Podcast / American Prestige / May 7, 2024

State of the Sahel: Niger and Chad

On this episode of American Prestige, a discussion on the US withdrawals from the two African nations.

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State of the Sahel: Niger and Chad with Alex Thurston | American Prestige
byThe Nation Magazine

On this episode of American Prestige, we welcome back to the pod, Alex Thurston, associate professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Cincinnati and non-resident fellow at the Quincy Institute, to discuss the situations in Niger and Chad now that the two nations have respectively kicked out most US troops.

We discuss the State Department’s underwhelming treatment of some African heads of state, how this dynamic differs when working with a military junta, what specifically precipitated the US withdrawals from Niger and Chad, AFRICOM’s security-focused framing, how Russia’s role in the region factors into things, and more.

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Colonel Ibro Amadou, an influential member of the military regime in power in Niger, reacts during his arrival to a demonstration for the immediate departure of United States Army soldiers deployed in northern Niger in Niamey, on April 13, 2024.

Colonel Ibro Amadou, an influential member of the military regime in power in Niger, reacts during his arrival to a demonstration for the immediate departure of United States Army soldiers deployed in northern Niger in Niamey, on April 13, 2024.

(AFP / Getty Images)

On this episode of American Prestige, we welcome back to the pod Alex Thurston, associate professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Cincinnati and nonresident fellow at the Quincy Institute, to discuss the situations in Niger and Chad now that the two nations have respectively kicked out most US troops.

We discuss the State Department’s underwhelming treatment of some African heads of state, how this dynamic differs when working with a military junta, what specifically precipitated the US withdrawals from Niger and Chad, AFRICOM’s security-focused framing, how Russia’s role in the region factors into things, and more.

Be sure to check out Alex’s new Substack Sawahil, the successor to his excellent Sahel Blog.

The Nation Podcasts
The Nation Podcasts

Here's where to find podcasts from The Nation. Political talk without the boring parts, featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the news, from a progressive perspective.

Death of Ebrahim Raisi, Rafah Offensive in Gaza, Unrest in New Caledonia | American Prestige
byThe Nation Magazine

On this episode of American Prestige, Danny and Derek return with the news roundup. This week: a Gaza update (0:35), three countries recognize Palestine (10:47), the ICC pursues arrest warrants (14:17), and an ICJ hearing wraps up (18:07); Yemeni Ansar Allah / Houthi forces down two US drones, plus the US admits its bombing campaigns have been futile (20:19); the death of Iranian president Embrahim Raisi (25:16); Taiwan inaugurates a new president and sees protests at the parliament while China conducts military drills nearby (27:38); protests and riots in France’s New Caledonia colony territory, prompting a visit from Macron (29:49); the US finally sets a date for withdrawing troops from Niger (33:52); Kenya’s William Ruto visits the US, with the former country’s mission to Haiti starting soon (34:40); an update on the Kharkiv offensive in Ukraine (36:58); and the UK schedules an election for July 4 (39:22).

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Daniel Bessner

Daniel Bessner is an historian of US foreign relations, and cohost of American Prestige, a podcast on international affairs.

Derek Davison

Derek Davison is a writer and analyst specializing in international affairs and US foreign policy. He is the publisher of the Foreign Exchanges newsletter, cohost of the American Prestige podcast, and former editor of LobeLog.

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