Islamic Terror groups in Africa

Given the recent news of the Paris terrorist attacks, I would like shift attention onto Africa. Africa is known as a hotspot for instability, and given recent events that occurred within the continent, it proves that Africa is struggling with maintaining stability within its vast lands.

Terrorism as an entity, is a threat to the entire world but Europe is not the only place in the world that suffers from such an entity. Countries such as Kenya, Nigeria, and Somalia have been suffering greatly, and the media does a poor job covering and giving them a spotlight. Kenya recently suffered a mass shooting at a University while the attacks in Paris occurred. Four gunmen stormed the Garissa University, killing the two security guards then proceeded to indiscriminately shoot at the student body. 147 were killed, 500 managed to escape, and 79 were injured. The gunmen were surrounded in the dormitories and and died upon suicide vest detonation. The gunmen were members of the Al-Shabab Islamic terrorist group, and this was reported as their most deadly attack yet. This isn’t the only terrorist group causing havoc.

Nigeria reported attacks by Boko Haram militant group which killed 49 people via suicide bombings. The town of Yola, is a town packed with refugees from Nigeria’s Islamic uprising. The town was the scene of a suicide bomber who killed 34 people, wounding about 80 others. In the northern city of Kano, 15 more people were killed by two other suicide bombers. It is confirmed that Boko Haram is responsible for these attacks and that they were named as the worlds most deadly extremist group in the Global Terrorism Index. Al Shabab also carried out terrorist attacks in Somalia. A car bomb was set off in front of the Presidential Palace in Mogadishu, which killed four people. The intent of the attack was to target the senior Somali and foreign officials. They organized multiple attacks as a hotel known as the ‘Shahafi’ was struck with a car bomb, shot at people then proceeded to have a shootout against security forces.

Given all these incidents, why has the media given little to none coverage of these events? Based on our in class discussions on counter insurgency and third party involvement into country’s civil wars, would the possibility of intervention in a part of the world that is in dire need probable?

Links to full stories on these events

Kenya attack: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-32169080

Nigeria: http://www.cnn.com/2015/11/18/africa/nigeria-blasts/index.html

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/11/17/world/africa/ap-af-boko-haram.html?ref=world&_r=0

Somalia: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/22/world/africa/deadly-car-bombing-at-somalias-presidential-palace-is-claimed-by-shabab.html?ref=topics

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/02/world/africa/-2015-11-02-world-africa-sahafi-shabab-militants-attack-hotel-somalia.html?ref=topics

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6 thoughts on “Islamic Terror groups in Africa

  1. Thank you for the post. I didn’t know that Kenya had similar terror these days. I believe there are more terrors occurring in the Middle East and Africa a lot however, it is not treated as terror in France. This seems the degree of feeling sorry on the terror is different from developed country and underdeveloped country. It is weird that terror in Africa or Middle East happens more than once like in France but people in the world care more about the terror in France. It doesn’t mean the terror in France was small or not a big deal. I mean people in the world and media are evaluating the value of people’s life depend on where they live. This different treat on France terror and other country’s terror might contain different meanings. France is not a place where war is usual so people and media is focusing however, people become hardened to the terror or war became usual countries. It is really sad.

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  2. First of all, that university shooting happened in April, not last weekend. That being said it is absolutely a horrible event that should be, and was, covered extensively all over the globe. the reason terror attacks in places like France get more attention is because of how infrequent they are, as well as how unexpected. With terror attacks happening almost daily in the middle east and Africa it is no wonder the media doe not devote as much time to them as it did Paris. That doesn’t mean the terror attacks inAfrica are unimportant, but because of how often they occur they are seen by the media and the people as largely expected and commonplace.

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  3. Events such as this are terrible to read/hear about. Unfortunately in these regions it may be considered a standard for indiscriminate killings and terror attacks to happen, no matter what organization orchestrates it.

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  4. Even though the attack on the university happened in April, people are just finding out about it now. Just because countries in Africa have experienced more violence than places like Paris does not mean there should less talk about it. I do not think there is enough awareness about the terrorist attacks that have been going on in African countries. I do not think the media covers it enough.

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  5. I think there is less attention given to the Kenya attacks because people are more able to relate to Paris and place themselves in the situation mentally as it is more of a western-centric country. People stereotype Africa as inevitable for warfare, while the Paris attacks came as more of a shock to the American people under the rhetoric of “Terrorist attacks and senseless violence just DOESNT occur on the streets in Europe!” People may have been hit more close to home by the Paris attacks because it invoked fear that if it happened in a western centric country like Paris, it could very well happen here, while very sadly, people possibly (perhaps due to racism?) view attacks on non western centric countries as an “over there” problem.

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  6. Because of all of the conflicts that occur in Africa it would be hard for the media to cover them. These type of events do tend to occur in several places but i believe France got a huge attention base because of the chances of a tragic event happening in that area compared to Africa or the Middle East.

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