U.S.-backed Somalia regime about to bite the dust?

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U.S.-backed Somalia regime about to bite the dust?

Somali head admits militant gains[/url]


Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed has said
Islamist insurgents now control most of the country, and have advanced
to the edge of Mogadishu.

Mr Yusuf said there was no effective government in Somalia, and
that insurgents were now able to carry out attacks in the capital at

President Yusuf was at his gloomiest on Saturday, addressing Somali MPs in neighbouring Kenya. 

He said the Islamist insurgency, which looked as though it had been
crushed two years ago following intervention by the Ethiopian army, was
now as strong as ever.



M. Spector M. Spector's picture

The Somali government is close to collapse because disputes within its ranks have allowed armed Islamic insurgents to take control of much of the country, the president said.

President Abdullahi Yusuf's remarks to about 100 Somali lawmakers in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, late Saturday represent the first admission by any official that the government is losing control.

Hours earlier, a radical Islamic group seized another Somali port town, consolidating its control over a southwestern region that borders the Somali capital.

"You know what the situation is. Because of the endless disputes in government, the opposition groups have taken most of the country, including Elasha, which is 18 kilometers (11 miles) from the capital," Yusuf said in comments that received wide coverage on radio stations in Somalia.

Yusuf said his government only had control of the capital and the southwestern town of Baidoa, which is the seat of Parliament. -[url=http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g7OaI4_kjeHA-o4UhlmP7v...

I wonder if Yusuf is planning to head home from Kenya any time soon? 


Going, going...

[u][b][url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7779525.stm]Thousands desert Somalia forces[/url][/b][/u]


More than 80% of Somalia's soldiers and police - about 15,000 members - have deserted, some taking weapons, uniforms and vehicles, the UN says.

The head of the UN monitoring group on Somalia, Dumisani Kumalo, said Islamist insurgents got many of their weapons and ammunition from the deserters. ...

In the UN report, Mr Kumalo, the South African ambassador, also said most of the Somali government's security budget - supposedly 70% of its total budget - disappeared through corruption.



M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Glen Ford wrote:
Having failed in deploying Ethiopia as its proxy in the war against Somalia, the United States now attempts to rally Europe and as many African stooges as it can muster to gang rape the Somalis into submission.

Two years ago, the Americans encouraged Ethiopia to invade its neighbor, to overthrow a young Islamic government that had, miraculously, restored a semblance of peace and stability to Somalia after 15 years of chaos and rule by warlords. As could have been predicted, Ethiopian ground forces and American bombs and missiles combined to bring about the "worst humanitarian crisis" on the continent, forcing millions of Somalis from their homes and into the jaws of starvation. The Americans bankrolled the aggression, in a futile attempt to prop up a warlord-based puppet government that by early this month was in a state of total disintegration, with 80 percent of its soldiers and police having deserted. The Ethiopians, defeated by the Somali resistance, are eager to exit the hell they and the Americans have created in Somalia. That leaves only a small force from Uganda and Burundi to act as Washington's proxies on the ground in Somalia, under the guise of the United Nations.

Uganda, especially, is Washington's willing mercenary outpost in Africa, willing to accept any dirty assignment from the Americans. But Somalia is too big a mouthful to be bitten off by Washington's African proxies, and the Islamists forces now represent Somali nationalism. [b]Mogadishu, the ruined capital, is expected to be back in Islamic Somali hands, any day now.[/b] Desperate, in its last weeks in office, the Bush regime now seeks to turn Somalia into a "free fire zone" in which any country in the world can shoot and bomb and kill at will. George Bush invites the world's military powers to form a posse to invade Somalia by air, land and sea, [b]on the pretext of wiping out piracy.[/b] Yet the piracy that flows from Somalia's onetime coastal fishing villages is mirrored in the lawlessness of foreign fishing fleets off Somalia's shores and the industrial piracy of nations that treat Somalia's waters as international dumping grounds for all manner of toxic wastes. The Americans imposed an imperial catch-22 on the Somali people, robbing them of their right to form their own government, then damning the Somalis for not accepting the rule of foreigners and foreign-backed warlords.

