Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Secessionists Somaliland Recognition: Why it won’t happen

It is almost 19 years since the Isaaq secessionists, under the banner of the SNM, had declared the North-West Region of Somalia as an independent, separate state adopting its former colonial name of Somaliland. During this long period, the secessionists had embarked on a relentless crusade lobbying the international community for recognition. Despite this concerted campaign, no single country among the international community has recognized the self-declared independence of the rebel government. On the contrary, the international community continues to support Somalia’s unity and territorial integrity at all international fora, in particularat the United Nations, African Union and Arab League. Far from coming to terms with the reality and accept their rightful place in Somalia, the secessionists persist in maintaining their defiance, persuading themselves that their ultimate goal is in sight. After 14 years, this looks like chasing a mirage.
The campaign for recognition has lately been shifted to the Somali internet websites which have been flooded with a barrage of propaganda in support of the SNM, or the independence and/or recognition of Somaliland. Most of them are too emotional and muddled to merit much attention. All the same, there are exceptions and one suchrarity is an article by Mr. Abdi Halim Musa Imam, recently posted in the Awdal News in which he passionately appeals to the international community to do justice to Somaliland and recognize its independence. Mr. Abdi Halim Musa argues, in common with almost all secessionists, that Somaliland deserves recognition, first and foremost because of its peace and stability in contrast with the mayhem and chaos in Somalia; secondly in view of the support it has inside and outside the country; and thirdly because of the OAU/AU Charter which, as wrongly interpreted by Abdi Halim, is supposed to support the inviolability of Somaliland’s former colonial borders- aninterpretation that, if it were correct, would give Somaliland the right to secede from Somalia and revert back to its former status as a separate independent state- This article will respond to these points.
Irrelevant justifications for recognition
1. The inviolability of Somaliland BordersOften, the secessionists are keen to talk of themselves as Somalilanders, having not only a separate country with its borders but also belonging to a people who are distinct from the rest of Somalia. Are there really such people, sharing common values and identity that distinguish them from other Somali clans in the Horn of Africa? The answer of course is NO. It is only by arbitrary British colonial conquest that those clans found themselves in the conquered British area. They could have been part of the French part or the Italian part. But that is how the division of the Somali homeland was arbitrarily settled by European colonial powers. Rather than therefore sharing exclusive ties, some of the clans had closer blood ties with kith and kin outside the boundaries of British Somaliland than they had with those inside the British colony. For example, the Harti clans in British Somalilandbelonged to the wider Harti and Darood clans in neighbouring counties of Italian Somalia, Ethiopia and North East Kenya. The Gadabuursi and Issa clans for their part were part of their clans in Ethiopia and Djibouti. The Isaaqs on the other hand were the only clan who were predominantly based in British Somaliland. Thus, the curving up ofthe Somali homeland in the Horn by the European colonial powers have drawn artificial boundaries in which clans found themselves involuntarily both inside and outside these boundaries. Because some clans found themselves within the artificial boundary of former British Somaliland does not mean that they automatically assume special and closer bonds that are distinguishable from the rest of their fellow Somalis in neighbouring Somali territories.
On the question of boundaries, it is true that Somaliland has inherited its colonial borders from the day it gained its independence. But Mr.Abdi Halim misinterprets the OAU/AU Charter by claiming that it supports Somaliland’s right to its former colonial borders. The relevant provision of the OAU/AU Charter applies to the borders of independent states that are members of the Organization, and not to borders of a breakaway region that is recognized by the international community as part and parcel of Somalia. However, Somaliland’s borders with neighbouring countries would have been inviolable in line with the Charter of the OAU/AU as long as it remained an independent country, a conditions it fulfilled from the day of its independence on 26 June until the first of July 1960 when it joined Italia Somalia. Once the government and parliament (and people) of Somaliland had freely and voluntarily gave up their independence in favour of union with Somalia, and the emerging Somali Republicwas recognized by the UN,OAU and Arab league, the colonial borders of Somaliland with Italian Somalia had irreversibly ceased to exist.
Mr.Abdi Halim Musa disingenuously argues that the decision to unite with Somalia was not “ratified” and therefore the act of union was invalid. Ratified by whom? The elected government of Somaliland took the decision which was approved by the elected parliament. Any one who remembers the day of independence and the union with Somalia would attest to the fact that the union had more support from the government and people of former British Somaliland than the case was with the South.
1. Full Control of the territory and Support from Somalilanders.It is true that when regime changes occur in an undemocratic manner in countries that are impendent, one of the conditions for the recognition of the new regime is whether it is in full control of the whole country and whether it has support from its people throughout the country. A good example was the immediate recognition of the government of Mohamd Siyad Barre after it overthrew its predecessor, having satisfied the international community that it was in full country of the country and that it enjoyed, by all appearances, the overwhelming support of the Somali people. The control of parts of the former British Somaliland is not the same thing as thatof an independent country coming under the control of a new authority.
