Mer krig i Afrika

Nytimes uppmärksammar Djibouti och Eritrea står på gränsen till ett krig. I Djibouti’s fall med stöd från USA och Frankrike. Här handlar det om en landbit mitt emot ingången till röda havet. Djibouti är USAs Afrikanska hub och har ett militäravtal med Frankrike. Till komplikationerna hör att Ethiopien har allierat sig med USA var soldater med amerikanskt godkännande och träning invaderat Somalien. Detta för att kväsa vad USA definerade som terrorister d.v.s Islamister.  Andra inblandade är Saudi Arabien och Yemen vars stöd till Islamiströrelsen i Somalia kan antas ha givit den en avgörande fördel mot de s.k krigsherrarna. Innan de bättre utrustade amerikansk trännade Ethiopiska trupperna återvände. Kenya påverkas i sin tur av de miljoner flyktingar som finns där. Och skulle jag anta intrycket att kristna driver krig mot muslimer

Med andra ord. Stora delar av östra Afrika är eller håller på att destabiliseras från Sudan till Kenya och Tchad. En sitaution som definitivt skulle komma att påverka Sverige och Europa. Det är heller inte att glömma bort att Sverige är direkt militärt involverat i vad som händer i t ex Tchad.

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On one side are the Djiboutians, a relatively well-equipped African military with combat boots, CamelBak strap-on water bottles and the occasional buttery croissant in the field.

On the other side are skinny Eritrean soldiers, covered in dust and wearing plastic sandals, camped out in thatch-roofed huts that look like fortified tropical bungalows.

There is no buffer zone between the soldiers, as there usually is along a contested frontier. Instead, the heavily armed fighters, who are becoming increasingly tense and irritable, are squeezed together on a sweltering hilltop, watching each others’ every move.

“It’s a very confusing situation,” said Maj. Youssouf Abdallah, of the Djiboutian Army.

A David versus David battle is shaping up here, with two of Africa’s tiniest nations squaring off over a few piles of uninhabited sand.

The problem is, that sand happens to lie in a very strategic spot, at the mouth of the Red Sea. A war here could imperil some of the busiest shipping lanes in the world and alter the precarious balance of power in the Horn of Africa, a conflict-prone, drought-prone region that already is on the cusp of famine.

Djibouti, a country of about 700,000 people, is backed up by France and the United States, both of which have big military bases here. Eritrea, which has a population of five million, is already in a border standoff with Ethiopia and is accused of fueling chaos in Somalia.

The Djiboutians say the Eritreans invaded in January and point to Eritrea’s history of friction with just about all of its neighbors. They suggest that the country either thrives on war or has gone a little border crazy.

The Eritreans have not said much. Their few statements deny any

[…]

Despite the fact that these two countries barely register on the map, it is the map itself that is part of the problem. Scholars say that the border area was never properly demarcated, and that the best guidance as to who owns what goes back to a vague communiqué between France and Italy more than 100 years ago. They were the colonial powers at the time, with France occupying what is now Djibouti and Italy controlling what is now Eritrea.

According to John Donaldson, a research associate at the International Boundaries Research Unit, a British institute that studies border disputes, France and Italy agreed in 1901 that no third country could rule the Doumeira area, and that specific border issues would be dealt with later.

“It’s very complicated,” he said. “But the question was basically left up in the air.”

Djiboutian officials said the Eritreans made a play for this area in the mid-1990s, producing old documents and saying that the territory was theirs. But Djiboutian officials said that their trump card is an 1897 treaty between Ethiopia and France that clearly states that the Doumeira area was French.

A Conflict’s Buffer Zone – Rocks, and Inches – NYTimes.com

Om Claes

A blogger and general internet nerd from Sweden. I write about politics, internet, technology, the world around me and whatever else interest me. I write mostly in swedish but some english.
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