51 comments

  • westgate shooting

    CNN) — Gunmen ambushed an upscale shopping mall in the Kenyan capital on Saturday, leading to a fierce gunbattle with police and at least 20 people killed, the Kenyan Red Cross said.

    Fifty people more people were wounded in the attack at the mall in Nairobi, said Abbas Gullet, head of the Kenyan Red Cross.

    The gunmen burst into the mall and shot indiscriminately, taking some people hostage, according to a senior Kenyan government source.

    It was unclear how many hostages the attackers took, but police are trying to negotiate for their release and retake the building, according to the source.

    Attackers appear to be of Somali origin, a Kenyan government source and Western diplomatic sources told CNN.

    The military asked local media not to televise anything live because the gunmen are watching the screens in the mall.

    Crowds fled down the streets as soldiers in military fatigues crawled under cars to get closer to the mall, guns cocked.

    Surveillance helicopters flew overhead.

    “We urge Kenyans to keep off Westgate mall, adjacent roads and its environs until further notice,” the Interior Ministry said on its Twitter page.

    It declined to release further information, saying it will issue a statement later.

    “We’re doing our job to ensure that everyone is evacuated to safety,” the ministry said. “This is a scene of crime, let police do their job.”

    CNN affiliate NTV reported multiple shooters were at the scene and terrified shoppers were hiding inside the mall, which is popular among expatriates and the wealthy.

    The high-end mall opened six years ago, and has more than 80 stores.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2013/09/21/world/africa/kenya-mall-gunbattle/index.html

  • Poleni sana Wakenya>Kenyans Must demand the Emediate Resignition of Uhuru/Ruto Government and hand-over Kenya Govrnment to Raila Odinga Who is acceptable by all peace-loving Kenyans>But before that the Sleeping Kikuyu-Gema organization(NSIS) top chiefs must resign !NSIS has failed to defend and protect the People of Kenya. The Useless corrupt Kikuyu-Gema organization has failed miserably to protect and defend Kenya borders. NSIS is busy 24 hrs following and intimidating Cord leaders and threatening and killing the ICC witnesses!
    Witnesses are dissapearing misteriously from their homes, We appeal to the ICC to detain William Ruto hence Uhuru Kenyatta will not appear at Hague!

  • westgate shooting

    (Reuters) – Gunmen stormed a shopping mall in Nairobi on Saturday killing at least 15 people in what Kenya’s government said might be a terrorist attack, and sending scores fleeing into shops, a cinema and onto the streets in search of safety.

    Sporadic gun shots could be heard hours after the assault started as soldiers surrounded the mall and police combed the building, hunting down the attackers shop by shop. Some local television stations reported hostages had been taken, but there was no official confirmation.

    The Somali militant group al Shabaab, which Kenya blames for shootings, bombings and grenade attacks against churches and the security forces, had threatened to strike the Westgate mall, popular with the city’s expatriate community. The chain of attacks follows action by Kenyan forces against al Qaeda-linked militants in Somalia two years ago.

    Police helicopters circled above the mall as armed police shouted “get out, get out”, and scores of shoppers fled the building. Smoke poured out of one entrance and witnesses said they heard grenade blasts.

    Others said they saw about five armed assailants storm the Westgate shopping mall and that the incident appeared to be an attack rather than an armed robbery.

    “They don’t seem like thugs, this is not a robbery incident,” said Yukeh Mannasseh who was on the mall’s top floor when the shooting started. “It seems like an attack. The guards who saw them said they were shooting indiscriminately.”

    Kenya’s Ministry of Interior said: “It is a possibility that it is an attack by terrorists, so we are treating the matter very seriously.”.

    Asked if foreign security services were involved in the operation to flush out the attackers, he said, “At this stage it has not become necessary yet.”

    One eyewitness who identified himself as Taha said he heard the screech of brakes followed moments later by an explosion and then sustained gun fire from the ground floor.

    Another survivor said he was shot by a man who looked Somali.

