Event Title

Terrorism in Kenya: The Role of Foreign Involvement in Islamic Radicalization

Presenter Information

Sophie Mvurya, Oberlin CollegeFollow

Location

King Building 339

Document Type

Presentation

Start Date

4-29-2016 2:45 PM

End Date

4-29-2016 3:45 PM

Abstract

This paper explores the relationship between terrorism, foreign policies, and Islamic radicalization in Kenya. In the midst of Somalia’s 22-year political crisis, and the subsequent surge in radicalization, American policy appears somewhat paralyzed, or at least divided between the quest for diplomatic solutions and direct military action. This paper reviews the background of Kenya’s invasion of Somalia and concludes that Kenya’s deep-rooted ethnic tensions and patronage politics further undermine the country’s ability to carry out effective foreign policy. The first part discusses the historical marginalization of Kenya’s Muslims, particularly from the northeastern and coastal regions, and examines the nation’s political tyranny. Thereafter it analyzes why and how foreign government involvement in Kenya’s security matters has aggravated the marginalization of Kenyan Muslims. Undoubtedly, the prominence of Al-Shabaab in 2008 provided a platform for Muslims to channel their grievances, thereby increasing radicalization in Kenya.

Notes

Session II, Panel 10 - Border Crossings: Case Studies From Palestine, Kenya, and Iran
Moderator: RaShelle Peck, Faculty-in-Residence, Africana Studies

Major

Politics

Advisor(s)

Kristina Mani, Politics

Project Mentor(s)

Darko Opoku, Africana Studies

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Apr 29th, 2:45 PM Apr 29th, 3:45 PM

Terrorism in Kenya: The Role of Foreign Involvement in Islamic Radicalization

King Building 339

This paper explores the relationship between terrorism, foreign policies, and Islamic radicalization in Kenya. In the midst of Somalia’s 22-year political crisis, and the subsequent surge in radicalization, American policy appears somewhat paralyzed, or at least divided between the quest for diplomatic solutions and direct military action. This paper reviews the background of Kenya’s invasion of Somalia and concludes that Kenya’s deep-rooted ethnic tensions and patronage politics further undermine the country’s ability to carry out effective foreign policy. The first part discusses the historical marginalization of Kenya’s Muslims, particularly from the northeastern and coastal regions, and examines the nation’s political tyranny. Thereafter it analyzes why and how foreign government involvement in Kenya’s security matters has aggravated the marginalization of Kenyan Muslims. Undoubtedly, the prominence of Al-Shabaab in 2008 provided a platform for Muslims to channel their grievances, thereby increasing radicalization in Kenya.