Global Security Watch--Kenya

Global Security Watch--Kenya

Global Security Watch--Kenya

Global Security Watch--Kenya


The geographic position and historical experience of Kenya make it strategically vital to Greater East Africa and to other nations desiring to influence events in Africa. At the crossroads of Arab and African cultures, Kenya faces the threat of transnational terrorism and other diverse 21st-century security challenges-challenges that may threaten sub-Saharan Africa as a whole.


Serious and sustained effort is needed for the study of the continent of Africa today, particularly as it pertains to strategy in international politics, strategy being that which connects political objectives with military capabilities. Due to its geography, history, and politics, Kenya is integral to events in and around Africa. To explore these issues in detail, this book examines the strategic dimensions of Kenya—and their bearing on Greater East Africa and the United States. in order to understand Kenya’s strategic significance, the Kenya Armed Forces must be analyzed as well as Kenya’s most important bilateral relationships.

Why Kenya? Why now? Kenya has played a significant role in the politics and security of Greater East Africa, in the past and today. Since the British established their foothold along the western Indian Ocean region, Kenya, particularly its southern third from Kisumu to Nairobi to Mombasa, developed into the premier political and economic center of British East Africa and a convenient location from which to traverse into Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and the Indian subcontinent. Today, Kenya’s geographic importance in Greater East Africa is greater, given the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, insurgencies in Somalia and Yemen, and the potential for renewed conflict in Africa’s two geographically largest countries, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The book is meant to inform the general public, students, scholars, and policymakers in the United States about the strategic dimensions of Kenya. Less attention is afforded to Kenya’s purely domestic political issues, though they are discussed when and where relevant to Kenya’s strategic dynamics. Research for the book was completed on September 27, 2009.

It goes without saying that a project such as this would not have been possible without the time, assistance, and forbearance of many individuals and institutions.

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