    Some shoppers ran up stairs and escalators and hid around the mall’s cinema complex. Police found another terrified group hiding in a toilet on the first floor.

    At least two dozen wounded were wheeled out on stretchers and shopping trolleys. Many of the victims had multiple light wounds, apparently from flying debris. Other walked out, some with bloodied clothing wrapped around wounds.

    The Kenyan Red Cross told Reuters at least 15 had been killed and more casualties were still inside the complex.

    “The casualties are many, and that’s only what we have on the outside,” Kenya Red Cross Society Secretary General Abbas Guled said. “Inside there are even more casualties and shooting is still going on.”

    “CARNAGE”

    Al Shabaab have previously threatened to launch strikes on Nairobi’s tower blocks and soft targets including nightclubs and hotels known to be popular with Westerners in the capital. But they have so far failed to carry out such an attack.

    “I personally touched the eyes of four people and they were dead. One of them was a child,” said one former British soldier at the scene.

    “It’s carnage up there.”

    Asked if the attack was a robbery, one paramilitary officer said: “No, terrorist”. There has, though, been no official statement from the police regarding the attackers’ motive.

    Police cordoned off the roads surrounding the mall in central Nairobi’s Westlands neighborhood.

    Satpal Singh, who was in another cafe on the mall’s top floor said he ran downstairs when he heard the gunfire and was shot at near the mall’s main exit.

    “A Somali guy shot at me. The guy who shot me was carrying a rifle, an AK-47,” 36-year-old Singh said.

    (Reporting by Edmund Blair and Goran Tomasevic; Writing by Richard Lough; Editing by Ralph Boulton)

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/21/us-kenya-attack-idUSBRE98K03V20130921

  • Let Uhuru Kenyatta and His Nsis Know that >He won’t Stop The ICC from hearing his case no matter What>The attack in Nairobi Seems to have targeted Westerners >There must be a crystal crear investigation hence this smachs rat(Questionable) Uhuru and his Jubilee has become anti-Western democracy and >his attack dog (Duale is of Somali origin wh is a questionable charactor!!! It is an oppen secret that Al -shaabab head and tail is in Nairobi !Thistragedy (Attack) Must be investigated by FBI/Mossad/Mi5/6 Cis etc. hence Why only did it happen when Uhuru Kenyatta ICC case is nigh!Let investigation prove otherwise!

  • who is Keen observer: diagnosis according to your statement in the face of what has just happened you are a lunatic

  • natuma risala za rambirambi kwa wale wote walio athirika na mkasa huu mungu atawapigania cz its very bad kumwaga damu isiyo na hatia

  • this avery deep secret we say kusema na kutenda

  • First things first…let’s first deal with helping the hostage then blame tha NSIS and #uhuruto

    • KSB: Kelvin, if the root cause of the attack is not addressed, Kenya may have to deal with another hostage situation next week or next month in a never ending cycle.

  • Go Look Yourselves in The Mirror

    These are Kind MAMAS (Truly Loving Mothers)than Al-Shaababs and many other African Dictators>

  • This attack occurs in the midst of contentious war-crimes trials of Kenya’s leaders by the International Criminal Court. Both Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta, and Deputy President, William Ruto, are being tried for crimes against humanity. The families of witnesses have been threatened and coerced. This is to say that Kenya’s leaders are not good people, and they will go to great lengths to stay in power.

    The confluence of the attack and the trials could worsen the situation.

  • paul S. Ole Kashu

    They caught us unaware, but we shall deal with them. Keep up the kenyan spirit of love and togetherness

  • Paul Hope Not Saul Umenishangaza

    Mr Paul S Ole Kashu ,Why do they always caught us unaware?Is there anything wrong with our brains? Have you ever sat down and ask yourself whats wrong with nigger weakness ?Do you regard yourselves as normal human being?How shall you deal with Kenya crisis and when?
    First came AlQaida in both Kenya and Tanzania! then Kikambala Hotel ? Other times in Nairobi and Mombasa:Dont even Count Garrissa/Moyale /Mandera/Tana river And now Westgate When will We Kenyans caught Aware?????????? Some times is better to shut-up and thibk not with our backs but our brains if we have!

