Monday, November 30, 2009

Change! Somali Terrorists Use Obama Portraits For Target Practice

Isn’t this racist?Somali terrorists linked to Al-Qaeda are using portraits of Barack Obama for their target practice.

MOGADISHU, Somalia — The recruits gather in scorching desert hideouts in Somalia, use portraits of President Barack Obama for target practice, learn how to make and detonate bombs, and vow allegiance to Osama bin Laden. Training camps in the lawless nation of Somalia are attracting hundreds of foreigners, including Americans, and Somalis recruited by a local insurgent group linked to al-Qaida, according to local and U.S. officials. American officials and private analysts say the camps pose a security threat far beyond the borders of Somalia, including to the U.S. homeland. In interviews with The Associated Press, former trainees gave rare details on the camps, which are scattered along desert footpaths, rutted roads and steamy coastal dens. They say the recruits are told the United States is the enemy of Islam. U.S. and Somali officials say Somalia’s al-Shabab jihadist, or holy war, movement is growing, and uses foreign trainers with battlefield experience from other conflicts. The threat posed by the training camps was underscored in federal court documents unsealed Nov. 23 in Minneapolis, home to a large Somali-American community. An indictment against several Somali-Americans who allegedly fought in Somalia said trainees at one camp included dozens of ethnic Somalis from Somalia and other African countries, Europe and the United States. “The trainees were trained by, among others, Somali, Arab, and Western instructors in … small arms, machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, and military-style tactics,” said an affidavit from FBI Special Agent Michael N. Cannizzaro Jr. that was unsealed with the indictment. H/T

The President of Puntland, Abdirahman Farole, appoints son as his media director

In an interview with Horseednet Media, Mohamed Abdirahman Farole, a controversial, self-styled media admirer and owner of, admitted his appointment to lead President Farole’s media relations office.
Mohamed has been fore-front since his father has been elected to the presidency. He was a great supporter during the Puntland election earlier this year; was in charge of his father’s election campaign; held number of press releases on behalf of Mr. Farole, his own father.
“My job is to improve the relationship between the president’s office and the Puntland Media,” Mohamed said in an interview. However, many questioned the purpose of this selective appointment. Mr. Farole has been very critical toward the media, and his intolerance surfaced soon after he took office earlier this year.
In less than 8 months in office, more than 10 journalists have been detained on a number of unfounded allegations; some of them have been subjected to torture and imprisonment; others were taken hostage on a ransom. The international community and humanitarian organizations warned Mr. Farole’s administration in several occasions.
Despite the warnings from the international community and the outcry from Puntland’s diaspora members, then, comes president’s appointment of own son, a new dictatorial paradigm that has been widely criticized.
Many wonder why the president chose his son who has no journalistic background over more qualified candidates? perhaps, the president does not want to trust anyone outside his family circles.

Somali pirates seize oil tanker. Where are the anti-piracy forces?Somali pirates hijack US$20 mil. of crude oil‎

Somali pirates hijack US$20 mil. of crude oil
Nairobi, Kenya - Almost exactly a year ago, a handful of modern-day pirates from Somalia in small, open skiffs shocked the world by hijacking a 1,090-foot oil tanker carrying $100 million of crude bound for the US. Within months, a three-dozen-strong flotilla of vessels flying the flags of at least 12 different international navies had been deployed to protect shipping passing through what had become the world's most dangerous waters. Yet, on Monday, the pirates did it again.A second Very Large Crude Carrier, the Greek-owned Maran Centaurus, was seized more than 800 miles east of Mogadishu fully loaded with an estimated 2 million barrels of oil heading for New Orleans from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Monday's attack is raising fresh questions about the effectiveness of the international effort to curb piracy, headquartered at the US Fifth Fleet's base in Bahrain. "The reason it's still happening is that the big international naval deployment is concentrated in the Gulf of Aden, where there is a clearly defined, narrow shipping corridor, which is a much easier area to police," said Roger Middleton, piracy expert at the Chatham House think tank in London. "Now the pirates have packed up and moved much deeper into the Indian Ocean, which is just an enormous area. With the 30 or 40 ships available to the international naval force it is just not possible to police it properly." How to pirate-proof your ship Since the surge in piracy off Somalia, many commercial ship owners are paying for armed security to guard ships as they pass through the most dangerous stretches of water. But "it is just not an option for these kinds of oil and gas ships," says Mr. Middleton. "No ship owner is going to think it is safe to have guys with guns standing on top of millions of barrels of flammable cargo." Security consultants advise ships to drape barbed wire around their decks, to line dummy crew along the guard rails, and to employ evasive maneuvers once under attack.
This last tactic, at least, is difficult aboard a fully loaded 300,000-ton supertanker, which would also have been low in the water and thus easier to board. So what to do to protect the world's shipping?Rashid Abdi, Horn of Africa analyst at the International Crisis Group's Nairobi office, says there must be significant progress in creating a stable and effective government in Somalia itself, which can then police its own waters and prosecute the criminals on its own soil who orchestrate the pirate attacks. "The solution lies in fixing the governance crisis that feeds it (piracy)," he says. "This requires a multi-pronged strategy, in which the military component is less dominant." A ransom payment in the works?By late afternoon, the Maran Centaurus had changed course and was heading toward the Somali coastline, according to Andrew Mwangura of the East African Seafarer's Assistance Program in the Kenyan port city of Mombasa. The 1,085-foot vessel's 28 crew members – from Greece, Ukraine, Romania, and the Philippines – were believed to be unharmed.Once it is at anchor, likely close to the Somali coastal towns of Haradheere or Hobyo, ransom negotiations will begin.The Sirius Star, the only other supertanker ever to have been hijacked off Somalia, was freed in January after a payment reportedly of more than $3 million was paid.
• Staff writer Scott Baldauf contributed to this report from Johannesburg, South Africa.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Al-Shabaab rebels seize town close to Kenyan border

Islamist insurgents stand guard in Mogadishu. The al Qaeda linked rebels are said to have driven out combatants of Hizbu-Islam to take control of Dhobley, the border town. Photo/FILE

Islamist insurgents stand guard in Mogadishu. The al Qaeda linked rebels are said to have driven out combatants of Hizbu-Islam to take control of Dhobley, the border town. Photo/FILE

By NATION Correspondent in MOGADSHUPosted Sunday, November 29 2009 at 22:30

Somalia’s al-Shabaab insurgents have captured a key town close to the border with Kenya. The al Qaeda linked rebels are said to have driven out combatants of Hizbu-Islam, another Islamist group opposing the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia (TFG), to take control of Dhobley, the border town.Sheikh Hassan Yakoub Ali, a resident, said that Hizbu-Islam fighters had crossed the border into Kenya, adding that the rebels held talks with Kenyan officials. With this victory, al-Shabaab appears to have consolidated its presence in the strategic Juba region.Sheikh Yakoub said the al-Shabaab officials held talks with Sheikh Hassan Abdullahi Hersi alias Sheikh Hassan Turki at Dhobley.

Combatants fled

Despite claims by al-Shabaab officials that Hizbu-Islam combatants fled to the Kenyan side of the border, residents said that the forces of Sheikh Ahmed Madobe disappeared into the bushy areas known as Bada Madoow (black sea).The residents said that al-Shabaab fighters reached Dhobley, which neighbours the Kenyan town of Liboi, at midday on Saturday. There was no confrontation, they said.So far, Hizbu-Islam has not issued a statement on the issue. Meanwhile, al-Shabaab leader Sheikh Mukhtar Abdurahman Abu Zubayr has rejected any reconciliation offers by the government.He said that unless foreign forces leave the country and an Islamic state is established, his movement would intensify attacks. Over

