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America's Covert War in East Africa

Surveillance, Rendition, Assassination

Clara Usiskin



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C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
01 April 2017
Clara Usiskin has spent eight years investigating the 'War on Terror' and its effects in the East and Horn of Africa, documenting hundreds of cases of rendition, secret detention and targeted killings. As a result of her work exposing abuses carried out by regional governments and their international partners, Clara was deported from Kenya and Uganda and is currently persona non grata in both countries. 

Her book sets out the historical background to today's covert war, including the early Somali jihads and British repression in colonial Kenya, through to the 1998 US Embassy Bombings in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, and President Clinton's early rendition programme. America's Covert War in East Africa then looks at the US Military's new Africa Command, with its emphasis on counterterrorism, alongside increasing use of targeted killings by security forces in the region, and continued renditions and secret detention. 

Finally, Usiskin investigates the shorter and longer term consequences of such intensive militarisation, and the proliferation of surveillance and other technologies of control in East Africa and its surrounding waters, focusing in particular on their impact on vulnerable ethnic and religious groups in a highly volatile region.
By:   Clara Usiskin
Imprint:   C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 138mm, 
ISBN:   9781849044134
ISBN 10:   1849044139
Pages:   224
Publication Date:   01 April 2017
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Clara Usiskin is a human rights investigator who documents national security-related abuses around the world, with a particular focus on the East and Horn of Africa. She was formerly a National Security Fellow at the Open Society Justice Initiative and Deputy Director of the Secret Prisons team at Reprieve.

Reviews for America's Covert War in East Africa: Surveillance, Rendition, Assassination

'America's Covert War in East Africa is a breath of fresh air-a positive anomaly in the crowded counterterrorism literature.' -- Parameters 'Clara Usiskin is a leading member of that surprisingly small band of lawyers, researchers, journalists and law-makers who painstakingly forced into the open some of the most disturbing secrets of the so-called war on terror. In this book she sheds new light on one of the major battlefields of that war. This is an invaluable contribution to the history of a very dark time.' 'This book is a must-read to understand how the misguided US and British security policies in East Africa destabilise the region, from someone who has put in the long hours there.' 'If you want to understand how US renditions and secret detentions work in Africa and how allies of Washington such as the UK have supported these Counter-Terrorism efforts -- buy this book. A really sobering and important book to read.' -- Alex Vines 'America's Covert War in East Africa is the harrowing and ongoing story of how a fundamentally misguided security policy -- surveillance, rendition, assassination -- has warped and destabilized the politics of a region and devastated countless innocent lives.' -- New Internationalist 'Usiskin skilfully combines eye-witness accounts, personal testimony and excerpts from official documentation to construct a chilling portrayal of a sinister apparatus of illegality and terror.' -- Counterfire 'Usikin writes clearly and emotes very effectively ... This is an informative read for anyone interested in the East African experiences during the almost two-decade-long global 'War on Terror'.' -- LSE Review of Books 'A harrowing firsthand account of the US war on terror... Usiskin goes deep into the belly of the beast to bring us some of the most heart-wrenching accounts of torture against detainees accused of masterminding acts of terror against America and its allies in East Africa... This book is unique in several ways, particularly in its combination of a refined legal investigation and extremely cautious investigative journalism.' -- Jok Madut Jok 'A highly disturbing but essential book... Usiskin's kaleidoscopic accounts of renditions, secret detentions and extrajudicial killings highlight the incredible reach of American and British power into African polities, as well as the eagerness of east African governments to use the 'War on Terror' to justify increased surveillance of everyday citizens, torture of political opponents, attacks on national judiciaries and violence against minority populations.' -- Dr Phil Clark 'Clara Usiskin takes the reader on a journey through Britain's colonial past and Al Qaeda's attacks in the 1990s to the modern cyber confrontation in the region. A book full of fascinating insight and episodes, revealing the troubling and enduring nature of terrorism in the region.' -- Professor Michael Goodman

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