Combatting the Al Shabaab Threat

The lack of good governance and the spread of terrorism seem to go hand in hand.   That is quite apparent in East Africa.  Just last month, al Qaeda’s affiliate, al Shabaab, attacked an African Union base in Southwest Somalia, the third forward operating base that al Shabaab has overrun in the last seven months. 

Somalia has effectively been without a functioning central government since 1991.   The Somalia Council of Islamic Courts was founded in an attempt to fill the gap created by the collapse of the government.  Al Shabaab was the militant wing of the group.  After Ethiopian and Somali forces defeated the Islamic Courts in 2007, al Shabaab began its violent insurgency. Its initial goal was to rid Somalia of outside interference, but later, it advocated the overthrow of the Western supported Transitional Federal Government with the intent of creating an Islamic nation under Sharia law.

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