African Studies and African Country Resources @ Pitt: Somalia
This guide provides selected high-quality resources on the global, political, economic, social and cultural aspects of the continent of Africa and its countries. It features individual country pages as well as sources searchable by topic or country.
Since 1991 Somalia has been defined as a failing state, one that lacks an effective central government. The vacuum of power in Somalia, in turn, enabled Al Qaida and other radical Islamic organizations to find allies and refuge in there. Shay’s account shows how the presence of radical Islamic entities in the area, alongside local problems and conflicts, has turned Somalia into a focal point in the global war against terror.
The situation in Somalia today embodies some of the most pressing issues in international relations. From the presence of al-Qaeda operatives to pirates, to what extent is Somalia a threat to global peace and commerce? Which aspects of Somalia's economic, social and political landscape can be considered successful, and how do these ‘success stories’ reflect some of the more problematic issues the country faces? This book sheds light on all of these topics and more. With six contributing authors, the book was published as a special issue of the Journal of Contemporary African Studies.
Somali piracy is repeatedly associated with the historical specter of barbary. Martin Murphy, author of the definitive guide to modern maritime piracy and terrorism, employs his critically-acclaimed approach to review the history, motivation, organization, criminal methods, and operational tactics of Somali piracy, from its initial manifestation in the early-1990s to today. He links their activities and fortunes to the rise and fall of Somalia's political groups; explains how and why violent Islamists operate within Somalia; and outlines the extent to which they may exploit maritime dimensions in the future. He concludes with a consideration of the various political and military solutions being used to meet these challenges.