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Old 03-17-2008   #21
Jedburgh
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GIGA, Feb 08:

Ethnic Coalitions of Convenience and Commitment: Political Parties and Party Systems in Kenya
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This paper analyzes the role of ethnicity in shaping the character of Kenya’s political parties and its party system since 1992. Drawing on a constructivist conception of ethnicity, it uses a framework of comparison derived from Donald Horowitz and distinguishes between three party types: the mono-ethnic party, the multi-ethnic alliance type and the multi-ethnic integrative type. It shows that although Kenyan parties have increasingly incorporated diverse communities, they have consistently failed to bridge the country’s dominant ethnic cleavages. Consequently, all of Kenya’s significant parties represent ethnic coalitions of convenience and commitment and, thus, ethnic parties. The paper further states that the country’s post-2007 political environment is a by-product of the omnipresence of this party type.
Complete 28 page paper at the link.
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Old 03-18-2008   #22
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Default Human Rights Watch: Ballots to Bullets

this is a new HRW report just out that says Kenyan officials olotted much of the post-election violence
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Report: Kenyan officials plotted attacks that killed hundreds

NAIROBI, Kenya — A leading human rights group said Monday that Kenyan political and business leaders plotted much of the country's recent ethnic violence, and it urged the new coalition government to bring the organizers to justice.

New York-based Human Rights Watch found evidence that hundreds of people were killed in planned ethnic attacks following the disputed presidential election in December. In many cases, the group said, the attacks were planned and financed by prominent civic leaders, although the group didn't directly implicate any top national politicians.
The full report can be downloaded here

From the report's summary:

Quote:
Summary

The scale and speed of the violence that engulfed Kenya following the controversial presidential election of December 27, 2007 shocked both Kenyans and the world at large. Two months of bloodshed left over 1,000 dead and up to 500,000 internally displaced persons in a country viewed as a bastion of economic and political stability in a volatile region.

The ethnic divisions laid bare in the aftermath of the elections have roots that run much deeper than the presidential poll. No Kenyan government has yet made a good-faith effort to address long simmering grievances over land that have persisted since independence. High-ranking politicians who have been consistently implicated in organizing political violence since the 1990s have never been brought to book and continue to operate with impunity. Widespread failures of governance are at the core of the explosive anger exposed in the wake of the election fraud.
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Old 12-01-2008   #23
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Default Kenya: A political & economic profile

This note outlines the main political developments in Kenya in recent years, and briefly surveys available economic and development indicators. This note will not automatically be updated, but to request an update, please contact one of the authors.

http://www.parliament.uk/commons/lib...snep-04895.pdf
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Old 06-17-2011   #24
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Default Al-Qaeda –Mombasa Attacks 28 November 2002

This AQ attack pre-dates SWC's debut, on a search there was no match for Mombasa, so this Israeli publication maybe useful:http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/mal...f/gj_ef007.pdf

Publication appears to have followed the death in Somalia of Fazul Abdullah Mohammed, the head of AQ in East Africa; there are various sections, including the investigation into AQ communications and a strategic commentary.
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Old 10-13-2011   #25
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IPI, 12 Oct 11: Termites at Work: Transnational Organized Crime and State Erosion in Kenya

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The threat posed by organized crime is not confined to serious crimes such as racketeering, the global drug trade, or human trafficking. For many developing countries and fragile states, powerful transnational criminal networks constitute a direct threat to the state itself, not through open confrontation but by penetrating state institutions through bribery and corruption and by subverting or undermining them from within. This paper examines whether Kenya faces such a threat.

Governments that lack the capacity to counter such penetration, or that acquiesce in it, run the risk of becoming criminalized or “captured” states. The research findings do not justify Kenya being labeled a criminalized state, but its foundations are under attack. Determined interventions are required to stem organized criminal networks from further undermining the state.

Six categories of transnational organized crime are examined, pointing to significant increases in criminal activity with pervasive impacts on government institutions in Kenya. Rampant corruption in the police, judiciary, and other state institutions has facilitated criminal networks’ penetration of political institutions.

The paper concludes with recommendations for steps to be taken at the national, regional, and international levels.
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Old 10-24-2011   #26
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Default Kenya (catch all)

Moderator's Note

See Post 6 for an explanation why a new thread, in summary: As much as the civil war in Somalia impacts Kenya, notably the Northern Frontier District, there is a need for a separate thread (ends).


Second grenade attack in Nairobi in as many days, Al Shabab sticking to their word it would seem. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...79N5W220111024

Last edited by davidbfpo; 11-28-2014 at 11:59 AM. Reason: Add Mod's note
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Old 10-26-2011   #27
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Default Small war grows across and within Kenya's borders

I know the taking of European hostages got attention here for a short time and last week's Kenyan military incursion too. The linked article gives IMHO a wider viewpoint - mainly affecting Kenya - and helps to understand what is going on. It starts with:
Quote:
..A fractious mix of violence and politics is unsettling the relationship between east African neighbours and putting more pressure on Somalis living in Kenya. The Somali militia group known as al-Shabaab is often viewed as the source of the problem. But the roots of the turmoil go deep in Kenya's own history..
Link:http://www.opendemocracy.net/daniel-...ape-of-tension
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Old 11-14-2011   #28
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Default Light fuse and walk away?

