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The Demise of Somali Nationalism

Abdi Farah Laqan
Sunday, April 12, 2009                                

In March of 1967, the entire student body of Ber Intermediate School went on a two-day strike. Instead of attending classes, the students set out on an 18-mile march to the provincial capital of Burao. The protest was triggered by the undesirable outcome of a sham referendum conducted by France in which the people of French Somaliland (now Djibouti) were ostensibly to determine whether to be independent or remain a French colony for another ten years.

Even though I was only a teenager at the time, and too young to grasp all that was happening, I’ll never forget the strong nationalistic emotions that the rigged referendum and the ensuing demonstration stirred in me. It didn’t matter to me that I had never been to Djibouti or known a single person living there. All that mattered to me that day was that Djibouti was a Somali territory, and it was deprived of its natural right to be free.

I reminisce about this long-gone episode in the history of Djibouti because it is in direct contrast to the state of mind of the Somali society today, a state of mind that is totally devoid of any sense of nationhood. Instead of national aspirations, most Somalis are nowadays preoccupied with meaningless head counts, like how many members clan A has in the parliament or how many ministers clan B has in the cabinet. No one, it appears, is conscious of the fact that neither the so-called parliament nor the purported cabinet has a nation to rule. It is almost non-existent, broken up into feuding clan enclaves.

Granted, clan affiliation has always been a fact of life in Somalia; and sure, it has always been an impediment to modernity and advancement, but I have never imagined it would rise to the level that it could actually destroy the State of Somalia.

For the last 18 years (and counting), Somalia has been in an anarchic state. Inter-clan warfare, foreign invasions, warlordship, and an indifferent international community all conspired to render the country ungovernable. All aspects of statehood have vanished, replaced by highly unstable, clan-driven fiefdoms, whose primary purpose is to prey on the Somali people, already battered by wars, famine, and disease.

But the most disheartening of all is the seemingly total disappearance of the concept of nationhood itself among a wide spectrum of Somali social classes. From the illiterate camel herdsman in the remotest Haud area, to the Ivy-league educated professional in North America, the thinking is basically the same: stand by your clansman regardless of his qualifications, competency, or moral aptitude. The only thing that counts, and overrides everything else, is genealogical proximity. God help us!

I don’t fault the camel herdsman for believing in, and trusting, the sanctity of clanship because (a) he was raised to think that way and (b) his survival and the survival of his herd may one day depend on the solidarity with his clan. Moreover, he is not exposed to other concepts to make him question the long-term viability of clanship. So it is only natural that he would stick with what he knows.

What I can’t understand are the motives of a highly educated class of Somalis – mostly in the Diaspora – who should know better than to peddle a narrow, clan-oriented agenda that further weakens Somali nationhood. It is truly sad to see the best minds among us – those of us who were supposed to lead the masses out of the darkness – engaged in the most divisive and destructive clan politics ever practiced in Somalia.

The demise of Somali nationalism is evident in the emergence of multiple mini-states, each one of them being the creation of a dominant clan in a geographical area. To survive, these clan fiefdoms stumble over each other to be in the good graces of Somalia’s arch enemy – Ethiopia. This suits Ethiopia well because it dovetails with its long-sought goal to keep Somalia weak and divided. Tragically, that opportunity has been handed to Ethiopia on a silver platter by none other than Somalis, who carry out all kinds of atrocities against their follow Somalis on the behest of Ethiopia. By exploiting clan divisions among the Somali people, Ethiopia has succeeded in making Somali nationalism subordinate to clan loyalties, thus minimizing “Somaliness” among the Somali people. For Ethiopia to manipulate Somalia so mercilessly shows how far Somalia has fallen from its dominant position in East Africa. How sad!

With all this going on, I still have some optimism that there are some Somalis out there who may have similar nationalistic memories as those I experienced back in 1967. Perhaps we all feel overwhelmed by the suffocating clannish culture currently prevalent in all regions of the country, as well as in the Somali diaspora, but I would urge all not to give in to the forces of darkness and division. We must somehow pull together and rise up to save the country before it ceases to exit. No one should take lightly the fact that the country could be gobbled up piecemeal by neighboring states, or made uninhabitable by toxic waste dumping.

Oh, by the way, after that sham referendum in Djibouti, the French learned two things: (a) the intensity of Somali nationalism and (b) the divisive powers of tribalism. They decided not to go through the force of Somali nationalism again, so they renamed the country after two local tribes. What used to be French Somaliland became The Territory of Afars and Issas. The word “Somali” was completely wiped out from the lexicon of the colonial office in Djibouti.

For the sake of our nation, let us rekindle that sense of nationalism for which Somalis were once famous.

