This module features teaching notes by George Mason University professor Terrence Lyons, author of Avoiding Conflict in the Horn of Africa, along with other resources to supplement the text. In the report, Lyons presents a full picture of what is going on in the Horn of Africa and suggests what the United States needs to do to address the multiple challenges to stability.
A few years ago, with little fanfare, the United States opened a base in the horn of Africa to kill or capture Al Qaeda fighters. By 2012, the Pentagon will have two dozen such forts. The story of Africa Command, the American military's new frontier outpost.
Idd Beddel Mohammed, Somalia's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations and Abdi Samatar, a Somali scholar at the University of Minnesota, discuss recent violence in Somalia and options for reconciliation.
The Greater Horn of Africa, the hottest conflict zone in the world, is a legitimate concern of U.S. officials. But their overwhelming focus on stemming terrorism there is overshadowing U.S. initiatives to resolve conflicts and promote good governance -- with disastrous implications for regional stability and U.S. counterterrorism objectives themselves.
Ethiopian troops appear to have won a military victory over Somalia's Islamic Courts militias, who fled Mogadishu Thursday. Their exit leaves a power vacuum in Somalia, and the United States’ focus on counterterrorism in the Horn of Africa may hinder its ability to defuse the crisis.
Conflict in the Horn of Africa is escalating rapidly as power struggles within Somalia are exacerbated by military support that both Ethiopia and Eritrea give to the opposing parties there. Ethiopia backs the weak interim government; Eritrea sponsors the Islamic militants fighting to overthrow it. Because the United States has accused Somalia of harboring al-Qaeda suspects, “the Ethiopian-Eritrean proxy conflict increases the opportunities for terrorist infiltration of the Horn and East Africa and for ignition of a larger regional conflict,” warns a new Council Special Report.
United Nations Undersecretary-General Shashi Tharoor presents his vision for a more effective United Nations, discusses successes and failures of the organization, and explains why he should be the next secretary-general.
The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, proposes sending a high-level team of Americans to the Ethiopia/Eritrea border to help settle the simmering border conflict there. Eritrea objects to the mission, questioning its legality and saying it would only accept rulings that forced Ethiopia to accept a border agreed to in peace talks after the last war.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.