Tag: Somalia

Human Rights Crisis in Somalia

 (Docudharma is like a big ocean to me. I guess I’ll jump but I hope not to be devoured by any sharks!) cross- posted at Daily Kos.

The situation in Somalia has not been good for some time.

A baby born in Somalia will have a life expectancy of 48.4 years.

 There is little date to measure the full extent of Somalia’s poverty but in 1994 the UN Development Program ranked Somolia 165th out of 173 countries in terms of its Human Development Index.

According to the World Bank, health standards in Somalia before the 1991 were among the worst in the world. It was estimated that there was 1 doctor for every 20,000 people (in the United States it was 1 doctor for every 470 people), and 1 nurse for every 1,900 persons (in the United States it was 1 nurse for every 70 persons). Only 2 percent of births were attended by a health professional, whereas in the United States nearly 100 percent of births were so attended. In 1990 average life expectancy at birth was 46 years, the infant mortality was about 123 per 1,000 live births (in the United States it is 7 per 1,000). The adult literacy rate was 27 percent.


Worse Than Darfur: U.S. Proxy War in Somalia

According to a new article by Steve Bloomfield in the UK Independent, the U.S. policy of advising Ethiopia in its war with neighboring Somalia has failed. Not surprisingly for the Bush team, it has achieved results entirely the opposite of what it intended. The outcome? UN officials describe it as the “the largest concentration of displaced people anywhere in the world…. the worst humanitarian catastrophe in Africa, eclipsing even Darfur in its sheer horror.”

According to Bloomfield, the U.S. believed that Al Qaida had established a presence in the “failed state” that was Somalia at the beginning of this century. The U.S. wanted to strike at the Union of Islamic Courts, a fundamentalist coalition that was ruling over much of central and southern Somalia.

On Christmas Day 2006, Ethiopia invaded its neighbour, Somalia. The aim: to drive out a coalition of Islamists ruling the capital, Mogadishu, and install a fragile interim government that had been confined to a small town in the west. But Ethiopia was not acting alone. The US had given its approval for the operation and provided key intelligence and technical support. CIA agents travelled with the Ethiopian troops, helping to direct operations.

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