 

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Golaha Hoggaanka Tolka: Baaq Nabadeed iyo Wanaag Doojin

Ku: socda Somaliland, Itoobiya iyo bulshada Gobolada Awdal/Salal


MINNEAPOLIS, U.S.A, SEPTEMBER 27, 2010—


Anaga oo ah, Golaha Hoggaanka Tolka, oo ay dhidibada u joojieen koox isugu jirta aqoonyahanno, xirfadley iyo hoggaamiyeyaal ka tirsan tolka Gadabuursiga, bishii Abriil 1-3, 2010 magaalada Minneaplois, Gobolka Minnesota ee Carriga Maraykanka, si ay u ambaqaadaan geeddi socod dheer oo ay doonayaan in ay ku dardar geliyaan hoggaan dhaqameedkii Soomaalida iyagoo aragtiyo cusub ku duraya kuna horkacaya Tolka deggan Geeska Afrika iyo adduunka daafihiisa, waxay si werwer leh ula socdeen dhacdooyinkii aan quruxda badnayd ee dhawaan ka dhacay Gobolada Awdal/Salal ee Somaliland.

Dhacdooyinkaa oo ay ka mid ahaayeen kooxdii dablayda ahayd ee ka soo degtay xeebta u dhaxaysa magaalooyinka Saylac iyo Lughaya, muddaaharaadadii laab-la-kaca ahaa ee ka dhacay Boorama, saraakiisha ciidamada Xabashida ah ee la sheegay in ay soo galeen Gobolada Awdal/Salal, iyo sida awood darrida iyo habqanku ka muuqdo ee dawaladdu ku waajahday arrintan.

Sida la wada ogyahay nabadda iyo deganaanshuhu waxay ahaayeen waxa keliya ee Somaliland kasbatay ayna ku faanaan dadku sannadihii ina soo dhaafay, sidaa awgeed aad ayey noo werwer gelisay saamaynta ay dhacdooyinkani ku yeelan karaan nabadgelyada dadka, ammaanka waddanka, isbahaysiga wacan ee ka dhexeeya bulshada iyo awoodda ay xukuumaddu u leedahay xakamaynta waxa ka iman kara dhacdooyinkan.


Haddaba anaga oo kalsooni ku qabna garashada bulshooyinka reer Awdal/Salal iyo wacyiga xukuumada, welibana aqoonsan sida ay saddexda geesood oo Itoobiya ku jirto ugu xilhayaan nabadda iyo deganaanshaha Geeska Afrika, waxan ugu baaqaynaa:

I. Bulshada Awdal/Salal:

A.   In ay bulshada Awdal/Salal si xilkasnimo ku jirto iskugu hawsho in ay iska ilaaliyaan wax kasta oo dhaawici kara nabaddooda iyo degnaanshahooda, midnimadooda, iyo bahwanaagga ay laleeyihiin bulshooyinka ay ood wadaagga leeyihiin iyo kalsoonida ka dhexaysa iyaga iyo xukuumadda.

B.  
In ay bulshadu wixii xuquuqdooda ah ee ay tabanayaan u raadsadaan si sharciga waafaqsan oo ay mariyaan malkooyinka xukuumadda iyo haamaha  bulshada iyaga oo mar walba xakamaynaya dareenkooda niyaddana ku haya in haddii nabaddu ay meel ka xumaato ay dalkoo dhan nabaddiisa burburin karto oo aanay cidina ku lulanayn.

C.  
In bulshadu ay arrimahooda ku xalliyaan si ay ku jirto caqligii iyo dulqaadkii lagu yaqaanay dadka reer Awdal/Salal oo ay Xukuumadda ka caawiyaan siday xaaladda u dejin lahayd oo ay baadhitaan rasmi ah ugu samayn lahayd una bishli lahayd gol daloolooyinka jira dhinaca ammaanka iyadoo dadku raalli ka yihiin.

II. Xukuumadda Somaliland:

Somaliland Administration
A.   In kasta oo aan ognahay in Xukuumaddu weli curdin tahay oo aanay weli lugaheeda si fiican dhulka ugu qotomin, waxa haddana meesha ku jirta in aanay waajibkeeda kaga baxsan karaynin in ay ku marmarsiiyooto in ay cusub tahay ama ay canaanta iskaga weeciso xilli la soo dhaafay. Taasi kama dulqaadi karto waajibka ka saaran in ay sugto ammaanka dalka iyo nabadgelyada dadka.

B.   Sidaa awgeed, waxan Xukuumadda ku boorrinaynaa in ay qirato daldaloolkeeda ayna oggolaato wixii canaan ay leedahay, degdegna wax uga qabato sidii ay u sixi lahayd si ay ku kasbato una xajisato kalsoonida dadka.

C.   Waxa kale oo aan Xukuumadda culays ku saaraynaa in ay iska ilaaliso in ay qaaddo tallaabooyin aan loo baahnayn ama ay sii dayso warbixino dab hurin kara dadka kalsoonidoodana ay ku lumin karto. Xukuumaddu waa in ay laabta ku haysaa in kasbashada kalsoonida dadku ay tahay hawl joogta ah oo had iyo jeer la bilkeedinayo, gaar ahaan marka ay doorasho ku guulaysato.

