The Disintegration of a "Model African Democracy"

Alex Thurston

This commentary examines how Mali entered its current crisis, tracing the fall of the regime of President Amadou Toumani Touré and the rise of armed Islamist groups in northern Mali, as well as the events that led to an armed intervention by France. The piece then discusses some of the conceptual frameworks that could impede effective policy formation in post-conflict Mali. The piece argues that Somalia does not offer a compelling model for Mali. The commentary closes by recommending that the Malian government and its partners should prioritize addressing humanitarian and security concerns in northern Mali over staging elections.