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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The War on Terror, the Chad-Cameroon Pipeline and the New Identity of the Lake Chad Basin
Author:Taguem Fah, Gilbert L.
Periodical:Journal of Contemporary African Studies
Geographic terms:Cameroon
United States
Subjects:international politics
hydrocarbon policy
international relations
Religion and Witchcraft
Economics and Trade
External links:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02589000601157113
Abstract:Until September 11, 2001, the Lake Chad basin, numerically the most important Muslim area in sub-Saharan Africa, hovered on a strategic periphery. It consists of a number of 'failed' States - unstable countries facing conflicts and sporadic violence, exacerbated by an acute socioeconomic crisis. Geographically it is exposed to many influences, from the north across the Sahara and even from the Middle East through the Sudan. It is also challenged by such drastic environmental factors as desertification. Now this has changed with the US war on terror and the opening of the Chad-Cameroon pipeline (a World Bank project). In his article, the author sets out to see what has happened to the region after it suddenly appeared on the radar screens of the Bush administration. In his (re)search he comes across corrupt government officials misusing oil pipeline funds to buy arms to subdue any resistance; the disregard of the oil companies for the social and environmental consequences of introducing a cash economy; the rising of new Islamic classes with a thirst for Islamic education and knowledge which has put them in touch with foreign Muslims. Islamic leaders compete among themselves to 'capture' the growing commitment to Islam. Simultaneously the American commitment to the pipeline and to oil is not likely to disappear, so the long-time impact of the pipeline will be unavoidable and this needs careful management. Everything is threatened by the unstable substratum of arms smuggling and the war on terror as these can escalate into conflict and violence, which could create a fine breeding ground for a kind of reactionary Islam which actually spawns terror and terrorists. Bibliogr., notes, ref. [ASC Leiden abstract]