D.   Dhab ahaantii waa masuuliyadda Xukuumadda in ay cabashooyinka dadka ee xaqa ah ay wax ka qabato iyo weliba werwerka dhinaca ammaanka ee bulshada Awdal/Salal iyo dalka intiisa kaleba. Waa in aanay iska indha tirin ilaa inta booguhu malaxaysanayaan ee dabeed ay qarxayaan. Waxan Xukuumadda ku boorrinaynaa in ay tallaabooyin degdeg ah ka qaaddo iyada oo la kaashanaysa madaxdhaqameedka iyo xubnaha bulshada ka masala xukuumadda.

E.    Iyada oo aan ognahay in oogista cadaaladu ay tahay mid ka mid ah waajibaadka ugu waaweyn ee saaran Xukuumadda waaritaanka leh, waxan culays ku saaraynaa Xukuumadda in ay caddaaladda hor keento dadkii geystay dilkii dadkii lagu laayey jidka u dhexeeya Kalabaydh iyo Dilla.
Haddii Xukuumaddii hore ay ku fashilantahy micnaheedu ma aha in dambiilayaashu ay xorriyad ku daaqaan, maxaa yeelay cadaalad keenistu ciddii doontaaba ha lahaatee waa waajib lama dhaafaan ah. Qabashada la soo qabtaa dadkii dilkaa fooshaxun geystayna waxay wax weyn ka taraysaa baabiinta xumaanta hurgumada leh waxaanay dareensiinaysaa muwaadiniinta in ay nabad ku daaqaan, xuquuqdooduna sugan tahay.
Midda kale caddaalad la siiyo dadkii dadkooda la dilay waxay xoojinaysaa daacadnimada dadku u hayaan  Xukuumadda iyo hoggaankeeda.

III. Xukuumadda Itoobiya:

A.   Anagoo dareemi karna xaqa ay Xukuumadda Itoobiya u leedahay in ay ka werwerto ammaanka dalkeeda iyo sugitaanka nabadgelyada dadkeeda, haddana waxan xusuusinaynaa Xukuumadda Itoobiya in ilaalinta saaxiibnimada  soo jireenka ah iyo jaar wanaagga ay la leedahay Somaliland in ay waajib kaga dhigayso in ay iska ilaaliso in ay ku kacdo tallaabooyin aan laga fiirsan  oo burburin kara xidhiidkha mudada dheer soo jiray soona hoyn kara ammaan darro iyo fadqalalo ka dhacda gobolka.

B.   Waxan Xukuumadda Itoobiya xusuusinaynaa in ay fahmto qiimaha weyn ay leedahay in lagu sii kobciyo kalsoonida labada dhinac wada tashi iyo iskaashi joogta ah oo laga yeesho ammuuraha ammaanka.

C.   Waxan si xoogle ugu boorrinaynaa in ay iska ilaaliso in ay qaaddo tallaabo aan cid lagala tashan oo ay ugu soo dirto ciidankeeda gudaha Somaliland iyada oo aanay oggolaanin oo aan la isla meel dhigin Xukuumadda Somaliland iyo hoggaan dhaqameedka bulshada gudaha.

D.   Waa in Xukuumadda Itoobiya ogaataa in soo gelitaan ciidan ay leedahay soo gala Somaliland iyadoo ku marmarsiiyoonaysa in ay cadaw baadhayso lana tashan Xukuumadda Somaliland ay keeni karto cadho xoogle oo dadku u qaado Itoobiya. Wixii halkaa ka dhashaana uu noqon karo wax aan la mahadin oo waxyeelo u geysan kara nabadda iyo ammaanka gobolka  una ciidmi kara xoogagga xagjirka ah ee ku maqan sidii ay u burburin lahaayeen danta ay labada dal wadaagaan ee ah sidii loo sugi lahaa nabadda loona heli lahaa horumar.

Gebogabadii, waxan ku dhiirrigelinaynaa dhammaan saddexda geesood ee arrintu khusayso in ay u dhaqmaan si xikmadi ku jirto kuna dheehantahay fiiro dheer iyo samir ay ku loodiyaan ammaanka jilicdasan. In loo wada guntado sugida danta dadka gobolku, waxay muujinaysaa bislaansho siyaasadeed iyo hoggaan karti leh.


Waa maxay Golaha Hoggaanka Tolku:

Golaha Hoggaanka Tolka, oo dhidibada loo joojiyey , bishii Abriil 1-3, 2010 magaalada Minneaplois, Gobolka Minnesota ee Carriga Maraykanka, waxay ujeedadiisu tahay in uu noqdo urur keena hoggaan ay leeyihiin Tolka ku nool Geeska Afrika iyo adduunka oo mideysan, hodan ah, oo nabad kuwada nool, nabadna kula nool dadka ay oodwadaagga leeyihiin iyo deegaankooga dabiiciga, awoodina kara in ay kor u qaadaan ilaaliyaana xuquuqdooda ay wadaagaan ee bulsho, dhaqaale, hantiyeed iyo aadami.

tlc@tolleadershipcouncil.org

6:04 am edt 

2010.09.01

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