 he travelled through Syria and reported on the religious aspects of the Civil War.

Cornelius Vogt – is a research fellow at the German Council on Foreign Relations. He studied political science and geography in Potsdam, Berlin, Los Angeles and Lille. His research areas are Foreign and Security Policy, military interventions and NATO.