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Issue 394

Front Page

News Headlines

Weapons Supplied To Somalia Government By The US Are Sold In Mogadishu Markets

The Shortest Man In Somaliland Leaves For Norway

Somaliland Parliament Says Suspension Of Voter Registration Illegal

Tostan Holds Conference On Women’s Genital Mutilation

UN Agencies Launch Next Round Of Child Health Initiative In Somaliland

An Interview With Ambassador Marika Fahlen, Sweden’s Special Envoy For The Horn Of Africa

Somalia Tells All Visitors To Seek Government Approval

Somaliland Government Controlled Media Used To Incite Extremism

Local and Regional Affairs

A CALL FOR DIALOGUE: To Hold A Free, Fair And Peaceful Presidential Election

East Africa: Ethiopia Takes Part in First East African Independent Producers Forum

Somalia Mosque Victims Belonged To Southern Punjab

Kenyan Court Drops Charges, Clears Way For Canadian Woman To Return Home

Al Shabaab Reportedly Beheads 4 Christians, Rips Gold Teeth From Locals' Mouths

2 Somali Women, Children Die In Fire

3rd Man Pleads Guilty In Missing Somalis Case

Man Gets 23 Years In Killing Of Somali Restaurant Cook

Athens Police Attack Somali Protesters

Libyans Kill 20 Somali Prisoners

Somalia: The Trouble with Puntland

Somali Insurgents Reject Government’s Olive Branch

Amnesty International Calls For Accountability And Safeguards On Arms Transfers To Somalia’s TFG

Eastern Africa Standby Force To Be Ready Next Year

Somali Islamists Pull Teeth From "Sinners": Residents

Communiqué: Conference With Former Senior Somali Military And Police Officers

Clinton And South African Discuss Somalia

Tribute To Ali Marshal

Editorial

Western Countries Encourage Piracy By Paying Ransom

Features & Commentary

Somalia: The Center Cannot Hold

Incredible Journey of Somali Human Right Activist Waris Dirie – The Movie

Escape From Somaliland

Without Free Movement, East Africa Will Keep Marking Time

Clinton's Africa Trip Highlights Importance US Attaches To The Continent

What Was Siyad Barre's Relation To A Fundamentalist Christian Group?

Legal Brief On The Suspension Of The Voter Registration List

Mandela – Poem

AT THE MERCY OF SOMALI PIRATES: Hansa Stavanger Crew Describe Hostage Ordeal

Where Camels Once Trod, A Train Crosses Australia

Update: Independent Diplomat Responds

US Misguided In Moving To Arm Somalia, Say Analysts

President Isaias's Encounter With The Financial Times

Somalia: The Trouble With Puntland – Report

International News

 

Woman Who Tried To Kill Ford Released From Prison

A Short Guide To Tools For Citizen Journalists

Australian Camels Facing Slaughter

UN Human Rights Expert Sounds Alarm On Draft Media Laws In Venezuela

Poll Shows Afghan Vote Headed For Second Round

Bristol's World Cup Bid Brings Communities Together . . . On The Football Field

Opinion

A Crucial Week For Somaliland: A Time For Action

Building Bridges For Somaliland University Student Outside And Inside The Country

Why I Fear For Somalia

Africa’s Best-Kept Secret “Somaliland” Is In Need For A Change!

Lost Faith In The System

Somalilanders Around The Globe: Vote For Change

Where There Is No Donor

Al-Shabaab: “The” Number One Enemy Of Islam And Somali People

President Riyale And The Election Commission Are The Reason Of The Election’s Bone Of Contention

Al-Shabaab: “The” Number One Enemy Of Islam And Somali People

By Dalmar Kahin

For almost two decades politically polarized warmongers, acting like spoiled children who refused to share a sandbox, held Somalia hostage. But never before have Somalis seen a terrifying group like Al-Shabaab cult. From a victorious group that evicted Ethiopian troops from Somalia to a barbaric enemy of Islam and Somali society, Al-Shabaab is the most loathed faction in Somalia today. This religious cult pretends to advocate for the rule of Sharia laws yet undertakes the most un-Islamic acts; it screams about the presence of foreign troops in Somali soil, yet Al-Shabaab parachutes foreign suicide bombers into the country. Worse yet, the Western Media uses Al-Shabaab’s barbarism as a powerful propaganda tool against Islam. And above all, this ruthless group brought death and destruction to an oasis of serenity amid chaos in Horn of Africa: the democratic republic of Somaliland.