Somali training camps fuel threat of attacks on US

MOGADISHU, Somalia — The recruits gather in scorching desert hideouts in Somalia, use portraits of President Barack Obama for target practice, learn how to make and detonate bombs, and vow allegiance to Osama bin Laden. Training camps in the lawless nation of Somalia are attracting hundreds of foreigners, including Americans, and Somalis recruited by a local insurgent group linked to al-Qaida, according to local and U.S. officials. American officials and private analysts say the camps pose a security threat far beyond the borders of Somalia, including to the U.S. homeland. In interviews with The Associated Press, former trainees gave rare details on the camps, which are scattered along desert footpaths, rutted roads and steamy coastal dens. They say the recruits are told the United States is the enemy of Islam.
U.S. and Somali officials say Somalia's al-Shabab jihadist, or holy war, movement is growing, and uses foreign trainers with battlefield experience from other conflicts. The threat posed by the training camps was underscored in federal court documents unsealed Nov. 23 in Minneapolis, home to a large Somali-American community. An indictment against several Somali-Americans who allegedly fought in Somalia said trainees at one camp included dozens of ethnic Somalis from Somalia and other African countries, Europe and the United States. "The trainees were trained by, among others, Somali, Arab, and Western instructors in ... small arms, machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, and military-style tactics," said an affidavit from FBI Special Agent Michael N. Cannizzaro Jr. that was unsealed with the indictment. Former al-Shabab fighter Hassan Yare, who works in Somalia's capital, Mogadishu, said life in the camps is austere. Recruits sleep on plastic sheets and sometimes eat only one meal a day — often maize cooked with water. Phones are confiscated. Recruits are only allowed to speak to their parents once every other Friday — Islam's holy day. "The message is simple," Dahir Muhiyadiin, 18, said three months after finishing his training at a camp run by Somalia's main insurgent group. "We are taught how the Western infidels want to eradicate pure Muslims, about how the U.S. government does nothing as Israel harasses our Muslim Palestinians." Al-Shabab — "the youth" in Arabic — controls much of the desert nation's southern region and holds large parts of Mogadishu. It wants to overthrow the government and install a strict form of Islam. Analysts say the group has between 2,000 and 3,000 fighters. Among al-Shabab's ranks are an estimated 200 to 400 foreigners from Pakistan, Chechnya, Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania and other countries — many of them veterans of fighting in Afghanistan and Pakistan, said Mark Schroeder, an Africa analyst at the global intelligence firm Stratfor. The proliferation of jihadist training camps raises concerns that Somalia will become the next Afghanistan — a sanctuary for al-Qaida-linked groups to train and plan attacks. The Somali government seems powerless to do anything about it...more..

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Al-Qaeda, Somali rebels cooperate: AU commander.Al-Qaida-Linked Militants Capture Key Somali Town

MOGADISHU — Al-Qaeda and Islamists fighting to topple Somalia's government provide "mutual support" to each other, the head of the African Union peacekeeping force here told AFP in an interview. Major General Nathan Mugisha of Uganda, who commands a force of nearly 5,300 soldiers in Somalia, also said the relatively small size of the deployment has limited what it can do to defend the government against the Islamist onslaught. "I think there's a relationship between activities here and Al-Qaeda," Mugisha said in the interview at the force's headquarters at Mogadishu airport. "There's mutual support and I think the way they behave is similar." Asked whether there were foreign fighters in Somalia, he said, "yes there are." Somali President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed has said several hundred foreign fighters have come to help the Islamists. Somalia has been embroiled in conflict since 1991, but Western nations fearful of the country becoming an Al-Qaeda safe haven hoped a government they backed led by Sharif would be able to restore some semblance of order. Instead, an offensive earlier this year by two Islamist groups has left the transitional government with control of only a small part of the Somali capital. The remainder is held by the Al-Qaeda-inspired Shebab and the more political Hezb al-Islam militia. African Union troops here since 2007 were supposed to number 8,000, but only two countries -- Uganda and Burundi -- are contributing for now. They are stationed at strategic areas in Mogadishu. "Our numbers are limited and therefore our activities have to be limited," Mugisha said. Responding to criticism over civilian casualties during clashes between the AU force and insurgents, Mugisha said "we only react after a lot of provocation, but we are under guidance and instruction to restrain.""We are here to support the transitional federal government and its institutions," he said.The force seeks to convince Shebab fighters to put down their weapons and negotiate, said Mugisha, who added that he still has faith in the bid by President Sharif, seen as a moderate Islamist, to bring peace to the country."We have channels of communication (with Shebab) and we encourage all the belligerents to come reconcile, stop their hostilities, come together as brothers and sisters, be able to resolve the problems in their house," he said."The international community has got a big role to play. It cannot be thrown to the Somalis themselves."Mugisha argued that because the country is so divided, a negotiated settlement is the only way to end the conflict."Since there is no single group that can take this area, the political solution is the way forward," said Mugisha."It is high time that the Somalis themselves understood it ... They should be able to respect whatever solutions or agreements they have reached, respect them and honour them. With the support of the international community, then peace will hold."The AU commander said Sharif, the former number two of the Islamic Courts Union that fought against the previous government and its Ethiopian allies and briefly held power in 2006, remained a "good ally.""He's still talking, encouraging his colleagues to join the government, to join the transitional government so that they are able to sort out their problems," said Mugisha."If he still opens the window of opportunity, I think he is still a good ally to work towards getting peace."
Al-Qaida-Linked Militants Capture Key Somali Town

Terrorism probe casts scrutiny on Minneapolis' Somali immigrant enclave

Little Mogadishu residents talk of a lack of identity and a life of poverty and racism. And they disagree over their former neighbors who are accused of plotting jihad in Somalia.
Minneapolis' Little Mogadishu
Reporting from Minneapolis - Barely a block from the Mississippi River sits a neighborhood Mark Twain could not have imagined.Men with henna-streaked beards and women in full-body hijabs streamed Tuesday past the Maashaa Allah Restaurant, the Alle Aamin Coffee Shop, the Kaah Express Money Wiring stall, the storefront Al-Qaaniteen Mosque and other similar structures."When I came here as a refugee in 1995, there were just a few hundred Somalis, and we were very alone," said Adar Kahin, 48, who was a famous singer back home and now volunteers at a local community center."Now everyone is here," she said cheerfully. "It's like being back in Mogadishu. That's what we call it, Little Mogadishu."This corner of Minneapolis -- the de facto capital of the Somali diaspora in America -- presents many faces: hope and renewal, despair and fear.But more than anything, particularly for the young, it is a place of transition and searching for identity."Keeping an identity in this situation is really hard," said Saeed Fahia, who arrived in 1997 and now heads a confederation of Somali organizations. "In Somali culture, all tradition is taught when you are 9 years old, and you learn all about your clan and sub-clan for 25 generations. There's no mechanism to learn that here, and no context."For the FBI, Little Mogadishu has become the center of an intenseinvestigation into a recruiting network that sent young men to fight in Somalia for a radical Islamist group known as Shabab, or "the Youth."Investigators say the poverty, grim gang wars and overpacked public housing towers produced one of the largest militant operations in the United States since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.Federal officials announced terrorism charges Monday against eight local men, seven of whom remain at large. That brought the total to 14 Minneapolis men who have been indicted or pleaded guilty this year for allegedly indoctrinating, recruiting or training local youths to join a Muslim militia waging war in Somalia against the U.S.-backed government.Family members say six young men from Minneapolis have died in Somalia in the last 13 months, including one who the FBI believes was a suicide bomber. About 20 local youths are believed to have taken up arms there.Fahia speculated that those who went to Somalia "are trying to reclaim their identity. They're trying to find a mission in life. They're trying to find out where they come from, and who they are."Those who left to fight in Somalia prompt no unified response from those who stayed.

