On October 14, a bomb-truck exploded in the capital of Somalia, Mogadishu, killing 276 people and leaving over 300 injured. This has been considered one of the deadliest attacks in History. Somalia makes part of the list of countries most attacked by terrorism, counting 75% of all terrorist attacks in the world, because of the combat between the central government and the Jihadist group Al Shabab, linked to Al-Qaeda.
By Maria Camargo and João Pedro Mendonça.
The country lives a war situation since 1991, after the fall of the dictator Siad Barre, and since then we have seen a power game between imperialist powers, which battle for control over the region. Somalia is also the country with highest starvation and drought. In February this year, State of National Catastrophe was declared because the drought and lack of water massacred the population, which, left to its own chance by the government and forgotten by the country’s allies, end up recurring to contaminated sources. The estimative is that, until the end of this year, 950 thousand children of less than 5 years will be in a serious situation of malnutrition, and of those 185 thousand will die without medical treatment.
The fact is that the destruction of the African territory as a direct consequence of the imperialist power game that together with the presence of an interventionist military force that attempts to control the region nail-and-tooth for its own interest, have completely devastated the structure of the country. Just like in Haiti, with the presence of the Minustah, Somalia is also military occupied under the excuse of a “reorganization of the country” after the Tsunami, in 2004, and “to fight Al Shabab’s advance.” This year, Trump approved the deployment of a higher number of military forces to the region and authorized air-attacks, as a “more aggressive response” to terrorism.
The result of that is a permanent war zone, which intensified over the last years but has existed for over two decades, now. And with the recent terrorist attack, we see a deafening silence by the world press and the governments, completely passive before this situation.
In 2015, in Paris, the attack to the newspaper Charlie Hebdo left 11 deaths and immediately generated high repercussion in the press all over the world, touching entire populations in several countries. On the same day, an attack to Nigeria left 111 deaths and there barely were news about it. Today, the same history repeats with Somalia, as it happens with other African countries daily.
This is a result of the “naturalization” of the situation of fatality and suffering by African peoples, fed by the racist, imperialist bourgeoisie. The selectiveness of pain and commotion responds to the logic that there are countries used to such a misery on a daily basis, to hunger and pain, because “they have always lived like that.” Such is the same stereotyped image of Black people as a people which is used to suffer. Their History is signed by this conception across the world.
This ideology hides the truly responsible ones, in the past and in the present, of the disgrace of the Somalian and other African peoples: European imperialism, which pillaged and enslaved African people and denies them any kind of historical reparation for the crimes committed in the past. And so, the racist and Eurocentric image subjugates Black people with the only goal of serving, sustaining, and justifying a system that profits out of the naturalization of “oppressed ones” and “oppressors”, and especially out of Black genocide, to guarantee their overexploitation.
An easy acceptance of the killing of Black people that is sustained by “hygienist” policies, segregationist and xenophobic, that leave thousands of immigrants and refugees to die in the Mediterranean Sea before they can get to European lands, or to be excluded, exploited, and massacred when they get there, by those who devastated their countries in the first place and took away all wealth up to the point that they had no other choice than to leave all they had behind, their homes, lands, and families.
Thus, it is unacceptable that we do not raise against this murderous silence by the big press and governments before the daily attacks on the Somali people, but also to other countries in Africa. We have to denunciate this passivity before Black genocide in the most perverse ways, be it by terrorist attacks that are ignored, by military or political interventions by imperialism, or by extermination policies by their own countries and those which are the main destination of the dangerous passage through the Mediterranean.