POINT By M.M. Afrah, Toronto, (Canada)
Fear Factor is a relationship many people have with their past.
It may be frequent family squabbles over inheritance, bankruptcy
or failure in life that ultimately lead to suicide in many
Western societies, despite professional help (psychiatrists) to
get past the trauma.
is a very rare phenomenon in Somali society, because Islam does
not sanction it as a last resort. Nevertheless, it is a known
maxim that the worst thing to fear is fear itself.
self-styled white “specialists” in Somali affairs claim that
the Somalis are talkative, loud-mouthed, easily become
irritated, and don’t give damn about improving their lives on
this planet. Of course some of the delusions are simply
malicious. At worst, they are downright racism. Loud mouthed?
Yes. The famous French novelist, Victor Hugo once wrote that one
has to be vocal if one wants to get what he wants or to attract
attention from his friends and foes. As we know the French, like
the Italians, unlike the British (with their stiff upper lip)
are vocal and very expressive people.
colonial administrators, to suit a purpose at a given moment
based the assumption that the Somalis, as a whole, are
insubordinate, compared to other black people in the Continent.
image is merely based on the fact that the Somalis, by nature,
refused to bow to the wishes of arrogant white colonial
administrators who divided and ruled their fragmented country,
which reminds me of Abdullahi Qarshe’s wake up call:
“Somaaliyey Kakacoy, Kakacoy, Kama, Kama Yimidee.” Somalis
in the Northwest nicknamed Kama, Kama a British colonial
administrator who hated the Somalis, just because they refused
to bow to him. Kama is the Kiswahili word of “If”. His catch
phrase was: “If you don’t do this or that I will….” He
was a District Commissioner in Kenya before he was posted to the
then British Somaliland in the 1950s. The BBC quoted him as
saying that the Somalis are arrogant and ungovernable. He was
accustomed to docile Africans in Kenya.
in the South, there was a British administrator in Mogadishu
during the British Military Administration in Somalia
(BMS) after World War Two that the Somalis nicknamed him
“Fakin Fakin” (Fucking, Fucking). His regular outburst was
“Fucking Somalis,” because he too hated the Somalis for
refusing, among other draconian measures, to pay poll tax or
head tax which set in motion the popular uprising against the
British Military Administration known as Dhagax Tuur in
which many Somalis lost their lives. But that is another story.
to today’s home front, 99 per cent of the Somali people are
victims of what medical science defines as Post-Traumatic Stress
Disorder Syndrome (PTSDS) as a result of the unending vicious
circle of violence never seen in our history. Bickering, war of
meaningless words, mistrust, suspicion and baseless accusations
is the main menu that automatically gives us an excuse to rush
to the gun at home or to the computer in the Diaspora. “You
had insulted my clan!” is the war cry, as if his clan gave him
the mandate to protect them.
A minor disagreement could trigger off widespread
bloodshed. I imagine that the person who coined the famous
phrase “we agreed to disagree” must have been a Somali!
Siyad Barre’s dictatorial policy negative? Some people may
ask. Yes. But his only lasting legacy is the writing of the
Somali language that hitherto faced a lot of hindrance by people
with vested interests, whether tribal, religion or whatever. In
connivance with some Arab countries, a number of religious
preachers in their Friday sermons called the Latin script that
was adopted as “Laa Diin” (without religion, or no
religion in Arabic.), probably unaware that other Muslim
countries like Turkey and Indonesia have also adopted the Latin
script for their national languages. After all not all Arabs are
Muslims. At the same time the General did not waste time to sow
the seeds of conflict that is being harvested today by people
who rebuff common sense, political compromise and diplomacy.
had ruled the country by decree and he was master of making his
decrees go through. No question is asked. The opponents of the
Latin script made palms-up and went home. They knew General
Barre was not to be taken lightly.
I warmly welcome any constructive criticism from my valued
readers. I only wish they could do their homework properly and
use the grammar and spell checks provided by their computer
software. Next week we will discuss the question of WHO WAS
RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DESTRUCTION OF MOGADISHU AND BAIDOA (The
City of Death). So watch out and make your own assessments
without bias or favour.
SOMAALIYEY TOOSA should be our permanent wake up call, no
matter what happens. WE SHALL OVERCOME, as Martin Luther King
Jr. used to say. Like Martin Luther King Jr. I have a dream that
one day we shall have a born again Somalia.
mentioned several times that those who committed war crimes and
other human rights violation must be brought before the Arusha
and The Hague ad hoc war crimes tribunals. These tribunals are
mandated for the persecution of certain war crimes, i.e. former
Yugoslavia and Rwanda.
OMAR ALASOW OF LONDON FOR PUTTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT.