Does the Arab League Care about Somalia?
The world watches in indifference as Somalia descends yet again into a bottomless pit that is tantamount, from the perspective of an ordinary Somali citizen in Mogadishu today, to the upcoming apocalyptic movie 2012 that predicts the end of the world.
For a mother who lost her husband in the anarchy that has engulfed Somalia for the last 18 years, and has a bunch of kids to care for on her own, every flare up of conflict in Mogadishu makes her wonder what she and her small children have done to deserve such misery. The scene of small children lying lifeless in the streets of Mogadishu is not acceptable under any religion in this world, let alone the Muslim faith.
A disputed election in Iran makes President Obama come out strongly against the loss of a few lives at the hands of the revolutionary guards, while he remains mum about the death and injury of hundreds of Somalis in Mogadishu on a daily basis. It is as if Somalia is an alien nation whose people live in another galaxy that is way out of this small world we live in.
|Armed Somali Militia Photo Courtesy|
Ethiopia seems to be poised to re-occupy Somalia and demands an International blessing for her new misadventure. The Sharif and his allies who belittled the old Man Yusuf for using Ethiopian troops to pacify the country seem to be praying for the same Ethiopian troops to save them from their old brothers in arms.
The redeployment of Ethiopian troops and the possible deployment of Kenyan troops into Somalia with an International blessing seem to be heralding the implementation of a plan suggested by a Kenyan writer a few months ago when he advocated carving up Somalia between the two neighboring countries, a scenario that is not far-fetched in my humble opinion.
The presence of AU troops from two landlocked counties, Uganda and Burundi, the constant interference of landlocked Ethiopia into Somali affairs, and the recent agreement between the Sharif government and Kenya to remap the territorial waters of Somalia to the benefit of Kenya, all seem to be focusing on the vast coastline of Somalia which they see as a failed state that does not deserve to control such a vast area of the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean.
The project of Ould Abdulalh seems to have failed miserably and the Sharif government that many hoped would bring peace and stability is on the brink of collapse thus paving the way for a fundamentalist state that may not be a bad thing in the eyes of many Somalis who prefer such as a regime to a country that is overrun by hordes of Ethiopian, Kenyan, Burundian and Ugandan opportunists who have their eyes on their beautiful and vast coastline.
To save the country from foreign interference, the Sharif should bow out gracefully like Yusuf before him and call for a wide Somali reconciliation conference inside Somalia this time, and not in neighboring counties that do not have the best interest of Somalia at heart.
The Somali problem is very complicated and should be left to its own people to resolve. The International community can help by facilitating a broad reconciliation conference that is funded, managed and organized by the Organization of the Islamic Conference. The Islamists will hopefully trust such an organization and heed the call for a reconciliation conference that is free from the interference and influence of regional countries such as Ethiopia and Kenya, two countries that have contributed a lot to the current situation in Somalia.
The Islamic world should not watch in indifference as Somalis slaughter each other. Since the Arab League does not care about Somalia, and its Arab members do not consider Somalis Arab enough, the Islamic world such as Turkey, Indonesia and Malaysia need to take an active role in helping their brothers in Islam thus fulfilling the famous words of the Prophet: Give your Muslim brother a hand whether he is oppressed or oppresses others.
By Ali H. Abdulla
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