Saturday, 6 August 2011

"How foreign policy blunders helped create the famine in Somalia" - New Internationalist

An excerpt from this article, which you can read in full on the New Internationalist website.

"How foreign policy blunders helped create the famine in Somalia

Posted by Mark Bradbury

Famine has returned to Somalia, and so has the US military. This is no natural disaster. Just as the US sent its first drones to Somalia, targeting leaders of the militant Islamist group al-Shabaab, tens of thousands of Somalis were crossing into Kenya, fleeing a catastrophic drought and conflict.

While US drones were able to find their targets in Somalia with pinpoint accuracy, humanitarian agencies have had less luck. They have experienced a catastrophic decline in access that has destroyed their ability to assist and protect civilians. The families crossing into Kenya are escaping from a severe drought but they are also fleeing a war.

This is a conflict between the internationally sponsored Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and a militant Islamic movement al-Shabaab, which is listed as a terrorist organization. The political use of aid by the warring parties has eroded the humanitarian space that agencies need to operate safely and securely.

Read the rest on the New Internationalist website

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