The attack on a European-style mall in one of Nairobi’s fashionable neighborhoods this weekend raises fresh concerns about the scale of the threat posed by the Somali terror organization, Shabab, and the capacity of the Kenyan state — already weakened by corruption charges against its political leadership and its domestic police forces — to address internal security in ways consistent with both human rights and effective anti-terror techniques. One of the most prosperous countries in the sub-Saharan, Kenya is home to all of the important positive trends in African society. However, the material and social gains brought about by a booming economy and liberal individual freedoms are now put in jeopardy by the government’s willingness to serve as a proxy counter-force for the U.S. government and the Obama administration in its war on Shabab in Somalia and its surrounding countries. How long will Kenyans and other East Africans be willing to sacrifice their own hard-won gains in order to prop up the failed U.S. campaign against radical Islamicists in Somalia? The deaths of innocents in Nairobi shopping mall make this very regional question of greater global significance.
Sep 21 2013
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