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  1. What could be worse than being forgotten in the rubble of war? As The New York Times reported this week, Gazans feel forsaken. The constant flow of humanitarian aid is staving off hunger and disease, but a pall of listlessness besets the Strip. It is so dreary that B'Tselem, an Israeli-staffed organization that's funded mostly by European governments and American foundations, has distributed video cameras to 18 young people just to get them out and about. They make really cool videos about all sorts of subjects - such as smuggling laundry detergent through tunnels between Gaza and Sinai; resisting the "occupation" by singing hip hop music; there's also one about a girls' soccer team. The videos have found their way onto Ynet, a popular Hebrew news Web site. THERE'S A revealing comparison to be made between the "siege" of Gaza and what is happening in Somalia, where the World Food Program this week was forced to abandon one million tormented people because Islamist gunmen have made it impossible for its staff to operate. The al-Shabab accuses the WFP of being spies for the infidels and has murdered a number of aid workers. The extremists are enraged that the WFP will not pay protection money. Overall, 3 million Somalis depend on WFP relief, but the plight of 285,000 acutely malnourished children is especially heart-rending. Naturally, the WFP also operates in the "Occupied Palestinian Territories" - that is, the area where the Palestinians refuse to create a demilitarized state of their own. The WFP - through no fault of its own - is part of a web of international bodies that is enabling, rather than trying to overcome, dependency among Palestinians. For 60-years-plus, UN agencies have gone along with the Arab world's insistence that their Palestinian brethren remain perpetual refugees. UNLIKE THE Somalis, the Palestinians have been fortunate in having Zionists for their enemies. How else could they attract celebrity politicians, like MP George Galloway, and superstar campaigners, like the International Solidarity Movement's Hedy Epstein, a hunger-striking 85-year-old lady who "survived" the Holocaust in London where she arrived in 1939 on the kindertransport. Galloway's "Viva Palestina" procession left London on December 6 and arrived in El-Arish this week. He quickly picked a fight with the Egyptians over how many vehicles could enter Gaza from Sinai. Cops and activists threw sand at each other and fought with sticks. The "Viva Palestina" spectacle was coordinated with Hamas, which needed a pretext to orchestrate an "intifada" against the anti-smuggling barrier Cairo has belatedly begun installing under the Philadelphi Corridor. On the Gaza side of the border, Palestinians shot dead an Egyptian guard, as other guards opened fire on Palestinian rioters, critically wounding five. Late Wednesday, Egypt allowed Galloway and 55 fellow travelers into Gaza, "bandaged, bleeding and bruised… because they tried to bring medicine to … people under siege in Gaza," said the intrepid British parliamentarian. Too bad that Galloway and Epstein, along with the play-by-play Al-Jazeera coverage they engender, didn't drive their convoy of 150 truck and 500 international activists - self-satisfied Europeans, mostly, but also 17 Turkish legislators - straight to Somalia to face down the al-Shabab. THE DIFFERENCE between Somalia and Gaza is that the people of Somalia are not only forgotten in the rubble, their desperation is… simply not interesting. They are people without options. Those responsible for their plight are Islamists, not Zionists or Westerners - though, for the Euro-Left, it's all America's fault somehow. In stark contrast, the people of Gaza do have options that would end their misery. They could stop supporting Hamas, which has mobilized their polity against coexistence with Israel; they could make peace among themselves and allow the comparatively moderate West Bank Palestinian leadership - which is recognized by the international community - back into the Strip. They could free IDF soldier Gilad Schalit whom they kidnapped in 2006. They could stop launching mortars against Israel's civilian population, as they repeatedly did this week. They could choose a two-state solution and accept that Jews also have a right to a homeland. They could end the "siege." They could build instead of reveling in the rubble and in their victimization.
  2. Duke and Fiqi this bokero guys works in natural resources sector including oil...and this bokero guy thinks this is a shitty deal... the status quo is not what i am asking for, rather I am demanding patience...Africa is littered with wars and corruption and bad deals all sourced to oil... Production sharing agreement that PUNTLAND is entering after proven reserves of commercial quantity are discovered,it’s a bad DEAL!!! ... saudi arabia owns the companies that pumps oil not comparison there!! .. Africans have seen nothing but misery from.oil .. it’s not a surprise they call it DEVILs EXCREMENT... Note that the oil sector is capital intensive and NOT LABOR intensive sector...little jobs for the locals and a lot of money for the politicians!!! dont be blinded by the oilly stuff demand patience! Please understand waiting till your people have capacity is not a futile thing it’s the most intelligent thing to do... but unfortunately Somalia recent history is one of BAD decisions after another coupled with extreme poverty of leadership so I expect nothing else but disappointment!
