Starving Somalia

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That brutal incident may help to explain why so few young Somali males are seen in the refugee camps. According to refugee aid workers, abduction is a frequent occurrence among new arrivals. As such, many say that most of the young Somali men stay behind in fear of being forced by al-Shabab to fight in the civil war against the forces of the TFG.

As one aid worker has explained, many refugees come to the camps to “escape the recruitment of child soldiers by al-Shabaab,” a recruitment effort that is taking place in mosques, schools and on the outskirts of Somali towns.

Of course, the notorious brutality of al-Shabab is well-established. In its efforts to remake Somalia into a Sharia-run Islamist state, al-Shabab has, among other things, stoned adulterers to death, cut off the hands of thieves, and murdered Christian converts from Islam. Al-Shabab has also subjected Somali women to forced marriages and gang rapes.

So, needless to say, it comes as little surprise that al-Shabab is now enacting a food ban that would purposefully starve to death huge numbers of Somalis. Certainly, al-Shabab’s current actions aren’t a surprise to those foreign aid organizations charged with providing humanitarian assistance to downtrodden Somalis.

Many of these organizations have witnessed al-Shabab kidnap and kill their workers, as well as seize food and other supplies meant for starving Somalis. Since 2008, 14 World Food Program employees alone have been killed in Somalia. So, in order for some of these foreign donors to go back into Somalia without fear, it’s now looking for some security guarantees.

As one UN spokesman said in a bit of a gross understatement, “The situation we have for humanitarian workers inside Somalia at the moment is not what we want it to be…Somalia is the riskiest environment we operate in the world today.”

Unfortunately, that disturbing reality seems unlikely to change anytime soon. Despite calls from the African Union for al-Shabab’s complete eradication, as well as a series of recent airstrikes from US Predator drones, al-Shabab has been increasing the effectiveness and scope of its work.

To that end, it has been reported that al-Shabab is transferring fighters to Yemen, across the Gulf of Aden, to reinforce al-Qaeda in Yemen’s (AQAP) attempt to overthrow the Yemeni government. For some, this move may be a precursor to al-Shabab and AQAP seizing control of the Bab al-Mandeb Strait, a key oil artery linking the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean. As one intelligence official said, such a move would present a “nightmare scenario.”

Sadly, living nightmares are all too familiar to most Somalis and, as demonstrated by al-Shabab’s most recent action, ones not likely to end any time soon.

Frank Crimi is a writer living in San Diego, California. You can read more of Frank’s work at his blog,

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  • BS77

    Somalia : barbarism, violence, piracy, cruelty, slavery, medieval ignorance ……
    every evil you can think of……what a horrible place. I pity the women and children.

    • welldoneson

      all perpetuated by Islam.

  • mikidiki

    Will the pirates starve as well so that ships can sail past in peace?

  • Gene W.

    The world and local battles ares between Evil versus Righteosness. It has been since creation.
    The one page absolute proof that God authored the Bible [ ] make it clear that the other scriptures were obviously inspired and authored through the influence of Satan.
    The battle rages to kill every thing that God loves (humankind) and especially Gods special people, the Judeo-Christians.

  • StephenD

    I wonder if this slipped by the Administration when they were granting "waivers" to those countries that use children as soldiers. They missed Somalia. Maybe they don't need the waiver as they are already dominant in the land.

  • LindaRivera

    Utterly heartbreaking.

  • jacob

    Shouldn't our President pull our troops from AFGHANISTAN, cut off the financial
    help to its corrupt government, as well as to PAKISTAN and send these troops to
    SOMALIA and liquidate these Muslim bastards ???

    What has been done so far to their pirates ???

  • Stuart Parsons

    The likelihood is that sending Western forces into Somalia would only encourage increased support for al-Shabab against the develish infidel invaders. Western forces out of Afghanistan YES…… and transfer them to South Sudan where we can be sure the Christian population will welcome them

  • Fritz Becker

    A little late to comment on this article but the solution is obvious, too obvious for the UN "Eurocrats" of the World Food Program. The U.S and it's allies should do what the Pakistani air force did during it's flood last year, make what they call "skatter" drops of food out out of the backs of aircraft. All of the problems they have had in distributing aid is because the UN WFP is stuck on stupid, they think that the only way to distribute aid is to transport it to a distribution center and then to transport the aid by truck into the effected areas which the bad guys will of course block or pillage before it gets there.