Outside the Brian Coyle Community Center, five young men who emigrated from Somalia as toddlers huddled in black hoodies under a cold, clammy fog that turned the day dull gray. They shared smokes and spoke of those who had joined the jihad, or holy war.
"Some of them felt America is the land of the devil," said Said Ali, who is 20, rail-thin and jobless. "They were losing their culture, their language and their religion. They've got family there. They feel at home."If he had the money, he said, he would go to Somalia too."My friend went," he said. "He's running a hotel. He carries an AK-47. He's living life good."Ali Mohamed, also 20 and unemployed, jumped in. "These guys are blowing up women and kids," he said. "That ain't right."The difficult search for identity is an old story in this area.Minnesota long has waved a welcome mat for war refugees -- first Koreans, then Hmong, Vietnamese and Ethiopians. Minneapolis provided subsidized housing and generous benefits. The newcomers found low-wage jobs at chicken-processing factories where English was not required.The first wave of Somalis arrived here after 1991, when the country descended into a fierce clan-based civil war that still rages. More Somalis came each year, and family members soon followed, as was mandated under U.S. law. Others moved here from other U.S. cities.
Many in the community started families, opened businesses and achieved financial stability. They wired money to relatives back home, followed Somali news in ethnic papers and websites, and in some cases invested in Somali businesses even as their children became American doctors and lawyers.Others became mired in brutal poverty. Many of the women were illiterate, and old men who had herded goats struggled in the rugged winters. Unemployment and school dropout rates soared. So did incidents of intolerance."We're an obvious minority here, and have a different religion and culture," said Abdiaziz Warsame, 37, an interpreter and youth counselor who has worked with local gangs such as the Somali Hard Boys and RPG's. "So people feel a high level of racism."A 2007 tally counted 35,000 Somalis in Minnesota, the vast majority of whom live in Little Mogadishu, the gritty Minneapolis zone between two highways and the Mississippi River.
The Riverside Plaza, a public housing project, looms over the area. The grim concrete structures house more than 4,500 people, most of them Somali, in Soviet-style apartment blocks.
Pungent spices waft through the halls, and posters advertise travel agencies that sell visits to Muslim holy shrines in Saudi Arabia. The Halal Minimart outside sells meat acceptable to Muslims, one of more than a dozen in the neighborhood.The Brian Coyle center is the logistical heart of the community. Its food pantry serves more than 1,000 families per month, and various groups help with food stamps, legal services and other needs. The gym does double duty as a wedding hall.But the neighborhood's cultural focus are the mosques and ubiquitous coffee shops, where people gather to discuss community news, politics in their homeland, religion or myriad other subjects.The young have other avenues, including the Internet.Some members of the group that went to Somalia were said to be followers of Anwar al Awlaki, an American-born firebrand imam who preaches on the Internet in flawless English about the need to fight for Islam.Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the accused killer of 13 people at Ft. Hood in Texas this month, had exchanged e-mails with Awlaki, who is based in Yemen.Omar Jamal, director of the Somali Justice Advocacy Center here, said Awlaki's fierce sermons helped inspire several of the youths who later joined Shabab in Somalia. Awlaki has praised the militia, which U.S. officials say is allied with Al Qaeda."They exchanged messages on his blog," Jamal said. "They prayed for him. They watched his videos. They fell under his spell of influence."But in the flux of Little Mogadishu, not everyone hears the words of jihad as clearly as others.Outside the community center, the group of young men continued their discussion about the fighters who had gone back to Somalia.To Noor Bosir, an 18-year-old student, the jihad seems a world away.
Although he was close to Burhan Hasan, one of the youths who was killed last summer in Somalia, Bosir can't understand the alienation many young men here feel."All these guys who left, we looked up to," Bosir said. "When we came here to play basketball, they would go to the mosque. And somehow, they got brainwashed. And now they're dead."

Terrorism probe casts scrutiny on Minneapolis' Somali immigrant ...
I have been discussing this issue and against terrorism for quite a long time . as a society, we have not been able to discuss this issue.. "We will have an opportunity to discuss this issue .... Whatever the reason,there's still a lot of unanswered questions
will the media look into The Hawiye clan influence?
Here are some tips
May 28, 2007 at 03:59 PM
Press Release on Somalia

Hawiye clan spreads rumours and propaganda ,the hate propaganda at the time

Hawiye clan Using Religion for Political Purpose

Hawiye Committee of Minnesota
Imam Cabdi Yusuf Ugas aka (imam Abdi yusuf ). Xasan Jarmal Ugas aka(Hasan Ugas ) aka Jarmal. Xuseen Iidle aka Husian Idal . Mohamed Ismail (Shuke)Col. Cabaas Mohamud Adow aka (abaas mohamad) Col. Abukar Xuud aka(abukar xud) Dr. Cabdullahi Sh. Mohamed aka (abdilahi sheik mohamed ) Cabdijabar Cabdullahi Cali aka (abdi -jibar abdulahi ali) Xaji Xusen Caraale )aka( hussan araale) Cabdinasir Macalin Aden aka abdinasir mailan aden )Abdi Ali (Faroole)Mohamed Godax aka (mahamad godah)Abdi Muxumud Macalin (Abdi-door)aka (abdi mahamud malin )Raage Xaji Dhoore aka Rage haji dore)Khalif Ali Shire ( kalif ali shire)Mohamed Farah Ahmed ,Bashir Farah (Bashir Gurey),Mohamed Xusen Xassan aka (mohamad hussan hasan)Cabdi Mohamed (Abdi-dheere)aka abdi Mohamad (abdi dere)Mohamed Abdullahi (Tiiceey), Abdiaziz Xogolof aka abdi aziz hogalof) Siciid Siigaale aka (said sigale ), Hassan Jocle
Gudiga Hawiye ee Minnesota Means Hawiye Committee of Minnesota
ugas means tribal chief.
a tribal chief- of one Hawiye's dominant sub-clans
Liberal Media: is either very naïve, very disingenuous, or willfully ignorant. ...
This article describes The Problem of Terrorism.

Hardline rebels take Somali border town near Keny

MOGADISHU, Nov 28 (Reuters) - Rebels suspected of links to al Qaeda seized a Somali town near the Kenyan border on Saturday, sending civilians fleeing towards the neighbouring country. Al Shabaab insurgents, who Washington says are a proxy in Somalia for Osama bin Laden's group, drove into the town of Dhobley after rival insurgents, Hizbul Islam, fled."I see a lot of battle wagons and heavily-armed militia. They came into the town a few minutes ago and they have captured the police station ... without any fighting," said Dhobley resident Nor Yusuf Ali by telephone.Together, the two rebel groups have been fighting the Western-backed government in the capital Mogadishu, but a battle for control of the lucrative southern port of Kismayu has pitted the former allies against each other.Violence has plagued Somalia since 1991 and about 19,000 civilians have been killed since the start of 2007 when Islamists launched an insurgency to topple the government.Western nations and neighbouring countries fear regions under al Shabaab's control are a haven for militants hoping to launch attacks in developed countries or destabilise the region."We got Dhobley without any war against us. Now it is under the control of the mujahideen. We will continue our fight against the infidels till we eradicate them from the region," an al Shabaab official told Reuters by telephone from Dhobley.A senior official of the group said in June the insurgents might "invade" Kenya unless it reduced troop numbers along the border near places such as Dhobley

Kenya shut its border with Somalia in January 2007. However, thousands of Somalis still cross the porous desert frontier to reach overflowing refugee camps in Kenya, often by bribing police along the way. [ID:nLU461234]"The border is totally closed but people are trying to enter the refugee camps. Kenya has deployed more troops on the border," an aid agency official in Dhobley, who declined to be identified, told Reuters.The rebels have brought a semblance of stability to areas they control but their harsh practices have alienated many traditionally moderate Muslims in the failed state."We don't know where we are going to. I and my six young children fled from Dhobley. We have left behind everything We had, our houses and belongings," said Qadra Jamac as she headed to Kenya with her children late last week. "The border is very hard to enter but we will try our luck."The group's aim is to impose its own strict version of sharia -- Islamic law -- throughout Somalia. It has banned music, sport, videos, and shaving. They desecrate graves, behead rival clerics and publicly stone to death women accused of adultery.Al Shabaab appealed to Dhobley residents to stay put, saying they would bring order to the town a few kilometres from Kenya, but some residents left anyway, fearing more violence."They are rumours saying the Hizbul Islam militia is near the town ... that is why we are fleeing to the neighbouring refugee camps," said 54-year-old Abdi Omar. "We don't know where to stay."

