Erick Stakelbeck

CBN News Terrorism Analyst

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Quick Thoughts on the Kenya Terror Attack

I'm on the road at the moment but wanted to offer some quick thoughts on the Kenya mall massacre carried out by the Somali terror group, Al Shabaab.

--Al Shabaab is a violent al Qaeda-linked group that shares AQ's ideology—that includes hatred for the West, specifically America and Israel.

--Al Shabaab controls large swaths of Somalia. It is the perfect al Qaeda breeding ground—there has been no functioning central government there since 1991 and terrorists can train and operate with impunity.

--The most dangerous aspect of al Shabaab, from an American standpoint, is that dozens of Somali-Americans—U.S. citizens—have traveled to Somalia over the past few years to train and fight with the group. Minneapolis/St. Paul in particular has a huge Somali population that has seen a bunch of young men go to Somalia and die. As a matter of fact, Somali-Americans have actually carried out suicide bombings there, as I documented in my first book, The Terrorist Next Door.

--Could these al Shabbab recruits return home and carry out deadly attacks here on U.S. soil? Remember, these guys have U.S. passports and are citizens, so they can move freely around the country. The nightmare scenario is that a bunch of them decide to carry out a Kenya (or Mumbai) style attack here, possibly hitting the Mall of America in Minneapolis or a similar target.

--This again proves that President Obama's statements that al Qaeda is on the run and nearing defeat are a joke. The AQ hierarchy may have been weakened in Pakistan, but AQ, its allies and affiliates are spreading like wildfire elsewhere, especially in Africa.

--This also shows, like Benghazi, that the jihadists aim to hit Western/Israeli targets around the world, and not just on our soil.

Print     Email to a Friend    posted on Monday, September 23, 2013 7:27 PM

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