DEBKAfile Special Report January 12, 2013
French President Francois Hollande placed the country on high domestic terror alert Saturday, Jan. 12, in case of retaliatory attacks by al Qaeda for French operations against two of its African wings: a failed mission to rescue a French hostage from the Somali Shabaab, and air and commando aid for the Mali army’s drive to stop advancing Islamists. The Islamists threatened to execute at least eight French hostages, one by one, unless French forces pulled out of Somalia and Mali at once.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 26, 2006
Ethiopia's intervention this week to save the weak Somali government from defeat at the hands of Islamist rebels is typical of the apparently incompatible foreign, sectarian, religious and tribal elements involved in its neighbor's civil war.
Many of the foreign elements fighting on the side of the Islamic Courts militia were sent to Somalia by Christian-ruled Eritrea to harass its rival Christian power, Ethiopia.
The Eritreans are joined by fighters from pro-Western Muslim nations of the Middle East to help a jihadist militia with strong links to al Qaeda to displace the pro-Western, internationally recognized Somali government.
Some military experts see this sectarian mishmash as a dress rehearsal for the big show should the very powers supporting the Islamist Courts in Somali decide to intervene in Iraq to restore Sunni Arabs to power and cleanse Baghdad of Shiite rule and Iranian influence.
The origins of the conflict hark back to rivalries in the Horn of Africa, which are complicated by broader Muslim Arab resentment of Christian rule in the region.
The Horn' two predominantly Christian nations, Ethiopia with a population of 73 million and tiny Eritrea with 4.5 million - who are half-and-half Christian and Muslim, are at daggers drawn. Ethiopian prime minister Meles Zenawi and Eritrean president Isaias Afworky are third cousins and sworn enemies.
2 articles tagged "Somali War" :