  • Samantha Lewthwaite

    ‘White Widow’ Samantha Lewthwaite feared to be behind Nairobi shopping mall massacre

    Two innocent children stand bewildered beside the body of a man gunned down in the Nairobi shopping mall massacre.

    The youngsters, one clutching two chocolate bars, were caught up in the atrocity that has left at least 68 dead – including three Brits.

    Just yards away explosions and gunfire rang out as Kenyan troops moved from shop to shop in a series of firefights with crazed terrorists and late last night tweeted they had freed most hostages.

    And last night it was feared that one of the ringleaders of the bloody attack is a British mother of three.

    Fanatical Samantha Lewthwaite, dubbed the White Widow, is a key member of al-Shabaab, the militant group which has claimed responsibility for the slaughter.

    The British soldier’s daughter, from Aylesbury, Bucks, is an Islam convert whose husband was one of the suicide bombers in the 7/7 attacks on London.

    Unconfirmed sources claimed that 29-year-old Lewthwaite may even be among the masked gun gang still under siege in the Westgate mall last night.

    An image on social networking websites appeared to show a balaclava-clad white woman holding a gun.

    In a Twitter message terror group al-Shabaab praised the White Widow and boasted that she was with them.

    On a site that has been repeatedly closed down, they wrote: “Sherafiyah lewthwaite aka samantha is a vrave (sic) lady! were happier to have her in our ranks!” In another posting they warned: “This is no more than a drill for a bigger event!”

    The bloodbath has left at least 175 seriously injured, including children as young as two. It began at about 1pm on Saturday when up to 15 heavily armed fanatics stormed the plush complex in the north west of the city and opened fire as they chanted jihad slogans.

    One mum who was at a kids’ cookery event in the mall told how she tried to protect 30 to 40 children as the bullets flew. Kamal Kaur said: “People were hysterical. The terrorists threw two grenades at us and they shot at us. My son, who is eight, just missed being shot.

    “My daughter was pulling him down and I was trying to pull the little boy next to him out of the way. Unfortunately a bullet or a grenade bounced off the wall and it hit the boy in his neck and chest area. He fell over, bleeding profusely. I was telling all the children to lie flat – just lie there and not scream or shout, just keep calm.”

    Within minutes of the carefully planned assault pools of blood smeared the pristine hallways and scores of bodies lay strewn across the floor.

    At one burger bar, a man and woman lay in a final embrace after being killed. The shooters targeted non-Muslims by asking them the name of the Prophet Muhammad’s mother before mercilessly slaying those who did not know.

    The city’s four hospitals struggled to cope with the number of wounded.

    Terrified patients besieged casualty units as volunteers helped distraught relatives find their loved ones.

    Briton Neil Saville, believed to work for global development company Dalberg in Nairobi, was among the wounded. He was undergoing surgery at the Aga Khan hospital last night after being shot in the chest.

    Colleague Jason Wendle said: “Thankfully he is stable and it is not life threatening, but we’re all in shock.”

    State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu confirmed reports of a white woman among the terror gang. A Kenyan police source said: “Samantha Lewthwaite is target number one.”

    As security forces prepared to launch a final assault last night in an attempt to end the bloodshed, government officials revealed the fanatics were holding at least 30 hostages.

    A senior source said: “There is a strong possibility that Samantha Lewthwaite could be one of the terrorists. We have reports that at least one, possibly two women were involved in this siege.”

    He added: “There are strong indications Lewthwaite has the capability and influence within al-Shabaab to carry out such an atrocity.”

    Lewthwaite, whose Muslim fundamentalist husband Jermaine Lindsay, blew himself up on a Piccadilly Line train during the 7/7 attacks in 2005, is also wanted over a bomb plot to kill hundreds of British tourists in Mombasa. Together with her British accomplice Jermaine Grant, the pair were days away from carrying out their attack before being arrested in December 2011.

