NARCO ANALYSIS: Morocco Making Hay


Morocco’s making hay while the sun shines. Rabat’s current dispute with Spain and its earlier, but ongoing, spat with Berlin are just the most recent instances of the Makhzen flexing its muscle.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Libya Sweet, Algeria Sour


Libya is looking sweet for oil companies and they are starting to sour on Algeria. But it may only be a medium-term trend and there is a distinct possibility that it could reverse next year. No energy companies or oil field service companies have actually quit Algeria yet, but there are murmurings of discontent. Meanwhile, after a decade of uncertainty in Libya, things are starting to look more attractive.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Dakar's Careening


The rioting in Senegal over the last week is a good lesson in the unpredictability of political stability. One would’ve been hard pressed to find any commentary or analysis in recent years that hinted at the kind of countrywide violence and unrest that rocked Senegal over the last week.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Morocco, Southern Morocco, & Germany


Many, many (many!) years ago when I was studying in Fes, I had an argument with a friend in the quad at Université Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah. My friend was upset with something I had done. I can’t recall what it was, but I remember replying that there were no actual tangible consequences for whatever it was that upset him. And he said, “المهم, c’est le geste!

NARCO ANALYSIS: Algeria's Presidential President


If there is one takeaway from Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune’s address on 18 February, it was: “I’m back, I’m the president, and I and I alone am the décideur.”

NARCO ANALYSIS: Libyan Uncertainty


The surprising conclusion of the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum last week only compounds the uncertainty around Libya’s political trajectory. Powerful actors are now likely to become even more disingenuous, further cloaking their true designs while biding time. Libya may have stumbled into some seemingly placid glade, but it is definitely not out of the woods.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Mauritanian Ace


Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould el Ghazouani has one heck of an ace up his billowy blue دراعة sleeve (please, oh please, don’t call it a “boubou.”) The parliamentary committee investigating financial misdeeds during his predecessor’s tenure completed its report in August 2020. It was nothing short of devastating for former President Mohamed Ould Abdelaziz. But since then, nothing.



Arguably, it’s always been tense in some parts of Tunisia ever since populist protests toppled former President Zine el Abidine Ben Ali. The (sometimes) violent demonstrations that rocked Tunisia in the last couple of days are different, though, because it wasn’t only the residents of Tunisia’s hapless, forgotten corners that spoke out, but demonstrators roiled the streets throughout the country.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Tebboune Back to Germany


Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune is back in Germany after a brief visit to Algeria to carry out the duties of his office. His work in Algeria done, Tebboune returned to Germany. He is reportedly only to stay for a couple of days, but a couple of days can mean any number of things in Algeria.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Morocco Bombshell


It’s a little (okay, very) cheeky, but I’ll kick off this analysis quoting the very last sentence from NARCO’s 18 November 2020 analysis: “And I haven’t even gotten to Western Sahara…” Well, I’ll get to it now.



NARCO CLOSEHOLD is timely, actionable analysis derived from discreet sources. NARCO CLOSEHOLDs are crafted as events merit. They are available to NARCO's subscription and retainer clients and on a case-by-case basis.

Request More Info