There's no doubt that the intensity of the news coverage in Britain about the attack by al-Shabab militants on the the Westgate shopping centre is reflective of the number of western victims and those that are close to elements of the Kenyan ruling class. The sort of numbers affected, 60 odd killed so far and 50 more still missing, is around the the almost daily casualties and wounded in terrorist attacks in Iraq, frequent attacks in Pakistan, not to mention the daily killings and destruction in Syria. But this doesn't at all mitigate the horror of the Westgate attack where men, women and children and a not insignificant number of workers (though no-one seems to be mentioning them) in a supposedly safe and benign environment had to face the deadly and frightening prospect of all hell breaking loose.
What this attack demonstrates is a further example of how the greatest achievement of the "War on Terror" is the generalisation of terror, terrorists and terrorism. It's a further example of the how the Clinton/Bush/Obama policy of US imperialism directly contributes to aggravating and spreading the very problems that this policy is supposed to deal with. To that extent it's also illustrative of the growing historical weakness of US imperialism despite it being the most powerful military force on the planet by far. The whole region around the Horn of Africa and down into Kenya contains bases and special forces of western countries, the USA, Britain and Israel particularly. Given its geo-strategic importance this region must among the most heavily survielled and tracked over all the planet and still they were unable to pick up or stop this well-organised and ruthless attack.
The responsibility for the devastation of the whole region around Somalia and the rise of even more irrational forces lies entirely with the major imperialisms whose frequent actions and incursions here contribute to the growing instability and chaos which then demands further actions and incursions which contribute further to growing instability and chaos.... and so it spirals outwards and downwards. Of course it is mainly the poor and the masses that pay, Somalia holds the biggest refugee camp in the world where even the usually optimistic NGO's comment that the situation is hopeless. Amid all the misery, deprivation and poverty of the region are corrupt local bourgeois and western special forces bases bristling with the latest weaponry and technology. The US has set up its "Africa Command Post" in Kenya backed up by British and Israeli intelligence and forces.
Obama said yesterday that he was committed to "dismantling these centres of destruction" but the fact is that US actions and the poverty from capitalism creates them, spreads them and fosters a steady and growing stream of recruits, local and "international" to the jihadi causes. Since operation "Restore Hope" and the battle of Mogadishu in 1993 in which US forces had to retreat instability has spread through the entire region - there are some good articles on this website under the heading "Somalia". Even when it looked like there was a relatively stable government in Somalia, with "moderate" Islamists a few years ago, any attempt at stability was destroyed by the US "counter-offensive" in 2007 which contributed to the overthrow of the government and the descent into greater chaos and the rise of al-Shabab.
In the "you couldn't make it up" category, there's news that the corrupt politicians Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto and others, are to be freed from criminal charges at The Hague in order to "help their country in its time of need". It was these two gangsters who six years ago at the time of the Kenyan elections unleashed their own thugs killing at least two thousand people.