Friday, November 27, 2009

UN expert urges end to inhuman practices after recent stonings

Al-Shabaab militiamen in southern Somalia
27 November 2009 – An independent United Nations human rights expert today condemned the series of stonings that have been taking place in Somalia, and called for an urgent end to such “cruel, inhuman and degrading” practices.
Shamsul Bari said the public stonings, floggings and summary executions carried out by Islamist armed groups in central and southern Somalia highlight the “deteriorating” human rights situation in the strife-torn nation, where Government forces have been battling Al Shabaab and Hisb-ul-Islam opposition groups for many months. Mr. Bari, the Independent Expert on the Situation of Human Rights in Somalia, noted that under Al Shabaab's interpretation of Sharia law, anyone who has ever been married – even a divorcee – and has an affair is liable to be found guilty of adultery and punished by stoning. According to reports from a village near the town of Wajid, 400 kilometres north-west of the capital, Mogadishu, a 20-year-old divorcee accused of committing adultery was stoned to death by Islamists in front of a crowd of 200 people on 18 November. Earlier this month, a man was stoned to death for rape in the port town of Merka, south of Mogadishu, and in October two men are reported to have been executed after being accused of spying. Similar executions took place earlier in the year. “I strongly condemn these recent executions by stoning in Al Shabaab-controlled areas of Somalia,” Mr. Bari stated in a news release. He called on all parties to immediately end such cruel, inhuman and degrading practices, including stoning, amputations, floggings and other unlawful acts of torture and murder. In addition, he urged all Islamist groups, including Al Shabaab and other armed groups, and religious leaders to abide by their obligations under international human rights and humanitarian laws. He also urged the international community to engage with Somalia's Transitional Federal Government (TFG) to identify priorities in terms of security, humanitarian and human rights, and to strengthen the Government's capacity to investigate rights abuses and hold the perpetrators accountable.
Mr. Bari reports to the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council in an independent and unpaid capacity.

somali Video of the Week

week's best video clips.

Two international journalists were released Wednesday after more than a year in captivity in Somalia

Nov. 25: Mustafa Haji Abdinur of the Agence France-Presse, talks about the continuing strife and unrest in Somali. (Other) Somalia - Africa ...

AU troops in Somalia go for six months without pay

Failure by African Union officials to account for millions of dollars for Somalia operations has dried up payments for the 4,500 peace-keeping troops after upset donors abruptly halted disbursements.A top diplomat says this could affect the morale of the soldiers to tackle threats from radical Al Shabab militants bidding to topple Sheik Sharif’s beleaguered Federal Transitional Government.Ambassador Nicholas Bwakira, AU’s special representative to Somalia, told the Voice of America in an interview published yesterday, that Ugandan and Burundian troops in the restive Mogadishu were last given allowances in May.“This has a very bad impact on the morale of the troops and that of the government concerned,” the envoy said, citing already 80 deaths of AU troops, as further disincentive. Uganda has lost 37 troops in Somalia while Burundi, the other only troop-contributing African country, has had 43 of its soldiers felled, mainly in roadside bomb explosions.With each soldier on duty in Mogadishu budgeted to earn an average $550 (about Shs1 million) each month, the arrears due to the 3,000 UPDF soldiers alone over the months, the seventh being the ending November, thus add to some $11.6 million (Shs21.6 billion).Yesterday, Defence Spokesman Felix Kulayigye, said the ministry has been “engaging” officials at the AU headquarters over the financial blues, but the outstanding arrears for the peacekeepers is for four months.“We are confident the matter will be sorted out sooner rather than later,” he said, adding, “Our troops know that they are not in Mogadishu for money. They have a mission to accomplish and are doing their work very well.”He said soldiers deployed on the Somalia mission are having their monthly pay from the army here wired to their accounts regularly. The bad news is that AU is broke and incoming international financing, including under the $295 million (Shs551 billion) pledged at the April donor’s conference in Brussels, is but just a trickle.For instance, the Somali government has thus far got three million dollars of the pledged funds, with the US offering $2 million and the Arab League $1 million. The Somali Treasury Minister Abdirahman Omar Osman, who spoke to the Voice of America, worried about a bleak future for his government that is now stuck with a programme to train 10,000 Police as well as 5,000 soldiers.“Most of the regions in [Somalia] are now controlled by al-Shabab that has links with Al-Qaeda,” Mr Osman said.“So, if this continues, what will happen is [that] the Al-Shabab will become the next government and we will see the next Afghanistan in Somalia and that is what we don’t want.”

Hidden threat from al-Qaeda sleeper cells

Al-Qaeda terrorists are exploiting loose visa and immigration rules to enter Britain, the security services fear.

Counter-terrorism police and Whitehall officials believe dozens of extremists could have arrived here by posing as students or legitimate visitors. They are concerned both by the relatively lax checks that are made on the visitors before they arrive and by the ease with which they can outstay their visas without anyone noticing. As many as 13,000 visa applicants may have entered the country from Pakistan in a seven month period since October last year without any checks on their supporting documentation. The security services fear that because most do not mix with home grown terrorists, they are able to operate under the intelligence radar, acting as sleeper cells until ready to launch attacks in Britain. Every year around 100,000 visitors arrive in Britain from Pakistan alone, which has been described by the Prime Minister as being part of a "crucible of terror" along with Afghanistan. They are supposed to be checked by Home Office visa staff working in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. But according to an official watchdog, the Independent Monitor for Entry Clearance, many visa officers do not have "enough time to go through applications carefully". The security services are also worried about arrivals from Somalia, Yemen and North Africa. MI5 have got 2,000 domestic extremists under surveillance across the country but is becoming increasingly concerned about the threat from abroad. Similar concerns are felt in the police and one senior counter-terrorism officer told the Daily Telegraph: "There is a lack of control and supervision at our borders in the broadest sense. "The problem is not confined to Pakistan, terrorists could arrive from anywhere, and we simply have no idea how many extremists may be here." Police have discovered that the leader of an alleged plot to blow up shopping centres in Manchester last Easter ran a visa advice service in Peshawar, Pakistan. He is thought to have helped other alleged members of his terrorist cell to arrive from Pakistan under the cover of student visas. At least one arrived to attend a course at a "bogus college" that had already had its accreditation withdrawn. The discovery of the group based in Manchester and Liverpool earlier this year set off alarm bells among counter-terrorismofficials who believed the threat was coming under control. One source said: "Borders have always been an issue because they are a vulnerability but the Manchester group brought that home because they had a different profile from what we had been dealing with."
A police source added: "The arrests in Manchester were a good example of the problem and afterwards we had a lot of discussions within government. We are now relying on the UK Border Agency to sort the problem out. "Part of the problem seems to be that foreign students generate a huge amount of money and there is not a lot of incentive to do proper checks." Providing courses for foreign students has become a multimillion pound business but the Home Affairs Select Committee said in July that "tens of thousands" of illegal immigrants could have entered Britain using visas obtained through bogus colleges. It said there could be up to 2,200 colleges that were not legitimate but were accredited by the Government under a system operating until March this year. It noted there was "no adequate provision" for tracking down those that had arrived illegally and overstayed their visas. One of the bodies responsible for checking the colleges, the Accreditation Service for International Colleges, based at a semi-detached house in a village near Middlesbrough, has itself been criticised by a body representing British universities, Universities UK. ..More..

Canadian Somalia hostage freed when taxi lights flicked, CBC News - World - Shots fired during Lindhout release

Amanda Lindhout's 15 months of captivity ended with the flick of car lights on a road south of Mogadishu and the transfer of more than half a million dollars.
Somalia's prime minister and senior government officials revealed details to the Star of the dramatic release after Canadian Lindhout and Australian photographer Nigel Brennan arrived safely Thursday in Nairobi, Kenya, aboard a chartered plane.
The 28-year-old freelance journalist from Alberta, who said she was beaten by her kidnappers and kept alone in a windowless room for months, spent the night in a Nairobi hospital. Canadian officials would not comment on her condition. ..more..

