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Extremism: Root Causes, Drivers, and Responses

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on November 20, 2015

Four of the eight ‘provinces’ or wilayat of the group’s self-declared caliphate are located in Africa Algeria, Libya, Egypt and Nigeria. While there are questions about the group’s ability to direct affiliates in a unified and coordinated campaign, those who have declared loyalty to ISIS have adopted its signature brutality. Efforts to counter violent extremism... Continue Reading

Trajectories of Terrorist & Armed Groups in Africa

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on November 12, 2015

To block the spread of recruitment and radicalization in West Africa, African policymakers and their partners should seize the window of opportunity to support preventative measures in as-yet untouched communities.  The Africa Center’s Dr. Benjamin P. Nickels, Academic Chair for Transnational Threats and Counterterrorism, offered these observations while participating as a speaker at a recent... Continue Reading

An Interview with Ms Kate Almquist Knopf, Director of the Africa Center

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on October 8, 2015

(This article was originally published on ISN) This month, we talk with Kate Almquist Knopf, who heads the Africa Center for Strategic Studies at the US National Defense University (NDU), Washington, DC. In our interview, Ms Knopf (1) describes ACSS’ mission and areas of activity; (2) highlights the African trends and developments that the Center... Continue Reading

Corruption: A Major Threat to Military Effectiveness

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on September 8, 2015

Corruption contributes directly to insecurity. It has a corrosive effect on combat readiness and effectiveness, undermining the ability to meet national security threats.

The Islamic State and African Terrorism

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on July 17, 2015

The growing competition between the Islamic State (IS) and al-Qaeda for influence on Africa’s terrorist groups was the theme of a recent panel presentation by Drs. Benjamin Nickels and Joseph Siegle from the Africa Center for Strategic Studies. “The advent of the so-called Islamic State has catalyzed something of a re-alignment in African terrorist groups”... Continue Reading

Fundamental Security Challenges Nigeria Must Face, Part 8: Governance

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on June 11, 2015

A common theme for virtually all of Nigeria’s security challenges is poor governance. Until the Nigerian government earns the confidence and trust of its citizens, any security gains realized will not be sustained.

Fundamental Security Challenges Nigeria Must Face, Part 6: Military Professionalism

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on May 14, 2015

Part 1: Identity Part 2: Faultlines Part 3: Extremism Part 4: Boko Haram Part 5: Strategies for combating extremism Part 6: Military professionalism Part 7: Maritime security Part 8: Governance Chadian troops and South African mercenaries were at the forefront of the push in early 2015 to expel Boko Haram from towns the group had... Continue Reading

Fundamental Security Challenges Nigeria Must Face, Part 5: Strategies for Combating Extremism

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on May 7, 2015

Part 1: Identity Part 2: Faultlines Part 3: Extremism Part 4: Boko Haram Part 5: Strategies for combating extremism Part 6: Military professionalism Part 7: Maritime security Part 8: Governance The date was June 11, 2009. Nearly 20 unarmed Boko Haram motorcyclists were fatally shot by police for refusing to wear safety helmets. The episode... Continue Reading

Nigeria’s Moment of Triumph

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on April 13, 2015

Africa Center Dean, Raymond Gilpin, and former Dean, Monde Muyangwa, assess the recently concluded Nigerian presidential election, considered the most transparent and peaceful in Africa’s most populous democracy. The outcome highlights the professionalism of the national election commission, the active engagement by civil society, and the statesmanship of President Goodluck Jonathan. While a host of governance,... Continue Reading

Fundamental Security Challenges Nigeria Must Face, Part 2: Nigeria’s Faultlines

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on April 3, 2015

Part 1: Identity Part 2: Nigeria’s Faultlines Part 3: Extremism Part 4: Boko Haram Part 5: Strategies for combating extremism Part 6: Military professionalism Part 7: Maritime security Part 8: Governance Nigeria’s most talked about faultline is the economic and social imbalance between the relatively underdeveloped, historically marginalized and mainly Muslim north, and the wealthier,... Continue Reading