Cannibalism on the way to Lampedusa and other fascinating Somali tales

Scene Of Cannibalism For The Raft Of The Medusa by Theodore Gericault

They were only at sea for three days but, what the heck, rather than starve (hardly possible in three days is it?), one of the aliens took a chunk from a dead man.   That is perhaps the most dramatic moment of this fascinating tale from a Somali migrant desperate to cross the Mediterranean and find a new life in the land of milk and honey—Italy!

The story is here at and below are some excerpts.  You decide if the storyteller is for real (but maybe first revisit, Greenfield on the Hyena Cure!)  (Emphasis is mine)

On Tahrib!

Hassan Ali is a 23-year-old Somali who survived gun battles and poverty in his youth in his native country before deciding in 2009 to embark on Tahrib, the perilous journey from Africa to the Italian island of Lampedusa. Thousands of Somalis make this trip every year, and this month it made headlines after a boat caught fire and capsized on October 3, killing over 300 would-be immigrants. Eight days later, a different vessel capsized in an accident that claimed at least 34 lives. Here, Hassan speaks about his troubled life before the trip and the horrors he experienced en route to Europe.

The cannibalism didn’t start until our second boat journey, from Libya to Lampedusa. We had already been traveling for ten days; people were dying and there was no food. I actually saw one guy cutting a piece of flesh from another man’s body.

Our Ali wanted to be an astronaut, but that wasn’t (understandably) possible in his home town in Somalia where squabbling clans were bringing AK-47s to mosques and shooting at ten-year-olds racing home.  So, our young and desperate adventurer, upon reaching the age of 19, found enough friends and relatives to front him $800 to go on Tahrib (described as attempting to get to Europe, but one definition I saw was that it translated to ‘smuggling’—being smuggled or doing the smuggling wasn’t clear).

Mom thought he was crazy!  That is what all Moms say!

I first heard about Tahrib on the radio when I was 19. There were people in Europe talking about their new lives and how they’d traveled there from Somalia by boat. It sounded like a good idea. After a while I told my parents I planned to leave. They were shocked. “Are you mad?” my mother said. “You’re a young boy, what has gotten into you?” I told them how I thought Tahrib was my only way forward, that I could only find a better life in Europe. They thought I was joking. When I called them from the first boat months later, they were terrified.

First boat was bad, but no cannibalism yet!

Our first trip was from Beled Hawo to Bosaso, a port city on the northern shore of Somalia. It wasn’t the worst journey, but we had hardly any food and the people who drove us there were being very cruel, shouting at us and hitting people occasionally. I was only a kid [editors note:  Somalis are “kids” for a long time, I noticed that when they were leaving Minneapolis to join al-Shabaab, kids, just kids!] —I missed my hometown already and everyone seemed so sad even though they were heading off for this exciting new life.

Captured by Libyan armed men who extracted $300 from Mom and Dad for Ali’s release and then on to the merry Tahrib again!

All I wanted was to be back in Beled Hawo with my parents. I didn’t care if I ever made it to Europe. Even if, miraculously, we survived the journey, how would the Europeans treat us? Would I get a visa? Would I be thrown in jail? I was terrified.

The trip across the Mediterranean was the worst part—people were dropping dead and others needed a little protein with their bread and biscuits.

It took another ten days to find a boat from Libya to Lampedusa. Then the real horror began. There was only bread and biscuits on board and the heat was unbearable. People were dropping dead and the captain did nothing. People started eating each other: it was like something from a scary movie right in front of my eyes. That leg of the journey took three days. It felt like years.

Ali, the would-be astronaut, knows who to blame for all of this horror—politicians who don’t help Somalia!  Of course that is the moral of the story after all!  Ali continues:

Everyone knows that politicians in Europe and Africa are doing nowhere near enough to address the dangers of Tahrib. Otherwise all those people would not have died near Lampedusa this month. No one is addressing the real issues—the violence, the poverty—that led me away from Somalia. [Here is an idea—-how about if Somalis get their own house in order!—ed]

Postscript!  Italy let me rebuild my life—-back in Somalia!  WTH!

