The ambivalent US foreign policy toward Somalia

Mon, 2010-12-06 18:12 by admin

OGADEN ONLINE – by Mohamed Ali, Chairman of the Somali American Peace Council (SAPC)

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US foreign policy towards Somalia has been ambivalent since the latter’s independence in 1960.Eager to establish direct relations with the nation that inspired this newly born one that many consider Africa’s first Western style democracy, President Aden Abdulle Osman dispatched a delegation led by his Prime Minister Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke to the United States for a meeting with President John F. Kennedy and his administration.

Unfortunately, the Somali delegation did not achieve its intended objective. The US had already established a warm relationship that it was not willing to sacrifice with Ethiopia- Somalia’s neighbor and a rival nation. Anecdotally, the advice given by the Kennedy Administration was that Somalia better deal with her former colonial masters such as Italy and Great Britain.

Disappointed but determined, the Somali delegation flew straight from Washington, DC to Moscow, establishing a Military and Diplomatic relationship with the Soviet Union. A relationship that would subsequently ensure the Soviets the strategic military base they needed in the port of Berberra.

Then unexpectedly, in 1977 and in the midst of the war with Ethiopia over the Somali ethnic region of Ogadenia, …

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