This book argues for making African intelligence services front-and-center in studies about historical and contemporary African security. As the first academic anthology on the subject, it brings together a group of international scholars and intelligence practitioners to understand African intelligence services’ post-colonial and contemporary challenges. The book’s eleven chapters survey a diverse collection of countries and provides readers with histories of understudied African intelligence services. The volume examines the intelligence services’ objectives, operations, leaderships, international partners and legal frameworks. The chapters also highlight different methodologies and sources to further scholarly research about African intelligence.
Ryan Shaffer is a historian with expertise on political violence and security. He has written for international magazines, including Reader’s Digest and Homeland Security Today, and his academic research has appeared in journals, such as Intelligence and National Security and the Journal of Intelligence History. Shaffer is the author of Music, Youth and International Links in Post-War British Fascism: The Transformation of Extremism.
Introduction, Ryan Shaffer
1. The More Things Change: Kenya’s Special Branch During the Decade of Independence, Ryan Shaffer
2. Intelligence, Decolonization and Non-Alignment in Zanzibar and Tanganyika, 1962–1972, Simon Graham
3. Soviet Bloc Security Services and the Birth of New Intelligence Communities in Mozambique and Angola, Owen Sirrs
4. Intelligence in Counterinsurgency: Lessons from the Rhodesian Experience, Glenn A. Cross
5. The Role of the Forces armées rwandaises Intelligence Services and Parallel Power Structures During the Rwandan Struggle for Liberation, John Burton Kegel
6. Intelligence and Political Power in Neo-Patrimonial Systems: Theory and Evidence from Liberia, Benjamin J. Spatz and Alex Bollfrass
7. The Sudanese Intelligence Services Between Continuity and Disruption, Joseph Fitsanakis and Shannon Brophy
8. Civilian Intelligence Services in Botswana: Colonial Legacies and Politicization of the Directorate of Intelligence and Security, Tshepo Gwatiwa and Lesego Tsholofelo
9. Knowledge Is Power, But Power Corrupts: Reassessing the Role of Intelligence in South Africa’s Wars, Politics and Society, 1965–2020, Kevin A. O’Brien
10. The Challenge of Effective Intelligence in Nigerian Post-Military Rule, Ibikunle Adeakin
11. Meeting the Needs of the State: Intelligence, Security and Police Legal Frameworks in East Africa, Christopher E. Bailey
A significant contribution to the field of Intelligence Studies . . . useful for scholars, students and international agencies cultivating relations with African countries diplomatically and strategically . . . offers a new understanding on African intelligence services.
Exceptional research . . . African Intelligence Services might seem aimed at the specialist, but this anthology is valuable for anyone seeking to understand Africa’s broader security issues.
In African Intelligence Services: Early Postcolonial and Contemporary Challenges, Ryan Shaffer brings together contributors to explore the histories and transformations of African intelligence services. The book offers an impressive introduction to the role of intelligence services in Africa and will give a strong incentive to researchers to further explore the emerging intelligence literature in African Studies.
The reader who takes the book in their hands will receive very detailed information about the IC of the countries discussed in it and the history, political life, economic, cultural, and other backgrounds of the countries and how they will deal with any challenges. Thus, the book will provide valuable material for a long time to come, not only for intelligence and security studies but also for researchers in other fields who have been less involved in African intelligence.
[A] must-read for academics, political stakeholders, and government officials, both in Africa and beyond. The thoroughly researched case studies, all written from historical and transnational perspectives will also appeal to international agencies and countries that have diplomatic and strategic relations with African states.
With publication of this edited volume on intelligence in Africa, Shaffer has performed a long overdue service for the international community of scholars concerned with the history and politics of the national security state. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It will become the standard work on African intelligence services for years to come.
African intelligence services are grossly undocumented in security studies. This book is a springboard to filling that gap. It is an incredible contribution to the study of the worldwide intelligence community from a new perspective.
This is the first of its kind in that it fills in the vital lacuna in our understanding of African intelligence services in national rather than international contexts. The contributors to this volume are to be credited with making a significant contribution to the field of Intelligence Studies.
This is an important study that will help increase the understanding of how Africa responds to the growing spread of instability and terrorism in the coming years. Shaffer has done an outstanding job bringing together such a wide array of expertise on African intelligence services.
Ryan Shaffer and his contributors to this anthology succeed admirably in shining the spotlight on the immediate post-colonial years of Sub-Saharan African intelligence services and in arguing convincingly that this period was crucially formative to their development. Shaffer and his colleagues wisely avoid a comparative approach to this question, a methodology rendered problematic, given the uneven nature of the source material and the diversity of cultural and historical contexts of even a small sample of countries. They instead focus on selected countries- Angola, Botswana, Kenya, Liberia, Mozambique, Rhodesia, Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, and Tanganyika/Zanzibar- and analyze each within its historical context. The result is a series of essays that collectively identify salient themes common to African intelligence services.
Essential reading for anyone interested in how security services developed in Africa since colonization and the Cold War.
African Intelligence Services does justice to the origins and impacts of African security agencies, a topic that desperately deserves more attention.
African Intelligence Services: Early Postcolonial and Contemporary Challenges, edited by historian Ryan Shaffer, is an important contribution to the scholarly literature on the making of early postcolonial African states. In contrast to the literature on intelligence services in the West, there is little peer-reviewed literature (certainly little written in English) on the entangled relationships of intelligence services with the diverse political, social, cultural, and other complex realities that have shaped them. Shaffer attempts to shift that needle, and his book can be recommended as essential reading for those wanting a broad introduction to the evolution of the power dynamics surrounding African intelligence services... The book is rich in empirical detail, analytical depth, and conceptual diversity... More authors should take inspiration from Shaffer’s excellent anthology, which shows that it is possible to write empirically rich and conceptually insightful studies about African intelligence services, debunking the narrative that excessive state secrecy makes this an unattainable goal. The book leaves one with the hope that it is only a matter of time before we see even more such texts on African intelligence services in the scholarly literature.
African Intelligence Services makes an impressive introduction to the role of intelligence services in Africa and themes of importance in contemporary African politics. . . this anthology is a must read for scholars and professionals who wish to expand their knowledge of security and intelligence in Africa.