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The Return of Somali Warlords

Horror, terror, shock, disgust, revulsion, indignation and humiliation in Mogadishu and other parts of Somalia. The Somali warlords are back in business with international recognition and support.

The worst thing that could happen to Somali people, on an ID day, is to find militias belonging to the criminal warlords and Ethiopian tanks in front of their houses.

The world is celebrating for the arrival of 2007 with a great deal of fanfare. People all over the world, with the exception of Somalis, have hopes, aspirations, expectations and resolutions that 2007 will be the annus mirabilis in which great things will happen.

Somalis have nothing to celebrate. They already have the knowledge of what is in store for them in the months and also years to come. A long and bloody struggle to free themselves from internationally backed Ethiopian and Somali warlords. So, Good times and bright future are not ahead of us. Somalis know this fact. The world too. Only turbulent days of bloodshed and destruction.

Ethiopian invasion signifies the intractability of Somali problems and the longer the Ethiopian occupation takes, the gloomier will be the picture.

Somalis have always known how to live under dictatorial regimes and self-appointed, corrupt, authoritarian Somali men; but it seems now they have to learn how to live under ruthless men from the northern highlands of Ethiopia, synonymous with brutality, subjugation and viciousness. They will not leave until "the job is done". They will not leave as long as Somalis (warlords) need them.

Somalia has been in the news in 2006. There have been unprecedented media coverage, scrutiny, publicity and analysis on this area of Africa, thanks to the meteoric rise of the Islamist groups in huge swathes of the country.

As the Islamist groups flee from one stronghold to another, the world media and human rights groups are likely to pay no attention to Somalia and the plight of Somalis in the coming days and months. We will see no reports of atrocities and condemnations of human rights violations in the country after the decline of Islamists. Mum will be the word.

This will undoubtedly be a great opportunity for Somali warlords with their Ethiopian backers to ensure that everything goes according to their plan. The only plan they know well: setting one clan against another clan, multiplication of warlords and creation of fiefdoms under each criminal warlord.

The international recognition and support bestowed to unrepresentative, unpopular, weak " Somali" government is tantamount to an international endorsement of a FORCED MARRIAGE. A government of Somali warlords by Ethiopia for Somali people is what the international community has endorsed and Somali people are being forced to accept.

Even if Somalis accept this warlord government; the main obstacle will be the inability of Somali warlords to work together. Teamwork, plurality, compromise and consensus have no place in Somali clan politics. They cannot agree on a common minimum programme because of factionalism, greed, ignorance, illiteracy, tribal ego and personal enmity. How a government of this kind can function is anybody's guess.

If Meles Zenawi really wants to do something "good" for Somalis, it would be wise and sensible of him if he could act on the basis of "first things first" and charity-begins-at-home principle. Respect human rights and dignity of Ethiopians and feed millions starving in Ethiopia.

Surely, Somalis will not miss Sheikh Yuusuf Indhacade, Sheikh Hassan Turki and Sheikh Hashi Eyrow; but they firmly believe that anyone who comes to power will invariably be as oppressive as the vanquished SHABAAB outfit led by Sheikh Eyrow and Sheikh Hassan Turki.

A forced marriage doesn't work and there is no a happy ending. Spousal abuse, wife-beating, rape and other types domestic violence usually form a part and parcel of this type of marriage. Today, Somalis have no option but to accept the marriage of Somali warlords- Ethiopia's men - with the blessing of the United Nations and others who claim to value human rights, justice, rule of law, equality, order and freedom.


Abdinasir Hussein Moallin
nasser100@gmail.com


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