Africa

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Snapshot,
Geoff D. Porter

From conflict in Mali to Libya's dangerous morass, Algeria has never faced such serious threats directly on its own borders. For the moment, the country appears determined to follow its usual strategy of pushing for political solutions to the external crises while beefing up its internal security as a safeguard if these solutions fail. The problem with this strategy is that asks too much from ordinary Algerians, who can only hope that it’s the best way to protect the normalcy that they hold so dear.

Snapshot,
Daniel Bekele and Jeffrey Smith

Since the attempted coup in December, six Gambian soldiers, including the three sentenced to death, have been held in solitary confinement and denied contact with family members and proper access to lawyers. These reports are just the most recent reminder of the horrendous human rights situation in Gambia.

Snapshot,
Paul Hidalgo

Al Shabab has been pushed out of its strongholds and cut off from its financial lifelines. And that is why the group’s ability to so easily attack within Kenya is so puzzling. Kenyan leaders have long blamed Somalia-based fighters and the country’s minority Muslim population. But the truth is that the main culprits are the culture and policies of the government itself.

Snapshot,
Harry Verhoeven

Ethiopia has surpassed Egypt as the most powerful country on the Nile. And African and Arab states alike are fast recognizing that they should build friendly ties with Addis Ababa now—or else face an even stronger competitor five years from now.

Snapshot,
Joshua Meservey

Al Shabab was once one of the premier terror groups in the world. Years before ISIS gobbled up sections of Syria and Iraq, al Shabab conquered and then governed most of southern Somalia. But the group has been in decline since its apex in 2010, and it is now fighting back through gruesome attacks in Kenya.

Snapshot,
Jason Warner and Michael W. Baca

Boko Haram is on the run. But that doesn’t mean that Nigeria is in the clear. As outside observers have focused on defeating the terrorist group, few have paid attention to the looming postwar reconstruction effort, whose success will determine whether northeastern Nigeria continues to be a source of instability in West Africa.

Postscript,
Matt Mossman

Nigeria’s election may have ended with a winner and a loser, but it was more about the process than the candidates. And there, great gains were made.

Snapshot,
Tom Keatinge

Roughly $1.3 billion in remittances flow to Somalia every year. But heavy-handed regulation threatens to cut off this vital flow of money.

Snapshot,
Jonathan Zimmerman

Since the 1960s, Americans have split into two camps on sex education: one side wants to teach kids how to make choices about sex, and the other wants to teach them to avoid it. That’s not an issue in most parts of the developing world, where the idea of youth as sexual decision-makers is simply anathema.

Snapshot,
Matt Mossman

It is clearer than ever that democracy in Nigeria is a rather thin veneer. Even so, a couple of factors make the country particularly fertile ground for democracy.

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