    Grant from East London, is due to stand trial in Mombasa today. He was snared before their deadly plan succeeded but Lewthwaite escaped and has been on the run ever since. She recently wrote on her blog: “Fear can make you do many things.”

    David Cameron condemned the latest atrocity. He said: “These terrorists do not represent Islam or Muslims in Britain or anywhere else in the world.”

    Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta last night vowed to defeat the militants – after revealing that some of his close family members, including a nephew, were among the dead.

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/white-widow-samantha-lewthwaite-feared-2294212

  • uhuruto bure sana

    We have westgate terror== solution is Commision of inquiry. Commisioners mint millions and no substance solution produced.

    Ruto says Terrorists target unemployed youth.=== Very true. But even uhuruto have not mentioned or adressed serious unemployment in the country.
    we know unemployment causes
    1 Insecurity and bringing crime up
    2 Terrorist recruit easily our youth
    3 High dependancy on government
    4 Broke government(no taxes)

    We have JKIA== we will not know what or who burned it. and that will remain unknown.courtest uhuru govt.

    Adding salt to injury high wage bill and impractical ideas e.g laptops.

    A fresh one Now teachers threaten strike in marking exams. == Poor education standard.

    Corrupt police equals westgate, and etc which translates to the westerners moving out bringing down the economy. — Where are the dragons when you need them.
    None of all these issues have been adressed by the socalled dynamic duo. in a serious manner. or some folks can spin and say ” lets give them more time”

    Al shabab have noticed how disorganized our security forces are and how easily you can bribe police and get away with anything. That alone tarnslates into even more chaos in the future lord forbid.

    How can you woo investors when you have all these going on at one time.

    NOTE … It is one thing to have a cosmetic government and one thing to have a functioning effective government. Same theory as lipstick on a pig. it still remains a nonperforming pig.

  • Kenya attack: GEJ’s anti-terrorism offer sparks anger

    September 24, 2013 by Temitayo Famutimi

    Remarks by President Goodluck Jonathan assuring Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta, and the citizens that the Nigerian Government will help avert a recurrence of terrorist attack has sparked public outrage.

    Members of the Al-Shabaab militant group had, on Saturday, laid siege to Westgate Mall, an upscale shopping centre in Nairobi, popular with Kenyan elite and foreigners, killing 68 people, including Kenyatta’s nephew and his fiancée; Ghanaian poet, 78-year-old Kofi Awoonor, and injuring over 150.

    A standoff had ensued between the Kenyan security forces and the attackers, who were reported to be heavily armed and holding an unknown number of hostages in the mall.

    While commiserating with the Kenyan government, Jonathan said in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, that “the Federal Government will give all possible support and assistance to Kenya in its efforts to contain the scourge of terrorism and avoid a recurrence of yesterday’s (Saturday’s) heinous attack on Nairobi.”

    But many Nigerians who caught up with the President’s message online say he “should mind his business” and preoccupy his government with putting an end to the extremism and security challenges posed by Boko Haram in his backyard, before offering to help contain and defeat terrorism abroad.

    A cross section of Nigerians who criticised the President quoted the popular saying that “charity begins at home.” They asked Jonathan not to contemplate sending soldiers abroad; with many arguing that it will amount to a misplacement of priority.

    A Facebook user, Oludare Olufote, urged the Kenyan government to reject Jonathan’s offer of assistance, saying he was only trying to depict himself as a true African leader.

    “Candid advice to Kenya: Combat terrorism with your efforts, combined with other strong nations, not Nigeria. Our President is only trying to make himself a true African leader, which he is. But the question is, what will become the story of a man whose house is in a shambles and looks into putting orderliness in a neighbour’s house?” Olufote argues.

    Solomon Idoko describes Jonathan’s statement as an absurdity. “Absurdity or what? Anti-terrorism assistance to Kenya! Jonathan can see the speck in his brother’s eye, but he is unable to notice the log in his own eye. I think we should start praying for the leadership of this nation,” Idoko wrote on Facebook.

