Monday, September 13, 2010

Somalia's human shield - Child soldiers and the civilian population

Nairobi, September 13 - There has been growing concern over the last few months about the ever-rising civilian casualties in the protracted war in Somalia. Mogadishu the capital, has been the epicentre of this bloody endless war that actually claims more innocent Somali civilians than the fighters themselves!
During last week's Eid Celebrations in the outskirts of Mogadishu, Hizbul Islam officials were seen praying in an open space surrounded by young armed men also saying their Eid prayers!

It might sound funny but believe me its very serious. What the AK 47 wielding young men most of who are actually child soldiers were simply doing is to provide cover for their commanders incase of any attack. In simple terms they were a human shield protecting their commanders from any surprise assault.

God forbid, should there have been an attack, the first to be hit would have been the boys while their big-bellied leaders would confortably have sped off. Its like the leaders were prepared for any eventuality because they even prayed with their shoes on!

Jokes aside, civilian casualties is a huge problem in Somalia. However, the answer to this pressing issue lies with the tactics used by the insurgents. They use the population as human shield hence endanger many innocent civilians.

There is a growing public resentment against the insurgents and its just a matter of time before the same public take's arms against their biggest tormentors who wrongfully use the religion to achieve their personal political ambitions.

Remember the warlords? They were ousted by layment some of who now claim to be Shabab and Hizbul islam commanders. If they continue transgressing against innocent civilians they should expect no mercy but the same treatment meted against the warlords

People have been pushed to the wall and its just a matter of time before they turn back. May Allah guide our lost brothers and peace prevail in Somalia, Amiin.