An increasing new phenomenon that scapegoats Muqdishu and its people for the Somali national failure is registering an astounding number that requires an immediate attention. With the birth of the World Wide Web and its recent introduction to Somalis, a number of freelance writers label slander against the people of Muqdishu only to satisfy their venting desires. Muqdishu, the ailing capital of Somalia , was always a cosmopolitan that housed nearly everyone from all walks of Somali society, but, alas, always depressingly suffered from an extra-ordinary outsourcing of bad apples from other regions in the country and Ethiopia . Not only that this new phenomenon targets Muqdishans but it, awkwardly enough, often extends to distinguished persons who their main fault is performing their national duty, or, simply expressing their God-granted viewpoints. The speaker of the House, Dr. Sifir, Prof. Samatars (the brothers), Dr. Galayr and the Head of the BBC Somali Section, just to name few, are prime targets of those articles authored by individuals I can only term as the new neo-supremacists. Scapegoating Muqdishans for the national failure, meanwhile, is, resoundingly uncharacteristic, granted that Muqdishu was never emancipated from external elements.
Time and again, displaced bloggers (website users) scattered around Europe and North America utilized their sharp pen to blame Muqdishu, or more bluntly, the Hawiye tribe for the failure of the nation state Somalia . This phenomenon appears to have gained fresh momentum since the historic parliamentarian vote that, on March 17 th , with overwhelming majority, outvoted troops from the so-called Frontline States. Persons of non-Hawiye are often sandwiched with the blame so long they appear to have partaken, or just theoretically supported that process. Sharif Hassan, the bold speaker of the house is a case in point. Some Puntland bloggers published pseudo-public demand asking the speaker to resign, as though, “the public”, is, only from their territory. Mohamed Ibrahim (Xaabsade), the de facto ruler of Baidao, Riyale of Somaliland and, to the dismay of many Somalis, Dr. Sifir, the Information Minister of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG), men with apparent opposing political dimensions, were all sandwiched for the blame. The latter was the last victim of the ongoing defamation against respected leaders of Somalia orchestrated by the new neo-supremacists.
Who is to be blamed for the national failure?
The fatally-ill bloggers often associate Hawiye with the failure of nearly 14 National Reconciliation Conferences, while crediting Abdullahi Yusuf, or, in euphemism, the Daarood clan as a whole, for restoring system of governance in Somalia . That claim falls short of credibility in essence. Contemporary historic records indicate vise versa. Nearly all of those conferences were cleverly aborted by Somalia 's staunch foe: Ethiopia , utilizing men of our ilk. Ethiopia undone all 14 efforts only to install its own puppet: Col. Abdullahi Yusuf. Six months after he succeeded to head Somalia , the finding father of warlordism in Somalia , Mr. Yusuf sought to fulfill Ethiopia 's century old dream: Physically occupying Somalia . Luckily, patriotic MP's, disproportionately Muqdishans, rejected that motion democratically albeit sustaining minor scars from globally aired brawl.
Col. Yusuf had confessed aborting Cairo attempt in 1998, Arta fruits in 2000 (publicly aired audios confirm this). These two attempts, especially Arta, were perhaps the most conducive resolution since 1991. Moreover, Mr. Yusuf brags about being the first to shoot an Ethiopian bullet against Somalia 's then otherwise strong government from the save havens of Ethiopia , almost 30 years ago.
The BBC Somali Section: A Prime Target?
Another prime target of the new neo-supremacists is the Somali Section of the BBC and its deft Chief Editor, Yusuf Garad. Almost all of the articles by those pathetic bloggers adjoin Mr. Garad to the historic parliamentarian vote against Frontline States. Others simply can't stand the BBC's redemption to higher standards of news making and the streamlining of its reporters, which was long overdue. Cognizant that Mr. Garad is the first Hawiye editor of BBC Somali Section since its inception over half of a century ago; the new neo-supremacists envy his fresh and sober leadership and, are intolerant of a voice other than their ilk. Even British critics agree that Mr. Garad rejuvenated the Somali Service by redeeming today's technology.
His boss, who hired him among several candidates solely for his qualifications not in accordance with 4.5 distribution method, commends him for engineering to install FM short waves of the BBC throughout major cities in Somalia . Besides the programming and the technical aspect of the BBC, Mr. Garad, a seldom brilliant mid-aged man who fluently speaks English, French and Italian not to mention his native Somali, correctly overhauled the staff of the Somali Section by requesting old folks to opt-out for an early retirement, or, reassigning them to a less impacting broadcastings such as Obituaries, Music programs and a free Bush House hang-outs, while recruiting a fleet of younger and more qualified generation of reporters that are representative of the Somali society.
Unlike the hay days, the BBC's lexicon of popular staff names is, for the first time, in fair balance. Perhaps the most quintessence of Mr. Garad's achievement during his tenure is his robust standardization of the “acceptable dialect” within the BBC to a non-northern, non-Mudug one, contrary to five decades of predominantly Northern and Mudug dialects. Reserving the largest audience amongst Somalis, the BBC's standard dialect is finally adjusted to a pure Somali one, period.
Muqdishu Survives Despite Outsourcing.
Muqdishu, however, gave a birth to distinguished leaders and, spearheaded the independence efforts for over 300 years. She [Muqdishu] prides with men such as Adan Abdullahi Osman (Adan Adde) – The father of democracy in Africa and Somalia 's first president. His tenure, according to scholars (see Bildhaan Journal of Minnesota ) was the most stable and progressive politically in Somalia 's post independence history. Muqdishu also takes a pride in housing SYL (Somali Youth League) – the vehicle of the independence itself. Even amid the ashes of the civil war, Muqdishu leads the whole nation in commerce, technology, education and healthcare. And, splendidly enough, Muqdishu exports goods such as clothes, food, electronics and so on to the neighboring countries in the Horn of Africa, including the quasi-hegemony: Ethiopia- A solid confirmation of Muqdishu's disposition.
While Muqdishu is booming with exports, it suffers from human imports from Mudug and arms – including land mine shipments from Addis Ababa . The despot, Mohamed Siyad Barre, zigzagged in the city for 21 years burying its people underground and assigning his kinsmen to a governmental password that enabled them to use the system as their ATM (Automated Teller Machine). He was another wicked export to the city. The warlords after him fattened their clumsy agenda's by milking Ethiopia 's arms outsource.
It seems, nevertheless, that ex-warlords are now awakened by Ethiopia 's conspiracy. Their efforts to stabilize the city are met with substantial setbacks from the president himself. Yet, they appear to be securing amble progress.
The Somali national failure, in the end, can't be associated with Muqdishu and its patriotic citizens; quite the contrary, Muqdishu has had pioneered in freedom fighting both prior and post independence. The natives of the city, due to their utmost hospitality, are the victim of an extra-ordinary outsource from other regions in the country, Mudug being the most to export its destitute children. Ethiopia , on the other hand, has had a vested interest in the destabilization of the capital for fear of resurrection of nation state Somalia that could subsequently reclaim the occupied Somali territories inside its porous borders. Distinguished Somali politicians and academicians who are the prime targets of those new neo-supremacists should stay in the course; the skillful head of the BBC Somali Section should continue to impress his audiences by delivering splendid journalism. Most importantly, he should seriously undertake the responsibility of overhauling the Somali Section. The rest of Somalis should be awakened to this new phenomenon.
Muqdishu, meanwhile, will remain the Mecca of Somalia in the foreseeable future albeit potential risks. Muqdishans, on the other hand, will recover their pride while protecting national borders.
Said Shiiq is a PhD candidate at the University of Wisconsin
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