Second-Order Effects in Sub-Saharan Africa

Part of the Global Forecast 2011

The crisis in Libya has raised fears among security analysts that the ongoing conflict will destabilize the already fragile states of the Sahel and strengthen the hand of affiliates of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) operating in Mauritania, Mali, and Niger. There is good reason for these fears. Although relatively small in number, AQIM forces have taken full advantage of the security vacuum that exists in the arid, remote northern regions of these countries and the ease of crossing borders that are virtually impossible to monitor effectively.