Islamic Militia Ban World Cup In Somalia

By Mohamed Olad Hassan: MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) – Islamic militiamen in control of Somalia’s capital fired guns in the air and cut electricity to makeshift cinemas to prevent people from watching the World Cup, witnesses said.

“As soon as the Islamists took over the security of our city, we thought we would get freedom,” said Adam Hashi-Ali, a teenager in Mogadishu. “But now they have been preventing us from watching the World Cup.”

A strict interpretation of Islamic law often bans western films and television as immoral.

The development came on the same day the Islamic militia’s leader said he did not want to impose a Taliban-style government in Somalia, a significant shift from his earlier calls for a strict Islamic republic.

He added: “We do not want to impose sharia law. We will accept the views of the Somali people.” [source]

I’m not sure if this has been confirmed as it’s based on the accounts of witnesses. So take it with a grain of salt. Nevertheless the question here is not whether Somalia has replaced one evil with another. The question is not whether Sharia law says anything about western film, television or football (which of course it doesn’t). The question is not whether Somalia will indeed become a Taliban-style government (80% chance it will).

The question here is what channel were Somalians tuned to before the electricity was cut off? I know a lot of people who’d be interested to know.

If Goleo’s foot squishing Pille isn’t a metaphor for oppression then I dunno what is.


  • Oops, why did that cut off?

    Ok, in continuation of what I was trying to say:

    The thing is, the current administration loves fooling people. “Oh we’re for human rights, blah blah blah.” Bollocks. The situation in Somalia has been ugly for years. The people deserve better. You can only hope that the new situation will actually mean improvement, but with hardly anyone paying attention, who knows? I just wish there were people trying to talk to the new leaders in the capital and trying to understand what’s going on.

  • Salam Naseem,
    I’m a realist – I have a very different opinion on the Taliban:
    – Taliban regime, aside from the AlQaeda business, was actually good for the Afghan people
    – Why is that?
    – pro: it provided unity and security to a war-torn country
    – pro: it did start to control the drug business and slowly divert the farmers from their cash crop
    – pro: while one might differ with their laws, they did have laws that were (in a way) evenly executed throughout.
    – pro: they did NOT persecute or kill non-muslim minorities.
    – pro: they allowed budhists to keep their temples & the statues inside the temples.

    They did have major problems with their “strict interpretation of sharia”. These problem, while major for 20th century, are mainly “civil rights & freedoms” problems. These problems appear CONSISTENTLY in all war-torn countries throughout history. And, almost without exception, the only solution has been: TIME. All countries start from strict laws favoring racial, social & gender injustice to more liberal ones. Countries are not “born” with civil liberties. I’m sure if the world gave Afghanistan another 5 years, they would have shifted a lot internally.

    In short: hungry & scared people are lousy civil-rights proponents, only prosperus & educated people can advance civil-right movements.

    – Slavery in the US: it took the US about 200 slow years to abondone slavery & reach for racial justice (while UK took less time). In 1852, the US supreme court declared that “the constitution is clear in that whites are citizens while blacks are property. Thus, a black man does not have the right to file a lawsuit in the first place!”

    – Japanese concentration camps: during WW2, the US government put any people of Japanese descent on its soil in concentration camps. Why? because people were afraid, and thus, crazy legistlarues could pass any law.

    – McCarthy era in US: after WW2 and at the beginning of the cold war, there was a “communist scare” in the US. The US Supremecourt made several judgements AGAINST free speech. Why? because people were afraid, thus McCarthy was able to get away with his investigations for a long time before being stopped.

    many of these supreme court decisions were revoked several years afterwards. Why? because people understood the situation better and started thinking more ratoinally.

    – The ‘Patriot Act’ in the US: After 9/11, anything with the name ‘patriot’ can pass the Congress & the house. I’m sure that in 4-8 years, these laws will be revoked as “unconstitutional”. We just have to wait for the people to become less-afraid and more rational.

    – The Roman history is actually filled with such examples (e.g. when the romans allowed the army inside Rome for the first time).

    In Somalia: a strong feeling of identity is needed for Sumalians to get out of their tribal civil war. Only a simple Islam can deliver this at this point (a black & white Islam). While civil liberties will suffer for several years, security & justice will slowly prevail. Afterwards, new more liberal movements will be born from within the system and will shift the society.

  • Most Somalis watch Arab tv, Al-Jazeera, LBC,MBC, Abu Dhabi TV, Rotana etc. and ofcourse a small percentage watch tv like MBC 2 and Dubai one. Although everyone is to busy with stayin’ alive.

Your Two Piasters: