Posts Tagged al shabaab

Minneapolis Source of Homegrown Terror

From The New York Times:

This city’s struggle with terrorism recruitment showed itself on two fronts Wednesday. In the morning, a Somali-American teenager admitted in court here that he had tried to flee the country and join the Islamic State. Hours later, federal prosecutors and some leaders among the region’s large Somali population announced about $1 million in funding for programs meant to combat just that type of radicalization.

Andrew Luger, the state’s top federal prosecutor, said investigations into terrorism recruitment would continue, but that he hoped young people would be dissuaded from extremism. Mr. Luger said meetings with Somali clergy and parents had brought calls for mentoring programs to help steer troubled teenagers away from terrorist recruiters.

 

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Al-Shabaab Attacks Somali Hotel

From CNN:

The attack began around 5 p.m. when a car bomb exploded at the hotel’s entrance, according to witness Aden Hussein, who said he was meters away from the hotel when the blast happened.

Gunmen then went inside the hotel, shooting people, Hussein said.

One of the attackers, wearing a belt with explosives, blew himself up inside the hotel, police Capt. Ahmed Abdi said

A few hours after the assault began, state-run media reported that security forces stormed the building and killed the remaining assailants.

 

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Gauging the Jihadist Movement, Part 1: The Goals of the Jihadists

Gauging the Jihadist Movement, Part 1: The Goals of the Jihadists is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

By Scott Stewart

Editor’s NoteThe following is the first installment of a five-part series examining the global jihadist movement. Part 2 analyzes insurgent and terrorist theory. Part 3 defines the jihadist movement and evaluates its various elements. Part 4 looks at franchises and grassroots jihadists and Part 5 scrutinizes the al Qaeda core as well as gauging the overall implications for security. 

Quite often when I am doing speaking engagements, client briefings or press interviews, I am asked questions like: “Given the events in Syria and Libya, is the jihadist movement stronger than ever?” It is a good question, but it is also one that is not easily answered in a five-second sound bite or a succinct quote for print media — it really requires some detailed explanation. Because of this, I’ve decided to take some time to provide a more thorough treatment of the subject in written form for Stratfor readers. As I thought through the various aspects of the topic, I came to believe that adequately covering it requires more than one Security Weekly, so I will dedicate a series of articles to it.

When gauging the current state of the jihadist movement, I believe it is useful to use two different standards. The first is to take jihadists’ goals and objectives and measure their progress toward achieving them. The second is to take a look at insurgent theory and terrorism models to see what they can tell us about the state of jihadist militant networks and their efforts. This week we will discuss the first standard: the jihadists’ goals and objectives. Next week we will discuss insurgency and terrorism theories, and then once we have established these two benchmarks we can use them to see how the various elements of the jihadist movement measure up. Read the rest of this entry »

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San Diego Woman Sentenced for Providing Support to Foreign Terrorists

From FBI:

Nima Yusuf, 25, received a custodial sentence of eight years in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for conspiring to provide material support to al Shabaab, a foreign terrorist organization, U.S. Attorney Laura E. Duffy announced today.

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The Expensive, Diminishing Threat of Somali Piracy

The Expensive, Diminishing Threat of Somali Piracy is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

By Ben West

Piracy off the coast of Somalia has dropped off dramatically in 2012. Successful ship hijackings have decreased from 31 in 2011 (and 49 in 2010) to only four so far in 2012. Attacks against ships have also decreased, falling from 199 reported attacks in the first nine months of 2011 to 70 attacks over the same span in 2012 — a 65 percent drop. However, diminished activity does not necessarily mean a decrease in the cost of sailing around the Horn of Africa. Somali pirates occupy a unique position, which is right along highly strategic global shipping lanes yet outside the reach of any national power. For international actors, it is politically and militarily easier to try to contain the Somali piracy threat than to eliminate it. But containment comes at a high cost. Read the rest of this entry »

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Resurgence of al Qaeda

From RAND:

One significant trend is the expansion of al Qaeda’s global network. The leaders of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, al Shabaab in Somalia, al Qaeda in Iraq, and al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (in North Africa) have sworn bayat, or loyalty, to al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri and provided him with funding, global influence, and a cadre of trained fighters. None of these affiliate organizations existed a decade ago. But, over the past several years, attacks by these affiliates have increased.

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Al Shabaab’s Threat to Kenya

From STRATFOR:

By Scott Stewart

The U.S. Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, released a message April 23 informing U.S. citizens in the country that it had received credible information regarding a possible attack against Nairobi hotels or prominent Kenyan government buildings. According to the message, the embassy has reason to believe the attack is in the last stages of the attack planning cycle.

The warning comes as thousands of Kenyan troops occupy much of southern Somalia. Along with a force of Ethiopian troops, local militias and a contingent of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) troops, the Kenyans are placing heavy pressure on the al Qaeda-linked Somali militant group al Shabaab in southern Somalia.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Al Shabaab Threats Against the United States?

This report is republished with permission of STRATFOR

By Scott Stewart

On the afternoon of Sunday, May 30, an Aeromexico flight from Paris to Mexico City was forced to land in Montreal after authorities discovered that a man who was on the U.S. no-fly list was aboard. The aircraft was denied permission to enter U.S. airspace, and the aircraft was diverted to Trudeau International Airport in Montreal. The man, a Somali named Abdirahman Ali Gaall, was removed from the plane and arrested by Canadian authorities on an outstanding U.S. warrant. After a search of all the remaining passengers and their baggage, the flight was allowed to continue to its original destination.

Gaall reportedly has U.S. resident-alien status and is apparently married to an American or Canadian woman. Media reports also suggest that he is connected with the Somali jihadist group al Shabaab. Gaall was reportedly deported from Canada to the United States on June 1, and we are unsure of the precise charges brought against him by the U.S. government, but more information should be forthcoming once he has his detention hearing. From the facts at hand, however, it appears likely that he has been charged for his connection with al Shabaab, perhaps with a crime such as material support to a designated terrorist organization.

Last week, the Department of Homeland Security issued a lookout to authorities in Texas, warning that another Somali purportedly linked to al Shabaab was believed to be in Mexico and was allegedly planning to attempt to cross the border into the United States. This lookout appears to be linked to a U.S. indictment in March charging another Somali man with running a large-scale smuggling ring bringing Somalis into the United States through Latin America.

Taken together, these incidents highlight the increased attention the U.S. government has given to al Shabaab and the concern that the Somali militant group could be planning to conduct attacks in the United States. Although many details pertaining to the Gaall case remain unknown at this time, these incidents involving Somalis, Mexico and possible militant connections — and the obvious U.S. concern — provide an opportunity to discuss the dynamics of Somali immigration as it relates to the U.S. border with Mexico, as well as the possibility that al Shabaab has decided to target the United States. Read the rest of this entry »

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