I know Kenya has had a close relationship with Israel, which was very clear after the Entebbe Raid and when a few years ago a SAM was fired at an Israeli charter flight, full of tourists from an Indian Ocean resort.

Now there's this single strand reporting, which is almost a gift to Al-Shabab:
Quote:
Kenya's prime minister is seeking Israel's support in stopping reprisal terror attacks by an al-Qaida-linked militant group Kenyan troops are pursuing in Somalia.... for assistance in building the capacity of the Kenyan police to deal with attacks by al-Shabab militants....but al-Shabab could view Kenya's request as a provocation.
Link:http://abcnews.go.com/International/...1#.TsF-4D0Uqsp
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Old 11-14-2011   #29
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Default The most thrilling terrain for a war — or for a safari

Aidan Hartley, a Kenyan farmer - near the Somali badlands - and journalist has written a short article on the terrain facing the Kenyan Army incursion, plus supporters:http://www.spectator.co.uk/columnist...ild-life.thtml

He opens with:
Quote:
I am proud of Kenya for taking on Muslim extremists in southern Somalia. Rather wisely, the Kenyan military has so far prevented hacks from reaching the field. But for anybody in the outside world who cares, this is not a new battle. Operations against Somalis of varying types of fanaticism have been mounted since the 1960s.
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Old 12-19-2011   #30
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Default Pink Cows across the border

Aidan Hartley is a white Kenyan farmer, whose farm is in the region near Somalia and a journalist. The linked article is about his struggles to stop rustlers and added here as it gives an impression of what life is like in that area. Human Terrain no less:http://www.spectator.co.uk/columnist...ild-life.thtml
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Old 12-20-2011   #31
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Default Kenya: a small war simmers

As much as the civil war in Somalia impacts Kenya, notably the Northern Frontier District, there is a need for a separate thread.

Link to the non-piracy Somali thread:http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/...ead.php?t=8468

From which half a dozen posts have been copied across to this thread.

Kenya has it's own problems, which were touched upon in older threads, notably after an election:http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/...ead.php?t=4686

The catalyst for starting this is a BBC report on an IED attack on a police patrol in a Somali refugee camp:
Quote:
The camp houses about 450,000 people who have fled famine and conflict in Somalia.
The report implies Kenya is aware of the simmering pot the camp is:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-16247634

Not to overlook that Kenya is receptive to facilitating the presence of US & UK military, partly for training and taking action in Somalia.
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Old 11-13-2012   #32
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Default Rustlers in The Rift Valley kill 42 plus police officers

A short BBC report on:
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At least 42 officers were killed when cattle rustlers ambushed police...The attackers used sophisticated weapons such as anti-personnel bombs and rocket-propelled grenades....This is the most deadly attack on the police in Kenya's history.
Link:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-20294747
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Old 11-19-2012   #33
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Default Motivation to join Al-Shabaab 50:50 money:faith

A short ICSR article 'Al-Shabaab: Recruitment and Radicalisation in Kenya':http://icsr.info/2012/11/icsr-insigh...tion-in-kenya/

Quote:
Based on our fieldwork with former al-Shabaab members in Kenya, about half of the people we interviewed were motivated by financial rewards. The other half were taken in by the teachings of Ali and other jihadist preachers.
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Old 11-21-2012   #34
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Default Rustlers in The Rift Valley Part 2

From a "lurker" the ambush targeted a mix of ordinary police, the para-military General Service Unit and para-military anti-poaching officers.

A BBC follow-on report, a mix of local detail and the wider context:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-20392510

This explains a lot:
Quote:
Traditionally the pastoralist communities in northern Kenya have been armed by the state and left to provide their own security under a "home guard" system.
Elsewhere in Kenya there is violence involving ethnic Somalis:http://news.yahoo.com/more-violence-...jQwZTFk;_ylv=3

Hard to be optimistic about Kenya, particularly with an election looming and the ease in which violence overtakes the ballot box.

This short comment is enough:
Quote:
The Somali militant group al-Shabaab is currently losing ferocious battles against Kenyan troops in Southern Somalia - part of an African Union peacekeeping mission. However, they are winning a strategic war back in Kenya; this is the battle for hearts and minds.
This HRW report is not encouraging, certainly no "hearts & minds" approach here:http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/fil...2webwcover.pdf
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Old 09-21-2013   #35
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Default Mumbai-style attack in Kenya

I posted this on my blog http://www.brownpundits.com/2013/09/...ion-is-now-ok/

Extended excerpt (basic question):
This can be classified as a "Mumbai style attack"...armed men attack a city, pick out one or more prominent civilian targets and slaughter any random person that they find, but may make an effort to spare Muslims. The target may have symbolic value. e.g. educated Westernized left-liberal observers will not have difficulty recognizing an upscale mall as a temple of capitalism, a bastion of imperialism and neo-colonialism, or a shrine to consumerism..in fact, if i had the time I could probably write certain Pakistani-Western academic's next article about the class dimensions of this lumpen-revolutionary act in my sleep....but i dont think the gunmen will bring that up; ..Bin-Laden and Zawahiri used a few random fragments from that discourse, but its not a central part of their propaganda effort. Their propaganda will be simpler and more direct; you attacked us, now we are attacking you. You may drone us or bomb us, but we WILL strike back and make you suffer. We are not weak. We are not scared. We are mujahideen and we will always be back, until you leave our lands and stop your oppressions against Islam.

