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Kenya’s Somali Contradiction

NAIROBI – The attack that killed more than 70 people at Nairobi’s Westgate shopping mall last week was, according to al-Shabaab, the Somali Islamist militant group that carried it out, retribution for Kenya’s intervention in Somalia. That raises a simple question: What is Kenya doing in Somalia, and is it worth the price?

Since Kenya’s army invaded its northeastern neighbor two years ago, the government has told Kenyans that they were going to war against al-Shabaab. But, as with most official pronouncements in Kenya, that story was only partly true.