The Sahel, marked with political instability and a rapidly worsening humanitarian and environmental crisis since 2011, is at the forefront of global security challenges today.
With 2020 the deadliest year on record, the Sahel raises urgent questions about the disconnect between theory and practice of strategic goals. Strategic theory is intended to inform an actor’s understanding of war. Strategy, reliant on the actor’s cognisance and understanding of the war they are faced with, needs to inform how they conduct it.
Scholars have recognised strategy as a way of coping with situations where nobody is in total control rather than as a means of asserting control over situations. What implications do such insights have for states and their partners when faced with complex transnational crises as seen in the Sahel? What is the scope/limitations and responsibility of the international community for the resolution of such crises?
Moudjib Djinadou, Director of Political Affairs, UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel
General Pascal Facon, Commander of Operation Barkhane 2019-20, French Army
Sir Hew Strachan, Professor of International Relations, University of St Andrews
Élie Tenenbaum, Research Fellow, Institut Français des Relations Internationales
Natasja Rupesinghe, Research Fellow, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs
ORGANIZER: University of St Andrews