The clock is ticking on George Bush's government, but Washington's threat to Somalia will outlast Bush. [b]Susan Rice, Bill Clinton's former assistant secretary of state for Africa, will soon become Barack Obama's United Nations Ambassador and [i]de facto[/i] point person on Africa. Susan Rice is just as warlike as Condoleezza Rice when it comes to Somalia.[/b] While Condoleezza Rice and her bosses justify U.S. aggressions in the name of spreading "democracy," Susan Rice urges American military interventions in Somalia and Sudan and elsewhere on "humanitarian" grounds.

For Somalia, an Obama presidency represents the "same old same old" - the same bombs, the same bullets, the same catastrophes, the same imperialism, with a slightly different vocabulary.

[url=http://www.blackagendareport.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&... Ford[/u][/url]




[u][b][url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7800276.stm]Hundreds of Somalis rounded up in Ethiopian capital[/url][/b][/u]


Hundreds of young Somalis have been arrested in the past few days in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

A number were questioned and then released but it is thought at least 200 are still being held. ...

A Somali embassy spokesman said he understood that security was being tightened before a regional summit.

In some cases young men were taken from their homes while others were arrested in the streets.

A spokesman for the Somali embassy in Addis Ababa said he and his colleagues were going around the police stations to find out what was going on. ...

Asked how the embassy felt about the raids, the spokesman said [b]he could not say they were happy but that this was the prerogative of the Ethiopian government[/b].

What else can the puppet Somali regime say about Ethiopia, which is occupying Somalia and slaughtering its people, acting as a proxy for the U.S.?




Going, going, ..., gone:

[u][b][url=http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2008/12/29/somalia-president.html]Violence erupts in Mogadishu as Somali leader resigns[/url][/b][/u]



The Ethiopian army is leaving:

The Ethiopian army is preparing to leave Somalia almost two years
after it invaded to oust Islamists who had taken control of large areas
of the country....Washington has said little about its covert war in Somalia, but it
has little to show for years of effort and hundreds of millions of

With Somalia now without a president or an effective
parliament, and with the Islamists stronger than before Ethiopia
invaded, American policy towards the Horn appears to have run into the




Out of frying pan, into fire, what an unfortunate country. 



What an odd conclusion, Doug.



I don't see why. Escaping foreign influence in favour of having things run by domestic religious nutjobs is not necessarily a great improvement.


Sounds like a good rationalization for U.S.-Canada-NATO occupation of Afghanistan.

I read the same article you did and rejoiced in my heart that the U.S. and Ethiopia were losing.

I clearly remember the reports during the reign of the Islamic Courts, to the effect that Somalia was tasting its first peace and stability since the warlords took over in the early 90s and all the rest.

For me, it's a matter of principle that a nation has the inalienable right to exercise is sovereignty and determine its own form of government without interference. The fact that you (or I for that matter) might not approve of how Somalians decide to arrange their affairs merely highlights how important this principle is. Otherwise, we become cheerleaders for aggression, war, and mass murder. Witness Afghanistan. Witness Iraq. Witness Gaza.

Let me take this opportunity to hail the impending victory of the Somali people in expelling the invaders and crushing yet another attempt of the U.S. to extend the reach of its empire. Happy New Year!


re Somalia pirates; the good guys ??



Wesen ist was Gewesen ist


Somalia: Another CIA-backed coup blows up

> Mike Whitney


In a recent Chicago Tribune article, "US Appears to be Losing in Somalia", journalist Paul Salopek sums it up like this:

"(Somalia) is a covert war in which the CIA has recruited gangs of unsavory warlords to hunt down and kidnap Islamic militants...and secretly imprison them offshore, aboard U.S. warships. The British civil-rights group Reprieve contended that as many as 17 U.S. warships may have doubled as floating prisons since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks...

"Somalia is one of the great unrecognized U.S. policy failures since 9/11," said Ken Menkhaus, a leading Somalia scholar at Davidson College in North Carolina. "By any rational metric, what we've ended up with there today is the opposite of what we wanted." (Paul Salopek, "US Appears to be Losing in Somalia" Chicago Tribune)

The CIA has done its job well. It's created a beehive for terrorism and the potential for another catastrophe like 9-11.

