January 05, 2020

US soldier killed as Islamist group al Shabaab attacks Kenyan base
Somalia’s al-Shabaab terror group targeted US forces in neighbouring Kenya for the first time on Sunday, killing three people and destroying American reconnaissance aircraft during an attack on a secretive military base. An unknown number of jihadist militants struck at Camp Simba, an American military facility located on a Kenyan naval base, shortly before dawn. The US military said one US service member and two contractors had been killed, while two while two Department of Defence officials were wounded.  There were “fewer than 150” American soldiers at Camp Simba, which is located on Manda Bay close to the tourist resort of Lamu, when the attack took place, US officials said. Although the militants were unable to penetrate Camp Simba itself, they succeeded in overrunning an adjacent airfield where they set ablaze at least two planes, one of which was an American “Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance” aircraft used for missions in Somalia. The brazen nature of the attack — which took place more than 50 miles south of the Somali frontier — represents a significant escalation in al-Shabaab cross-border operations. The group has frequently carried out attacks on Kenyan troops in retaliation for the Kenyan army’s military incursion into southern Somalia.  But until now it has shied away from attacking US troops stationed in Kenya, although the group did mount mount a failed operation against American forces stationed in Somalia last September. Camp Simba, established in 2004, is one of the largest American military installations in Africa. It is frequently used by US special forces mounting covert operations in Somalia. One prominent analyst, Rashid Abdi, suggested that the attack “may have been a well-timed signal to Iran it is open for tactical alliances” following the US airstrike that killed Qasem Soleimani, Iran’s top general, in Baghdad on Friday. Mr Abdi said that Sunni al-Shabaab is fundamentally hostile to Shia Iran but noted that the Kenyan security services have long accused Gen Soleimani’s Revolutionary Guards Corps of trying to woo the group into a marriage of convenience against the United States. But other analysts rejected the theory, saying that attacks like the one on Camp Simba normally involve months of preparation. They also suggested  that al-Shabaab would alienate potential recruits if it sided with Iran. The US has mounted a growing number of airstrikes against al-Shabaab targets in Somalia in recent years. Sunday’s attack forced a brief closure of Manda Island civilian airport, which is situated across a narrow stretch of water from Camp Simba and is used every year by thousands of British tourists heading to hotels on the Lamu archipelago.
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Star Wars Director Says It's About Time A Woman Makes A Star Wars Movie
Jan 02, 2024
Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Sharmeed Obaid-Chinoy is directing an upcoming Star Wars movie that brings back Daisy Ridley in the role of Rey. Obaid-Chinoy will become the first woman to direct a Star Wars film, dating back to the franchise's origins in the 1970s. Speaking about this, Obaid-Chinoy told CNN that she is "very thrilled" to make the movie and create something that is "very special.""We're in 2024 now, and I think it's about time we had a woman come forward to shape the story in a galaxy far, far away," she said.Obaid-Chinoy won Best Documentary, Short Subjects Academy Awards for Saving Face (2012) and A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (2015).In 2020, Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy told the BBC that a woman would eventually direct a Star Wars movie, saying that would "absolutely" happen, "without question." Victoria Mahoney was a second unit director on The Rise of Skywalker, but a woman has never claimed a top directing credit on a Star Wars movie.On the TV side of things, The Mandalorian has featured a number of female directors, including Deborah Chow and Bryce Dallas Howard. Chow went on to direct the Obi-Wan TV series, too.Another high-profile franchise that has never had a female director is James Bond. Producer Barbara Broccoli and Skyfall director Sam Mendes have both said they want to see a woman direct a future 007 film.As for Obaid-Chinoy's Star Wars movie, little is known about it apart from the fact that Ridley will come back to play Rey. It is expected that this film will be the first of the three new Star Wars films to come to theaters, possibly releasing in December 2025.According to a report, Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight is writing the Rey movie, taking over for Damon Lindelof and Justin Britt-Gibson.
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NBA Names Clare Akamanzi CEO Of NBA Africa
Jan 02, 2024 15:29
The NBA named Clare Akamanzi – an accomplished business executive and international trade and investment lawyer – as CEO of NBA Africa. Akamanzi will start her position on Jan. 23, 2024, and report to NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum. In this role, Akamanzi will oversee the NBA’s business and basketball development efforts in Africa and will be responsible for continuing to grow the popularity of basketball, the NBA and the Basketball Africa League (BAL) across the continent, including through grassroots basketball development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives that improve the livelihoods of African youth and families. For the last six and a half years, Akamanzi was CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB), where she spearheaded Rwanda’s economic development by enabling private sector growth. Under Akamanzi’s leadership, RDB implemented several business policy reforms and initiatives that led to significant investment and development for the country, including through partnerships with the BAL, Arsenal FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC, FC Bayern Munich and TIME Magazine, among others. “Clare’s business acumen, international experience and familiarity with basketball and the NBA make her the ideal executive to lead our business in Africa,” says Tatum. “NBA Africa and the Basketball Africa League are well-positioned for continued growth, and under Clare’s leadership we believe these initiatives will transform economies, communities and lives across the continent.” “I’ve seen firsthand how sports can positively impact businesses, families and communities in Africa, and the NBA and the BAL are a perfect example of that,” says Akamanzi. “The NBA has done an incredible job growing basketball and the economy around it across the continent, and I’m excited about the enormous opportunities ahead to build on that momentum.” Previously, Akamanzi was Chief Operating Officer of RDB and Head of Strategy and Policy Unit, Office of the President of the Republic of Rwanda. She has extensive international trade, business and diplomatic experience, having previously worked for the Rwandan Government at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland and at the Rwandan Embassy in London, England. Akamanzi has worked or studied in seven different countries and holds an honorary LLD from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, in recognition of her work in Rwanda. She earned a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she was the recipient of three prestigious awards for academic excellence and distinguished contribution to the community: the Lucius N. Littauer Fellows Award, the Raymond & Josephine Vernon Award and the Robert Kennedy Public Service Award. In addition, Akamanzi holds a Master of Laws degree in international trade and investments from the University of Pretoria in South Africa, and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. Akamanzi has served on several company boards, including the World Health Organization (WHO) Foundation, ECOBANK and Aviation, Travel and Logistics (ATL) company. She was recognized by Forbes as one of Africa’s Top 50 Powerful Women in 2020.
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