Militants in Timbuktu are attacking tombs and at least one mosque that they say contravene Islamaic law. Dr Shamil Jeppie tells host Marco Werman why centuries of religious tolerance in Mali appear to be breaking down.
Initial reports from Timbuktu suggested that tens of thousands of priceless documents had been destroyed when Islamist rebels burned down the city's Ahmed Baba Institute as they fled. It now appears that locals saved at least some of the documents.
Washington is keeping the conflict in Mali at arm's length. American officials say they are providing intelligence to France and are considering deploying American aircraft to land in Mali. But there are no plans to send American troops.
Brian Eno, a rocker, composer, and all-around musical curiosity seeker, is in Mali right now, taking part in the Africa Express cultural exchange. Malian musician Sidi Touré says Mali's recent civil war tried, but failed to break the deep place of music in that country.
Malian musician Bassekou Kouyate has made his mark with the West African lute the ngoni; not by playing traditional music on the ancient instrument but by exploring its potential with other styles like Western music. Anchor Marco Werman has details.
As the militants melt away from cities and towns in northern Mali, there have been scenes of jubilation. People who have experienced life under the rule of Islamist fighters say it has been a harsh, violent existence.
France's military intervention in Mali represents a shift in the country's foreign policy. Anchor Jeb Sharp hears more about that from Jennifer Cooke, director of the Africa Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
What happens when a Jewish rock band from Brooklyn travels to Mali and starts a collaboration with local artists? An album with the working title, 'The House of Friendly Ghosts.' Anna Boiko-Weyrauch has the story from Bamako.