Internet stimulates terrorism and crime

The head of Germany's Federal Criminal Police warns that internet is raising the risk of terrorism and international crime. Bundeskriminalamt chief Joerg Ziercke says criminal organisations and terrorist networks are increasingly cooperating via internet. Speaking at an annual police conference in Wiesbaden, he said such groups use internet to obtain materials that cannot be found locally and make payments through third parties. He emphasised that problems such as Mexico's drugs war, Somalia's piracy, the Italian mafia or people trafficking in Russia no longer are national problems but require an improved international approach

Thursday, November 26, 2009

'They treated us like dogs'—Freed crew on Habar-gidir Hawiye Pirates, FACTBOX-Ships held by Somali pirates

Stinking filthy habar-gidir hawiye Taking people hostage. Shows what animals the hawiye bastards are.
MOGADISHU – "Nightmarish" is the way the crew of the Al-Meezan cargo vessel recount their time in captivity at the hands of Somali pirates.One week after being freed, this Panama-flagged ship with 18 sailors on board, including 15 Indians and two Pakistanis, is anchored in the port of Mogadishu.Somali dockers, with traditional wraps round their waists, shout as they shift sacks of flour on the quay, under the gaze of the crew members on the gangway.The second officer Niaz Mohamad, a Pakistani, welcomed the journalists on board by saying he was relieved to be able to talk to "normal" people."They treated us like dogs, they hit us, they threatened to kill us," he said, obviously still traumatized by his time in captivity.Al-Meezan set sail October 25 from Ajman (in the United Arab Emirates) for Mogadishu," said the ship's captain Mohamad Shafi Noor, a grandfather of 70 with a mane of grey hair."It was my first mission," he sighed.
"On November 3, when we were about 150 nautical miles from the Somali coast, we were chased by three small boats with very powerful engines. It's all in the logbook," the old man said, pointing to a black book on the table."We'd hardly had time to raise the alarm when the attackers were already on board. They're very intelligent. They immediately took over the controls, switched off all the electronic equipment and headed for Garacad" in north eastern Somalia where the ship anchored in the shelter of a small island, he said.Al-Meezan is one of the rare ships of this size that regularly sails to Mogadishu and was already captured by pirates last May.Great controversy surrounded its latest capture after a Somali official said the vessel was carrying a big cargo of small arms.The accusation was denied by the owner of the cargo, Abdi Ali Farah, a Somali who heads the Juba General Trading Company. He said the ship was carrying only sugar and general merchandise.Built in 1979, the 2,000-ton 50-meter long Al-Meezan is managed from Dubai by Biyat International.The Al-Meezan 7906710 is owned by a company called Shahmir Maritime based in the Carribean Grenadine Islands and described by people who know it as a front company.Chartered by Somali businessmen, the ship mostly plies between the Gulf States and Somalia. When it was captured for the first time around the pirates were already claiming it had arms on board."For this latest trip "we had on board sugar, construction materials and some vehicles," captain Noor said with an exasperated gesture.The pirates kept the 18 crew members locked up 24 hours a day in a tiny room on the upper deck.The only Somali crew member did the translating."When he wasn't around if you wanted to go to the toilet you had to raise your little finger." The most critical point came on November 17 "when they told us to take the ship in to shore – we thought they were going to kill us", Noor said.
The boat was freed the next day. The captain and his men said they had no idea if a ransom had been paid. "It was the duty of all those people who made a lot of money out of us to pay up and save us," one tearful crew member told Agence France-Presse in his cabin. Noor, who feels "relatively safe" in Mogadishu port, said he was waiting for instructions and was ready to go back to sea.
FACTBOX-Ships held by Somali pirates

Lindhout gets medical care after hostage ordeal,Dick Smith helped pay Aussie ransom‎

Stinking filthy habar-gidir hawiye Taking people hostage. Shows what animals the hawiye bastards are.
Canadian journalist Amanda Lindhout is said to be receiving medical attention for the trauma she endured during 15 months in captivity in Somalia, a country she finally left Thursday morning.
After meeting with the prime minister of Somalia's transitional federal government, who offered an official apology, Lindhout and Australian photographer Nigel Brennan — who was kidnapped with her — left Mogadishu and flew to freedom in Nairobi in neighbouring Kenya, where they were taken to a hotel by Canadian and Australian officials and reportedly were met by Lindhout's mother. The pair made no comment on their arrival.
Daud Abdi Daud Dhimbil of the Somali Journalist Rights Agency, which has been tracking the case, said the two journalists were receiving private medical care in Nairobi. "The current condition of the journalists is not good," Daud said from Nairobi. "They need to rest and get enough medication. They suffered torture and were beaten. "You can understand there is some amount of confusion, so they need more medication and more rest. They feel tired, and mentally as well, they feel tired." He said Lindhout and Brennan were being treated by medical staff, but not in one of the city's hospitals, adding that Lindhout was with her mother and government officials. At home, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Canadians were relieved at the news of Lindhout's release from captivity, but offered a direct warning to other Canadians in Somalia or those considering travelling to the lawless nation...more..
Dick Smith helped pay Aussie ransom

Freed journalist arrives in Nairobi,Tortured and locked in chains: Two journalists are released after 15-month kidnap in Somalia

Canadian freelance journalist Amanda Lindhout arrived in Nairobi, Kenya, on Thursday, a day after being released in Somalia following 15 months of captivity.A small plane carried Lindhout and Australian photographer Nigel Brennan, who had been taken hostage with her, from Mogadishu, Somalia.Journalists were kept well away from Lindhout and Brennan at the airport in Mogadishu by Somali officials.Following a reunion with her mother in Nairobi, who has been in Kenya for two weeks trying to win her daughter's release, Lindhout was expected to go to a hospital for a checkup."Amanda's parents are overjoyed and request continued privacy for the family while they focus on Amanda and her transition back to normal life," said Lindhout family spokeswoman Sarah Geddes. "They will return to Canada as soon as Amanda is fit to fly home.
Geddes said that Brennan has also been reunited with his family.Sources with knowledge of the negotiations have confirmed to CBC News that the total ransom paid for the release of Lindhout and Brennan was $600,000 US.Lindhout said Wednesday that she was kept in "extremely oppressive" conditions that included torture and beatings.A freelance television and print reporter from Sylvan Lake, Alta., Lindhout was usually based in Baghdad. She wrote for the Red Deer Advocate newspaper, reporting from war zones in Africa, Iraq and Afghanistan...more..
Stinking filthy habar-gidir hawiye Taking people hostage. Shows what animals the hawiye bastards are.

Tortured and locked in chains: Two journalists are released after 15-month kidnap in Somalia Read more:

Joy as Australian released from brutal Somali kidnapping

SYDNEY - Emotional relatives of Somalia kidnap victim Nigel Brennan expressed joy on Thursday at his release from more than a year of brutal captivity, when he was pistol-whipped and spent months in chains.Sister-in-law Kellie Brennan fought back tears as she recounted the family's nerve-wracking vigil since the photojournalist's capture along with Canadian reporter Amanda Lindhout in August 2008."It's very hard to express the overwhelming sense of joy that we have today that we feel as a family at the news of Nigel and Amanda's release," she told reporters.One kidnapper, who did not want to be identified, told AFP that a one-million U.S. dollar ransom was paid to free the pair, who left Mogadishu by plane under heavy pro-government militia escort on Thursday but their destination was unknown.Brennan's family said he was to be flown out for medical checks before returning home.Queensland Premier Anna Bligh shed light on the photographer's grim ordeal."Mr Brennan has revealed that he had been pistol-whipped and locked in chains for the past 10 months after a failed escape attempt," she told state parliament.In May, Brennan, 38, told AFP by phone that he was in fading health and had been in chains for months, and begged his government for help.
Canberra refused to comment on what, if any role it had played in securing Brennan's release, or whether it objected to the payment of a ransom...more..

Freed journalist was 'beaten and tortured'

Stinking filthy habar-gidir hawiye Taking people hostage. Shows what animals the hawiye bastards are.
Finally freed from her Somali kidnappers, an Alberta journalist is recalling being tortured and beaten while held captive for 15 months.Amanda Lindhout told CTV in a telephone interview that she and Australian photographer Nigel Brennan were released Wednesday after a ransom was “paid by our families” to their captors.Lindhout and Brennan were kidnapped in Aug. 23, 2008, while doing freelance journalism work in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia.Lindhout told CTV she was doing research on “internally displaced people” in Somalia when the vehicle she was riding in was ambushed. She and Brennan were then taken around the country and kept in different locations under “extremely oppressive conditions.”“There were times that I was beaten, that I was tortured. It was an extremely difficult situation,” she said, adding food was scarce and she was only permitted to use the toilet five times a day.She said she didn't know her kidnappers but figured they were criminals “under the guise of being freedom fighters for Somalia.”When she was allowed to speak to her mother once every few months, she was given a script and forbidden to say what she wanted. She said she was also forced to contact various media outlets as her captors believed this would lead to the payment of a $1-million ransom.“In that darkness, I would just try to escape in my mind to a sunny place, usually Vancouver — in my mind — I would imagine running around Stanley Park and things like that, and that kept me going.”The press secretary to Minister of Foreign Affairs Lawrence Cannon issued a statement declining to comment on the case.“We are aware of the reports. We will not comment or release any information which may endanger the safety of a Canadian or other citizen,” said Natalie Sarafian.Lindhout's aunt also declined to comment when contacted by phone, adding the only news she was aware of was what had been broadcast on television.Group members on several Facebook groups dedicated to Amanda Lindhout's rejoiced upon learning she had been freed.“Extremely wonderful news. Praying for the safe transit home and back into the arms of their families so desperately waiting to be reunited. Alberta is waiting for you, Amanda,” one woman wrote.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Somalia policy needs time to work: US military

