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Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Call to al Shabaab for Peace

Thursday, July 14, 2011

It is said “all wars are evil;” even a just one, albeit necessary. “A son dies, and not born of war,” said also our Somali ancestors.

Today, in Somalia, people are facing the worst humanitarian drought disaster in 60 years.

  • In the last 100 days, 200,000 Somalis fled to neighboring countries in search of food.
  • This catastrophe is just unfolding.
  • Thousands of Somalis have perished so far, and Millions more are most assuredly at grave-risk of starving to death.

With no effective government to respond, and a raging war, this looming cataclysm could not have happen to our people at a worst time.

While it is beyond human capability to prevent natural disasters, it is Man who always must prepare for and alleviate such disasters. Drought and a resulting famine are not new in the Horn of Africa. This has happened to us Somalis before, and not just to us but to the whole region, as it is happening now.

Most of us are old enough to remember about the not so long ago of early 70s drought, where our government then successfully evacuated drought-victims on planes and resettled them. We are not so lucky this time, and it should make us cringe about the potential cost to Somali lives in the offing with this just beginning tragedy.

It is this disaster in progress, more than any other reason, which impeaches the persistent war by Harakat Al-Shabaab Al-Mujahidin. It begs the question, “Al-Shabaab: For whom and what do you keep fighting?

  • What benefit of your war, if it only brings death and misery to your own people?
  • To carry on a war in the name of Islam, in a Muslim country, where the primary victims are the most vulnerable innocents is beyond basic human character.
  • It certainly is not Islamic!

It is simply not enough, though much welcomed, that you the leaders of Al-Shabaab have allowed International Aid Agencies into areas under your control. Nor is it acceptable for you to see this human tragedy as a bonanza for public relations.

The stakes for innocent Somalis are much higher than Sheikh Dahir Aways and other Al-Shabaab leaders visiting drought victims in camps inside Somalia and distributing some aid. The people need, more than ever, a total cessation of the conflict.

What use of this war?

  • Al-Shabaab, your so-called holy war, of which you so proudly claim to be martyrs of (Al-Mujahidin), is only destroying your country.
  • It is killing, by bullet, famine or shear neglect, Somali babies and mothers.

Why [is] seeking peace-terms with your own follow Somalis, to save the people, so unacceptable to you?

Surely, it was more than acceptable for the last messenger of Allah, Muhammad (SAW), who left no stone unturned in search of peace with his pagan persecutors—his own people nevertheless!

Because of the pending devastation of famine, the people of Somalia are crying out for an end to their long suffering.

And, if you Al-Shabaab leaders are listening with your hearts (if they are not turned into stone completely), you will immediately confess of a willingness to an urgent and all-enveloping ceasefire followed by peace negotiations.

Take your terms for peace and put it on a negotiating table.

On your policy to-date, as the only organization, which sees “war” as a strategic option in Somalia, only you Al-Shabaab can end the war peacefully. Others can end your war by war.

There could be peace within Somalia in days, only if you are willing. It is up to you, for no other insists on war in Somalia—not the so-called government or Ahlu-Sunna! For the people, why not at least explore peace?

  • By the way, the fastest way to remove foreign troops from Somalia (in case that is the only reason for continuing fighting) is for the Somalis to stop fighting each other!

Abdul-Aziz Mohammed

The Rest @ Garoweonline

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