Potential Hot Spots: March 17, 2004


Kenyans are openly discussing the new focus of US and European intelligence agencies on African countries where Al Qaeda may have a presence. But some of the discussion is about how the US and European intelligence presence had little to do with tracking terrorists and everything to do with snooping on Kenyans. Why snoop on Kenyans? That wasnt made clear, except to say that the US and Europeans were sort-of neo-imperialists who sort-of want neo-protectorates. News articles claim there were US Marines operating near the Kenya-Somalia border. Dont dismiss the reports as pure hogwash just because of the anti-colonialist rhetoric. US, European, and for that matter, Kenyan intelligence is very interested in tracking Islamist terrorists in the region. There is a new focus on Somalia as an Al Qaeda lair. It appears local Kenyans have picked up on intelligence agents and police as they collect data and (possibly) track terrorists. Tanzania, to the south of Kenya, also reports more counter-terror sleuthing. About a third of Tanzanias population of 36 million is Muslim.


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