People tell me Lampedusa is beautiful. I have no idea. I can barely remember any of the landscape I saw: everything was so terrifying. But, Alhamdulillah [praise to God], I made it there alive and, amazingly, got an Italian visa after three months of being held at a camp. Some people I traveled with waited years and others never got one. I love Italy, though. I lived there for three years and made a small living working in various jobs. I may never be an astronaut but Italy let me rebuild a life that was destroyed. I’m back in Somalia now—not in Beled Hawo but another city. I hope I get to visit Italy again some day.

Ahhhh!  What are we missing here?

How the state of Iowa stopped being a refugee resettlement contractor

Tysons’ pork processing plant in Columbus Junction, Iowa still bringing in the refugees—Burmese this time.

This is probably going to be inside baseball for some readers here.  But, when we first began writing Refugee Resettlement Watch in 2007, there were TEN major federal refugee contractors instead of the NINE today.   The tenth contractor was the State of Iowa.

I’m guessing this Iowa office was a booming operation during the Clinton years as the Clinton Administration helped their pals in the meatpacking industry by hauling in tens of thousands of Bosnians to supply the much-need cheap LEGAL labor.

Here then is a long story about workplace legal wrangling (wade through the first 25 paragraphs or so) and this is what the upshot of the mess in the office created for the resettlement program.  I had wondered how they fell out of favor with the US State Department.

From the Des Moines Register (emphasis mine):

Colbert and Phillips contend that problems in the Refugee Bureau outlined in the court records are a window for the public to better understand the downfall of the agency — specifically its decision in 2010 to stop its resettlement service.

Phillips said that the agency, under Wilken, failed to apply for grants and key subsidies for the resettlement program.

Resettlement was for decades the lynchpin of the bureau, which dates back to former Gov. Robert Ray’s legacy work with Tai Dam refugees. The agency has since helped hundreds of refugee families escape war-torn or politically rife countries.

Today the agency — which is federally funded — focuses on social services instead of refugee resettlement.

“People are afraid that in two years, refugee services will completely cease to exist,” said Phillips, who now works in the human resources department at the Mitchellville Correctional Facility.

Lorentzen McCoy, the DHS spokeswoman, noted that the resettlement decision was made when the U.S. Department of State determined that the Iowa agency did not meet the criteria to continue with the placement program.

Colbert, who was hired in 2007 around the same time that Wilken was promoted to the bureau’s director, said federal officials had alerted Iowa of concerns it had with the resettlement program.

She contends that Wilken, who was the bureau’s deputy director for roughly 20 years prior to his promotion, didn’t act to save the program and even told her he would be satisfied if that part of the program would be terminated because other federal program money would keep the bureau going.

Records provided by the state show the bureau’s current budget of $1.9 million is about $200,000 lower than it was in 2010, when the resettlement program ended.

“I can tell you that when I got there they were in trouble. It was pages and pages of stuff that was wrong,” Colbert said of the Department of State’s assessment.

But, if you think you are off the hook in Iowa, you aren’t, there are at least two agencies resettling refugees in the state—Lutheran Services and Catholic Charities.

In fact, if we are going to have resettlement in the first place, I would get all the churches out of it and get the states back in control.  Not that I have a lot of faith in government, I just think there is a little more accountability with a government agency overseen by elected officials (and presumably watching the purse strings).  You can’t get at the inner workings of a “church” through normal sunshine legal provisions in the same way government is required to be transparent.

The photo is from this story about the impact of Burmese refugees on Columbus Junction (400 refugees to a town of 2000), but since its a pork plant at least they aren’t members of the Religion of Peace.

George Soros flying in “conservatives” to lobby for amnesty

Editors note:  This is cross-posted from Potomac Tea Party Report, here.  We have an extensive Grover Norquist archive here for your further edification.

