Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Somalia: Life after Al Shabaab


HUDUR, Somalia — After hardline Islamic militants left town it didn’t take long for the kids’ late afternoon soccer game to restart in Hudur.Like musical ringtones and long trousers, clean-shaven faces and international radio stations, soccer was banned under the puritanical rule of Al Shabaab. For nearly four years arbitrary laws and brutal punishments were the order of the day.The few foreign aid agencies in the area were expelled, crippling medical care and reducing food supplies. Imams were kicked out of their mosques and schools closed. So when more than 2,000 Ethiopian and Somali government troops swept into Hudur in mid-April there were cheers as Al Shabaab pulled back into the surrounding countryside.As soon as the militants left, 19-year-old Hussein Abdi went to the market to buy a pair of jeans, dusted off his soccer ball and started hanging out with his friends again at the tea shops that line the uneven streets of Hudur, the regional capital of Bakool province with about 40,000 people.“Life was hard then but now it’s good. We dress how we want, play football, walk with our friends,” said Abdi. He was back at school again, too, and hoped, eventually, to make it to university.Abdulkadir Nur, the regional education officer, is responsible for reopening schools and getting pupils back on the standard curriculum after years of learning nothing but Arabic and Quranic studies.“We had made something here and Al Shabaab broke it,” he said. “Now we need to build their minds again.”After Al Shabaab left, the governor of Bakool region, Mohamed Abdi, a large man in a sparkly baseball cap known to all by his nickname "Tall," returned to Hudur from exile in a town straddling the Ethiopia-Somalia border. Like other government officials in Hudur, Abdi blurs the lines between civilian and military, running the administration and ordering troops.More from GlobalPost: Somalia: WHO reopens regional health clinic after Al Shabaab retreat
“When we came back the people were very happy, they came out of their homes to celebrate and welcome us,” he said.Mahmud Abdi, an intelligence officer, said when he first walked through Hudur, “You could see what Shabaab had done in the faces of the people: They were scared if you said ‘hi.'”Al Shabaab’s puritanical version of Islam ran contrary to the predominately Sufi beliefs of people in Somalia, and it was the local imams who bore the brunt of the rebels' theological zeal.“When Al Shabaab captured the town some innocent people were beheaded, others were arrested or fled town. Some imams were also killed but not here, in other towns,” said Sheikh Ali Ibrahim, imam of Buulow mosque in Hudur.”Mohamed, clutching a string of prayer beads and a slim collection of Quranic verses, was expelled from his mosque and only returned after Al Shabaab left. “The religion they adopted is something they made up, it has nothing to do with the Prophet Mohamed,” he said.Officials in Hudur were confident that although Al Shabaab were only 12 miles outside town they would not return. “The time of the hardliners is almost finished, Shabaab is dying,” said Mohamed Ahmed, district commissioner of Hudur.But the near encirclement of the town by Al Shabaab is causing other problems.Bakool was one of the first parts of Somalia to be declared a famine zone by the United Nations in July last year. Seventy-six-year-old Amino Mohamud survived thanks to a small store of sorghum she had saved up; others said they foraged for wild fruits, roots and grass.Last year was tough but Mohamud said although Al Shabaab was no longer in Hudur their presence could be felt in empty market stalls and empty stomachs. “Forget about [last year],” she said, “now is worse. We are besieged by Al Shabaab, movement is restricted, prices are rising.”Liberated towns like Hudur are islands of government control in a sea of Al Shabaab, which continues to control most of the hinterland and the few roads that cross it. Militant roadblocks ensure the movement of both goods and people is restricted.“We have encountered problems in terms of getting supplies in from other districts because [Al Shabaab] are blocking all the roads coming into the town,” said the governor, Abdi.“The businessmen are trying to bring their supplies into town by using donkey carts so they don't use the roads. The pastoralists are coming into town to sell off their livestock, but it is also difficult for them to come here through the official roads, as they are blocked,” he said.More from GlobalPost: Al Shabaab loses more ground

Abdi added that residents who want to return to Hudur from refugee camps along the Ethiopian border are also being blocked.One resident who did manage to return home was Abdirizak Nur, a 20-year-old who for the previous 19 months had been an Al Shabaab fighter battling African Union and Somali government forces in Mogadishu and other cities.Nur said he joined Al Shabaab willingly “for jihad, to defend our religion.” After training under an Arab commander in the south of the country he was sent to the frontlines. “There was fighting all the time,” he said.Eventually he was redeployed to his home region of Bakool and later deserted. “Too many innocent people were being killed, it wasn’t compatible with my beliefs,” he said.Unlike Abdi who now plays soccer every afternoon with his friends and is looking forward to life getting back to normal, for Nur it seems too late. He still wore his Shabaab camouflage uniform and was undergoing military training having signed up to join the government forces to fight against his old comrades.  Via  GlobalPost:
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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
Somalia

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