Germany and France Unveil New Plans for a European Military

German Chancellor Angela Merkel (L) and French President Emmanuel Macron deliver a joint press conference at the Elysee Palace in Paris on July 13, 2017, during an annual Franco-German Summit. (PATRICK KOVARIK/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

 

The two nations announce plans for a new fighter jet, a new fighting force in Africa, and a new push for a eurozone superstate.

On July 13, Germany and France held their first joint cabinet meeting since France’s presidential election, and the two leading European countries announced some eye-catching new military projects.

This was the first such meeting since Emmanuel Macron won the presidential election on May 7. Since then, there has been much talk of a new era of Franco-German cooperation. On Thursday, the pressure was on to demonstrate results. Continue reading

The Militarization of West Africa

BERLIN/N’DJAMENA/BAMAKO (Own report) – Berlin is using today’s visit of Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari to enhance its rapidly growing military influence in West Africa. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s trip to Africa early this week has already revealed Germany’s growing military importance on the African continent. According to reports, a “change” can already be noted, particularly in Mali. Traditionally within France’s exclusive sphere of influence, the EU, “fundamentally under German leadership,” is now increasingly determining that country’s development. The German government is also expanding the Bundeswehr’s activities and the supply of military hardware to Niger and Chad, along with the construction of a military base in Niger’s capital Niamey. Berlin is also seeking to obtain influence in the war against Boko Haram in Nigeria. The first accords on support measures had already been reached with Nigeria last year. Germany is enhancing its network of influence in West Africa by increasing the deployment of expeditionary troops, the establishment of military bases and by supplying military aid. This could possibly reduce France’s traditional political and military predominance in its former colonies.

Continue reading

Oil-Rich Nations Are Selling Off Their Petrodollar Assets at Record Pace

In the heady days of the commodity boom, oil-rich nations accumulated billions of dollars in reserves they invested in U.S. debt and other securities. They also occasionally bought trophy assets, such as Manhattan skyscrapers, luxury homes in London or Paris Saint-Germain Football Club.

Now that oil prices have dropped by half to $50 a barrel, Saudi Arabia and other commodity-rich nations are fast drawing down those “petrodollar” reserves. Some nations, such as Angola, are burning through their savings at a record pace, removing a source of liquidity from global markets.

Continue reading

Africa’s Fourth-Largest Gold Producer Is Facing A Possible Military Coup

OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) – Burkina Faso’s President Blaise Compaore said on Thursday he would stay in power at the head of a transitional government until after elections, rejecting opposition calls for him to step down immediately following a day of violent protests.

The head of the armed forces, General Honore Traore, had earlier dissolved parliament and announced talks with all political parties to create an interim government to take the West African country to democratic elections within a year. Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: