Nation Building or Targeted Killings: Tough Choices for U.S. in Somalia

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Ruins in Mogadishu after a truck bombing.

The truck bomb that devastated the Somali capital of Mogadishu and killed more than 320 people on Saturday was the deadliest terrorist attack in Somalia’s history. But beyond the catastrophic loss of life, the horrific tragedy is a clear indication that al Shabaab, the group believed to be behind the attack, continues to pose a dire threat to Somalia and the Horn of Africa in its entirety.

“Al Shabaab has morphed to become more of a regional terrorist organization and should no longer be considered an insurgency group within Somalia,” Ambassador Phil Carter, former U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea, told The Cipher Brief.

The Cipher Brief has become the most popular outlet for former intelligence officers; no media outlet is even a close second to The Cipher Brief in terms of the number of articles published by formers.” —Sept. 2018, Studies in Intelligence, Vol. 62

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