And, it will be one big happy lovefest with Ali Noorani’s National Immigration Forum and surely with Noorani’s pal Grover Norquist hovering in the wings (or, he might be right out front).

Here is the Breitbart news story.   And, then I’ll direct you to a couple of posts at Refugee Resettlement Watch where we have more details on Noorani and where Norquist and Noorani intersect.

Pakistani Ali Noorani began his open borders activism as head of the Massachusetts Immigrants and Refugee Advocacy Coalition.

When you read about the ‘Evangelical’ lobbying push (below), the strategy has Grover written all over it (although his name does not come up in this article).

I honestly think that Norquist is a sleeper long-ago planted in the Republican Party, I just can’t figure out yet who he is a sleeper for!  Or, is it all about the payola?

Matthew Boyle at Breitbart:

The George Soros-funded National Immigration Forum (NIF) is organizing a “fly-in” of what it calls conservatives from across the country aimed at lobbying House Republicans for an amnesty bill.

According to USA Today’s immigration beat writer Alan Gomez, NIF is planning to organize the fly in with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg’s, and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Partnership for a New American Economy.

“The fly-in is being organized not by conservative groups, but organizations that have focused on legalizing millions of people who are in the U.S. illegally and changing the legal immigration system to bring in more foreign workers,” Gomez wrote on Monday. He noted that the 300 activists for an immigration grand bargain were looking to make what he described as a “conservative pitch” for amnesty.

Gomez noted NIF’s Executive Director, Ali Noorani, who “has advocated for changes in immigration law to help legal and undocumented immigrants for three decades,” claimed “the broad collection coming to Washington represents ‘the conservative base of the Republican Party.’”


Soros is heavily involved in funding the lobbying for amnesty. After Breitbart News exposed NIF for being Soros-funded while running a campaign to make it appear as though evangelicals support granting amnesty to illegal immigrants, Noorani admitted his group accepts funding from Soros. Noorani denies that the funding was being used for the Evangelical Immigration Table (EIT), a project that his group runs the operations of, but admits that millions of NIF’s dollars come from Soros and that about 10 percent of its budget this year comes from the leftwing billionaire.

There is more, with links to follow, read it all.

Here are all of our posts in which we mention Ali Noorani at RRW.  See especially this post from last February.  This is what I said:

This closing section of the Politico story has Norquist written all over it—Ali Noorani is Grover’s Pakistani buddy (big smooch from Noorani to Grover ), and this is classic Norquist strategy:

It’s not just religious leaders looking to help galvanize support from social conservatives. The National Immigration Forum has created its “Bibles, Badges and Business” effort that targets conservative lawmakers by bringing in pastors, law enforcement and business owners into the debate. The group helped facilitate more than 70 meetings on Capitol Hill in December, of which 56 were with Republicans.

NIF is preparing to roll out a formal network to help provide a vehicle for sharing and strategy.

Ali Noorani, head of the forum, said it just makes sense when looking at how immigration reform is going to get passed.

“A conservative voter is going to listen to a conservative leader, especially in conservative states,” Noorani said. “From our perspective, this is about voters hearing from their pastor police chief or business — why their Republican member of Congress needs to be supported in this push for immigration reform.”

Be sure to read this piece (it is linked above also) by Noorani in which he begins his Evangelical Christian push by quoting Norquist.

There have been rumblings that Norquist has met with Soros, maybe they cooked this whole thing up together.

See also our recent post on Norquist here.

Perhaps one of the most disturbing things I learned over the years of researching the refugee program was that many so-called Christian and Jewish groups have their hands deeply planted into the pockets of federal and state taxpayers—Catholics, Lutherans and Evangelicals alike.  They help facilitate more immigration to America and benefit big business interests (and their own as they are paid by you to help the immigrants get set up with social services).   The so-called “comprehensive immigration reform” bill passed by the Senate is larded with goodies for the “churches.”

How is this any different than what angered Christ so much with the Temple moneychangers?