Home > AQ General, Articles of interest, Commentary, Somalia > New article on What the Al Qaeda al Shabab merger means for Australia

New article on What the Al Qaeda al Shabab merger means for Australia

Hi folks, I have a new article out at The Conversation focusing on what the recent merger between al Qaeda and al Shabab means for Australia.

Comments as always are welcome. Cheers.

  1. Dr Luke Howie
    04/20/2012 at 11:25 am

    You have deployed some interesting metaphors here – “merger” and its associates “franchise”, “organisation”, “committee” etc. They are business metaphors that ask us to consider AQ in ways that spark a business/managerial imagination.
    I have always resisted these. IMHO, they simplify things. “Merger” seems to imply processes that are probably not present in the case of the links between AQ and groups like al Shabab (in that it seems implausible, but am happy to be shown that I have not considered – or don’t have access to – certain priveleged information). I have always felt that a metaphor such as “merger” was too neat in that it suggests collaborations that don’t seem likely/possible (ie: do they have an AGM; does al Shabab provide financial records to its parent company?).
    Leah, do you consider it a fairly loose metaphor that aids public appreciation of these links, or is it a matter of there being too much chatter for this collaboration to be anything but a close, working alliance.

    Carl Thayer has described this situation as the ‘al Qaedanization’ of the terrorist threat. Every threat can be imagined as an al Qaeda one, even when evidence is scratchy.

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