Part 5: A Different Perspective For Long Lasting Peace And Stability In Somalia
- Dr. Mohamed Warsame 'Kimiko'
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| The international community’s labeling of Warlords/Faction Leaders —
The descriptive names given by the Somalis to the elements involved at their various stages of regression and the reasons why they do not consider them as leaders and deny them such labels have been sufficiently explained in the previous pages. However, for reasons of ease and uniformity henceforth we shall use the international community’s label: “Warlords or Faction Leaders”.
We have indicated earlier the process under which the Warlords had steadily declined, degenerating from leaders of political movements into faction leaders, then into war-initiators and finally war-drummers/instigators. It was at this last stage that the Eldoret Conference convened in 2002. With hindsight, it now seems that the Warlords were evolving into two distinct and opposing groups: the Eldoret Signatories and the newly formed National Patriotic Council immediately dubbed the Balad Group, which primarily objected to the Conference’s management. Regardless of their groupings and whatever labels they are branded, they still remain Warlords or Faction Leaders, and unfortunately for the Somalis, it is business as usual. The Somali people are generally classified into two broad categories: “Hubaysane” meaning the armed, and “Saaboley” which means the palmed or empty-handed. The latter are, in the parlance of the warlords, worthless. There is a criteria for membership into the warlords’ club, it however is an informal and somewhat unflattering criteria established by the Somalis for the required qualifications for anyone aspiring to become a member. Every candidate must satisfy, among others, the following conditions: must be in command of at least 4 technicals which are mounted-vehicles, and, must have killed “Ga’an ku Dhiigle”or Bloodied-hands. Profile of the members (Eldoret Signatories and Balad Group)
In essence what we have is two groups: the Ethiopian sponsored Awasa group or SRRC and the recently formed Balad group or NPC. The following passage briefly profiles the common characteristics inherent in the groups. Their level of education, if any, is very low, to say the least and none of them had prior political or leadership experience. Ironically, none of them is selected or elected by his clan or any other constituency, nor do they have the purported political support from the clan, let alone large segments of the people. One may get some support from the clan when he cleverly initiates war, which is normally ephemeral in that the clan immediately takes it over and the war ends soon because the parties concerned peacefully settle the quarrel. None of them firmly controls any meaningful area or people with the exception of Abdiillahi Yusuf Ahmed, the president of the Puntland Administration. Al1 of them put together control less than 5–10 per cent of all the arms and militias in the entire country. Their militias continuously harass and terrorize the populations in the areas where the “War-Instigators” live. None of them has any known legitimate income or wealth, none of them has any declared or discernible political program, let alone political organization. Each operates solo without trusting the others regardless of clan affiliation. Interestingly enough each hates and vehemently opposes the most next in kin who is considered as a potential rival in imaginary governmental positions yet to be defined and created. They have no common interest be it national, regional, clan, political or economic, and nothing binds them together except what each pursues as perceived personal interest in the crowd. None of them has the common good or national interest at heart. Each of them wants to occupy a position, without any qualification, in a presumed Somali government whose establishment they are preventing either by greed or ignorance. They naively expect others to establish the government for them so they can harvest the fruits without any sacrifice whatsoever, this is an absolute absurdity. Many of them are products of international conferences that they have participated in—perhaps for the first time in their lives— which gave them name recognition. For example, all the Eldoret Signatories, no doubt, are henceforth “ipso facto” Warlords. They will forever claim to have been Signatories, at one time. Some of them possibly have committed serious criminal acts and therefore may feel a bit apprehensive about future prosecution. A majority of them enjoy name recognition and are always invited by the international community, regardless of their true base or relevance at home. This is a major factor that continuously keeps them alive by portraying them as important leaders worthy of respectability. The characteristics discussed above, illustrate the reality about the so-called Somali leaders including the Signatories and Balad Group and other similar characters. These are the leaders that some foreign countries want to impose on the Somali people. Next Chapter:
Analyzing the Warlords By Dr. Mohamed Warsame - Kimiko - Keydmedia Online Exclusive Dr. Kimiko is a Somali politician and diplomat. He has occupied various diplomatic posts in Somalia since independence in 1960, including Somali Ambassador to the United States in 1980.