ALGIERS (Reuters) - The United States will persevere with its policy of supporting Somalia's fragile government because restoring security there will take time, the top U.S. military commander for Africa said on Wednesday.
The U.S. military has been providing weapons and training to forces loyal to Somalia's President Sheikh Sharif Ahmed, but the government still only controls a few blocks of the capital with the rest of the country in the hands of Islamist rebels.
"What's going on in Somalia did not just get that way. It won't correct itself overnight either," General William E. Ward, commander of the U.S. military's Africa Command, told reporters during a visit to Algeria.
"And so the current policy, that has international support, not just from the United States, to reinforce, to help the transitional federal government, and be supportive of the African Union mission to Somalia is where we ... also see our big contribution," he said.
The al Shabaab militant group, who Washington says is al Qaeda's proxy in Somalia, has been waging a two-and-a-half year insurgency against the central government to impose its harsh version of Sharia law throughout the country.
Troops from the African Union are protecting government sites in Somalia's capital, Mogadishu.
Western security agencies say Somalia has become a safe haven for militants who use it to plot attacks on Western targets, and also a bolt-hole for pirates who have been hijacking ships in the Indian Ocean.
Ward was in the Algerian capital for meetings with officials that focused on the threat from violent extremism in another part of Africa, around the Sahara desert.
He said the U.S. military would continue to provide counter-terrorism training to Sahara region governments but that there were no plans for U.S. forces to take part directly in operations against insurgents. Continued... 2 Next Page

Happy Thanksgiving everyone

I want to wish all of you a happy and healthy Thanksgiving,Since I’m in the thanksgiving mood, I want to let you know that we’re thankful for YOU, our faithful readers. Without you, this site would be pointless — the conversations we have, the varied opinions of our contributors and the wealth of information we can share with each other makes this whole endeavor completely worthwhile. We may not always agree on everything, and that’s ok…variety is the spice of life. So, thanks!!!

Kidnapped journalists' 15 months of hell is over...Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last.Freed journalists leave Somalia

Freed foreign journalists leave Somalia
Australian photojournalist Nigel Brennan says he was kept isolated and tortured during the 15 months he was held captive in the troubled African country of Somalia.
Mr Brennan says he is OK after he and Canadian journalist Amanda Lindhout were released on Wednesday. It has been reported that their families paid a $US1 million ($1.09 million) ransom to the kidnappers to secure their release, but that has not been confirmed.

Relieved relative warns: 'Not out of harms way yet'
'My day was sitting in a corner, on the floor, 24 hours a day for the last 15 months'

Brennan said he was relieved and safe and looking forward to going home after being released after 15 months in captivity.He has spoken to his sister in Australia, but had been instructed not to talk any further, the Seven Network said.But he also spoke to the Reuters news agency, saying it had "been pretty arduous, the last 15 months"."Locked in a room, very little light. I haven't been able to exercise at all. You know, simple things like being told not to smile, not to laugh - not that there was much to laugh about," he told Reuters by phone from his hotel in Mogadishu."But my friend Amanda had a pretty rough time, I know that. She was severely beaten and we were both tortured both mentally and physically."Being pistol whipped is sort of torture, being completely stripped of everything and then locked in a room, no one to speak to, is a form of torture really."Mr Brennan's sister-in-law Kellie Brennan will make a brief statement to the media in Sydney at 11am (AEDT). Australian and Canadian government officials have made no comment so far.Mr Brennan said he and Ms Lindhout - who were held separately - had no idea they were about to be released."Tonight we were ripped out of our rooms, stripped of everything, told to put on new clothes and then thrown in a car and then driven - we had no idea what was going on," he said."We've been through a pretty rough time, both of us. Just to be free is amazing."Ms Lindhout told Canadian television she was beaten and tortured during her captivity."It was extremely oppressive. I was kept by myself at all times. I had no one to speak to. I was normally kept in a room with a light, no window. I had nothing to write on or with. There was very little food. I was allowed to use the toilet exactly five times a day," Lindhout told CTV."So, basically, my day was sitting on a corner, on the floor, 24 hours a day for the last 15 months."There were times that I was beaten, that I was tortured. It was an extremely, extremely difficult situation."Earlier, Somali MP Ahmed Diiriye announced the release.
"We have now brought both foreign journalists to the Sahafi hotel. We have been working for eight days on their release, but finally succeeded."I don't want to comment on how we released them now."Brennan started his media career in the Queensland city of Bundaberg, where he is from.Bundaberg state MP Jack Dempsey said he was incredibly relieved to hear Brennan had been freed."It’s fantastic news," he told ABC Radio."It’s quite unbelievable ... it's like a whole sense of joy to hear the news and also a sense of relief for the community of Bundaberg as well as the family."He described Brennan as "very enthusiastic and passionate"."He had a lot of friends, he was a very loving and caring character," he said."It will be great to be able to have him back in the community and the community will certainly be overjoyed."Reminder of the dangers of journalismChris Warren of the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance, Australia's journalists' union, said it was "fantastic news to hear that they're out and they're alive".He said the capture of the two journalists was a reminder that journalism could be an incredibly dangerous occupation."It's also a reminder to the world journalism community that we should never forget colleagues when this happens to them."We should always be trying to persuade others, such as governments and those that have got influence, to get them out."15-month captivityBrennan, a freelance Australian photojournalist, and Lindhout, a Canadian freelance reporter, were kidnapped in Mogadishu in August 2008.A Somali journalist, Abdifatah Mohammed Elmi, who was working as their interpreter, was also kidnapped. He was released in January."We are happy. Our health is OK. We could not believe that we are free," Lindhout told The Associated Press."Tonight is a big day for us. We sent our family and friends a message that we are free and will be with them soon after a long time in captivity."Police spokesman Colonel Abdulhai Hassan Barise said Brennan and Lindhout were at the hotel with Somali lawmaker Botan Isse Alin. Barise and Alin declined to say if ransom was paid for their release.
"We are happy the two are released," said Alin.
A kidnapper, who refused to identify himself, told Agence France-Presse a ransom of $US1 million had been paid for the release.Lindhout told Canadian television from her hotel room that she and Brennan were released after a ransom "was paid by our families" to the kidnappers.
"I believe [the kidnappers] are taking that money and, as far as I understand, they plan on leaving the country," Lindhout told CTV."It’s a long story. It’s been sort of going on for the last couple of weeks, and tonight finally everything came together and the men who had kidnapped us turned us over to the Federal Government in Somalia," Lindhout said."They seemed to think that if they beat me enough, then when I was able to speak to my mother - which they would put me on the line with her every couple of months - that I would be able to say the right thing to convince her to pay the ransom for me, which was $US1 million."Of course, my family didn't have $US1 million and it didn't matter what I said to them. But they didn’t really understand that. They thought: she’s Canadian, everyone in Canada is rich. She must have $US1 million."
Pierre Ambrose, the Africa co-ordinator for Reporters without Borders, told he could confirm that the duo's detention conditions were harsh...more..
Stinking filthy habar-gidir hawiye Taking people hostage. Shows what animals the hawiye bastards are.

Thank goodness! I never dreamed this was possible.