  3. its not matter of waiting for anybody!! ask yourself does puntaland have the know-how to negosiate? do they have the expertise to ensure maximum benefit? i know the people who are dealing with they have hazy careful
  4. Duke I suspected that much...reason, facts and experience has never swayed you before... these are complex issue and require thoughtful responses...but greed i suspect will win the day!!!
  5. Hey Duke and the rest.... please see the article i wrote on oil and minerals in Africa... if i were you i wouldnt explore anything until somalis have the capacity and know-how... plus a poltical settlement...otherwise our current predictment will be a child play please my read my article below Natural Resources and Conflict: a briefing paper In the modern history of developing countries natural resources have played an ominous role, rather than stimulating broad-based economic development, been a hindrance, creating a false sense of security and distortion; rather than reducing poverty and promoting democracy, it has concentrated wealth and power in the hands of a few; rather than contributing to social development, it has exacerbated inequality and higher levels of corruption. Worse still, in many countries natural resources have fuelled violent conflict. Over the past 60 years 40% of civil wars can be directly associated with natural resources; since 1990, there have been at least 18 violent conflicts fuelled by the exploitation of natural resources and other environmental stressors . This can be illustrated by the example of Nigeria where revenues generated by oil over the past 25 years have constituted a figure of six times that of the global aid budget received during the same period. Yet, Nigeria is poorer now than it was before oil production began and oil producing regions of the Niger Delta are seeing local grievances morphing into intractable conflicts and a huge international criminal syndicate. With world demands for natural resources such oil, metal and timber growing at a phenomenal rate (e.g. from 2000 to 2007 the worlds daily demand for oil increased by 9.4 million barrels) resource-rich countries are in greater position than ever to extract better terms and use these resources as bedrock for development. The central challenge however remains; to paraphrase Joseph Stiglitz; how do we deal with the phenomenon of rich countries with poor people? The first place to begin is to understand the nature of the problem and the impact it has on the incentive structures of the host countries. Rich countries poor people Beyond its impact on conflict natural resources have had adverse economic and environmental impact. Studies show that since 1975 the economies of resource-rich countries have grown at a slower rate than countries that could not rely on the export of mineral and raw materials. Even when resource induced growth takes place it rarely yields growth that is to the benefit of society at large. For example Equatorial Guinea in 2007 had a real growth rate of above 22% but 70% of its population live below the poverty line. Angola, a country endowed with fertile lands and a rich sub-soil has consistently over the last decade registered a growth rate of above 13% of GDP but 40% of its population live below the poverty line. Resource exporting countries are also confronted by intense volatility, for example in the last 24 months oil prices fell from $147.27 to $32.40 per barrel. Boom and bust cycles such as these have devastating impact on the economy and stability. During the boom period “irrational exuberance” dictates policy, leading to overinvestment in white elephant projects and reckless risk taking. During the busts draconian budgets cuts are hurriedly introduced which in turn has a negative impact on the poor. There are two further negative impacts natural resources can have that are worth mentioning; one is on the environment and the other on politics. On environment the impact of mining, especially alluvial mining has been devastating. Mining turns lush forests into a lunar landscape, with loss of biodiversity, erosion, formation of sinkholes and contamination of soil, surface water and ground water. Furthermore contamination resulting from leakage of chemicals affects the health of local population. Deforestation, which constitutes 20% of global carbon emissions is a common impact associated with mining, logging and charcoal production. Perhaps the most devastating impact of natural resources is on politics. It creates a set of incentives for governments to be unresponsive and unaccountable to their population (Niger and Uganda are examples of natural resource induced presidential term limits removals). Governments of sub-soil rich countries amass giant fiscal revenues that render them deaf to the cries and the needs of their populations. Such fiscal might allows such states the ability to buy out or repress their political opponents and makes them doubly hard to dislodge. Resource rich countries are also inhospitable environment for democratic growth; the majority of resource rich countries are either non-credible democracies or are straight forward totalitarian regimes. From curse to blessing At the theoretical and practical level many instruments have been developed and tested such as, sovereign wealth funds, transparency mechanisms, and institutional capacity development to mention just a few, with little success. However there are examples of countries (Botswana and Chile) that have succeeded in preventing the adverse impact of the natural resources, and this should assure us that there are solutions for this intractable problem. What complicates what is already complex task is that natural resources management goes to the core of national sovereignty, governments are sensitive to any external intervention in what they deem to be an exclusive realm. However, experience shows that tackling these issues requires concerted and multifaceted approach that encompasses governance, macro and micro economic stability, capacity enhancement, and creative approaches that ensure the sector provides jobs. The issue employment