World View: Kenya's Presidential Candidate Threatens Violence if He Loses

World View: Kenya's Presidential Candidate Threatens Violence if He Loses

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Kenya: Presidential candidate threatens violence if he loses
  • Chad says it killed two al-Qaeda linked terrorist leaders in Mali
  • Gun control talk increases public interest in 3D Printing
  • 7 year old schoolboy is suspended for shaping pastry into a gun

Kenya: Presidential candidate threatens violence if he loses

Odinga supporters rally on Saturday (AP)
Odinga supporters rally on Saturday (AP)

Kenya’s current prime minister, Raila Odinga, on Saturday accused hisopponents of planning to rig the vote in Monday’s presidentialelection, and said that if he loses, it will be because of “blackmailand intimidation”:

“I have warned them the consequences may be worse thanlast time round. The people will not stomach anotherrigging.”

The “last time around” that he’s referring to was the last election,in late December 2007, which was followed by massive ethnic violencebetween Odinga’s Luo tribe, and his opponent’s Kikuyu tribe. (See “Post-election massacre in Kenya raises concerns of tribal war”)

For Monday’s presidential election, the two leading candidates areOdinga once again, facing another Kikuyu candidate, Uhuru Kenyatta,the son of Kenya’s first president, Jomo Kenyatta, the “foundingfather” of Kenya as a nation. Kenyatta called Odinga’s threata statement saying that he had been misquoted.

The Luo and Kikuyu tribes have had many ethnic wars in the past, and anew one would not be a surprise. Kenya’s last generational crisis warwas the Mau-Mau rebellion, which climaxed in 1956, so enough time haspassed, and a new generational crisis war is a possibility.

However, there are 8 candidates in Monday’s election, and the rulesrequire a vote over 50% to be a winner. Odinga and Kenyatta are eachexpected to get a plurality and lead the vote, but neither is expectedto gain a majority, so some analysts believe that this outcome willmean no violence this time. However, this outcome will force arun-off election in April, and tensions may be higher than ever atthat time. ABC News and AP

Chad says it killed two al-Qaeda linked terrorist leaders in Mali

Chad’s army claims to have killed terrorist leader Mokhtar Belmokhtar,who led January’s attack on an Algerian gas plant where at least 37hostages were killed. (See “18-Jan-13 World View — Did France kick a hornet’s nest with military intervention in Mali?”.)

Belmokhtar began a two-decade career of Islamic militancy, first as amember of Algeria’s Islamic Armed Group in the country’s civil war,then as a joint founder of the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat(SGPC), which later evolved into Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb(AQIM). However, after an AQIM leadership split, Belmokhtar formedhis own terrorist group, the Khaled Abu al-Abbas Brigade, whichclaimed responsibility for the attack on the gas plant.

Chad’s army also claims to have killed another AQIM leader, AdelhamidAbou Zeid, in Mali on Friday. The deaths cannot be confirmed untilDNA tests have been completed, but if the claims are true, then itwill al-Qaeda terrorists in Mali back for a couple of months, untilthey can regroup. Guardian (London) and Reuters

Gun control talk increases public interest in 3D Printing

Talk of gun control, which is one of Washington’s stupidest ideas, ina city where extreme stupidity is the hallmark of everyone from thepresident on down, is having more unintended consequences. It’salready been reported that gun owners and would-be gun ownersare buying up all the guns and ammunition they can find, for fearof losing the opportunity.

When I wrote about gun control inDecember, I pointed out that there’s no evidence that prohibitions inthe past — of alcohol, drugs, abortion and prostitution — had anyactual effect, but they had a large negative effect of creatingbootleggers, organized crime, drug cartels and prostitution rings.

I particularly mentioned that 3D printing would, within a coupleof years, allow anyone to manufacture guns in his garage or basement.That day is arriving much more quickly as another unintended consequenceof the talk of gun control. Media attention has increased,including a great deal of coverage by al-Jazeera on how 3D printingwould effectively end gun control in the UK.

A Texas gunsmith, Cody Wilson, last year demonstrated a 3D-printedAR-15 semi-automatic rifle, but his work was ridiculed because thefell apart after firing six rounds. However, Wilson has fixed thedesign flaws, and has now demonstrated an AR-15 that can shoot 600rounds without failing. He’s put his entire design template on theinternet for anyone to download and use with their own 3D printers.

Manufacturing an AR-15 with a 3D printer is still an expensive affair.The printer itself costs several thousand dollars, and then each guntakes 9-12 hours of print time and costs $150 in materials. Butwithin a couple of years, those prices will have come down, and therewill be even more advanced templates available on the internetavailable for anyone with a 3D printer to use. Al-Jazeera and Ars Technica

7 year old schoolboy is suspended for shaping pastry into a gun

Josh Welsh, a second grader with attention deficit disorder inBaltimore, was suspended for “manufacturing” his own gun. He waseating a strawberry tart, and decided to shape it into a mountain, butapparently the result looked like a gun. The teacher became furious,and Josh was suspended for two days. Fox News

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