Al-Shabaab’s hypocrisy in abundant supply, it advocates for the rule Sharia, but it carries out the most un-Islamic acts of violence—suicide bombings. For starters, in the Somali world suicide bombers remain foreign ideologies that Al-Shabaab imported to the country. It is a new phenomenon that frightens the Somali people. So far, Al-Shabaab targeted government officials and civilians alike with suicide bombings. Without a doubt, suicide bombings are against the teachings of Islam. Clearly, any Muslim scholar that you speak to will tell you that suicide bombing is one of the most un-Islamic acts—a guaranteed ticket to hell; yet Al-Shabaab in the name of its version of Islam conducts what Islam resolutely forbids.

Equally, new to Somalia and as gruesome as the suicide bombing is the limb amputations. While in every neighborhood of Mogadishu women are raped and people are mugged—never mind securing the rest of the country—Al-Shabaab horns its skills to chop up body parts of young boys caught shoplifting. But what does Islam say about limb amputations? 

To amputate thieves’ arms or legs strict conditions must be met: first, a functioning Islamic state with its security forces, economy, justice and health care systems should exist. Second, the state must prove beyond shadow of a doubt that the government can provide jobs for the thieves, but they resort to stealing. Before, the perpetrators lose their limbs, the president of the Islamic republic—if required—must testify in a court of law that it is not his/her government that fails them, but they let themselves down. Third, the owner of the stolen goods must insist not to forgive the perpetrators, which will never happen in the Somali society. Fourth, the perpetrators and community should have time to evaluate what is at stake. During this period the community convinces the owner to forgive the thieves. Currently, Somalia is far from a nation that can be applied to Islamic laws.

But Al-Shabaab devises a brutal campaign of terror and argues such an atrocity is based on Islamic Sharia law. Destroying cemeteries, killing civilians and displacing them, among other atrocities, Al-Shabaab carries out a barbaric war against the Somali people. However, among Somali Islamic scholars Al-Shabaab’s barbarism has nothing to do with promoting Sharia. “Before Sheik Sharif's election you were all fighting for an Islamic leader, but now you have no excuse,” the chairman of the Somali Clerics Council, Sheikh Nur Barood Gurhan states. http://hiiraan.com/news2/2009/Feb/somali_clerics_council_endorses_president.aspx (Sheik Sharif is the current Somali president, or more precisely: the besieged mayor of Mogadishu.)

Now don’t forget: many members of Al-Shabaab fighters are in fact from former warlords’ militias. In the past, some of these militias who currently call themselves Al-Shabaab raped Somali women and girls, looted businesses, and murdered countless innocent people in the name of defending not Islam or Somalia but the interest of their tribes. (Back then, tribes were the new sports on the block.) These gangs just changed shirts. In that case, shouldn’t Al-Shabaab’s Sharia applied to its members? Of course not, because Al-Shabaab zealots accept only the part of Islam that favors them. That is, they exonerate themselves from their horrendous crimes—without a tinge of regret—yet preach us about Islam.

Also, while Al-Shabaab screams about the presence of the African peacekeeping forces known as UNISOM in Somalia, it [Al-Shabaab] parachutes foreign suicide bombers into Somalia. Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys, the leader of Hisbul Islam—an ally of Al-Shabaab—unequivocally admits receiving support from Eritrea and foreign fighters. He states, "Eritrea supports us…there may be two or three Arabs who were moved by Islam to fight alongside us." http://markacadeey.com/may/20090523_1e.htm 

Now, admittedly, when attacked the UNISOM forces’ indiscriminate slaughter against civilians provide Al-Shabaab yet another reason to wage war. Worse yet, the current Somali regime’s imprudent strategy to associated with Ethiopia, and signing bogus maritime deals with Kenya which allow Kenya to steal a large chunk of Somalia’s territorial waters, among other blunders, provide Al-Shabaab a cause to wage war. See these articles about the scandalous treaty: 
http://somalilandpress.com/4335/for-sale-somalia%E2%80%99s-territorial-waters/
http://www.unforum.com/UNheadlines571.htm and http://tinyurl.com/njjxgy

But the maritime treaty isn’t as scandalous as the Western Media’s malicious propaganda campaign against Islam. The Western Media could not be happier with Al-Shabaab’s un-Islamic barbaric acts. For instance, with respect to Somalia’s turmoil almost every article that you come across, or every channel you flip states, “Al-Shabaab enforce strict Sharia laws”. What kind of Sharia? Without a doubt, this is the invaluable propaganda that the Western Media rejoices. And to make sure that an undiluted ignorance—the worst disinformation of the century, a condoned Islamaphobia—spreads like a wildfire, none of the Media groups invite Islamic scholars to clarify whether Al-Shabaab practices Islam, or barbarism. Instead, the Media invites the so-called Western experts who repeatedly regurgitate the same stale propaganda against Islam. Through the thick lenses of the West, Islam and terrorism are synonymous words, and so are Sharia and limb amputations.

