Ethiopian army may withdraw from Somalia

This video is called Ethiopian and US invasion of Somalia 20 Dec. 06.

By Brian Smith:

Ethiopia threatens to withdraw from Somalia

22 September 2008

Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi has warned that he is prepared to withdraw his country’s troops from Somalia, where they are propping up the US-backed Transitional Federal Government (TFG), even if the latter was not in control of the country.

His comments in an interview with the Financial Times at the end of August mark a significant shift in policy. He had previously indicated that Ethiopia would stay in Somalia until the TFG was in control of the country and well established.

He threatened that “technically we could bring them [the Ethiopian troops] back home tomorrow. We feel we have done what we planned to do in terms of preventing a total takeover of Somalia by a jihadist group.”

Cobbled together in 2004, the TFG is a cabal of CIA-backed warlords infamous for looting the country over a period of nearly two decades. It is beset by internal squabbling and split along clan lines.

The Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) militia took control of virtually the entire country in 2006, including the capital Mogadishu, and won substantial popular support due to its offensive against the warlords and its record of establishing civil order and the provision of food and basic services.

The illegal invasion and occupation of Somalia by thousands of Ethiopian troops was organised with the full backing of the Bush administration in December 2006, and was accompanied by US Special Forces units on the ground in Somalia. The US military also supplied air and naval power to support the Ethiopian invasion force, whose mission was to overthrow the UIC.

Most Somalis resent the Ethiopian occupation, and the puppet regime which it props up. Tapping into this, the remnants of the UIC began an insurgency in early 2007, which has led to Ethiopia becoming bogged down in its own “mini-Iraq”.

Italy Invades Abyssinia in 1935: here.

7 thoughts on “Ethiopian army may withdraw from Somalia

  1. Somalia: Mogadishu Rocked By ‘Worst Shelling Yet’

    UN Integrated Regional Information Networks

    23 September 2008
    Posted to the web 23 September 2008


    At least 100 people were killed and thousands fled their homes in the “worst fighting” to hit Mogadishu in recent months, locals told IRIN.

    The fighting on 22 September pitted Ethiopian troops, African Union peacekeeping troops (AMISOM) and Transitional Federal Government (TFG) forces against insurgents. More than 200 people were reportedly wounded, hospital sources said.

    “We are still today [23 September] collecting bodies and body parts from the market and the area around it,” Ali Mohamed Siad, chairman of the Bakara market traders, told IRIN. “Blood and body parts are everywhere.”

    The fighting was concentrated around the large market – which has in the past been the scene of fierce fighting between Ethiopian-backed government forces and insurgents.

    “The market and the surrounding neighbourhoods experienced the worst shelling yet,” Siad added.

    He said the shelling by Ethiopian, AMISOM and TFG forces began when the market was full of shoppers getting ready for the Eid festivities, to mark the end of Ramadan next week.

    Up to 82 people have so far been confirmed dead and 157 injured in the market area alone, Siad added. The market was now closed.

    Ali Sheikh Yassin, acting chairman of the Mogadishu-based Elman Human Rights Organisation, told IRIN the market had been shelled from three different directions. “It was obvious the market was deliberately targeted,” he said.

    The shelling began after Islamic insurgents launched simultaneous attacks on the two main AMISOM bases at K4 and the airport, said a local journalist.

    But AMISOM spokesman Barigye Bahoko told IRIN the AU peacekeepers were not involved in the shelling. “We are absolutely not responsible for the shelling,” he said. “Responsibility should be on those who attack our defensive positions.”

    Local sources said the fighting and shelling were mostly concentrated in the districts of Hodan and Hawl Wadag in south Mogadishu.

    Many families are still trying to get out, while others have begun burying the dead and taking the injured to hospital.

    A medical source told IRIN the two main hospitals, Madina in the south and Keysaney in the north, were seeing more injured than at any time in the recent past.

    “As of last night 195 injured were brought to Madina and about 30 to Keysaney,” the source said. Roughly 46 people died in the hospitals, “but that is only those who made it to hospitals”.

    Meanwhile, talks to end the conflict, which have going on in Djibouti between representatives of the government and a faction of an Eritrea-based opposition alliance, the Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia, led by Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, again failed to agree a ceasefire.

    “The main stumbling block is the withdrawal of Ethiopian forces,” said a civil society activist at the talks.

    He said the TFG seemed to be trying to find a way for a less hurried withdrawal, while the Alliance was insisting on a 30-day withdrawal.

    The parties agreed to resume talks in 15 days to hammer out a ceasefire agreement.

