Government Broadcasting,  Psychological Struggle,  Public Diplomacy

Still unarmed in the struggle for minds and wills

Last month, The New York Times reported on the recruiting successes of Somali-based terrorist group Al Shabab. From Charges Detail Road to Terror for 20 in US by Andrea Elliott:

The case represents the largest group of American citizens suspected of joining an extremist movement affiliated with Al Qaeda, senior officials said. Many of the recruits had come to America as young refugees fleeing a brutal civil war, only to settle in a gang-ridden enclave of Minneapolis. …

The disclosures are the government’s first public account of a recruitment operation that it says has largely focused on Somali-American men from the Minneapolis area. Those young men included Shirwa Ahmed, 26, who carried out a suicide attack in northern Somalia in October 2008, becoming the first known American suicide bomber. Since then, at least five other recruits have been killed in Somalia, relatives and friends say, and four defendants have entered guilty pleas.

There is painfully little in the article about the information war and how the community gets their news from their homeland and home region.

See also:

  • Censoring the Voice of America