    But some Nigerians felt that the President might be planning to secretly deploy troops to the East African nation to fight the al-Shabaab militants. They, however, warned him against taking such a decision.

    One Joseph Ubiagba says, “The Federal Government must not let Nigerians lose their temper. We have terrorists all over the place in this country and you cannot check them. They are killing and maiming Nigerians almost on a daily basis.

    “I hope you people have conscience. People who have conscience won’t talk like that. The day you people remove one kobo to go and fight terrorists in Kenya, the almighty God will visit you people with his anger as has never been seen before.”

    On nairaland.com, a respondent with the name Lerteee writes, “The fear of al-Shaabab should be the beginning of wisdom. Uncle Jona, abeg, Boko Haram, Ombatse and Niger Delta boys don do us. Please and please, don’t allow these militants to visit Nigeria; they are deadlier. Why, in the first place, did they attack Kenya? I guess it is for the same reason that Kenya interfered in Somalia’s business. Nigeria has too much trouble already.”

    Meanwhile, President Jonathan was also rebuked for allegedly leading a life different from his words. According to some online commentators, the Kenyan President appeared more serious with the fight against terrorism than his Nigerian counterpart.

    Another respondent on nairaland.com, Balla Briggs, says, “You see, the situation in Kenya now is that about 68 people have been killed. In one week in Nigeria, we have lost close to 68 people too. Have you seen the Kenyan President voice over our situation? No, because he has his own mess to deal with.

    “President Jonathan has not even spoken about the killings in Nigeria in the last week, yet he deems it fit to put his mouth in Kenya’s palaver. This is a joke of a leader. The Kenyan President rightly cancelled his trip to the UN General Assembly because he recognised there was a problem. Yet, President Jonathan who lost over 68 people to Ombatse, Apo and Boko Haram killings has travelled to New York City for the UN meeting.”

  • kenya fighting for the west

    Kenya’s suffering reflects its admirable action in Somalia

    The Globe and Mail

    Published Monday, Sep. 23 2013, 7:30 PM EDT

    Al-Shabab’s brazen attack on Nairobi’s Westgate Mall was the desperate act of a terrorist force on the wane, a brutal way of punishing Kenya for its recent efforts to oust the al-Qaeda-affiliated militia from its homeland of Somalia.

    “We’ll not negotiate with the Kenyan govt as long as its forces are invading our country, so reap the bitter fruits of your harvest,” al- Shabab ominously tweeted last weekend.

    But Kenya, in many ways, was simply carrying out the West’s bidding. As the death toll continues to mount from the horrific attack, it is now incumbent on the West to stand by Kenya, which now faces tough questions on how to move beyond what some are calling its “9/11 moment.”

    The attack also serves as grim reminder that there is no such thing as an arms-length intervention. While Washington has carried out limited drone strikes in Somalia, it has largely depended on African forces to combat al-Shabab on the ground, which merged with al-Qaeda last year.

    Indeed, the attack has brought into sharp relief how crucially important Kenya has become as an ally, as al-Qaeda’s franchises in the Horn of Africa evolve.

    In 2011, “Linda Nchi” (Swahili for “Protect the country”) was a joint operation of the Somali, Kenyan, French and American militaries. It was Kenyan troops, however, who crossed the border by the thousands into southern Somalia in the wake of the abduction of several foreign tourists and aid workers inside Kenya.

    The invasion, of course, was about much more than that. Under the influence of al-Shabab, Somalia had become a lawless haven where piracy and kidnappings flourished. Kenya’s incursion was largely successful in driving al-Shabab out of strategic strongholds, allowing the Somali government to consolidate its power in the capital, Mogadishu, and extend its influence beyond.

