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Islamic Militia Seizes Mogadishu, Somalia

This isn't good:

MOGADISHU, Somalia -- An Islamic militia said to have links to al Qaeda seized Somalia's capital yesterday after weeks of fighting with U.S.-backed secular warlords, raising fears that the nation could fall under the sway of Osama bin Laden's terrorist organization

The advance unified the city for the first time in more than a decade and after 15 years of anarchy in this Horn of Africa nation. But it also posed a direct challenge to a fledging U.N.-backed Somali government.

"We won the fight against the enemy of Islam. Mogadishu is under control of its people," Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed, chairman of the Islamic Courts Union, said in a radio broadcast. The militia controls a 65-mile radius around the capital after fighting off a secular alliance of warlords.

The Islamic militia is gaining ground just as the U.N.-backed interim government struggles to assert control outside its base in Baidoa, 155 miles from Mogadishu. The prices of weapons soared there yesterday as fears grew that the militia could head to Baidoa next.

The militia is the first group to consolidate control over all of Mogadishu's neighborhoods since the last government collapsed in 1991 and warlords took over, dividing this impoverished country of 8 million people into a patchwork of rival fiefdoms.

Omar Jamal, director of the Somali Justice Advocacy Center in St. Paul, Minn., said the Islamic militia's victory in Mogadishu was a turning point in the country's history.

"It is exactly the same thing that happened with the rise to power of the Taliban" in Afghanistan, he said, adding that the extremists are "using the people's weariness of violence, rape and civil war" to gain support for a government based on Islamic law.

Kofi Annan proves that, once again, the UN is irrelevant on issues of Islamic extremism.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan is calling on "all sides to stop the fighting" in Mogadishu, Somalia's traditional capital.

"The secretary-general continues to be concerned about the violence in Mogadishu and its environs," said Annan's spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, Monday. "He appeals to all sides to stop the fighting and enter into negotiations.

"He stresses that all parties to the conflict should resolve their differences and address outstanding issues in accordance with the Transitional Federal Charter of Somalia," the spokesman added, referring to the February 2004 accord reached after negotiations in Nairobi, Kenya, among the Horn of Africa nation's different factions.

Islamic militants are at war with civilization in their attempt to spread Sharia law, and Kofi Annan recommends negotiating? As far as the Islamists are concerned, there is no Transitional Federal Charter of Somalia.

John at OPFOR expresses his concern:

Sudan, then Somalia. I sincerely hope Nigeria isn't next.


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Comments (8)

Sure, we should negotiate. ... (Below threshold)
The Listkeeper:

Sure, we should negotiate. We just need to make sure to send in our master negotiator, Corbin Dallas...

Maybe We should send Koffi ... (Below threshold)

Maybe We should send Koffi and Carter over to negotiate. Im sure with their healthy respect for sharia law they'll be able to work it out,maybe even win a noble..

I wonder when the Peace Pri... (Below threshold)
The Listkeeper:

I wonder when the Peace Prize committee is going to figure out that they need to wait and see if all these treaties they've given prizes for actually pan out before they give the prize money.

Kofi Annan "continues to... (Below threshold)

Kofi Annan "continues to be concerned about the violence in Mogadishu"?

He also "stresses that all parties to the conflict should resolve their differences.."

I think there's a single question on the lips of all those that are met with such "concerns" and "stresses"...and that is: or what?

A valid question to be sure. Bearing in mind the Security Council's recent bold and persuasive appeasement of Iran, the answer very well could be along the lines of: "all parties to the conflict should resolve their differences or we will be forced to offer you incentives."

Why does Kofi even bother to talk anymore?

We should recognize the gov... (Below threshold)

We should recognize the government of the northern part, Somaliland, which is relatively stable, runs elections, etc. Just because central and southern Somalia is completely messed up doesn't mean we should pretend the northern part is just as bad.

I say send Cynthia McKinney... (Below threshold)

I say send Cynthia McKinney over there where she can do some good!

when do we get to stop payi... (Below threshold)

when do we get to stop paying, literally, for this impotent un body. annan's technique is customarily, comparable, rather identical, to a chess commentators. he's a wonderful play by play guy but can't seem to get into the game - at all.

of course, bush will give him a hug and express out devote support for the un swindler(s).

Exactly! well put..... (Below threshold)

Exactly! well put..






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