Sufis and salafists throughout the Islamic world and in Nigeria specifically. This antagonism is driven by both theological and political considerations. Yet the Islamist movement must not be considered a unified front, as it is made up a variety of different groups, each with their own agendas and methods for pursuing them. The section finishes with an examination of the means the Qadiriyya and Tijaniyya use to counter the Islamists’ influence.
The third section examines the political, economic, and social conditions in Nigeria—and the north in particular—today. As past experience in other parts of the Islamic world demonstrate, these circumstances are often critical to an Islamist group’s ability to expand its membership and propagate its message. While the monograph is at pains to show that the spread of these organizations and ideals is not solely the result of high unemployment and political disenfranchisement, they are clearly contributing factors. And the picture that emerges is indeed worrying, for Nigeria seems to suffer from many of the social ills that have so helped Islamist groups elsewhere in the Middle East and Africa. The main conclusion this section draws is that northern Nigeria represents fertile ground for Islamist groups to cultivate.
The last section outlines the monograph’s conclu- sions before offering up a series of recommendations. Its main suggestion is that the U.S. Government establish a permanent consular presence in the northern city of Kano, Nigeria. Such a mission would act as a focal point through which aid, development assistance, and military training could be channeled. In this way, the United States could extend its influence throughout the entire region and into Niger, Mali, and the southern Sahel. This recommendation, like the others