The French assault on militant jihadists in Mali reflects a recognition in Paris that the long-brewing Islamist trouble in North Africa is something that has started to spiral out of control, and has potential to have a direct impact within France.
With the northern part of Mali now under militant hands, regional countries are being left with no option but to provide a credible threat to intervene militarily. But will neighbouring states be able to sustain their intervention?
After nearly a year in Somalia, Kenya is preparing to commence its assault on Kismaayo, Al-Shabaab’s strategic and financial outpost, and the current front line of the concerted counter-insurgency campaign in southern Somalia. With Merca just fallen, could this prove the boon to the KDF’s expeditionary gamble?