    With the Westgate attack, however, a splintered but more radicalized al-Shabab has demonstrated its ability to strike outside its homeland. The West and its African allies should continue to work together to assess and respond to what happened in Nairobi. Kenya’s decision to entangle itself in Somalia did not happen in isolation. The casualties of Westgate include scores of foreigners, including two Canadians. Kenya’s bitter fruit, in many ways, is all of ours to harvest.
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/editorials/kenyas-suffering-reflects-its-admirable-action-in-somalia/article14485804/

  • Kimaiyo the idiot
  • so sad. i luck words to say, may God have mercy on us. Lets repent and ask God to forgive and remember us. Peace of God. Shalom.

  • Westgate stories

    In Kenya, attackers used ‘less is more’ strategy

    By RUKMINI CALLIMACHI, Associated Press | October 5, 2013

    NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Salim Massebellah had just reached the parking lot at Nairobi’s premiere mall. Private guards inspected his trunk, then passed a mirror underneath his vehicle, checking for the exposed wires that would indicate a bomb. That was the weapon of choice of al-Shabab, the terrorist group Kenyans had been warned might one day target their capital.

    Moments later, the shooting erupted. The terrified guards ran, dropping the mirror. It hit the pavement with a clang.

    Sitting stiffly at the wheel, Massebellah saw the two attackers pass by his car. Each one was holding a single, belt-fed machine gun. What neither of them was wearing was a suicide vest. “They were shooting indiscriminately,” said Massebellah. “There was nothing the guards could have done.”

    Experts say the attackers’ choice of weapons, including AK-47s and grenades, was decidedly low-tech for al-Shabab, the al-Qaida affiliate based in neighboring Somalia which is known for their lethal use of suicide bombers. And it’s this very decision to use small arms, instead of explosives, that made possible the most deadly terrorist attack in Kenya since the 1998 bombing of the United States embassy, analysts say.

    If copied elsewhere, including in Western countries, this style of attack could prove equally difficult to stop, both because public places like malls cannot be protected in the same manner as government buildings, and because security services are trained to detect explosives, not small arms.

    “My assessment has always been that the day that al-Shabab lets go of the ‘Cult of the Suicide Bomber,’ we will be in world of trouble,” said Matt Bryden, the former coordinator of the United Nations Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea. “It’s far more complicated to procure the parts for an explosive vest, as well as to find people willing to be martyrs. I always worried that if you just get guys riding in with AK-47s and grenades, they could do incredible damage,” he said. “We have now reached that dangerous place.”

    CCTV footage retrieved from Westgate Mall shows only four attackers took part in the prolonged siege, though others may have been a part of the Sept. 21 attack and fled, according to a government official close to the investigation who insisted on anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on the matter. This handful of fighters easily overpowered the mall’s unarmed security guards, killing over 60 civilians and leaving the mall awash in blood. It would be hours before Kenya’s notoriously dysfunctional military arrived on the scene in force, leaving petrified shoppers to fend for themselves.

    At the front entrance of the mall, 37-year-old Mamtaz Jamal ran a promotional table selling creams. That morning she had carefully laid out one of her tubs of milk-and-honey scrub, putting a decorative halo of pebbles around the circular pot. She heard an earsplitting bang, and looked up to see the glass walls of a nearby jewelry shop shattering.

    The attackers had lobbed a grenade inside. She ran, looking back just long enough to see that one of the attackers had grabbed a Caucasian man. He was holding him by the back of the neck, forcing him to walk in front, like a human shield. “With his other hand he was shooting,” said Jamal.

    It was as if the fighter was expecting to be met with return fire. But the first men to return fire, including off-duty cops and members of a neighborhood watch group, were using pistols to fight hardened terrorists with automatic weapons.

    “Perhaps the most alarming thing about the operation is that it was low-tech,” says Richard Downie, the deputy director of the Africa program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “Clearly someone has realized that you don’t need to assemble bombs and suicide vests. All you need is some light arms and grenades, then you choose a soft target — and off you go,” says Downie, who testified before Congress this week on al-Shabab’s evolving tactics.

