Trans-Saharan Ties and Tensions: Maghrebi Policy in Sahelian West Africa,
HAVERFORD COLL PA
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This paper examines the policy of four North African states -- Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, and Libya -- toward the Sahelian states stretching from Senegal and Mauritania to Chad. The issue dominating international relations in this Arab-African subsystem is the war in Western Sahara in which Algeria and Morocco have major stakes. The repercussions of this war have profoundly affected Mauritanian politics and have influenced policy in Senegal and Mali. A second theater of strife is of course the civil war in Chad where Libyas role has been a source of concern not only for the Saharan-Sahelian states but for all of West Africa. Philippe Decraene has recently referred to the gigantic diplomatic match which is being played in West Africa. Although the moves of the many players on this vast playing field are all interrelated, I shall summarize the policy initiatives of each of the four North African actors separately before analyzing the policy implications for the United States of this ensemble of regional interactions.
- Government and Political Science