So my question is this: Their arguments and actions are horrible, tragic, sad, etc. But are they now so routine that they have become in some sense legitimate? That we accept them as part of the nature of war? after all, when more advanced countries fight each other (or weaker countries) and use aircraft to drop bombs or fire missiles, we sort of take it in our stride. War is bad, but when it does happen (and sometimes it happens), this is just how it is. Will we think about Mumbai-style attacks the same way now?

If your first thought is "what a strange question", then you have already accepted what used to be almost unthinkable. We have had bombs going off in cities for over a century. But we have NOT had this for a century. Is it now routine? or is there still some special horror attached to such attacks? does it in some way delegitimate the attackers in your eyes? put them beyond the pale? or are they just another damned armed force doing what humans have always done? fighting for their cause, while we fight for ours? Maye we have to kill them, maybe we can compromise with them? or ignore them? maybe we dont have to care what happens in Kenya or Mumbai?
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Old 09-21-2013   #36
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Im sure its life altering for those directly affected by the violence if they come from a background where violence of the sort is a rarity. For outsiders hearing about violence, its old hat in my opinion. I can hear about terrorist violence everyday if I watch the news. If I were the average observer half way around the world, I wouldn't care or bat an eye. Terrorists are losing the "terror" component of their attacks through over use.

I dont know if that makes it easier or harder for affected govts to deal with the situation.
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Old 09-21-2013   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by omarali50 View Post
I posted this on my blog http://www.brownpundits.com/2013/09/...ion-is-now-ok/

Extended excerpt (basic question):
This can be classified as a "Mumbai style attack"...armed men attack a city, pick out one or more prominent civilian targets and slaughter any random person that they find, but may make an effort to spare Muslims. The target may have symbolic value. e.g. educated Westernized left-liberal observers will not have difficulty recognizing an upscale mall as a temple of capitalism, a bastion of imperialism and neo-colonialism, or a shrine to consumerism
I have not read enough about Kenya but I don't see it as a "Mumbai style" attack. Mumbai was clearly an attack by a foreign entity for political (and partially religious) reasons. This attack appears to be the opposite - a internally based entity attacked for religious (and partially political) reasons.


Quote:
Originally Posted by omarali50 View Post
So my question is this: Their arguments and actions are horrible, tragic, sad, etc. But are they now so routine that they have become in some sense legitimate? That we accept them as part of the nature of war? after all, when more advanced countries fight each other (or weaker countries) and use aircraft to drop bombs or fire missiles, we sort of take it in our stride. War is bad, but when it does happen (and sometimes it happens), this is just how it is. Will we think about Mumbai-style attacks the same way now?[/I]
What might be more interesting is the question "do the victims not resonate with me enough to care?" or put another way "do I not feel enough affinity to this group to see myself as threatened by the activity of the terrorists?" The average Kenyan probably will not have anything in common with those who could shop in that mall. The average Westerner does not have enough in common with the average Kenyan to care. So you have a very limited audience who were intended to feel the brunt of this attack, if in fact it was a terrorist attack and not simply an act of war by a group who sees wealthy, non-muslim Kenyans as the enemy.

Here we see the intersection of religious identity and national identity that I discussed elsewhere.
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Old 09-22-2013   #38
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Default Images From A Terrorist Attack At A Mall In Kenya

Images From A Terrorist Attack At A Mall In Kenya

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--------
Read the full post and make any comments at the SWJ Blog.
This forum is a feed only and is closed to user comments.
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Old 09-22-2013   #39
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I live in Nairobi, Westgate mall is 2km far from my home. Several of my friens and colleagues were in westgate mall when it happened. There was a children cooking contest going on that day and it was just another shopping Saturday for all.
Al Shebaab target this mall because there are a lot of foreigners and it is a symbol of Kenya economicial success. According to AS twitter account, this attack is made to force Kenya to withdraw its troops from Somalia. To me, it is a Mumbay stile attack: a group of armed men entered the mall and started to shoot in the crow.

What is amazing is to see all the people together, helping each others to escape, black, white, indians, muslim, christians... In a Kenya were ethnic group, religion and origins are often an issue: all are together to face this coward act.

The operations were still going on this Sunday at noon (Kenya time).
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Old 09-22-2013   #40
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I think it's certainly a Mumbai-style attack. Monitoring the various twitter feeds, it's apparent that the attackers are being fed live intel and are coordinating efforts with and AS headquarters.
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