Britain’s Support Could Be Key To Beating Boko Haram

It has been a quiet holiday period so far, though I kept busy catching up on work and doing a couple of solicited op-eds. This first one was in response to the British Defence Secretary’s announcement of the deployment of more British forces to help Nigeria fight Boko Haram for Newsweek. Another out later in […] Read more »

On the Other Side of the Camp

June marks Immigrant Heritage Month -- and people across the country are sharing their American stories. Whether you've recently embarked on your first day as an American or want to share how your ancestors came to arrive here, we want to hear from you. Add your voice to the conversation today.

I was born in Somalia, but mostly what I remember are flashes of a carefree child, happily unaware of the world beyond the Utanga Refugee Camp in Kenya. About half a mile from our UNHCR-issued blue tent was the fence that surrounded the camp. Beyond the fence was an endless blue horizon of ocean. And if you stood close enough, on the slight precipice before the fence, you could see where the beach welcomed the waves — its sand, sometimes clear and brightly glistening; other times, dark and dusky, casting sad grayish hues. It felt abandoned and desolate. I never saw any people down there. But sometimes I would catch the sight of boats with colorful sails drifting over the waves.

Most of the other children congregated over at the dumpsites and water wells, fashioning toys out of trash and rocks. I kept to myself, a quiet but curious observer exploring the neighborhoods within the camp. I would often come home well past sundown, only to be rightfully scolded by a concerned parent. But those daily, miles-long excursions only left me hungry for more.

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What’s in a Name?: Boko Haram renames itself the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP)

Boko Haram has recently declared its allegiance to the Islamic State (IS) and renamed itself the Islamic State's West Africa Province (ISWAP).

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From Boko Haram to Ansaru: The Evolution of Nigerian Jihad

And another long ago written piece, that has only emerged now, this time an Occasional Paper for my home institution RUSI looking at Boko Haram and the evolution of Nigerian jihad. This was something that I did a little while back when Ansaru were a more prominent threat, and was when I was doing more […] Read more »

President Obama: “Our Fight Against Violent Extremism”

Ed. Note: The following op-ed by President Obama appeared in the Los Angeles Times this morning.

The United States has made significant gains against terrorism. We've decimated the core al Qaeda leadership, strengthened homeland security and worked to prevent another large-scale attack like 9/11.

At the same time, the threat has evolved. The al Qaeda affiliate in Yemen actively plots against us. Since 9/11, terrorists have murdered U.S. citizens overseas, including in the attacks in Benghazi, Libya. Here in the United States, Americans have been killed at Ft. Hood and during the Boston Marathon.

Our campaign to prevent people around the world from being radicalized to violence is ultimately a battle for hearts and minds.

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What We Are Reading

International News Coverage   Middle East, Terrorism and Counterterrorism   Yemen crisis: Houthi rebels announce takeover BBC Yemen’s Shia Houthi rebel movement has announced it is taking over the government and dissolving parliament.   Hadi affirms his presidential resignation final Yemen News Agency / SABA Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi affirmed on Sunday his full determination […]

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