The last couple weeks in Mali have been interesting as the government was overthrown in an apparent "accidental" coup by US trained CPT Sanogo. Sanogo & friends have held to power despite threats from ECOWAS and condemnation from the US and over the past week they have weathered a counter-coup by the red-beret presidential troops loyal to the now resigned President. Through it all the US Embassy has remained open, so I wonder what has been the role of the FAOs on the ground (DATT & OSC Chief) as they probably had the best relationships with the new leaders of Mali? If they already had a relationship of trust with coup leaders are they the best US conduit for communication? Reports in the media say that the US has cut off military aid to Mali, but would this be negotiable due to our concern about AQIM and other militant groups hostile to the US helping establish Azawad?