Sunday, January 18, 2015

The army feels betrayed and abandoned by Jammeh

Yaya Jammeh surrounded by disgruntled troops
In the wake of the 30 December events that led to the executions of members of external forces that allegedly attacked the State House in Banjul, Jammeh's own forces are divided and the strain is showing all around.

As suspicion spreads within the ranks, soldiers are on edge wondering when the next comrade in arms will be 'fingered' by a rival group within a divided military.  The security and intelligence personnel are equally on edge.

The absence of the Commander-In-Chief from the battlefield on the 30 December to the 2nd January didn't only go unnoticed but has confirmed the suspicion of some of Jammeh's cowardice and selfishness.

Yaya Jammeh was in hiding while he sent his entire family to Rabat out of harm's way, leaving the 'loyalists' to repel the attackers. The C-i-C watching (actually hiding) from a safe distance has added to the troops resentment of him. As a source close to the military said "Jammeh's only interest is to how long he can prolong his grip on power, but he knows this is the end of the road for him and his regime."

Jammeh's increasing reliance on mercenaries as part of his personal  security detail, driven by his lack of trust of the Gambian military and security structure, has further complicated a delicate security condition, further exposing the fault lines.  

However, in his futile attempt to fend off the threat to his regime, he decided to release gruesome (and posed) photos of his victims to serve as warning to the military and to instill further fear to an already traumatized civilian population. (We'll be saying more about the 'staged' photos in a separate blog post).  "It is rather late in the day for him (Jammeh) to use scare tactics because the military's patience has been stretched beyond its limits.  Even Jammeh knows his days are numbered", according to the same source.