Rep. Keith Ellison: It’s a new day in Somalia; send money

Update:  Lawlessness and mayhem are back as al-Shabaab attacks the capital—and as our commenters noted earlier.

If it’s a new day and Somalia is on the mend, then WHY ARE WE STILL IMPORTING SOMALI REFUGEES? 

If Somalis from the ‘diaspora’ are traveling back and forth to Somalia to buy real estate and do business, why is the flow of “refugees” still moving Westward?  Should we even be calling them “refugees” anymore?

Rep. Keith Ellison scans the horizon for Somali pirates (just kidding!). Photo: Minneapolis Star Tribune

Editors note:  As of the end of February (5 months into fiscal year 2013) see, here, the US State Department and its contractors have brought 2,814 new Somali “refugees” to the US (read: new Democrat voters and cheap labor)!

In his opinion piece at Insight News, Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, the go-to guy for the federal refugee contractors, tells readers how great Somalia is doing and how the US needs to send more money to the country. 

Let’s make a deal—send Somalia more money and let them keep their so-called “refugees.”

Ellison (emphasis mine):

It’s a new day in Somalia. That’s the message I took away from a trip to the capital city of Mogadishu earlier this year. We have our best opportunity in more than two decades to help stabilize Somalia and advance U.S. national security interests — but only if we act quickly.

The improved security situation has filled Mogadishu with new life. Somalis can once again play music and dance, activities banned by terrorist group Al-Shabab, which until recently controlled much of the country. Crowds of people fill the streets, socializing and shopping.

Somali-Americans from my district in Minnesota are starting businesses and buying real estate. And a new generation of Somalis from the global diaspora is returning. One of them started Somalia’s first think tank, the Heritage Institute for Policy Studies. Another woman left her high-paying job on Wall Street to help build up Somalia’s financial sector from scratch.

These positive developments are largely a result of Somalia’s successful political transition last year. After many failed attempts, Somali leaders completed a process that produced the first representative, permanent government since the fall of Siad Barre’s regime in 1991.

Somalia now has a new constitution, parliament and president. In a strong vote of confidence, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton formally recognized the new government when President Hassan Sheik Mohamud visited Washington in January. Mohamud also met with President Obama and more than 20 members of Congress.

Nonetheless, Somalia’s new leaders face challenges that would be difficult even for an experienced, well-resourced government. Ministries are nonexistent or understaffed; there is no public education or established banking system; more than a million people are displaced, and security threats remain serious. However, even the pessimists can no longer say that Somalia is hopeless.

The new government is populated with public servants who want Somalia to succeed. President Mohamud made clear at his meeting on Capitol Hill that security is his top priority. His government must quickly move into areas liberated from Al-Shabab and prove that government can be a force for good, not just a source of corruption and oppression. It can do that by providing basic public services, including trash pickup, transportation, education and a functioning judicial system.

The United States has an opportunity to make an investment in Somalia that could pay huge dividends over time.

There is more.

5 thoughts on “Rep. Keith Ellison: It’s a new day in Somalia; send money

  1. DC-Janes were so exited last night that war against Alshabab was over. Rep. Keith Ellison crowed: It’s a new day in Somalia; send money. And then Kabooom. Hahaha. 16 killed in attack on Somali Supreme Court. Where the HELL is NEW Somalia gone? Alshabab are McCain Germs as Taliban and SFA. They ain’t terrorist group no mo. USA & Western allies never won a single battle down there. Alshabab maintained India Ocean Maritime Piracy as at Top Forbes Ranking Standards Dorga-ya-Ganesh but buried by mainstream media because ain’t afford it. Westerns kidnapping in Africa is like having a haircut. Alshabab voluntarily disappeared momentarily outta Mogadishu to come after and settle old pending accounts with Kenyan & Ugandan warlords. They’re back in business larger than life. Somali current government controls from Airport to Presidential Palace and the rest is Alshabab’s. Democratization will prove my take.

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  2. Mogadishu has certainly taken a remarkable turn for the better, but it’s fragile. A friend of mine has been there for two months and there were 3 bombings in the city during that time. Alshabaab is not in control, but they have a presence. Undeniably there are opportunities for people in the diaspora — especially young people who now speak several languages, and who have professional connections in the EU and North America — to return. The city has been devastated and basic infrastructure is weak, but that itself presents big opportunities (for work). A lot of people are making that decision now, what to do? And it’s typically people of some means and education who are in the position of moving back in order to work for redevelopment*. But, Mogadishu is not all of Somalia. It’s a very big country and Alshabaab still controls large swaths, which may explain why there are people still coming here. With Mogadishu’s still tenuous stability, it would be difficult to absorb more internally displaced people than the tens of thousands it already has.

    (*I realize it’s not the focus of your blog to talk about Somalis who are educated, who have professional careers and experience, but there actually are very many and they are the ones deciding right now whether or not to go back. It’s clearly much more difficult for the elderly and poor to uproot again. This is the same situation that people from South Sudan were in once that country gained its independence in 2011.)

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