MADRID – The United States is pressuring Spain and Morocco to revive a decades-old project. There must be a tunnel between Africa and Europe through the Strait of Gibraltar.
For the US, a tunnel connecting Spain with Morocco is of great strategic importance. They want to use it to influence Africa again. According to the US, Chinese and Russian interests are making a dangerous advance on the continent. That would be to the detriment of the West. According to the website votoenblanco.com, this is a difficult dialogue that involves a lot of diplomacies. Different countries with their specific interests are involved.
The tunnel under the Strait of Gibraltar is the key piece of a major Inter-African highway. Ultimately, it should connect Europe directly with Cape Town. That would promote commercial exchanges between the West and Africa. In addition, Europe and North America will then have more influence on the continent.
Huge pressure from the US
That is why the pressure from the US on Spain and Morocco is great. Those two countries should study and update the project at technical and project levels. Then they can start it up as soon as possible. Even though the Spanish government Sánchez is already in talks with Morocco, little is known about the content of the talks.
NATO of the South Atlantic
The tunnel and the highway to Cape Town, in turn, are part of a project to create a kind of NATO of the South Atlantic in the future. This project, which partly serves as a barrier against China, Russia, and the advance of radical Islamism in Africa, is still in its early stages.
Port of Tangier vs Algeciras
The port of Tanger-Med, in Morocco, is another piece of the puzzle. This is supported by the United States and continues to grow. The port thus poses a serious threat to Spanish cargo ports. Especially for Algeciras, as it is currently the most important cargo port in the Mediterranean.
Problems and sensitivities
On the Spanish side, state-owned company SECEGSA (National Agency for the Study of the Strait of Gibraltar) and CETMO (Center for Transport Studies for the Western Mediterranean), among others, are investigating the tunnel through the Strait of Gibraltar. SECEGSA is a partner of the Moroccan SNED. However, due to various problems and sensitivities, the project is slow to get off the ground.
This has to do with many comprehension problems and strategic sensitivities. Morocco wants the tunnel to end in Gibraltar and not in Spain. The country wants Britain and not Spain to control that important road. Spain, in turn, does not allow to be marginalised in this project. If the tunnel ends in Gibraltar, there is a danger that the port of the Moroccan Tangier will displace that of Algeciras from the world stage. The Americans just have little faith in the Sanchez government. In their eyes, he works together with dangerous communists and nationalists. Moreover, due to the migrant problems, Spain and Morocco have not been on good terms with each other lately anyway.
Technical impossibility of tunnel
Another problem is the technical impossibility of a tunnel ending in Gibraltar. The relief of the seabed and the strong currents in that part of the strait are unfavourable for the construction of a tunnel. These factors have therefore been obstacles for the start-up of the project for decades. Despite this, Washington is now stepping up the pressure to break those barriers to shape this vital link in their world domination.
Different options for the tunnel
The distance between Africa and Europe is the smallest at the Strait of Gibraltar. However, on this shortest stretch of just over 14 kilometers, the sea is 900 metres deep. A little further west, that depth is ‘only’ 300 metres. That is still much deeper than the maximum depth of existing tunnels, but it would be the best place to connect the continents.
In Spain, the entrance to the tunnel would then be located at Punta Paloma. This is located in the province of Cádiz just north of Tarifa. In Morocco, the Punta Malabata near Tangier would then serve as the starting point. Plans for a permanent submarine connection between the two countries date back to 1980.