The Wall Street Journal quotes Africa Center Nonresident Senior Fellow Rudolph Atallah on the terrorist attack on a hotel in Mali, presumably the work of al-Qaeda affiliates, though no group has claimed responsibility for the attack: 

Heavily armed men stormed into a hotel popular with European military pilots in central Mali, officials there said on Friday, in what appeared to be the latest attempt by al Qaeda allies to wrest control over the north of that country.

[…]

“In a nutshell this was just a long time coming,” said Rudy Atallah, former Africa counterterrorism director at the US Defense Department and a senior Africa researcher at the Atlantic Council in Washington. “They’re going to keep doing this until things start to give in, and the Islamists start to gain ground.”

Read the full article here.