    Former FBI agent Don Borelli, who investigated al-Shabab’s 2010 attack in Uganda, said that even in the United States, law enforcement would struggle to contain an attack of this nature. “To be quite honest, we are not protected. The average mall in the U.S. does not involve walking through metal detectors. It’s a very soft target. The security there wouldn’t be any match for a group of people with assault weapons. Even a police officer is not designed to stand up to military weapons … So in terms of vulnerability, we are very vulnerable.”

    Al-Shabab, meaning “The Youth” in Arabic, carried out its first suicide attack in Somalia in 2006. By 2008, the group was dispatching multiple bombers to different locations who carried out simultaneous attacks. While their tactics were deadly in their homeland, their reliance on explosives made it difficult for them to export terror beyond Somalia’s borders, said Bryden, now the executive director of Sahan, a Kenya-based think tank.

    One major exception was an al-Shabab bomb attack during the screening of the 2010 World Cup final in Uganda’s capital in July 2010. More than 70 people were killed. Since then, the group has tried on multiple occasions to smuggle explosives into Kenya.

    “These plans have without exception been detected, or disrupted. What it suggested is that moving explosives and components for bombs has proven too difficult,” says Bryden.

    It’s also much easier to recruit attackers, if the plan does not involve dying. Bryden, who has spent two decades researching Somalia, says that in the past, al-Shabab has struggled to find Kenyans willing to partake in suicide missions. The fact that the fighters at Westgate were speaking Swahili to each other, the national language of Kenya, suggests that they succeeded. It’s not yet known if the attackers managed to escape after the attack.

    Hints of a change in tactics could be seen earlier this year in Mogadishu. In April, al-Shabab attacked the country’s Supreme Court, using a suicide bombing to breach the perimeter before unleashing gunmen inside. In June, they attacked a U.N. compound, using explosives to blow up the main gate. Gunmen rushed inside, slaughtering around a dozen people.

    “Suicide bombings have been the centerpiece of every major, spectacular al-Shabab attack over the last seven years. And it’s only in 2013 that we have seen attacks in which suicide bombers have become accessories to the main assault, which is carried out by gunmen,” says Bryden. “Suicide bombers are no longer the center of gravity of al-Shabab tactics — and that is the shift that has enabled the attack to take place here in Nairobi.”

    As of Saturday, the death toll stood at 67 people killed. Massebellah survived by sitting like a statue, his car stopped in front of the drop arm, as people were slaughtered around him in the parking lot. Nearby, a man was killed at the wheel of his car. His 13-year-old daughter survived by playing dead next to her father’s corpse.

    Jamal survived by hiding inside a women’s clothing shop, huddling in the back with other frightened shoppers. Alongside her was her colleague, who had been hit by shrapnel in the leg. When it became clear that no one was coming for them, she found a pair of scissors inside the store and used it to cut off his jeans.

    She took a scarf off of the rack to tourniquet his bleeding leg.

    ___

    Associated Press writer Tom Odula contributed to this report.

  • Al Qaeda template

    Al Qaeda Template

    The operation ticks the boxes that al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri listed in a message published just over a week ago.

    1. Ensure the target is Western. The Westgate Mall has several Israeli establishments and is popular with expatriates. Those killed include three British citizens, two French nationals and two Canadians, their governments said. In his September 13 message, al-Zawahiri warned against attacks on non-Western states unless the regime was part of “the American forces.” Kenya, with its long tradition of pro-Western governments and close relationships with Western militaries, fits that bill.

    2. Take hostages where possible. Al-Zawahiri recommended taking “the citizens of the countries that are participating in the invasion of Muslim countries as hostages so that our prisoners may be freed in exchange.”

    3. Try to avoid Muslim casualties. Al-Shabaab claimed on its Twitter feed that the gunmen escorted Muslims out of the mall, before turning on the “disbelievers” inside. Witnesses said the gunmen at the Westgate tried to identify Muslims by asking shoppers the name of Mohammed’s mother. They shot those who didn’t know.