    [ This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations ]


  2. Uganda: UPDF Taking a Wrong Path On Somalia

    The Monitor (Kampala)

    1 October 2008
    Posted to the web 1 October 2008

    Abdilkadir Osman

    I respond to statements by spokesman of the Amisom force Bahoku-Barigye who stated recently that he did not want to be dragged into what he termed “a senseless war.”

    Uganda has already dragged itself in a war brought to my people and Uganda has to bear the price. Ever since “Day-one” Uganda’s “peacekeeping” force was compromised and is far from being neutral in that it was mainly deployed at State House to protect President Abdillahi Yusuf, safeguard the airport for the President, his government and the most detested Ethiopian army.

    Uganda in particular has lost the confidence of the Somali people in general for factors which I shall state below. I wish to make some issues clear so that Ugandan people understand why the UPDF, supposedly on a humanitarian mission, is being attacked by the very people they were sent to protect.

    The UPDF will never be looked at as an objective neutral force due to a series of factors and events that preceded their deployment. At an African Union summit in Addis Ababa soon after Ethiopia’s invasion of Somalia, President Museveni was clearly seen congratulating Ethiopian Prime Minister Zenawi on his “successful” invasion.

    On the Somali streets this was viewed as a “low-blow”, these two Christian presidents gleefully patting each other’s backs at the removal of an Islamic Courts government. During this summit the US Secretary of State for African Affairs, another Christian, was present and didn’t even attempt at hiding her joy at the “removal” of the Islamic Courts.”

    This, I can say, was the “killing-blow” to any UPDF impartiality in this mission. It’s also no longer a well kept secret that the US government is bankrolling the UPDF Somalia mission.

    This fact, added with the subsequent visits to Uganda by General Ward, the Commander of the US Africa Command, adds fuel to the perception that Uganda’s UPDF is on a US counter-terrorism (a synonym for counter-Islam) mission. In plain terms, the UPDF has been out-sourced or sub-contracted to do America’s dirty work in the Horn of Africa region.

    Given the Ugandan leadership’s resistance orientation, one would expect better of them in their appraisal and analysis of another resistance movement. They should revisit their actions pertaining to Somalia. I wish those concerned in President Museveni’s administration to take another look at the situation on the ground. Need I remind you that the NRM bush war could not be as successful were it not for the grassroots support given to their fighters.

    I am sure your commanders in Mogadishu have seen the level of support the Somali resistance is getting on the ground both in the capital city and elsewhere in the country. Go there and see for yourselves how detested the current head of the TFG Mr Abdillahi Yusuf is.

    He was never elected by our people but merely a product of a flawed process undertaken in Kenya. My counsel to Ugandans, both leaders and the citizens, please don’t fight another man’s war. We never had a quarrel between our two people. America is lighting a fire at your neighbour’s house.

    What peace are you keeping, if I may ask? Amisom has now taken to shelling our residential areas and markets just as the Ethiopians did. Major Bahoku, why are you shelling civilians? The recent Amisom shelling of Bakara market was horrible.

    Shelling this market is comparable to shelling Kampala’s Owino market. Why do you not tell Ugandans exactly what you are doing in Mogadishu? You have now even started raiding residential homes in Mogadishu starting September 27.

    Osman is a member of the Mogadishu-based Islamic Courts


  3. Somalia: AU Force Spokesman Condemns Govt Action

    Garowe Online (Garowe)

    18 October 2008
    Posted to the web 19 October 2008

    The spokesman for a small African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has condemned an act attributed to the country’s interim government, Radio Garowe reported Saturday.

    AMISOM spokesman Bahoku Barigye told reporters in the capital Mogadishu that Somali government officials prevented wounded civilians from flying out of Aden Adde International Airport.

    “We condemn the Somali government’s decision to prevent civilians from traveling out of the capital [Mogadishu], including wounded people,” said the spokesman.

    He indicated that AMISOM commanders had informed airport officials about Friday’s incident at the airport, whereby 80 passengers traveling on African Express Airways were prevented from boarding the airplane.

    Unconfirmed reports said that Somali government officials boarded the plane forcefully, but an immigrantion official denied the charges.


  4. Pentagon establishes “Africa command”
    [T]his work to complement and support American security and development policies would include missions like deploying military trainers to improve the abilities of local counterterrorism forces.

    Somalis resist occupation
    [T]he Washington-organized intervention in Somalia [is] a further manifestation of the bogus “global war on terrorism.”


  5. Pingback: Ethiopian warmongering dictator kills Ethiopian children | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  6. Pingback: US soldiers accused of poaching Somali animals | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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