Kenya, United States, Ethiopia, and Somalia intelligence sharing is at an all time high. All partners are providing information about the movement and all military-political movements of the Somali terror group Harak Al-Shabaab Al-Mujaheddin.
Kenya is major partner in the Global War on Terror and historically an ally of the United States. Today Kenya and the US have forged deeper ties particularly in security matters.
Terrorism is a continuing concern, and joint counter-terrorism operations are helping thwart terrorist plots and mitigate the effects of attacks in Kenya and Somalia both wedged in the terror complex of East Africa.
Kenya has increased its intelligence programs along the border areas and is closely working with the Somali Intelligence Service NISA. It is also conducting operations deep in Southern Somalia to obtain intelligence on possible terrorist attacks however unlikely.
It is in the interest of the United States to see AMISOM succeed hence the open commitment to intelligence gathering and sharing besides military cooperation.
Joint CT Ops & Intelligence Sharing Milestones
These operations have been very successful so far. The following high-value targets, all who are leaders of the Al-Shabaab terror group have been eliminated;
- Ahmed Abdi Godane, also known as Mukhtar Abu Zubair, the Emir/Supreme leader of al-Shabaab
- Yusef Dheeq Al-Shabaab chief of external operations and planning for intelligence and security
- Tahliil Abdishakur Chief of Amniyaat’s elite squad and suicide operations
- Adan Garar al-Shabab’s chief of external operations and member of intelligence brass
Operations Against Militants
Intelligence gathered is shared is analyzed further, objectively, to identify, recommend and execute the most reliable military operation against the identified target.
KDF Air-force and air cavalry have been central in these operations while the United States Predator Drone’s have been used to conduct precision strikes against high-value targets in Al-Shabaab controlled areas.
Predator Drone strikes using hellfire missiles have yielded great results in nipping the leadership of the Al-Shabaab.
“The objective of intelligence sharing and the joint counter-terrorism operations is to eliminate the leadership and mid-level command of the Shabaab completely besides destroy their economic lifeline. Once they are broke, blitz their rag-tag militia out of Somalia.”
This in one of the most successful joint counter-terrorism operations. However, the partnership is not limited, there is cooperation among regional intelligence services.
Future Counter-Terrorism Joint Command
Ethiopia and Kenya enjoy business relations. Their joint counter-terrorism operations in Somalia have strengthened the intelligence sharing.
It will not be a surprise Nairobi, Mogadishu, and Addis Abbaba may form a joint counter-terrorism command to tackle the complex threat of Radical Islamic insurgency.
Such a command will make it easier for the region to deal with the challenge of terrorism which of course follow a discernible cycle — and that cycle and the behaviors associated with it can be observed through such a command.
US, Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia and other key regional players will continue playing the key role of eliminating and mitigating risk of radical Islamist’s insurgency in the region through intelligence sharing and joint counter-terrorism operations.