Tracing Al Shabaab’s Decision to Cooperate with Al Qaeda in Somalia (2008)
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l Shabaab, a Somali insurgent with predominantly nationalistic causes (alongside transnational [global Jihad] and Islamic goals) made the choice to fight on behalf of Al Qaeda in 2008. The decision to do so contrasted with Al Shabaab’s previous behaviour of actively denying cooperation and distancing itself from Al Qaeda. This study aims to uncover factors that contributed to Al Shabaab’s decision through the use of process-tracing. The results show that Al Shabaab’s declaration of cooperation with Al Qaeda in August 2008 was brought about by a series of events that traced back to four factors: public reactions to the implementation of a Salafi ideology, the shift to a radical leadership, Al Shabaab’s inability to maintain stability in areas under its control and its increasing attacks by Al Shabaab on the Somali public. Al Shabaab pursued cooperation with Al Qaeda after realizing that their nationalistic preference was no longer achievable in the near future.
Sjah, A. (2014). Tracing Al Shabaab’s Decision to Cooperate with Al Qaeda in Somalia (2008). Journal Of Terrorism Research, 5(1), pp. 35-45.
Journal of Terrorism Research
This is an open access article published in Journal of Terrorism Research. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/)
Special Edition issue - Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism in Sub-Saharan Africa
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