praying for Texas Saturday. That'll fix everything. (a commentator on NPR said earlier today that Perry would announce following the Iowa straw poll later this year, to steal the spotlight from the winner, but I cannot find a link to it). But Somalia does not have a Perry to save them. Instead, they've got a group of brutal fundamentalists who terrorize the population (no, not Christian Evangelicals this time, instead they're fundamentalist Muslims), and an incredibly weak central government who takes a cut of Somali piracy ransoms and turns a cataract blind eye to it, while the population starves. It didn't have to be this way.
See, back in the George Bush I rule, the UN sent in troops to distribute aid to the Somali citizens who were starving in the early 90s. Clinton continued to support this mission and had a large number of US Special forces deployed to Somalia. Lots of aid was being distributed, and people were being helped... but the warlords were still skimming and terrorizing and causing problems. So the US sent in a Delta Force team to get one of the most evil of the douche bags, Mohamed Farrah Aidid. Aidid's militia were well equipped with RPGs, and they figured out if you fire enough RPGs at a Black Hawk helicopter, eventually, a few will hit and damage the helicopter. Once the bird is down, the well fed, well paid, motivated militia can kill the US pilots and drag their bodies around Mogadishu as grotesque parade trophies. 1000s of Aidid's militia tried to do this, and around a 1000 of them were killed and several thousand were wounded by the Americans in the process. While Aidid's men found the Pakistani armour to be easy targets (ambushing and killing 24 soldiers), the Americans were much tougher opponents, with a 55:1 kill ratio (1000 militia killed / 18 Americans killed).
After the bloody Battle of Mogadishu, Clinton withdrew all American forces, and for the last 18 years, Somalia has continued a slide into deeper anarchy, famine, piracy, corruption, terror, desperation, and fundamentalist rule. Now, the UN has declared another full blown famine in Somalia, and Somali citizens are trying to flee their country into Kenya, while the Al Shabaab douche bags (AKA Al Kabob here forward) harass, rape, and rob the citizens as they flee if they're not from the right "tribe".
But the BBC, the EU, and the UN keep ratcheting up demands for aid to be sent to Somalia, to alleviate the suffering, and save lives. Um, sure... that's a good idea.. right? Today, proved my doubts were well founded, as Somali soldiers opened fire on citizens who tried to stop the soldiers from driving off with the food aid in military trucks while NGOs were trying to distribute it, killing seven of their fellow starving citizens.
There's no reason to send any American lives into that fray. No US military. Not US State Department. No one's sons or daughters from the US Peace Corp. I'm sorry, it's very sad and terrible, and I know I probably sound quite heartless to say it, but feeding the Somali military and militia groups will only continue the suffering in that country. Once there's no more non-combatants left in the drought stricken, fundamentalist ruled, famine blanketed horn of Africa, then the rapes, murders, robberies and death by starvation will decrease, and US drone strikes won't have to worry about taking out civilians because the only people left will be the bad guys who helped to bring these apocalyptic conditions upon themselves. Let their Gawd save them. I actually heard a BBC interview where a militia member said "that is imperialist food, we do not want it." Fine Al Kabob. Good luck with your ideology and belief system.
Besides, the US is broke - we can't take care of our own poor, elderly, infirmed, wretched souls with the shortage of boot straps in the US economy currently. We're much too busy protecting the rich - oops, I mean Job Creators [TM] - in the hopes that someday, they might actually create a job here or there. Sending borrowed US treasure and precious US young people's blood to Al Kabob ruled Somalia, is about as sane and responsible as following what Freedom Works desires for America's future.
1 year ago