View Full Version : U.S. Won't Say if It Aids Somali Warlords

05-17-2006, 03:55 PM
WASHINGTON - The U.S. is working with regional and international partners to keep al-Qaida from establishing itself in northeastern Africa, White House press secretary Tony Snow said Wednesday. He would not say whether that included warlords in Somalia.

Snow cited Somalia's lack of a functioning government and said Osama bin Laden's network uses such chaotic situations to establish terrorist training centers and bases. Somalia is just across the Gulf of Aden from Yemen and the Saudi Peninsula.

Two weeks ago, Somalia's transitional president said he believed the United States was bankrolling an alliance of warlords, the same people whose armed gangs are keeping Somalia ungovernable.

Asked Wednesday whether the United States was working with warlords, Snow said he had to speak carefully.

"You've got instability in Somalia right now, and there is concern about the presence of foreign terrorists, particularly al-Qaida, within Somalia right now," he said.

"In an environment of instability, as we've seen in the past, al-Qaida may take root, and we want to make sure that al-Qaida does not in fact establish a beachhead in Somalia."

Snow said the United States "will continue to work with regional and international partners wherever we can to crack down on terrorism and also to try to prevent its rising."

At the State Department, spokesman Sean McCormack also declined to be specific about the partners with whom the United States is working.
"We certainly have active efforts working with the international community and working across a spectrum of Somalis to make sure that Somalia isn't a safe haven for terrorism," McCormack said.

On May 3, Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed told The Associated Press in Sweden, "The Americans should tell the warlords they should support the government and cooperate with the government. ... We are the legitimate government, and we will help you fight terrorism."

Somalia has been without a real government since largely clan-based warlords overthrew longtime dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060517/ap_on_go_pr_wh/us_somalia (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060517/ap_on_go_pr_wh/us_somalia)

05-17-2006, 04:08 PM
no surprise. they did the same in Afghanistan. warlords will outlive their usefulness and they will be labeled as criminals and taken care of either directly or indirectly. i mean god forbid US forgets to punish evil....