News Ticker

The Next Security Crisis

Potential Problems in the Next 6 Months

Mass Causality Terrorist Event in Nairobi or Mombasa

  • Another major terrorist event in Nairobi or Mombasa is probably the most likely and dangerous event that could occur in the next 6 months. Al-Shabaab has become far more aggressive in Kenya since Ahmed Abdi Godane consolidated power within the organization. The Westgate Mall attack in September could be an indicator things to come in the future.

Ethiopia and Egypt Conflict

  • A conflict between Ethiopia and Egypt would certainly be a regional clash of the titans, which could draw Sudan and Eritrea into the fray as well. But both countries cannot afford a conflict. Ethiopia is spending most of its capital on economic development and Egypt is in political turmoil. If Ethiopia and Egypt cannot come to an amendable solution to the Grand Renaissance Dam issue hostilities will likely occur via airstrikes and through the support proxy dissidents in each others countries. It is highly unlikely this would occur in the next 6 months.

Coup in Eritrea

  • Experts have been predicting a coup in Eritrea for years but access to information on events in the closed country is difficult to come by. The ability of President Isaias Afweki to remain in power is impressive given the economic strife and political friction caused by isolation. This is an event that could always occur with little to no warning to the outside world.

Resumption of Ethiopia and Eritrea Hostilities

  • A war between these two states is very unlikely. Neither side wants to resume the conflict that became an economic disaster for both sides. However the posture and proximity of combatants is persistently a cause for concern. Hostilities in the region would probably be very short in duration and not erupt into a widespread conflict.

Religious Conflict in Kenya

  • The uptick of in attacks in Kenya and the continual crackdowns by Kenyan security forces is inflaming religious tension. Even though much of populations anger is geared towards to Somali’s, coastal Arabs have also been the target of security sweeps. A breakdown between Christians and Muslims would resemble the Election violence in 2008 but would occur in northeast Nairobi and in communities along coastal Kenya.

Mass Rioting in Zanzibar

  • Zanzibar’s violence seems to fluctuate but the undertones of discontent are always there. The death of a child or and influential religious leader could easily spark several days of rioting on Zanzibar. The result would be the shutting down of business and the evacuation of tourist. The long term effects to tourism if this happened could last for two fiscal quarters.

Mass Causality Terrorist Event in Ethiopia or Djibouti

  • Both Addis Ababa and Djibouti have taken robust security measures to ensure the safety of their populations and western guests. We assess the capitals of these two nations are two of the safest in the Horn of Africa from terrorist attacks. Even though attacks are difficult to conduct, they are not impossible. Despite the general perception of al-Shabaab being the primary threat in the Horn of Africa, al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) could also target the U.S. forces in Djibouti. Both countries would probably rebound from a single terrorist attack and ongoing security measures would become stricter making another attack even less likely.

Major City in Somalia Falling to al-Shabaab

  • If Baioda, Galkayo, Beletweyne or Kismayo fell into al-Shabaab’s hands a lot of questions would arise concerning the true nature of security progress in Somalia. Kismayo frequently seems the most endangered due to concerns of a Kenyan withdrawal from Somalia and the potential for an exploitable conflict between Darood sub-clans. However al-Shabaab efforts seemed streamlined a year after Ahmed Abdi Godane purged its ranks. Al-Shabaab’s profile and tactics resemble a cell based asymmetric terrorist network as opposed to the larger paramilitary structure it used to be. Holding territory isn’t as important as it once was but seizing it momentary to give the government a black eye could be an effective move.

 

 

 

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