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Mali Rebels Push On Despite French Strikes
The Wall Street Journal ^ | January 14, 2013 | By DREW HINSHAW in Bamako, Mali, and DAVID GAUTHIER-VILLARS in Paris

Posted on 01/14/2013 8:23:13 PM PST by MinorityRepublican

Islamist rebels chased Mali's army from a garrison town deep in its own territory on Monday, striking back at the weakest link in a nascent coalition after French fighter jets hit militant bases deep in the Sahara.

The surprise move by what witnesses called a well-armed rebel force highlights the risk that the French campaign in Mali could widen as al Qaeda militants spread across the heart of the world's largest desert.

The advancing fighters took control of the small barracks town of Diabaly after attacking and defeating the Malian army there, French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said.

The once-remote conflict in northern Mali is now within 250 miles of Mali's capital, Bamako, posing a grave test for the country's ramshackle military and adding to the mounting pressure for other foreign forces to get involved.

"Our role won't be to remain alone alongside Mali," France's Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Monday.

Mr. Fabius said the U.S. was helping with transport, communication and intelligence-gathering capabilities, while the U.K., Belgium and Denmark were providing transport assistance. Several West African countries, including Nigeria, Niger, Burkina Faso and Senegal, have pledged to dispatch hundreds of soldiers, but the timetable for their deployment has yet to be determined. Algeria, which has traditionally opposed intervention, allowed French combat aircraft to fly through its airspace to reach targets in Mali on Sunday.

The European Union said it would accelerate the deployment of its own mission to train Malian soldiers, but ruled out any potential combat engagement.

(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: algeria; belgium; benghazi; burkinafaso; denmark; europeanunion; france; kenyanbornmuzzie; mali; niger; nigeria; senegal; unitedkingdom; waronterror

1 posted on 01/14/2013 8:23:18 PM PST by MinorityRepublican
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Comment #2 Removed by Moderator

To: MinorityRepublican

Time to send in Beau Geste and the Foreign Legion.....


3 posted on 01/14/2013 8:30:35 PM PST by expat2
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To: expat2

The French probably do not have the resources to fight this war by themselves.
The Islamists have a big store of arms and a mobility that makes jet airstrikes of little importance. The first thing they need to do is control the flow of fuel into the region. But that will take a lot of road recce flights with armed helps.
They can prevent the Islamists from taking Bomako, but that is about it.


4 posted on 01/14/2013 8:39:22 PM PST by Oldexpat
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To: expat2

The French probably do not have the resources to fight this war by themselves.
The Islamists have a big store of arms and a mobility that makes jet airstrikes of little importance. The first thing they need to do is control the flow of fuel into the region. But that will take a lot of road recce flights with armed helos.
They can prevent the Islamists from taking Bomako, but that is about it.


5 posted on 01/14/2013 8:40:09 PM PST by Oldexpat
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To: expat2

I suspect all the green hatted French troops on the news are Légion Etrangère. Perhaps the only regular French forces are the air wing people providing CAS.


6 posted on 01/14/2013 8:48:53 PM PST by Huaynero
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To: MinorityRepublican

Vietnam all over again ... Meet the new fascists, Islamists, same as the old fascists, VC.


7 posted on 01/14/2013 8:55:04 PM PST by VRWC For Truth (Roberts has perverted the Constitution)
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To: MinorityRepublican
Mali is pretty open country, mostly desert and savannah. Ought to be good hunting grounds for helicopter gunships if the French have any. One problem--it also is a huge country--twice the size of Texas.
8 posted on 01/14/2013 9:57:43 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: Huaynero
I suspect all the green hatted French troops on the news are Légion Etrangère. Perhaps the only regular French forces are the air wing people providing CAS.

I would think that regular army Special Operations people are there.

9 posted on 01/14/2013 11:03:29 PM PST by ansel12 (Cruz said "conservatives trust Sarah Palin that if she says this guy is a conservative, that he is")
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To: hinckley buzzard

As I wrote yesterday, the answer to enemy convoys is Napalm.

Rockets, bombs and strafing are nice, but not necessary destructive enough if you don’t have enough air assets to strike the whole target area effectively.

Napalm covers everything in its path, and its path can be a long (and wide one), depending on how the canisters are dropped (two, side by side, simultaneously), or single drop in a line.

I suspect that they French are trying to fight this war on the cheap, like some other power I know. That is NOT the way to fight in the desert. You hit the enemy with everything you can bring onto them. Again, Napalm is the weapon of choice for mass destruction of enemy forces.

Also, it is a weapon that creates massive fear in the enemy. It was, according to my combat friends, the most feared American weapon in Vietnam.

Time for the French to take the croissants off the table and put on some iron gauntlets.


10 posted on 01/15/2013 12:49:21 AM PST by MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
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To: VRWC For Truth

not quite, northern Mali is wide flat desert — no place to hide from planes or choppers. Vietnam was different


11 posted on 01/15/2013 2:16:30 AM PST by Cronos (Middle English prest, priest, Old English pruost, Late Latin presbyter, Latin presbuteros)
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12 posted on 01/15/2013 4:18:30 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
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A map of the Sahel region showing where Al Qaeda operates (AFP/Graphic)

A map of the Sahel region showing where Al Qaeda operates (AFP/Graphic)

13 posted on 01/15/2013 4:18:38 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
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Mali: France pointed against al-Qaeda

Mali: France pointed against al-Qaeda | Le Figaro | September 24, 2012 | Isabelle Lasserre | Posted on 09/26/2012 9:55:01 AM PDT by JerseyanExile

14 posted on 01/15/2013 4:18:38 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
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To: Cincinna; Olog-hai; AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; ColdOne; ...

Thanks MinorityRepublican.


15 posted on 01/15/2013 4:18:53 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
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To: hinckley buzzard
They do. They operate the Eurocopter Tigre. Some of their attack choppers are currently deployed in Afghanistan. This one seen below is a Deutsches Heer (German Army) service example.



16 posted on 01/15/2013 5:16:10 AM PST by ketelone
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To: MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
I suspect that they French are trying to fight this war on the cheap

Napalm is very cheap. It just generates a lot of bad publicity.

I myself do not mind seeing crispy Jihadist on the news and internet.

17 posted on 01/15/2013 6:25:13 AM PST by BBell (And Now for Something Completely Different)
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To: MinorityRepublican
This can't be, because Islam is a religion of peace, and the Al Queda types have been defeated...
18 posted on 01/15/2013 6:47:03 AM PST by pieceofthepuzzle
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To: Oldexpat

France has the resources to fight this war—most modern nations do—the question is, do they have the resolve. Yes, they need more troops. The foreign Legion would be ideal in this fight and should be sent in. Bombing alone will not work—we delude ourselves into thinking these “bloodless” tactics will really work. We must be willing to put in men with guns and be willing to wade in carnage. This could be the turning point for the west-—the place where we draw a line in the sand.


19 posted on 01/15/2013 7:00:49 AM PST by Forward the Light Brigade (Into the Jaws of H*ll)
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To: expat2

I’d rather talk to some ex-Rhodesian military about this fight.


20 posted on 01/15/2013 8:27:34 AM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: Oldexpat

Thanks to Obama’s Libya policy.


21 posted on 01/15/2013 8:29:11 AM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: hinckley buzzard

Drones.


22 posted on 01/15/2013 8:29:47 AM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: MadMax, the Grinning Reaper

You’d have to suppress the news images. The West doesn’t have the stomach for napalm.


23 posted on 01/15/2013 8:33:29 AM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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