Mission accomplished! So whatever the cosmetic guv's and CIA's official intentions and goals are, imagine for uno momento that they want to achieve the exact opposite. Imagine that a government of the rich, run by the rich and for the rich and heavily influenced by powerful multinational corporations could possibly be lying on occasion, and that millions of people are misled by the lies couched in plausible deniability.

"When the same mistakes are repeated over and over again, it's time to consider the possibility that they are not mistakes at all." -- Naomi Klein 





Great article, thanks for the link, Fidel.


I must say that I appreciate that site and its contributors almost as much as this one. This and that are a wealth of information


[size=30]Going, going, GONE![/size]

Islamists take bases in Mogadishu[/b][/color][/url]


The last Ethiopian troops in Somalia's capital have left Mogadishu and Islamist forces have taken over most of the bases they have left behind.

A BBC reporter says four of the six vacated bases have been taken over by insurgents from different factions, seemingly working together.





Africa's forgotten wars shame the media 

An army of journalists is leaving with the Israeli soldiers – about 1,500 have been reporting on Israel’s war in Gaza, mostly from the same spot on the Israeli-Gaza border. Israel didn't allow journalists into Gaza during the offensive. The question is: where is the world's media circus heading next?

Not to Africa, for sure. While the cameras focused on the Israel-Gaza border for the 22 days of the conflict, human tragedies were unfolding on another continent.

Thousands were killed in the Democratic Republic of Congo as rebel fighting continues. In Darfur, 3,461 people died in the civil war; while in Zimbabwe, 1,500 died from cholera. However, very few cameras were recording these tragedies.

Yossi Meuller, an NBC producer, has covered news around the world. He has filmed Palestinian intifadas, the Yugoslavian civil war and has spent a few weeks in Africa. He says that Africa remains of little interest.

Most of the time it was really a small story. Somalia was a story just because there was starvation and the interests of the USA were at stake. Nobody cares about what happened there,” he said. ”In Rwanda, we arrived after 30,000 or 60,000 people were killed. And we didn’t care, nobody cared. It was a story for a few days, not more than that.”

Genocide in Africa rarely makes breaking news headlines.

Some say the decision from where to report and what to report has nothing to do with the journalists but about money and politics.

“Nobody wants to touch Africa. People just want to make money in Africa, that’s it. No country wants to be there. France ran away, Italy ran away, everybody ran away from Africa,” said Meuller.
On Tuesday the world’s cameras are all turned on Washington to record for the first time in history a black man becoming the leader of a superpower

It remains to be seen whether Barack Obama’s policies can alter the media's agenda - turning cameras onto Africa and keeping them there.

Thanks for the Somalia thread, unionist.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://socialistworker.org/2009/02/09/somalia-nightmare][color=mediumblu.... fingerprints on Somalia's nightmare[/u][/color][/url]

The Ethiopian Army invaded Somalia in December 2006, overthrowing the Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) government and installing the Transitional Federal Government (TFG). Two years later, approximately 10,000 people have lost their lives, and 1.1 million Somalis were turned into refugees, the victims of Ethiopian occupiers and an ongoing civil war.

From the beginning, the TFG, though backed by the U.S., was weak, maintaining control in only a small area of the capital of Mogadishu, and some regions of western Somalia. Several thousand African Union troops--including U.S.-trained Ugandan forces--ostensibly bolster the TFG, to little effect. The U.S. also intervened directly in Somalia with sporadic air strikes.

After the Ethiopian invasion, sections of the UIC and other opposition forces regrouped in the Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia (ARS), with others coalescing around the fundamentalist al-Shabab group and other armed factions.

Ethiopian troops withdrew after a unity agreement between the TFG and the ARS, now the major opposition faction. Sheik Sharif Ahmed, the ARS leader and head of the UIC government in 2006, was elected president of the TFG on January 31....

Somalis celebrated the withdrawal of Ethiopian troops, and President Sheikh Ahmed enjoys popular support as a legacy of past UIC rule. The U.S. government's short-term goal of installing a partner in counter-terror appears thwarted.

