My New Article, "Addressing the Enemy: Al-Shabaab’s PSYOPS Media Warfare" (CTC Sentinel)

The article examines 6 cases of Al-Shabaab’s psychological warfare (PSYOPS) & information and influence and information warfare operations:

(1) the group’s January 2020 Manda Bay airfield attack in Kenya on a military base used by U.S. forces;

(2) 2010 Mogadishu stalemate between Al-Shabaab and the African Union & the start of the Somali insurgent group’s new “jihadi journalism media campaign;

(3) 2011 Dayniile ambush by the group killing scores of Burundian African Union troops;

(4) 2014 Mpeketoni raids by Al-Shabaab on a town and its environs in Kenya blamed by the country’s president (falsely) on his political opponents despite clear evidence to the contrary;

(5) Al-Shabaab’s multi-part campaign to sway the outcome of Kenya’s 2017 general elections;

(6) Al-Shabaab’s leader addressing Americans about the use of national resources abroad despite record mass shootings & natural disasters in U.S. during 2019;

In addition to examining the specifics of each case, I look at how Al-Shabaab attempts to broaden the reach of its PSYOPS propaganda products by attracting attention from external news media. Sometimes successful, its success rate is also mixed. Media warfare demonstrates both Al-Shabab’s significant capabilities but also its limitations, particular operationally in its bid to take over the Somali state.

The article can be read online at the CTC Sentinel’s WEBSITE.

A downloadable PDF of the article is available at my Academia.edu profile page.

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