NARCO ANALYSIS: US SecDef Visits Algeria
By Geoff D. Porter
US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper will visit Algeria on 1 October 2020. The visit comes as something of a surprise to the analyst community, but more importantly to the Algerians themselves. It is not at all clear what Esper wants and why he is going.
Speculation ranges from the mundane (“Esper heard something or other about Algeria being a good CT partner,”) to unrealistically hopeful (“Esper is going to ask the Algerians for help securing the release of an American held hostage by the Islamic State in Mali”) and snarky (“Esper reckons that the more he visits obscure countries, the less likely it is President Trump will be able to fire him.”) Whatever the actual reason, the Algerian government welcomed the US overture for a meeting, even if it doesn’t know what the meeting is for.
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