Pirates of the Horn: U.S. Backs Reign of Crime and Death in Somalia

The civilian death count from the American-backed "regime change" operation in Somalia is approaching 10,000, with more than 800 killed in the Terror War slaughter since June.

The figures, compiled by the Elman Peace and Human Rights Organization in Mogadishu, are almost certainly an undercount, given the rampant chaos that has ravaged the country in the wake of the Ethiopian invasion, and the Muslim practice of quick burial of the dead. But they are horrific enough, especially when added to another statistic released by the United Nations last month: 3.7 million Somalis are now in need of outside aid in order to survive. This is more than one-third of the entire population.

I have written often of what is happening in Somalia, and the American government's direct role in it, and the total silence of America's bipartisan political establishment about this vast atrocity. I won't recapitulate the horror and terror -- and American complicity -- here at the moment, but links to many of these pieces can be found in this recent post.

Meanwhile, a new piece in The Times is worth noting. It is offered as a sidebar to a larger story on the continuing plague of piracy based in Somalia, but it contains some telling facts and a good capsule description of the origins of the Terror War operation.

For one thing, it notes something that is almost never mentioned in any story about Somalia, neither in the very rare stories about the conflict itself or the rather more numerous stories about piracy and its effects on commercial shipping (an issue far more important that the lives of 10,000 innocent human beings, of course): the fact that the main backers and bankrollers of the vicious pirate gangs "are linked to the Western-backed government."

The conservative UK paper then goes on to give an accurate account of how these pirate-backing factions came to power -- facts that are almost universally ignored by the "liberal" American media . (Not to mention the "progressive blogosphere;" indeed, you can actually find more references to the Somalia war in the corporate press than among our internet "dissidents.") :

Years of violence, neglect and misguided policies have left Somalia one of the most dangerous countries and a breeding ground for the pirates attacking one of the world’s busiest shipping routes.

Today the northeast area of the country, including Puntland, has been carved up by warlords who finance themselves by drug and gun running. This is also the heartland of the pirates, whose main backers are linked to the Western-backed government. Radical Islamists control much of the south, including the key port of Kismayo and the porous border area with Kenya, a staunch Western ally.

This has realised a Western nightmare, which was supposed to have been destroyed by Ethiopia’s American-backed invasion of Somalia two years ago in support of a puppet government created by the international community. That alliance spanned the spectrum from extreme radicals to moderate, devout Muslims. The latter were in charge.

Everyone – except Pentagon planners, it seems – knew that Somalia had never proved fertile territory for Saudi-style radical Islam. However, indiscriminate bombing of civilian areas by Ethiopia, Somalia’s historic enemy, with huge casualties, put an end to that. The Islamists were driven out, the moderates went into exile and the hardliners took control of the south with a popular powerbase beyond their wildest dreams.

A puppet government, installed by foreign invasion, riddled with crime and corruption, alienating and radicalizing the population: here we see the quintessential template of the "War on Terror," replicated faithfully in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Somalia -- and soon, perhaps, in Pakistan.

Mass death, mass ruin and immeasurable human suffering: this is what the War on Terror does. This is what the War on Terror is all about.
It can have no other outcome. When someone supports the War on Terror -- as Barack Obama, John McCain, Sarah Palin and Joe Biden all do, with eagerness and enthusiasm -- this is what they are embracing. They are dipping their hands in innocent blood.