Somalia between a rock and a hard place – Part 1

Article written by Mr Abdi Musse –Somali Scholar, commentator of global geopolitics.

Somalia’s geographical location

From the era of Egyptian pharaohs the geographical location of Somalia was very important for many reasons; including, the strategy and the close proximity of Gulf of Aden, which for many years was a trading hub interested by many powers.

European colonialist quickly recognized the important of Somali’s geographical location followed by the cold war tit for tat game played by the East-led by Russia and the West-led by USA.

Current situation

Too many interests and hidden agendas arose from the civil war and the anarchy Somalia endured for the past 26 or so years, which led foreign actors and neighbouring countries to exert huge emphasis to dominate Somalia politics by meddling it’s affairs inside out.

These competing interests surely confuse both the average Somali person as well as the Somali politicians who neither holds the leverage of leading the country into the right direction nor have the financial and institutional capability to perform any real politic. The former is due to the lack of real mandate as foreign actors hold more power over the Somali politician-hence foreign actors are pulling the strings due to the aid they bring the country, while the later is as direct result of the former.

Imagine being resident in a house that has many doors and each door’s key is held by someone whom you the resident of one of the rooms do not know their intentions and ambitions for the house. The similarities are there for Somalia today. There are many so-called stakeholders/partners and international community whom we actually do not know their intentions and ambitions.

One key evident could be the terror incident on 14 October 2017 at Zoobe Mogadishu where over 350 Somali innocent being killed in one day and over 600 wounded. The investigation of that while still continuing it was clear to many Somalis that there were cover up and disagreement between the Somali Federal Government’s and foreign actor’s positions as to where the target was. The foreign actors interference caused the delay and confusion followed by the lack of clarification as whether the target was Halane or Turkish Military base. This is still an outstanding question that needs to be answered.