But in the long run these deliberate fear-mongering tactics and unabated Islamaphobia will harm the Western image and inadvertently recruit more groups like Al-Shabaab.

And who created this monster? Of course, Al-Shabaab came to power when U.S. commissioned Ethiopia to invade Somalia in December 2006. Ethiopian troops fled; U.S. failed its mission; Somalia inherited the monster.

But Somalia is not the only victim of Al-Shabaab. The democratic republic of Somaliland also received the wrath of Al-Shabaab. It detonated one of the worst suicide attacks in Somaliland’s history in October 2008. Over twenty two civilians lost their life. The scares of the bomb attacks are still visible in Hargeysa, Somaliland capital. And while panic-stricken Somalilanders focused on local suspects from Somalia, I asked a simple question: “Is Canada Harboring Terrorists Who Attacked Hargeysa, Somaliland capital?”http://www.maanhadal.com/articles/Is_Canada_Harboring_Terrorists.html

One year later, Canada’s National Post Newspaper answers my question and details how Al-Shabaab sympathizers from Canada planned to spur chaos in Somaliland: http://www.nationalpost.com/story.html?id=1472963 Similarly, a brainwashed Somali-American from Minneapolis was among the suicide bombers that sent body part flying over rooftops in downtown Hargeysa.

Now, Hargeysa is only 280km from U.S. bases in Djibouti. Additionally, Somaliland border guards near Djibouti are poorly trained and barely equipped to stop suicide bombers and terrorists. Therefore, God forbid but it will be a matter of time before Al-Shabaab attacks U.S. bases in Djibouti. And that is why it is paramount for the U.S. not only to train and equip Somaliland forces but also base some U.S. forces near the border between Somaliland and Somalia to stop suicide bombers destined to attack U.S. base in Djibouti.

Surely, just as the Al-Shabaab terrorists bombed Somaliland in 2008, so too they could detonate deadly explosives against U.S. bases in Djibouti. Hence, the U.S. must stop Al-Shabaab at the border between Somaliland and Somalia and not at the gates of the U.S. military bases in Djibouti. The indisputable fact is: the ONLY wall that separates Al-Shabaab suicide bombers and U.S. forces in Djibouti is Somaliland. If this wall is thick enough, Al-Shabaab will have less chances of attacking the U.S. interests in Djibouti.

To sum up, Al-Shabaab’s callous brutality against Somalis, its un-Islamic ideologies, and its unabated barbaric limb amputations, among others, now forced many Somalis to either stay frightened in their houses, or flee in droves. Also, this group’s brutal war to annihilate anyone that opposes its ideologies is unprecedented in Somalia. 

With conviction, overwhelmingly the Somali citizens, the intellectuals, and the Islamic scholars, view Al-Shabaab as the number one enemy of the Somali society and Islam.

As for the West, it cannot abandon Somalia and watch while West-created monster: Al-Shabaab decimates the current Mogadishu regime.

The truth is: while Al-Shabaab is left to amputate and terrorize Somali people, the West uses this terror group as an indispensible propaganda tool against Islam. The fact is: if the U.S. and its allies want to annihilate Al-Shabaab they could do so easily. But why bother? After all, Al-Shabaab has very little chance or motive to detonate bombs in the Western countries (minus staged terrorism, of course), despite the ludicrous shrills from the West. And more important, to continue the Western imperial expansion, an enemy is always needed.

Similarly, both Ethiopia and Kenya desperately need Al-Shabaab to keep Somalia’s inferno burning.

Doubtless, once Al-Shabaab terrorists overrun Mogadishu and its environs, they will take their suicide bombs to the democratic republic of Somaliland—once again—where during its upcoming presidential election in September 2009 terrorists plan to detonate massive explosives at polling stations. 

Nor will the U.S. bases in Djibouti escape Al-Shabaab terrorists’ attack, if U.S. doesn’t stop them before they enter Somaliland.

Dalmar Kahin

dalmar_k@yahoo.com






 

 


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