Fear of officers "going native" keeps our intelligence agencies ill-informed about Somalia, Syria, and other hotspots.
When the British ran an empire they did it the right way, if one is into imperial management. They created an entire bureaucracy, the Colonial Service, which was manned by officers who were expected to go out to foreign posts for extended periods, to learn the local language, and to acquire an understanding of the... Read More
America's clandestine activities in both nations only provoke the conflicts they are meant to prevent. By Philip Giraldi There appear to be some good business opportunities in Yemen, but they may not be what they seem. Yemen is the poorest Arab nation, and one of the poorest countries in the world, with an estimated annual... Read More
Okay, I know that the Fuzzies were Sudanese followers of the Mahdi and that the Somalis are ethnically different, but they all do have bushy hair, which is what Kipling was referring to. I have been following the debate over what to do about the Somali pirates with some interest, particularly as assiduous readers of... Read More
Another CIA Cock-Up
Until a month ago, no one in the Bush administration showed the least bit of interest in the piracy off the coast of Somalia. Now that's changed and there's talk of sending in the Navy to patrol the waters off the Horn of Africa. Why the sudden about-face? It could have something to do with... Read More
"Pirates of the Caribbean" and cute little Johnny Depp they are not. Somalia's pirates tote AK-47's and RPG rockets, chew the narcotic shrub qat, use satellite cell phones for their negotiations, and are just about the only people in strife-ravaged Somalia these days who have a regular job. The Strait of Malacca between Singapore and... Read More
While I normally think that armed intervention in other peoples' quarrels generally turns out poorly, there are times when a little overwhelming force can be salutary. The current situation with pirates operating freely out of Somalia, which has no effective government, begs for just such a solution. The pirates use well established and well known... Read More
"They Are Slaughtering Somalis Like Goats"
While George Bush was breezing through photo-ops at the G-8 summit in Japan; his Ethiopian proxy-army in Somalia was grinding out more carnage on the streets of Mogadishu. More than 40 civilians have been killed in the last 48 hours. On Sunday, Osman Ali Ahmed, the head of the UN Development Program in Somalia, was... Read More
osted this on American Footprints on November 13 Maybe one reason the Bush administration is unable to develop a coherent foreign policy is because it’s stuck in reactive mode, flinching as fresh catastrophes come down the pipe and scrambling to come up with new excuses and rationales for initiatives that—had they worked out—would have been... Read More
The Case of Somalia
The imperial system is much more complex than what is commonly referred to as the “US Empire”. The US Empire, with its vast network of financial investments, military bases, multi-national corporations and client states, is the single most important component of the global imperial system. Nevertheless, it is overly simplistic to overlook the complex hierarchies,... Read More
"The US has opened a fourth front in the war on terrorism" the Pentagon announced last week, as if the US did not have enough failing wars on its hands with al-Qaida, Afghanistan, and Iraq. In a striking irony, F-18 fighter-bombers from the carrier "USS Eisenhower," deadly AC-130 gunships from the US base at Djibouti,... Read More
The "war on terror" is back with a bang. First Afghanistan, then Iraq and now Somalia. And Iran could well be the next Islamic nation to be bombarded by the US - as President George W Bush telegraphed in his "surge" speech on Wednesday. The Pentagon is thus already well engaged in its self-described "arc... Read More
Ethiopia's invasion of Somalia under cover of the Christmas holiday was a blatant aggression that is likely to widen the arc of conflict across the dangerously turbulent Horn of Africa. It also marks the opening of a new front in Washington's war against Islamic militants and reformers. Claims by Ethiopia that Somalia, a nation without... Read More