So the information keeps coming in. Foreign Policy just released an update on their Failed States research identifying new revelations on Somalia. Foreign Policy concurs that the existence and influence of foreign fighters in Somalia is overstated. Here’s a key quote:
Perhaps even more interesting for Somalia watchers is a June 9, 2009, cable that describes the country’s conflict as a largely clan-against-clan turf war rather than a political or ideological struggle. This explanation conflicts with other popular accounts of the crisis, which tend to focus on religious extremism combined with the potent quest for wealth and security.
As I mentioned in Part 1 of this post, Somalia is about clan before jihad. Only in certain locations and at certain times, which I’ll discuss in Part 2, does ideology drive action. Survival-security trumps ideology for the most part. Unless ideology can provide security…..more to follow.