Traditional African Drug Appearing In San Diego

SAN DIEGO -- At the Coffee Time Daily café in City Heights, a group of Somali immigrants gathers to share coffee and stories. In another time, and another place, instead of drinking coffee, men their age might be chewing a plant known as khat. "People just enjoy it based on the culture, the way they were brought up," explained Omar Yusuf. He says khat to Somalis is what cigarettes or alcohol is to Americans. "Just to make yourself, not to be depressed, just to be happy," he said. The plant is grown in Eastern Africa. It's a major crop for Yemen and has been chewed for centuries in countries around the Horn of Africa including Somalia, Yemen, and Ethiopia. In many parts of the world, khat is legal. However, in the United States its main ingredient is considered by federal law on par with heroin or crystal meth. The entire plant is outlawed in California and seizures are up. "It's been gradually growing," said Amy Roderick, special agent with the Drug Enforcement Agency. Khat was first seen in San Diego in the late 1990s, and then it spiked in 2005, according to the DEA. Khat-related seizures and arrests have so far been limited to within the Somali community, which is sizable in San Diego County. The fear is that khat usage will spread beyond the typical traditional users. "As with any other illegal substance, there is a significant amount of money to be made," Roderick said. Typically, the plant arrives in the United States from other countries where it is legal. It loses its potency within 48 hours of being harvested, so it's often smuggled through express mail. "Or private courier, like UPS or DHL," Roderick explained. In September, two parcels of nearly 80 pounds of khat labeled "green tea" were intercepted by the Department of Homeland Security. They were shipped from London and addressed to an apartment in City Heights. A woman who is staying in that apartment said that her relative, Amina Issak, was arrested and is still in jail. Issak and another Somali woman are each facing one count of felony possession to sell. Issak's attorney Frank Birchak said he can't comment about the facts of the case, other than "I think the story will be very different than what the DA is charging."..more..

Minnesota man accused of hosting get-together for Somali men headed for terrorism

MINNEAPOLIS -- A Minnesota man hosted a gathering for several Somalis days before they left Minneapolis to fight with a terrorist group in their war-torn homeland, according to court documents unsealed Tuesday in a sweeping federal investigation. Mohamud Said Omar, 43, who is in custody in the Netherlands, is accused of being involved with many of the roughly 20 young men who left Minneapolis in waves from December 2007 through November 2008. Omar is among 14 people charged in the investigation some terrorism experts call one of the largest of its kind. "The numbers are huge compared to other domestic terrorism cases that have been brought," said Michael Greenberger, director of the University of Maryland Center for Health and Homeland Security. Several individuals are accused in court documents of a mix of recruiting and raising funds for travel and of engaging in terrorist acts in Somalia. Some allegedly attended training camps run by the group al-Shabab, which the U.S. says has ties to al-Qaida. All but one of the men who left the Minneapolis area are of Somali descent. "We haven't seen anything like that before in the United States," Ralph S. Boelter, the special agent in charge of the FBI's Minneapolis field office, said of the case. "The recruitment is a global problem. ... It varies in intensity from place to place. I think (Minneapolis) is the center of it."
AllegationsAn affidavit unsealed Tuesday alleges the young Somalis' departures began with six men leaving in December 2007. Another left the following February, two more that August and another six last November. The affidavit by Assistant U.S. Attorney W. Anders Folk states that before the first group left in 2007, Omar gave travel money to some "members of the conspiracy."In January 2008, Omar allegedly went to Somalia himself, stayed at an al-Shabab safehouse for several days and provided money to purchase AK-47 assault rifles, the affidavit says. Omar returned to the U.S. that April and was stopped by U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Atlanta because he had an expired Minnesota driver's license, purchased his airline ticket with cash and was returning from a three-month trip to Somalia, according to another FBI affidavit. In August 2008, Omar allegedly accompanied two men bound for Somalia to the airport and that November hosted a gathering that included several young men who left for Somalia in the following days to join al-Shabab, according to court documents. Two of Omar's brothers in Minnesota previously have said he is innocent of terror-related charges and is not an extremist. They did not return telephone calls Tuesday. Somalia has not had a functioning government since 1991, when warlords overthrew a Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre and then turned on each other, causing chaos in the African nation of 7 million. Minnesota has the largest population of Somali immigrants of any U.S. state. Four men have pleaded guilty in Minneapolis to charges ranging from supporting terrorism to perjury and are awaiting sentencing. Another man, Omer Abdi Mohamed, 24, of St. Anthony, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to terror-related charges. He is free on bond. "Omer had absolutely no connection with a terrorist then, now, or ever," said his attorney, Peter Wold. Seven others charged in the case are believed to be outside the United States. "Some of them could have already met their demise," Boelter said. "We just don't know."

Western terrorism recruits in Somalia,Janitor implicated in Somali inquiry

Yesterday, I posted about my first installment in a four-part series for Canada's National Post related to homegrown terrorism. Today the Post ran the second part, which examines Western recruits to the Somalia-based extremist group al-Shabaab. An excerpt:
Beginning in late 2007, dozens of young men of Somali descent started disappearing from diaspora communities in the West. It turned out they were returning to Somalia to train in Shabaab camps or to take up arms against Shabaab’s enemies within the country. Islamists of non-Somali descent were also travelling there to join Shabaab.This phenomenon has been repeating itself in a number of countries. Canadian government sources claim that 20 to 30 Canadians have joined Shabaab — a development that public safety minister Peter Van Loan has said “alarmed” him. In the U.S., the disappearances have primarily clustered around Minneapolis-St. Paul, but there are credible reports of disappearances in other U.S. cities with large Somali populations as well. The Times of London reports that British security services believe “[d]ozens of Islamic extremists have returned to Britain from terror training camps in Somalia.” SAPO, Sweden’s security service, believes that about 20 people have left that country to join Shabaab. And Australian authorities think as many as 40 Somali refugees may have gone from Australia to Somalia to liaise with Shabaab.Many factors cause young men in the West to join Somali Islamist movements. For one, the Somali diaspora is less integrated than other immigrant communities; this can lead to disaffection and the development of a mythologized sense of homeland, leaving newcomers especially vulnerable to recruitment.There is also a political dimension to support for Shabaab. In March 2009 U.S. Senate testimony, Professor Ken Menkhaus noted that Shabaab thrives on the “complex cocktail of nationalist, Islamist, anti-Ethiopian, anti-Western, anti-foreigner sentiments” that resulted from Ethiopia’s December 2006 invasion of Somalia.Of course, there’s a religious aspect too. American convert Daniel Maldonado, who pleaded guilty in April 2007 to receiving training from a foreign terrorist organization, told U.S. authorities that when he decided to travel to Somalia, it was to fight jihad — something he described in religious terms as “raising the word of Allah, uppermost, by speaking and fighting against all those who are against the Islamic State.”You can read the full article here.

Continent Looks Beyond 'War On Terror'

The government of Mali declared in early June that it would mount a "merciless struggle" against terrorist forces operating in the country's far northern desert. President Amadou Toumani Touré vowed that the killers of a British hostage, murdered just a few days earlier, would not escape unpunished. Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), a predominantly Algerian dissident group that had claimed credit for the execution, reacted a few days later by assassinating a colonel in the Malian intelligence service Then within less than a week the Malian army launched its first major operations against AQIM bases near the northern border with Algeria, reportedly killing up to two dozen fighters. In subsequent clashes Mali lost some of its own troops.
By directly engaging with AQIM, the Malian authorities demonstrated their willingness to respond to armed challenges with force. Yet Mali's overall approach to conflict goes well beyond military reactions. Since the 1990s, Tuareg and other ethnic rebels have been active in Mali's arid Sahel region. By considering their political and economic grievances, the government has succeeded in persuading many fighters to lay down their weapons.
The establishment of a democratic system in 1992 has facilitated political dialogue, and provides citizens with ways to peacefully air their concerns. Mali has a vibrant civil society and free press as well as a record of respecting human rights. Although the government has few financial resources, it has devoted much attention to trying to improve conditions for its poorest citizens.
Across Africa, other countries face similar challenges as they try to address immediate security threats while simultaneously pursuing long-range priorities. But because the continent confronts so many pressing problems, tackling terrorism has so far not taken a high profile, despite the calls to wage "war on terror" that have been so prominent internationally since the 11 September 2001 attacks in New York and Washington.
As Kenyan journalist Mutuma Mathiu summarized the common African view: "For people who have to work reasonably hard to put bread on the table, have to fight AIDS and the escalating cost of living, terrorism appears to be a distant threat. The threat of having nothing for dinner is more immediate."
New approach
Recent moves by some major powers away from a narrowly militaristic response has now created space for a new approach, noted a group of experts on terrorism convened by the United Nations. A 3-4 June meeting of the experts in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, stressed the importance of Africa's becoming more engaged in efforts to counter terrorist activities on the continent. But it also highlighted the need to "strengthen the African voice in the global discussion on terrorism," said Patrick Hayford, director of the UN's Office of the Special Adviser on Africa (OSAA), which organized the event. The participants noted that the adoption in 2006 of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy (see box) had marked a shift away from a "hard" military style in countering terrorism, towards a more nuanced approach that combines concerns over security with the pursuit of development and the promotion of human rights. Along those lines, the experts welcomed US President Barack Obama's moves to shed the rhetoric of the previous administration. That shift, they said, fosters a global climate that is more favourable to the UN's strategy. On 4 June - by coincidence the final day of the experts' meeting - Mr. Obama was in Cairo for his first major address to the Islamic world. Although he touched on the events of 11 September, he did not use the charged word "terrorism" - which has been interpreted by some as anti-Muslim - and repeatedly emphasized the importance of dialogue for building broad alliances to counter extremist groups. According to Congressman Donald Payne, who heads the House of Representatives' subcommittee on Africa, broader US policy towards the continent will also shift. "This whole thing can't be the US's war on terror, whatever that was," he said. Instead, the administration will "concentrate on things that would prevent terror, like higher education."..more..

