Thursday, March 7, 2013

Countering Extremism in Africa

The George Washington University Homeland Security Policy Institute published a useful reminder on 6 March 2013 titled "Pardon the Pivot, What about Africa? African Lessons for Avoiding Myopic National Security."  The authors are Frank Cilluffo, Joseph Clark and Clinton Watts. 

The analysis offers a good summary of the security threats that exist in Africa, especially the Sahel region, and suggests a number of questions that need better answers.  In my view, the most important question is what are the political, economic, environmental, social, religious and cultural issues that create a safe haven for extremist groups in Africa.  In other words, what are the root causes of extremism?  Once an answer to this question is agreed upon, it might be possible to make some real progress in combating extremism in the region.

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