Sunday, June 11, 2006

Peaceful Somalia

According to this "analysis" at Monsters and Critics with a United Press International byline, and I use the term analysis loosely, Somalia could be due for a new golden era of peace and unity following the victory of the Islamists in Mogadishu.

Thanks to the victory of Islamic fighters, Somalia is back in the international spotlight and perhaps on its way to peace.

The theory is that with the US-backed warlords out of the way, peace will return to the war-stricken country now that the Islamists have "reunited" Mog. And don't worry, these are moderate Islamic courts, no need to bother yourself with trifling little details like them banning Western and Indian films, videos or even the World Cup. Their opposition to listening to music or dancing because it's "un-Islamic" is just a trivial concern. No, these are moderate clan-based African Islamists. No need to pay any attention to that man (Mogadishu's senior cleric- what does he know, right?) saying that "All Somalis must defend the Islamic courts because this is not inter-clan fighting, but war with the infidels.
" That fighting which left 300 dead as they fought to take control of the city was nothing to worry about- possibly it's some sort of cultural thing. And that talk by one of the leaders of the Islamic Courts about starting a jihad on any foreign troops sent to the country? Probably just tough guy talk?

The courts union, which includes 11 Islamic religious tribunals, are credited for having reinstated some peace and order in the capital and for providing services the powerless central government has failed to do.

Its victory in Mogadishu apparently restored hope for stability among this east African country`s almost 9 million population, mostly Muslims exhausted by civil war.

Hope and stability if you're a Muslim willing to go along with their particular brand of "justice" that is. Like the kid who stabbed his father's killer to death after a ruling by one of the courts. All that business of thieves getting limbs amputated and women wearing either the headscarf or veil is welcomed by the people of Somalia; stability like this is much preferred over the results of speaking out against the courts. The BBC also approves of the new stability that the Courts have brought to the city, even though one of their own producers was murdered there, most likely as a result of a fatwa issued against Westerners entering Mogadishu.

Now that they've unified Mogadishu, the Courts hope to go on to "unify" the rest of Somalia, with the help of foreign fighters in their ranks. Goodness, soon the whole country can benefit from their benevolent leadership! But that's not all, after that they may go on to "unify" parts of Ethiopia too.

The "analysts" go on to say that the US shouldn't worry about Al Qaeda in Somalia because the Islamic courts won't have anything to do with them. Please do try to forget that the US has already identified Al Qaeda operatives being harboured by the Islamic Courts and that they have also had contact with Osama Bin Laden.

Experts warn that an American intervention in the name of the war on terror would be tantamount to an open invitation to Somali cooperation with al-Qaida, threatening to turn the courts union from a clan-based system into a fundamentalist militant one.

Unless of course the US tries to stop them having contact with Al Qaeda, in which case they will adopt close ties with the terrorists. Makes sense doesn't it? Thank you Monsters and Critics (and let's not forget UPI) for such a well researched and in-depth analysis. What on earth would we do without such insightful reporting as this?

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