Saturday, December 23, 2006

Works in mysterious ways.

A war, somehow, inexplicably, almost mystically, as if by divine 'intervention' (and by no means by the more mundane kind of intervention), is breaking out in Somalia. Not the low-level war of attrition between embattled "government" warlords and "Islamist fighters" (who are, in fact, the government). No. According to The Guardian, Ethiopia is somehow involved. Who? How? What? As if to make an even more ridiculously blubbering clueless wreck out of me, The Guardian avers that the Ethiopian army are going to formally invade to "defend" the government (they already have about 8,000 troops covertly operating there to defend the 'government' according to the UN), and the only explanation is that they think the SCIC are a "terrorist" organisation. On this flimsy basis, outright war in the horn of Africa is threatened. Granted, Ethiopia is a world power not to be messed with, but who would allow them to do this?

Well, there are clues. Ethiopia, it is mentioned, is an ally of the US in the 'war on terror'. And we know that the warlords are backed by Washington, and also that Washington has been sponsoring the warlords because, well, Coca-Cola has its bottling plant to think about and there are rich oil reserves waiting to be unleashed. Washington has also been sending in mercenaries, and pushed a resolution through the UNSC backing the use of "African troops" to support the "government" of Somalia. Policy is coordinated by Washington in concert with several European states through the 'Contact Group', one perhaps every bit as venal as the one formed to speed up and facilitate the disintegration of Yugoslavia. So, I don't know, is it possible that Ethiopia's decision is in some way explicable in terms other than the declared exasperation of Meles Zenawi, himself a vote-rigger and butcher of protesters in Addis Ababa (and also a former member of the esteemed Commission for Africa)?