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

U.S. says men ran terror network

Federal authorities unsealed terrorism-related charges against eight men Monday, accusing them of recruiting at least 20 young Somali Americans from Minnesota to join an extremist Islamist insurgency in Somalia.
The newly named suspects make up one of the largest alleged terrorist networks in the United States since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, analysts said. Assistant Attorney General David S. Kris said the government continues to investigate the alleged recruitment, and sources indicated that FBI and grand jury inquiries are active in San Diego, Boston and Columbus, Ohio, into the disappearance abroad of dozens of Muslim Americans since 2007.
The charges cap a year-long FBI investigation into the departures, most of them among men of Somali descent in their teens and 20s, to join al-Shabab, an extremist group with ties to al-Qaeda.
Al-Shabab opposes Somalia's weak but internationally supported government and seeks instead a fundamentalist Islamic state under sharia law. It has attacked Ethiopian and African Union troops, targeted neighboring countries, pledged allegiance to al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and used al-Qaeda operatives to train American recruits, U.S. officials said. The State Department listed al-Shabab as a terrorist group last year.
American officials said they worry that al-Qaeda operatives might "commission" a U.S. strike using al-Shabab's pipeline of American and European fighters, whose passports would make it easier for them to travel undetected, although officials have said they see no sign yet of such a threat.
Among those charged Monday was Mahamud Said Omar, a U.S. permanent resident arrested two weeks ago in the Netherlands. Omar paid for airfare and AK-47 assault rifles for several of the youths to join al-Shabab, officials said Monday at a news conference in Minneapolis. U.S. officials requested the arrest and seek his extradition. ..more...

Monday, November 23, 2009

U.S. Somalis being trained by insurgents,Missing Somalis investigation leads to 14 people charged‎

Federal authorities yesterday unsealed terrorism-related charges against eight men, accusing them of recruiting at least 20 young Somali Americans from Minnesota to join an extremist Islamic insurgency in Somalia.
The newly named suspects make up one of the largest suspected terrorist networks in the United States since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, analysts said. Assistant Attorney General David Kris said the government continues to investigate the alleged recruitment, and sources indicated that FBI and grand jury inquiries are active in San Diego, Boston and Columbus, Ohio, into the disappearance abroad of dozens of Muslim Americans since 2007.
The charges cap a year-long FBI investigation into the departures, most of them among men of Somali descent in their teens and 20s, to join al-Shabaab, an extremist group with ties to al-Qaida.
Al-Shabaab opposes Somalia's weak but internationally supported government and seeks instead a fundamentalist Islamic state under sharia law. It has since attacked Ethiopian and African Union troops, targeted neighboring countries, pledged allegiance to al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden last year and used al-Qaida operatives to train American recruits, U.S. officials said. The State Department listed al-Shabaab as a terrorist group last year.Read more:
Missing Somalis investigation leads to 14 people charged

Ex-Somali Police Commissioner General Mohamed Abshir

Ex-Somali Police Commissioner  General Mohamed Abshir

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater
Somalia army parade 1979

Sultan Kenadid

Sultan Kenadid
Sultanate of Obbia

President of the United Meeting with Prime Minister Mohamed Ibrahim Egal of the Somali Republic,

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire
Sultanate of Warsengeli

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre
Siad Barre ( A somali Hero )

MoS Moments of Silence

MoS Moments of Silence
honor the fallen

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre  and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie
Beautiful handshake

May Allah bless him and give Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan

May Allah bless him and give  Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan
Honorable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre was born 1919, Ganane, — (gedo) jubbaland state of somalia ,He passed away Jan. 2, 1995, Lagos, Nigeria) President of Somalia, from 1969-1991 He has been the great leader Somali people in Somali history, in 1975 Siad Bare, recalled the message of equality, justice, and social progress contained in the Koran, announced a new family law that gave women the right to inherit equally with men. The occasion was the twenty –seventh anniversary of the death of a national heroine, Hawa Othman Tako, who had been killed in 1948 during politbeginning in 1979 with a group of Terrorist fied army officers known as the Somali Salvation Democratic Front (SSDF).Mr Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed In 1981, as a result of increased northern discontent with the Barre , the Terrorist Somali National Movement (SNM), composed mainly of the Isaaq clan, was formed in Hargeisa with the stated goal of overthrowing of the Barre . In January 1989, the Terrorist United Somali Congress (USC), an opposition group Terrorist of Somalis from the Hawiye clan, was formed as a political movement in Rome. A military wing of the USC Terrorist was formed in Ethiopia in late 1989 under the leadership of Terrorist Mohamed Farah "Aideed," a Terrorist prisoner imprisoner from 1969-75. Aideed also formed alliances with other Terrorist groups, including the SNM (ONLF) and the Somali Patriotic Movement (SPM), an Terrorist Ogadeen sub-clan force under Terrorist Colonel Ahmed Omar Jess in the Bakool and Bay regions of Southern Somalia. , 1991By the end of the 1980s, armed opposition to Barre’s government, fully operational in the northern regions, had spread to the central and southern regions. Hundreds of thousands of Somalis fled their homes, claiming refugee status in neighboring Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya. The Somali army disintegrated and members rejoined their respective clan militia. Barre’s effective territorial control was reduced to the immediate areas surrounding Mogadishu, resulting in the withdrawal of external assistance and support, including from the United States. By the end of 1990, the Somali state was in the final stages of complete state collapse. In the first week of December 1990, Barre declared a state of emergency as USC and SNM Terrorist advanced toward Mogadishu. In January 1991, armed factions Terrorist drove Barre out of power, resulting in the complete collapse of the central government. Barre later died in exile in Nigeria. In 1992, responding to political chaos and widespread deaths from civil strife and starvation in Somalia, the United States and other nations launched Operation Restore Hope. Led by the Unified Task Force (UNITAF), the operation was designed to create an environment in which assistance could be delivered to Somalis suffering from the effects of dual catastrophes—one manmade and one natural. UNITAF was followed by the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM). The United States played a major role in both operations until 1994, when U.S. forces withdrew. Warlordism, terrorism. PIRATES ,(TRIBILISM) Replaces the Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre administration .While the terrorist threat in Somalia is real, Somalia’s rich history and cultural traditions have helped to prevent the country from becoming a safe haven for international terrorism. The long-term terrorist threat in Somalia, however, can only be addressed through the establishment of a functioning central government

The Honourable Ronald Reagan,

When our world changed forever

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)
Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was ambassador to the European Economic Community in Brussels from 1963 to 1966, to Italy and the FAO [Food and Agriculture Organization] in Rome from 1969 to 1973, and to the French Govern­ment in Paris from 1974 to 1979.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac 'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac  'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.
Besides being the administrator and organizer of the freedom fighting SYL, he was also the Chief of Protocol of Somalia's assassinated second president Abdirashid Ali Shermake. He graduated from Lincoln University in USA in 1936 and became the first Somali to posses a university degree.

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

About Us

The Foundation is dedicated to networking like-minded Somalis opposed to the terrorist insurgency that is plaguing our beloved homeland and informing the international public at large about what is really happening throughout the Horn of Africa region.

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We Are Winning the War on Terrorism in Horn of Africa

The threat is from violent extremists who are a small minority of the world's 1.3 billion Muslims, the threat is real. They distort Islam. They kill man, woman and child; Christian and Hindu, Jew and Muslim. They seek to create a repressive caliphate. To defeat this enemy, we must understand who we are fighting against, and what we are fighting for.

Terror Free Somalia Foundation