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Ethiopian blogs focus on Somali tension

Ethiopia’s bloggers kept a nervous eye on their country’s southern border with Somalia over the past two weeks as rumblings of renewed conflict got ever louder.

The growing tension received next to no coverage in the mainstream media who focused most of their international coverage on southern Lebanon.

But the bloggers were there to fill up the vacuum.

Many of them realised that their readers would know next to nothing about the complex relationship between Ethiopia and Somalia. So they filled the knowledge gap with briefings and background articles.

Ethiopundit provided the most colourful summary in Meles's Not So Excellent Adventure [Meles Zenawi is Ethiopia's prime minister]:

Where to start … where to start …. OK, the Usual Suspect Clan Warlords (USCW) lost a battle for control of Mogadishu [Somalia's capital] and eventually most of the region to the New Jack Islamist Warlords (NJIW) that we certainly had never heard of. Not only that, but the US was allegedly helping the USCW and Ethiopia definitely was helping them. Oh, and Eritrea was aggressively arming the NJIW in a bid to outflank Meles Inc (actually at this point it seems, just to mess with Ethiopia for hell of it)…

According to the USCW, Eritrea was joined by Egypt and Saudi Arabia in aiding the NJIW and according to many others the latter had some rather unsavory connections to international terror. As the USCW were being chased across the region, the UN backed (alert the media!), Ethiopian supported, For Real Somali Government in Internal Exile (FRSGIE) welcomed Ethiopian troops sent by Meles Inc. into Baidoia (the FRSGIE capital) and environs.

Meles Inc., however, denied it was attempting any hostile takeovers at all. The FRSGIE said that it was all a mistake due to Ethiopian donated uniforms on its own soldiers while Meles Inc. denied the whole thing with the same straight face it used to deny everything from blocking blogs onto keeping 70 million hostages. A few tame reporters claimed to see nothing but there could have been a legion of Galactic Storm Troopers straight from the Clone Wars right next door for all they were allowed to see.

My Heart's in Accra provided a slightly drier run-through of the key facts in Some background on the likely forthcoming conflict in Somalia.

After the briefings came the commentary.

Enset called on Ethiopia and the international community to recognise that the newly resurgent Islamic movement in Somalia could actually be seen as a stablising force. But in Neighboring Somalia In The Spotlight he warned:

unless cooler heads prevail in Mogadishu and Baidoa [the headquarters of Somalia's provisional government], there a real possibility that a full-fledged war might break out … and this does not bode well for peace in Somalia and the Horn of Africa region.

Redeem Ethiopia worried about the religious faultlines that it saw opening up in Thuggish Governance:

The previous Ethiopian-Somali conflicts were much more about colonial legacy than they were religious. Attempting to give the historical bumpy relationship between the two countries a religious tone is the first defeat for Ethiopia, as it is the country with a population that is half Christian and half Muslim.

Urael saw parallels with Lebanon in ‘I told you so’:

There is a striking similarity between Israel’s invasion in Lebanon and Ethiopia’s invasion in Somalia. There are also differences. The Islamic Courts Union did not kidnap Ethiopian soldiers. They actually have not shot any rockets to Ethiopian territory. They are just not the ones Ethiopia allied with.

The similarity is that the United States of America is using both aggressors. And it is turning a blind eye towards the misery that is created.

Aqumada chose poetry over politics. He summed up the fears of many by translating a poem by Wilfred Owen, the British World War 1 poet, into Amharic [one of Ethiopia's main languages]:

Anthem for Doomed Youth

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
-Only the monstrous anger of the guns.

Anthem for Doomed Youth in Amharic

4 comments

  • Greetings,

    Somalia’s tiny Christian Community has not been mentioned.

  • Thank you all,

    I feel honored that my website was heard.

    David

  • Hirut Awoke

    Sign this petition which advocates dialogue instead of war

    http://www.PetitionOnline.com/peace06/petition.html

  • International communities(IC) are diminishing to encounter Somalia conflict.
    Somalia civilians are tormenting post civil war, drought, famine, flood and luck of security almost 17 years. IC still unable to understand Somalia mentality in a generally and what Somali wishes in a normally. IC has not yet come out a clear policy to toward a Somalia after UN intervention collapse in 1995 after that failure IC adapted a blind policy to toward Somalia. IC unable to consider the plight of Somalia civilians wants stable government and greater security. IC tranquil not sees a danger facing Somalia civilians and the Horn of Africa regions. If IC cannot act together in a Somalia policy, stability, security, and peace building mission will lead a failure or even deterioration situation. Somalia conflicts may be seemed within Somalia clashes but not on the ground. Somalia conflicts will lead greater disaster and engulf entire of East Africa regions. IC cannot afford a state without a central governments otherwise Somali state may already be a heaven a terrorism groups and planning something very nasty for particularly western interest in Horn of Africa Regions. IC a determination and act together needs greater urgency on the international stages back by political will and sending international peace keeping forces includes NATO and IGAD on the ground to stabilize the Somali regions and back by a nation building process.

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