‘It may be premature to celebrate the fall of Gaddafi, especially since the National Transitional Council has introduced sharia’

‘The fighting in Somalia can no longer be dismissed as an obscure domestic struggle in an unimportant country of no wider relevance to the world. The crackle of machinegun fire in Mogadishu, the regular thwump of mortars, the ground-shaking shelling by Amisom tanks and the sporadic suicide attacks by delusional youths represent the frontline in the international fight against al-Qaeda.’

A week after British intelligence officials confirmed the growing international jihadist threat emanating from Somalia, the media wing of the al-Shabaab militia have released a video re affirming their support for bin Laden and the al-Qaeda cause.

In my first fortnightly column for New York’s Hudson Institute, I describe how the current conflict in Somalia can be framed as a struggle between the two predominant strains of Islamism.  It is also reproduced below, in full.

This important investigation by the New York Times has many implications for Britain, which is now a half-way home to a quarter of a million Somalis.