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President Bush's Speech on Terrorism Undercut by Attacks in Somalia

Issue 354
Front Page
Index
News Headlines
Message Of The UN Resident Humanitarian Coordinator To Somalis
Local and Regional Affairs
Muslim Cleric Arrested In Somali Bombings
Massive Security Deployment In Somaliland As Death Toll Rises
UN Staff In Somalia Mourn Loss Of Colleagues Killed In Deadly Blast
Ban Deplores ‘Outrageous' Attack On UN Office And Other Sites In Northern Somalia
Mark Malloch-Brown Condemns Attacks
Form cabinet, Somalia told
Deadly Car Bombs Hit Somaliland
Bombings Have Markings Of Al-Qaeda: US Official
FIDH Condemns the Suicide Attacks in Somalia
AP IMPACT: Security Firms Join Somali Piracy Fight
Shipload of supplies escorted to Somalia
Flashback: Israeli Revealed as owner of South Sudan bound weapons ship
Editorial
 
The Terrorist Attacks On Somaliland
Supporting Somaliland's Democracy Against The Terror Act ?
Somaliland & Unisa's Department of Religious Studies represented at London 's 2008 Think Tank of the
Kenya On Heightened Terror Alert After Somaliland Bombings
Features & Commentry
Somalia 's Pirates Flourish In A Lawless Nation
‘It's A Great Time To Be A Pirate'
Somaliland Witness: 'Terrible Day'

Opinion

Somaliland Stands Firm Against Terrorism
It's Time To Take On The Gangsters Of The Sea
President Bush's Speech on Terrorism Undercut by Attacks in Somalia
Somalia 's Descent Into Chaos Predicted
Somaliland Organizations In Diaspora Condemn The Terrorist Attacks In Somaliland
Message Of Condolences And Condemnation
Will White People Riot?
The Hon Stephen Smith MP
 

 

This is a post by NSN Intern Amanda Hillman

President Bush spoke this morning to the graduating class of the FBI Training Academy . He commended the expanded role the FBI has played in the US 's fight against terrorism; “'More than seven years have passed without another attack on our soil. And this is not an accident," the President said. "Since 9/11, we have gone on the offense against the terrorists abroad, so we do not have to face them here at home…” Yet the President's speech was undercut by morning news reports of suicide bombings in Afghanistan , India , Spain , and Somalia .

The optimistic tone of President Bush's speech at the FBI Academy this morning reflects the degree to which the current administration has been separated from reality, especially in Somalia . The Washington Post reports that the death toll for Wednesday's crescendo of suicide bombings across northern Somalia rose to 30 this afternoon. The AP explained that the attacks struck “just as international leaders held talks on ending decades of deadly turmoil in this chaotic African nation. The five seemingly coordinated attacks targeted a U.N. compound, the Ethiopian consulate and the capital, Hargeisa. All occurred in the breakaway republic of Somaliland …” U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Somalia , Mark Bowden said that "While Somalia is one of the most dangerous places in the world for aid workers, Hargeisa has been relatively stable and consequently many United Nations staff were stationed there." The BBC reported that foreign workers will be pulled from the area.

Militants in Somalia linked to Al Qaeda are suspected of the synchronized bombings, and experts worry that “ the attacks might signal that insurgent groups are expanding their reach to new areas and are using more sophisticated techniques.” The militants are part of a group known as Shabab, and they have “been fighting a guerilla war against Somalia 's transitional government and the Ethiopian troops supporting it.” Shabab's leadership has vowed to overthrow Somalia 's fledgling government, drive out any Ethiopian troops, and recently announced their intentions to “forge closer ties with Al Qaeda,” making it potentially not dissimilar from the Taliban in Afghanistan .

Recent hijackings of cargo ships along the Gulf of Aden, off the coast of Somalia , are far from unrelated in this matter. Despite recent commitments to secure one of the busiest shipping lanes in that region, the AP is reporting Somali pirates today hijacked a Turkish ship and its crew of 20 in the Gulf. States and alliances sending ships and war planes to police the waters there need to acknowledge that the problem they must now confront is much deeper, and has much further reaching influence, than the proliferation of piracy.

The string of attacks on cargo and aid ships this past year, like the suicide bombings in the past few hours, is testimony to the failure of the Bush administration, as well as the international community, to coherently and effectively address the crisis befalling failed states around the globe.

October 30, 2008 at 05:18 PM | Permalink

 


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