Al Shabaab is one of the century2019s most successful violent jihadist movements. It has governing power, ruling over millions of Somalis and vast swathes of territory, and kinetic power, committing spectacular acts of violence. But what lies behind the headlines and the bloodshed? Who are Al Shabaab, and why do people join? How does this organisation govern, educate and indoctrinate? Reporting on Somalia for twenty-five years, Mary Harper has gained extraordinary access to members of Al Shabaab2014and, disturbingly, they in turn have access to her. In this engrossing book, she paints the complex picture of life for ordinary people in the group2019s shadow2014stories of tremendous loss, unbearable compromise, and unexpected profit. She reveals a resilient movement with many faces, and discovers that it can be difficult to know where Al Shabaab begins, and where it ends." From book cover.?