Mali : A New Battleground


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           JANUARY 16 , 2013           07.55 P.M.

Birth of Al – Qaeda and demolition of World Trade Centre in New York could be called water – shed moments in the history of modern world . It spawned many Jehads by Al Qaeda against the ” Satanic Western powers ” and several wars by the Western powers to safeguard the world from the ” Islamic menace ” .

War in Afghanistan and killing of Osama Bin Laden are well chronicled and thus need no repetition . But when I read about the recent attack on Mali by French army , I was forced to consult Wikipedia for the history of Mali , as I was not very much familiar with the history of Africa in general and Mali in particular .

An enlargeable map of the Republic of Mali

An enlargeable map of the Republic of Mali (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Green: Mali Federation

Location of Mali Federation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Republic of Mali , is a landlocked country in West Africa . Mali is bordered by Algeria on the north , Niger on the east , Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire on the south , Guinea on the south-west , and Senegal and Mauritania on the west . Its capital is Bamako .

Mali consists of eight regions and its borders on the north reach deep into the middle of the Sahara, while the country’s southern part, where the majority of inhabitants live, features the Niger and Sénégal rivers. The country’s economic structure centers on agriculture and fishing. Some of Mali’s prominent natural resources include gold and salt. About half the population lives below the international poverty line of US$1.25 a day.

The Songhay Empire at one point controlled alm...

The Songhai Empire at one point controlled almost all of Mali (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Map of the successor states of the Ghana Empir...

Map of the successor states of the Ghana Empire, on the upper Niger river valley, West Africa, circa 1200 Common Era. These outlines are approximate, and should not suggest modern states with fixed borders. States in this era were centered around cities and strong places, with variations of influence radiating out from these points. C. 1200 on the eve of the rise of the Mali Empire, usually dated in the 1240s CE. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Present-day Mali was once part of three West African empires that controlled trans-Saharan trade : the Ghana Empire , the Mali Empire (from which Mali is named), and the Songhai Empire . During its golden age , there was a flourishing of mathematics, astronomy, literature, and art .At its peak , Mali was one of the most expansive empires in the world at the time .In the late 19th century, during the Scramble for Africa , France seized control of Mali, making it a part of French Sudan . French Sudan (then known as the Sudanese Republic) joined with Senegal in 1959 , achieving independence in 1960 as the Mali Federation . Shortly thereafter , following Senegal’s withdrawal from the federation , the Sudanese Republic declared itself the independent Republic of Mali . After a long period of one-party rule , a 1991 coup led to the writing of a new constitution and the establishment of Mali as a democratic , multi-party state .

A conflict in northern Mali began in January 2012 . On 22 March 2012 , a group of junior soldiers seized control of the presidential palace and declared the government dissolved and its constitution suspended . On 6 April 2012 , rebels from the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) declared the secession of a new state , Azawad , from Mali . Shortly after, the MNLA were sidelined by Islamist groups associated with Al-Qaeda, and dropped their demands for secession . The soldiers who seized power allowed Dioncounda Traoré , the President of the National Assembly, to take office as head of state in accordance with the constitution , but they have continued to wield considerable power . Plans to re-take the north with international assistance are being formulated , after which the interim government plans to hold the long-delayed national elections .

This above mentioned history of Mali is taken from Wikipedia and is being re – produced here . I don’t know what will be the outcome of this war ? I fail to forecast the future of Mali ? Won’t be able to say whether Azawad will be a reality or not  ? Will Al Qaeda be rooted out from Mali like Afghanistan or will it succeed here ? Outcome of war is not certain in Mali but it is certain that Mali will not be same again .

It is my belief that my students of acting should know the history of our country and the world .I don’t want to declare my acting institute as the best acting institute of Mumbai or the best acting academy of India and not tell my students about the current affairs of the changing world . I don’t want to claim that I run the most successful acting class in Mumbai and my students are illiterate when it comes to world affairs .

I want that students of my acting class ,  Vidur’s Kreating Charakters , should become a better citizen of India and a conscientious denizens of the world .

VIDUR

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

www.vidur.co.in

www.kreatingcharakters.net

www.vidurfilms.com

www.youtube.com/ividur

www.twitter.com/VidurChaturvedi

www.jaibhojpuri.com/profile/VidurChaturvedi

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