An active Kenyan military is a new story for journalists in the country, as much as it is new terrain for the Defence Force itself. Reporting on the military’s incursion into Somalia calls for correct terminology - here’s a guide for those covering this regional conflict story.
War: all out fighting mostly between nations.
Incursion: Sudden invasion of territory, has temporary connotation.
Insurgents/insurgency: a person who rises in forcible opposition to lawful authority, especially a person who engages in armed resistance to a government or to the execution of its laws; rebel.
Offensive: an attack.
Assault: the state of close combat.
Assault rifle/weapon: short, compact rifles used in close combat e.g AK variants and M16 also called carbines.
Invasion: to overrun territory with an army.
IED: Improvised Explosive Device.
Ordnances (not ordinances): military weapons with their equipment, ammunition, explosives etc.
Gunships : a helicopter or fixed-wing airplane armed with rapid-fire guns or cannons and used to provide close air support for troops in combat.
Hostilities: act of warfare, antagonism.
Ceasefire: end of hostilities.
Terrorist: One who uses violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, especially for political purposes.
Militia: a body of citizens organized in a paramilitary group and typically regarding themselves as defenders of individual rights against the presumed interference of the federal government.
Collateral damage: any damage incidental to an activity, like the killing of civilians in military action.
Military regime: military or martial form of government; also known as military dictatorship.
Rival factions: split groups from the original main group and now in opposition to each other.
Amisom: African Union Mission in Somalia.
Peacekeepers: military force, etc., deployed to maintain or restore peace: Amisom is in Somalia to maintain/enforce a ceasefire in clan/ rival faction’s hostilities.
The four-year Health Media Project (HMP) launched in January 2013. It builds on the success of Internews’ Voices in Health media training program (2003-2012).