On 5th of July 2018, The Al-Qaeda affiliate in East Africa, Harakat Shabaab Mujahideen movement, fired mortar shells at Kenya Defense Forces (KDF) –AMISOM Contingent Forward Operating Base (FOB) in Fahfadhun area in Sector-2 zone, Gedo Province of Southern Somalia.
The mortar fire struck army sand bags on the perimeter fence and set off alarms but caused no damage on the FOB structure and assets. Assessments shows the accuracy of the militants mortar fire is often off the mark and significantly inferior though it does pose a significant threat if accurate.
Analyzing the event aspects From S.I Threat Lens.
A Notable surge. It’s obvious the Islamists have increased their terrorist’s activities along the north eastern region, particularly in Kenya and Somalia. The attack on the KDF Fahfadhun FOB is the 3rd consecutive sally against Kenyan security forces operating along the border with Somalia.
Avoiding contact to mitigate troop losses. The militants have adopted the strategy of using projectiles and remote controlled explosives to conduct attacks. This is meant to mitigate risk of losing significant number of fighters to the superior and convectional Kenya Army while achieving key battleground objectives.
Summarily, the group continues to demonstrate capability to morph strategies and adapt. This allows them to preserve their small numbers and remain relevant. Kinetic operations and investment in deep cover intelligence operatives can help stymie the surge and destroy the small terrorist’s cells in the borderline regions.