Yet Sheikh Ahmed's openness to the U.S. and his collaboration with the TFG now divides his forces from other wings of the former UIC, including groups like al-Shabab, which is on the U.S. government's list of terrorist organizations. For the U.S., the split is welcome.

Meanwhile, attacks by Somali armed groups have continued. Suicide bombers, likely connected to al-Shabab, attacked African Union troops on February 3.

The longer-term picture likewise indicates increased volatility in the region. Since the collapse of the UIC government in 2006, a resurgence of pirate attacks off the Somali coast--with some holding multimillion-dollar tankers hostage--recently prompted the Chinese and Indian governments to send naval patrols, an unprecedented move for China.

Faced with this heightened militarization, Bush called for sending warships to the Gulf of Aden as well, and Barack Obama has pledged support for continuing that policy.

[b]The Obama administration is also a strong proponent of Africom, a new U.S. military command for Africa officially launched on October 1, 2008, with the frightening potential to subject Somalia and other countries and regions to U.S. terror on a new scale. In fact, Africom could mean the Somali experience writ large for the entire continent, with local proxies and enhanced military reinforcement.[/b]

As Nunu Kidane put it in an article titled [url=http://towardfreedom.com/home/content/view/1440/63/][u]Africom, Militarization and Resource Control[/u][/url]:

If you're thinking traditional bases with thousands of military personnel, think again. General Kip Ward has said it is not about "bases" and "garrisons," but rather a network of sophisticated military operations strategically placed throughout the continent, which can be moved around and utilized for any purpose.

General Gates called Africom "a different kind of command with a different orientation, one that we hope and expect will institutionalize a lasting security relationship with Africa." It is "a civilian-military partnership," where diplomatic and humanitarian relief by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) will get directives from the Department of Defense.

Africa Action and other human rights groups have rightly called on the Obama administration to address the humanitarian catastrophe in Somalia. But one often-proposed solution--United Nations peacekeepers--would only escalate the problems for ordinary Somalis. On the ground, UN troops would carry out U.S. priorities, just as they did during the "humanitarian intervention" of 1993.

Instead, activists should stand against any U.S. military intervention in Somalia, from Africom to the naval patrols. Challenging the "war on terror" is a crucial first step toward real peace for Somalis.


[url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7954670.stm][color=red]Somalis reject Bin Laden threats[/color][/url]


One of Somalia's hardline Islamist leaders and the information minister have both told Osama Bin Laden not to interfere in Somalia's affairs.

The al-Qaeda leader on Thursday called for Somalia's president to be toppled.

Sheik Hassan Dahir Aweys, who denies US charges he has links to al-Qaeda, has been reported as saying only Somalis should decide on their future.

Information Minister Farahan Ali Mohamoud said Bin Laden should concentrate on his own survival.




[url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/may/18/islamist-insurgents-near-mog... insurgents close in on Somali capital[/color][/url]


Islamist insurgent groups have captured two towns near Mogadishu since Sunday, adding to strong gains made within the Somali capital last week.

Less than four months after the moderate Islamist Sheik Sharif Ahmed became president, the western-backed government is now under significant pressure. Heavy fighting over the past week has killed nearly 200 people, with tens of thousands of people reported to have fled Mogadishu.


They should have read the [url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8256893.stm][color=red]BBC on Tuesday[/color][/url], Webgear, and they'd have been less shocked today:

Somali Islamists will avenge the raid in which a top al-Qaeda suspect was reportedly killed in Somalia, an al-Shabab commander has told the BBC. [...]

"They will taste the bitterness of our response," he told the BBC's Mohammed Olad Hassan in the capital, Mogadishu.


[url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8508176.stm]Somali rebels 'pour into Mogadishu'[/url]

Hundreds of Somali insurgents loyal to Islamist group al-Shabab have poured into Mogadishu, witnesses say, amid expectations of a major battle.

Eyewitnesses reported that fighters, about 20 vehicles and artillery had arrived in Somalia's capital overnight.

Residents have been fleeing for days amid a widespread belief that the rebels and government forces are on the cusp of a serious showdown.