[Marxism] The 13th Circle: Somalia's Hell and the Triumph of Militarism

Dbachmozart at aol.com Dbachmozart at aol.com
Mon Dec 8 20:48:25 MST 2008

Empire Burlesque  - Chris Floyd 
_The 13th Circle: Somalia's Hell and the Triumph of Militarism_ 
Posted:  07 Dec 2008 07:31 AM PST 
clip -- 
As you might expect, the New York Times buries the lede _in its latest story 
about Somalia_ (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/07/world/africa/07somalia.html) 
, but surprisingly, the  general outlines of the truth of the rapidly 
collapsing situation on this third  front in the "War on Terror" can be gleaned from 
the piece.

Some 14  paragraphs into the story, Establishment water-carrier Jeffrey 
Gettleman finally  gets down to the heart of the matter, and, to his credit, 
delivers an admirably  succinct précis of the latest imperial flameout:

In 2006, Islamist troops teamed up with clan elders and  businessmen to drive 
out the warlords who had been preying upon Somalia's  people since the 
central government first collapsed in 1991. The six months  the Islamists ruled 
Mogadishu turned out to be one of the most peaceful  periods in modern Somali 

But today's Islamists are a harder, more brutal group  than the ones who were 
ousted by an Ethiopian invasion, backed by the United  States, in late 2006. 
The old guard included many moderates, but those who  tried to work with the 
transitional government mostly failed, leaving them  weak and marginalized, and 
removing a mitigating influence on the die-hard  insurgents.

On top of that, the  unpopular and bloody Ethiopian military operations over 
the past two years  have radicalized many Somalis and sent hundreds of 
unemployed young men — most  of whom have never gone to school, never been part of a 
functioning society  and never had much of a chance to do anything but 
shoulder a gun — into the  arms of militant Islamic groups.

That  is pretty much it, give or take some details -- such as the extent of  
Washington's direct involvement in the ongoing destruction of Somalia, which 
_as we have often noted here_ 
(http://www.chris-floyd.com/component/content/article/3/1598-work-of-evil-beyond-the-worst-case-scenario-in-somalia.html) , 
involved not only arming,  training and funding the Ethiopian invaders, but also 
dropping US bombs on  fleeing refugees, lobbing US missiles into Somali 
villages, renditioning  refugees -- including American citizens -- into captivity in 
Ethiopia's  notorious dungeons, and _running U.S. death squads in Somalia _ 
live-american-special-ops-in-somalia.html) to "clean up" after  covert 
operations. (The latter is no deep dark secret, by the way; U.S.  officials openly 
boasted of it to Esquire Magazine.)

Now, as anyone not  completely blinded by imperial hubris could have 
predicted, the entire  misbegotten exercise has collapsed into the worst-case 
scenario. A relatively  stable, relatively moderate government which held out a 
promise of better future  for the long-ravaged land was overthrown-- ostensibly to 
prevent it from  becoming a hotbed of radical extremism. The resulting 
violence, chaos and brutal  occupation by foreign forces led directly and inevitably 
to -- what else? -- a  rise in radical extremism. Thousands of innocent people 
have been killed,  hundreds of thousands have been driven from their homes, 
millions have been  plunged into the direst poverty and the imminent threat of 
starvation and  disease, unspeakable atrocities and unbearable suffering are 
arising, as they  always do in any situation, anywhere, when a human community 
is  destroyed.

full --

**************Make your life easier with all your friends, email, and 
favorite sites in one place.  Try it now. 

More information about the Marxism mailing list