But for the sake of argument, one has to challenge Mr. Abdi Halm Musa claim that the overwhelming majority of the people of former British Somaliland support the secession and that its so-called government is in full control of the whole area of former British Somaliland. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The Harti clans in the North-West Region do not subscribe to the secession and remain an integral part of Somalia. Their regions and areas are under their own control. The need to be seen to be in full control of the whole territory was the main driving force behind the ill-fated attack on Lasanod last year by the Isaaq dominated forces. Indeed, it was the defending Puntland forces, comprising the Harti clans, which were able to thwart this desperate attack on Lasanod.
The Gadabuursi and Issa clans had little choice but to acquiesce to the SNM occupation and the subsequent rule from Hargeisa- at least for the time being. There is no doubt that they are hostages given their precarious geographical situation. But that is likely change as the new government of Somalia is able to progressivelyextend its writ, at least initially to the non-Isaaq areas of the North-West Region. As for the Isaaqs themselves, there is the false assumption that they are monolithic and that they all support secession. That is a sweeping overgeneralization. Large sections of the Isaaq clan do still remain patriotic unionists, notably the Garxajis who had an honourable leading role in the independence struggle for the Somali people everywhere.
Support from outside
Mr Abdi Halim Musa wants us to believe that the case for recognition has solid sympathy and support from certain influential external quarters. In this regard, he cites the support from a lone American journalist, the representative of the International Conflict Group (ICG) in Kenya, an individual well-known for hispro-secessionist bias, and one or two solitary British Parliamentarians still hankering for their former colonial ties with the territory. This pitiful support has to be set against the fact that the British government and the rest of the international community had consistently supported Somalia’s territorial unity at the Security Council. If this is all the support the secessionists can master for all these 14 years of lobbying and denigrating the rest of Somalia, surely the hopelessness of the crusade should have made people question the futility of following a dead-end road that leads no where.
Contrast with the rest of Somalia
In their eagerness to secure recognition, secessionists, and Abdi Hashim is no exception, never stop to brag of their stability and peace in Somaliland in contrast to the chaos in the rest of Somalia, much though true this is. Their hope is that the world will finally wash its hands from the seemingly endless disorder in Mogadishu and that in the end they will reward the one peaceful part, Somaliland, with the recognition it deserves. If there is one common prayer among the secessionists, it is their wish that the chaos and crisis in the South would continue unabated and that the newly established government in Nairobi would never get off the ground just like its predecessor-thanks to the warlords in Mogadishu. Whatever bad news emerges from Somalia is seen as a blessing for the secessionists.
Antipathy towards other Somalis
Since the secession was declared, the antipathy towards the rest of Somalis in Somalia had reached intolerable proportions. Who would have believed until recently that a time will come when Somali nationals living lawfully in Hargeisa, as Somali citizens, or coming as visitors, would be “deported” as illegal aliens while foreigners such as  Ethiopians are affectionately welcomed? This distancing from the rest of Somalia is not a new phenomenon related to the secession and recognition goals. It goes back to the early 1950s when some sections of the Isaaq clan in former British Somaliland opposed the raising of the S.Y.L flag at its office in Burco which led to the famous S.Y.L. verse: “Sanduluu ku iman saca faarsa tegey saddex maalintuu qado, sawaxaa ka dhigan safka haatan yidhi Soomaali aan diidno”.
Part of the strategy of the secessionists is that there may come a time when the South will lose patience with their unyielding secession and finally give up on them and say” good riddance!!” After all, who needs who? The Isaaq homeland is indisputably barren and impoverished. Remittances from the Diaspora, relief aid and petty commerce are the main source of livelihood. As people who are otherwise resourceful and enterprising, and who are dependent on trade with the rest of the Somali territories, you would expect them, if they were rational, to support Somali union that would guarantee them open boundaries, where they would have unrestrictedmovements, selling their products wherever they want, making their financial investments at the most profitable locations wherever it might be in Somalia, and making their preferred residence anywhere they choose in Somalia. In a federal Somalia, they will still have their beloved Hargeisa as regional capital and have their own regional assembly. Indeed, you will expect few Southerners to come to Hargeisa for business or pleasure whereas the attractions of the South for Northerners are immense and profitable-given of course peace and stability,.
The choice between secession that leads to isolation and missed opportunities and membership of Somalia is quite obvious. The problem with the secessionists is that there are no leaders with vision, courage and integrity who are prepared to face to the hard facts and the necessary decisions even if they have to risk initialunpopularity. Those who are presently in government or in the opposition parties have come to outdo one another in their eagerness to endear themselves to the uninformed masses that have been daily fed with anti-Somalia hate propaganda. Sooner or later, the secessionists would have to come round to the other famous S.Y.L  verse:”Soomaaliyey toosoo, toosoo isku tiirsada ee….”Amin
', Somaliland'

Terrorist  Godane

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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

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