Here's a nice picture of an AC 130 Gunship raining destruction over a swathe of unidentified but defintely enemy territory in the Horn of Africa. In case you were'nt aware of it, you will be tonight, the United States has opened another front in its War On Terror! After 2 weeks of denial, it is positive that America has been assisting Ethiopia in its invasion of Somalia with logistics and arms.
The spin in the American Media so far is that 17 Al Qaeda operatives were definitely killed in this raid. The operation was against a group fleeing what was called a training camp and hese guys were definitely the culprits for the Embassy bombings. We nailed them just in time for the presidents speech tonight!
Of course, messy details are leaking out of the European Press, even the BBC is claiming that more than 30 innocent villagers were killed and that bodies are all over the place. There has been a messy battle going on for the last week in this area and no one is quite sure what the toll is and who the victims really are. The important thing for Washington is that it got its spin going for the presidents speech tonight.
When was the last time these dude got anything right? How many ttimes have we heard, "The turning point is right around the corner!", "Another three months and, well, we got'em!" "The terrorists are on the Run!"
Why do we only get nests of Al Qaeda operatives in time for some big policy speech by the Pres? Then we find out that it wasn't what it was claimed to be and some nasty little massacre has taken place for PR puposes......
The real spin is going to be the outrage in the Arab world over the bombing of another Moslem country we are not officially at war with. For every claimed Al Qaeda death, there will be hundreds of new recruits. This is the kind of stuff that will fuel terrorism for decades!
Does anybody in Washington know what is really happening on the ground in Mogadishu? The city is fueled by Khat and cheap arms. Where do the cheap arms come from? Who has assembly lines going night and day churning out automatic arms that have to be sold somewhere?
Somalia exists in total anarchy, I have a very good friend who after a few drinks on New Years Eve, recounted his experiences with Mediciens san Frontiers a few years ago on the border with Kenya. According to him, the Imams cannot really get a grip on the country either. The true law are the warlords, the gangsters who run everything. The present "legitimate" Somali government is an alliance of warlords who rule over this devastated land.
Almost everyone is addicted to Khat. Khat is fairly unknown in America. When I lived on the corner of Avenue B and East Fifth Street for years in New York, there was and still is a carry out store run by Yemenis. Back in the 80's on a Sunday morning, I would come in for some coffee and find a group of men with bales of green leaves. I found out later that khat was very big in the Yemeni community in NYC.
My buddy describes the effects of Khat as a type of speed, but one that makes the user extremely focused on a goal. He would have to go on trips to Mogadishu and to do it, he would have to have a driver and bodyguard. They would demand to paid in Khat. He described the rides as true trips of terror but there was never an accident and his body guard seemed to have a sixth sense for sensing danger.
He described Mogadishu as a place where work starts in the morning and everyone starts chewing khat and as the day goes on the effects of the khat make the place more and more anarchic. Everyone on the streets was armed and at the bazaar, the main products for sale were very cheap weapons and of course mountains of khat.
The khat makes the users focused and extremely brave. They belive themselves invincible. They describe the effects as being able to see everything in slow motion and deal with it in another dimension. Of course, Khat is forbidden by the Koran as iss alcohol and other drugs, but the difference with Khat is that it truly produces an anarchy where each individual in a group is his own law.
I realizze that I have wandered from the original subject, but to tie it together, the spin the government is putting on this public relations stunt airstrike is that it accomplished some kind of positive goal in its war on terror.
The reality is that it has opened another Pandoras Box which will continue to haunt us for generations. They don't know who they killed, they have no idea what is going on iin Somalia and it has been delivered to you just in time for Prime Time.
Mr. Bush, we're ready for your close up!