is crucial to unlocking the mystery of rich countries poor people. In many of these countries natural resources such as oil accounts for more than 80% of government revenues, while the sector employs on average less 10% of the country’s workforce. This has serious ramifications; it leads to high inequality and concentrates wealth and power in the hands of a few. This not need be the case; the sector with a bit of creative thinking has the potential to unleash high level of employment. One area that offers potential for unleashing job creation and local private sector development is the local content provisions within capital intensive natural resource sector. These provisions give greater preference to nationals and national suppliers, however many countries have failed to deliver on the scale of local content captured by national firms. In Nigeria the oil sector constitutes 20% of GDP and 65% of budgetary revenues but about 80% of the value of work on oil and gas sector is carried out abroad . In middle income countries like Trinidad and Tobago where the energy sector assumes 40% of GDP only 10% is captured by local firms across the value chain . The value attached to this less exploited sector of the natural resource exploitation is enormous. Even with low share of the market Shell Group of Companies paid $9.2 billion for procurement from low and middle income countries in 2005. A slight increase in the market share in the supply chain for the local private sector could act as the necessary jolt to get stagnant economies moving and more importantly incentivising peace, by removing causes of conflict such as inequality, while instilling the dignity that comes from work. One thing that hasn’t worked is sectorial approach in dealing with this problem. The linkages between different sets of problems (conflict, bad politics, fiscal excess, volatility, export-inhibiting exchange rates, corruption, disforestation, shortage of arable land etc), associated natural resources are so strong that working on one area will be insufficient to solve the problem. Preventative action prior to any natural resource exploitation stands the best chance of successes, mainly because it allows for a window period to enacted necessary measures to prevent conflict and mismanagement before entrenched interests develop. Countries that have avoided misery-inducing consequences of natural resources have two common characteristic: - transparent and effective public institutions - Democratic system that is responsive to citizens. These are prerequisite for more technical aspects of the recipe, such as stringent environmental laws, maintaining macroeconomic stability, diversification of the economy, and guarding against currency appreciation.
  6. saddiiq please just stop it!!! i suppose u also believe it was isreal that blew up the twin towers and that bush knew about it... right??? i suggest u summon some brain cells for assitance
  7. these people are evil and anyone who even attempts to explain this heinous crime is no friends of Somalis or humanity... i have lived and worked in Afghanistan this is the same shit the Taliban and al-Qaeda do... bomb mosques kill thousands of civilian and stone pregnant women... these people are singularly the largest threat to Somalis every where... i have been warning people for so long, Al-shabab and their ilk are merchants of death and destruction that is their manifesto. I hope this tragedy will unites us all against such a backward and evil ideology of death!!!
  8. Oz what line...who drew it? and who decides when it crossed?... i guess your retort to Amin public stoning i suppose?
  9. jAC DID u say no mobile phones in akhiro? am disappointed, i have a lot of free minutes could have used them guys you need to chill, u cant get offended all the time.....Islam doesn’t need your offence taking, i would say it's doing just fine... so chill with the fake outrages
  10. che I suppose you have become the gobbles of the lunatic fringe... with time you will come to realise the folly of your actions...
  11. Duke well put... even those accused of heinous crimes have rights...we cant have medieval kangroo courts in the 21st century- and by the way why always adopted gladiatorial public lynching, that is so 500 years ago, but then that is where shababe wants us to go…soon enough they will ban electricity, and books on the premise that it is to western…and anti-islamic.
  12. Cartoonist first task is to insult...if they fail in that, they won’t be doing their job... they are suppose to hold a mirror to a society, so that we can see our own reflection… so chill guys,
  13. the issue is guys the warlords and clan facist created the enabling environment for fanatics to flourish...the irony is that they have created an animal more dangerous and less progressive of anything somalis have seen, that ended up destroying them also...
  14. RUDY i am shocked about your naivety... listen bro, this people are not Somalis, they have a global agenda... why is it so difficult for you to comprehend this...don’t take my word for it...listen to what the shabab say...listen to them... i do not doubt your genuine goodwill for Somalia and her people but your seriously misguided...
  15. Rudy You are extremely naïve if you think the problem is Shariff… Man have you not learned from previous follies of identifying yey as being the problem… Do you really think if Sharif steps down the fanatics will become reasonable? Please I beg of you see the problem for what it is, Somalia will never prosper under fanatical, merchants of death, called shabab. Lets not keep on repeating the same mistakes… Somalia has suffered enough under warlords, we cant now afford Talibanisation ( which will make the era warlords seem like paradise). Furthermore why cant you understand that the international community and our neighbours will never allow ( and rightly so), a shabab lead Somalia… So if you actually care for Somalia as you proclaim please don’t condemn us with this lot, and invite western intervention… You don’t like Shariff wait until his term ends and vote for whoever you like…