Emma Leonard Boyle
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Counterterrorism in Museveni’s Uganda
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Ugandan security concerns throughout the Museveni era have centred around terrorism, both domestic and international. Internationally, there is evidence to suggest that the Ugandan intelligence services foiled attempts by al Qaeda to bomb the US embassy in Kampala at the time of the Dar es Salaam and Nairobi embassy bombings. In 2010, Kampala suffered from bombings carried out by the Somali group al Shabaab, inspired by al Qaeda and in retaliation for sending peacekeepers to Somalia. Domestically, Uganda has also experienced attacks deemed to be terrorism from the Allied Democratic Front and the Lord’s Resistance Army. This chapter demonstrates how the term ‘terrorism’ has been used by the Ugandan Government in many different ways, and how the expansive use of this term has been critiqued. The chapter argues that the key to understanding the Ugandan Government’s response to these disparate threats is through understanding how Museveni has used these crises to become a key US ally in the ‘War on Terror’ and to position himself as a regional leader in East Africa.

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