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Snapshot,
Yahia H. Zoubir

The Libyan leader's ouster dispersed masses of guns and refugees across the region. Already, Algeria has seen attacks by AQIM militants armed with Libyan weapons, Mali has been rocked by a coup led by armed nomads returning from Libya, Niger is struggling to cope with waves of refugees from Libya and Mali, and Tunisia's economy has been shattered by the loss of its most important trading partner.

Comment, May/June 2011
Daniel Byman

Although last winter's peaceful popular uprisings damaged the jihadist brand, they also gave terrorist groups greater operational freedom. To prevent those groups from seizing the opportunities now open to them, Washington should keep the pressure on al Qaeda and work closely with any newly installed regimes.



This article appears in the Foreign Affairs/CFR eBook, The New Arab Revolt.

Snapshot,
Azzedine Layachi

North Africa is where the Arab world's recent political upheaval began and where it has reached its most violent climax. Beyond Tunisia and Libya, how nervous should the ruling regimes in Algeria and Morocco be about their political futures?



This article appears in the Foreign Affairs/CFR eBook, The New Arab Revolt.

Collection,

A collection of continuing Foreign Affairs coverage of the crisis in Egypt and the Middle East.

Essay, Summer 1985
Richard B. Parker

Until recently, the countries of North Africa have seemed in a state of political equilibrium. Morocco and Tunisia, both regarded as close friends of the United States, reinforced each other as moderate states with similar outlooks; they served as geopolitical balance across the Maghreb to the stable but ideologically more radical Algeria in between. Libya, erratic and unpredictable, was isolated and could expect to encounter the hostility of the other three if it embarked on any adventures against any one of them. That was the situation until the middle of last year.

Essay, Winter 1979
Stephen J. Solarz

Most Americans have probably never heard of the Western Sahara. If the name of this Colorado-sized territory in northwest Africa evokes any image at all, it is likely to be one of nomads with their tents and camels against a background of blinding sunlight and endless sand engaged in the ancient and timeless confrontation between man and nature. During a visit to the region last summer, I often wondered at the contemporary international significance of this vast and empty-looking land with its parching 120° days, fierce sandstorms, and blue-robed, nomadic inhabitants.

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