Greg Pirio will discuss his book, The African Jihad, which examines efforts to bring about the grand vision of Islamist hegemony in the greater Horn of Africa region.
The book traces how these efforts began with the collaboration between Al Qaeda and the National Islamic Front (NIF) government of Sudan. The NIF under the ideological leadership of Hasan al-Turabi and Al Qaeda under Osama bin Laden sought to channel the social, political and economic grievances of Muslim communities into a global jihadist narrative, and the NIF and Al Qaeda worked hand in glove to set up and/or support several, coordinated jihadist movements in the countries of Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Tanzania and Uganda. Pirio takes the story of Horn of Africa jihadism up to the defeat of the Union of Islamic Courts in Somalia by the combined forces of Ethiopia and the Somali Transitional Federal Government in early 2007; he demonstrates how a faction within Somalia’s Islamic Courts movement with historic ties to Al Qaeda had come to dominate the Islamic Court’s movement and threatened wider regional insecurity and the expansion of the Middle East conflict into Africa.
Gregory Alonso Pirio is president of Empowering Communications, a firm dedicated to promoting communications as a constructive force for positive social change, and he is one of the principal promoters of NextAfrica, an all African news and information TV channel. Pirio was Director of the Portuguese-to-Africa and the English-to-Africa Services of the Voice of America (VOA) where he supervised extensive, in-depth coverage of issues and events of importance to African radio and TV audiences. He holds a Ph.D. in African History and an M.A. in African Studies, and has published academically on issues relating to the history Pan-Africanism, especially the Marcus Garvey Movement.
Cost: Free and open to the public; parking is available for $8 in lot 3.
Books will be available for purchase and book signing will be held immediately after the presentation.
Sponsor(s): African Studies Center
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