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Al-Shabaab in SomaliaThe History and Ideology of a Militant Islamist Group, 2005-2012$
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Stig Jarle Hansen

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199327874

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199327874.001.0001

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Setting the Stage

Setting the Stage

The Resurgence of Religion in Somalia

(p.15) 2 Setting the Stage
Al-Shabaab in Somalia

Stig Jarle Hansen

Oxford University Press

In Somalia a resurgence in the importance of religion paved the way for Al-Shabaab. This chapter elaborates on the conditions in Somalia that, through a rise in the importance of religion, paved the way for the sharia courts of Mogadishu, which in turn paved the way for Al-Shabaab. It tells the story of how the ideologies of the 70s, 80s and 90s, socialism, nationalism and clanism, were delegitimized and how warlords in the end failed to maintain law and order for the local population, and factions fragmented. It elaborates how the failure of any institutions to provide security and social security opened the way for religion and religious institutions, which in many cases were the only institutions protecting the Somalis. This again gave an increased popularity to religious leaders, including the early Al-Shabaab network

Keywords:   Sharia courts, religion, nationalism, fragmentation

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