    Nairobi is vulnerable to Al-Shabaab attacks not least because of the large Somali community, many of them refugees from the country’s long-running clan warfare, that lives in the Eastleigh district. Known as “little Mogadishu,” Eastleigh is now home to an estimated 250,000 Somalis. And Al-Shabaab is well established there, raising money, finding recruits and setting up safe houses.

    Al-Shabaab also has an ally in the militant Kenyan group al Hijra, formerly the Muslim Youth Center, which has a strong presence in Eastleigh and in the coastal city of Mombasa. Investigators will be examining whether al Hijra played a role in the attack on the Westgate mall. Kenyan al Hijra militants are suspected to have been responsible for several of the small-scale terrorist attacks that have hit the country.

  • embassy bombings

    Fast facts: The embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania
    By CNN Library
    October 6, 2013 — Updated 0718 GMT (1518 HKT) CNN.com

    Editor’s note: This is one in a series of Fast Facts offered from the CNN Library giving a more in-depth look at a person or topic in the news.

    (CNN) — With the capture of Abu Anas al Libi over the weekend, the U.S. embassy bombings in Nairobi, Kenya; and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, are once again in the news.

    Al Libi, an al Qaeda leader, was wanted for his alleged role in the deadly 1998 bombings of the two embassies in Africa.

    Here are some fast facts about the attacks:

    DATE

    August 7, 1998

    NAIROBI ATTACK

    — 224 people were killed in Kenya, including 12 Americans.

    — Approximately 4,650 more were wounded.

    — The bomb in Nairobi was delivered in a truck to the rear entrance of the embassy,

    — Exploded at about 10:35 a.m. local time.

    — Back of the five-story embassy was severely damaged and a building adjacent to the embassy was leveled.

    DAR ES SALAAM ATTACK

    — A total of 10 people were killed in Tanzania, all Tanzanians employed by the embassy.

    — The bomb at the U.S. embassy in Dar es Salaam went off at about 10:40 a.m. local time.

    — It severely damaged the southeastern corner of the three-story embassy building.

    U.S. RESPONSE

    — On August 20 the U.S. fired some 75 Tomahawk cruise missiles at facilities in Afghanistan and Sudan in response to terrorist activities.

    — U.S. President Clinton said the strikes were a response to an “imminent threat” to the U.S. posed by a terrorist network backed by Osama bin Laden.

    — Clinton said that the U.S. had “convincing information” that the network organized and financed by bin Laden had carried out the bombings in Kenya and Tanzania.

    — He also blamed bin Laden’s followers for other previous attacks and plots.

    INDICTMENTS

    — On November 4, 1998, a federal grand jury in New York City issued a 238-count indictment against Osama bin Laden, charging him in the August bombings of the U.S. embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam.

    — Twenty other al Qaeda members were also named in the indictment

    — Bin Laden allegedly had planned and financed the attacks, which were then carried out by his followers.

    — The State Department announced rewards of $5 million each for information leading to the arrest or conviction of bin Laden and five other suspects, the largest sum of money the U.S. had ever offered for the capture of a terrorist.

    — Bin Laden was also placed on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted List. He was killed in a U.S. in Abbottabad, Pakistan, in May 2011.

    — Abu Anas al Libi, one of the indicted, was captured on October 5, 2013, in Tripoli, Libya

    © 2013 Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

  • its so sad that people choose to bring in politics in the face of this sad painful moment some of us lost our loved ones and all some of you can think about is blaming the president and the NSIS be real Kenyans and pray for our country God bless and protect our country

  • Political Institute

    Uhuru Kenyatta planning Of Westgate Attack to save himself and his Deputy William Ruto From The ICC In Hague, failed Miserably (Uhuru Kenyatta) Master PlanThe So Called False Flag Operation) Cooked by NIS Gema Boys Under General Gichangi & General Karangi & GEMA CID boss Ndegwa Muhoro!(The Gema Supremacists)Cunning,Smart Arrogant,Impunity Don’t Cares Silly & Stupid,Is this The End of GEMA Empire? http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/sep/23/kenya-behind-terror-rampant-corruption

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