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By Mohamed Hassan

The Somalia capital of Mogadishu has gone through a series of terrorist attacks for the recent years. Since February 2017 there has been a number of terrorist attack in the capital of Mogadishu, which have left a dead-score, injuries and multiple damage of properties. Today’s attack at least left 19 people killed after a car bomb exploded near busy restaurant in the Somali capital of Mogadishu. More than dozen were wounded, after the vehicle exploded on Thursday at an intersection packed with civilians.

This is one but a few of terrorist attacks that has happened in Mogadishu in a very short span of time. The explosion denoted cars are regular custom of Mogadishu busy hotels and lucrative businesses in the areas controlled by the government, Makka Almukarama road. The absence of strong and reliable security system in the government controlled areas means that safety and security is jeopardized. It also demonstrates that Alshabab insurgents have enhanced skills in operational tactics and intelligence to enable to easily attack highly protected areas in the capital city. Furthermore these incidents provides us with insight of how Alshabab is tactful in its operations, we can also recalled the several occasions when Alshaabab attacks happened since 2009, they were able to breach the security of high secure venues such as the presidential palace, the Mogadishu Airport, UN complex and among others.

The major reasons for this high levels of terrorist attacks has been attributed to a wide array of factors .The main reason for this widespread attack of terrorism has been attributed to high levels of poverty and unemployment which has made many youths vulnerable to enticement such as money, firearms, and free military training by the Alshabab militants.

The Alshabab have attracted many youth through mobilization and religion war propaganda, which has lead Somali youth to be vulnerable and used to execute deadly attacks in Mogadishu and various part in Somalia as well as in the neighboring countries.

The other loophole that has always been cited is the failure of having effective counter terrorism strategies that can be used to tackle and ascertain radicalized youth to be disengaging from Alshabab member and union with their families. The major issues are that Somalia armed security personnel protects senior politicians, business people and private companies, rather than being national unified security agencies that protects citizens and their properties.

The other dynamic that has contributed is that many youths have been radicalized and they fear to leave Alshabaab for their safety could be compromised due retaliation from their leaders either the government or to be handover to a third party for interrogate as the consequence of being members of Alshabab, many combatants have gone through psychological and emotional trauma hence need much counselling and trauma healing process.

Somalia government doesn’t employ meaningfully strategies to deal with the defected combatants thus leading to use it forcefully measures that scare away the defected Alshaabab losing useful Intel they could have gathered from these people, in some cases Somalia government they have tortured and executed defected combatants.

Why is Mogadishu their stronghold?

Alshabab insurgents have sympathizers in large part of Mogadishu whereby they organize and stage attacks in various parts of the capital which is enable by their spies, this is due government incapability restore law and order and deploy security personnel that capable to combat insurgent attacks. Within the capital there is quite number of unknown armed group, which isn’t under the control of the government and operates as militia. They are threating security and movements of people and also hinder business operations.

The remedies to this problem it needs wider strategies and mechanism to bring down the attacks and there is need for a concerted joint effort between all the stakeholders who live within and outside Mogadishu. There is need for a freewill for every civilian who lives within Mogadishu. The religion leaders need to be in the forefront in trying to change the already radicalized youth and also fight with the misinterpretation of the religion that clearly do not agitate for bloodshed. The government needs to provide a registration system to identify the inhabitants to reduce the rate of crime and to be able to identify those behind it.

Youth Empowerment.

The youth tend to follow the mass and influenced by peers among themselves, we need to educate the youths since they are the future of our country. Give them opportunities for employment and to develop themselves, this way it may limit the exposure to engage in Alshabab and used to be radicalized. The youth need to be provided with meaningful jobs not only in the security sector but also in various sectors of the economy. This will make them self sufficient and less vulnerable to being recruited by Alshabab insurgents. The private, public and non-governmental organizations have great role of ensuring youth to be provided with self-sufficient, decent and sustainable jobs. The youth also need to be taken through technical and vocational training to enhance their skills.

Public and Media

The media has a pivotal role of creating awareness about the dangers of engaging in extremist organizations and also educate the youths about the vice of being radicalized. The media could be involved in offering awareness campaign for the youths and instilling them with life skills that can make them self employed and great entrepreneurs. The youth need to be exposed to the social media, which will keep them informed of what is happening within the country to enable them to see the impact for these extremist organizations doing and also used as a tool to educate them. The media should be a channel of condemnation of this barbaric and cowards massacre of the Alshabab. The awareness campaign should be lead to disengage the combatants by Somalia government, religion leaders as well as intellectuals to confront this vice.

Its really sad to see how divided we are as Somali community, killing in the name of things that isn’t acceptable in our religion or culture, hiding behind tribes that has nothing to do with teaching of our religion and our founding fathers. We are one people with one language and one religion, we have a great privilege as a Somali people that No other people have, u should unite and flash out this people who are dragging us behind and killing our people and destroying our country. We are refugees in every other country, why go all that trouble when we have a beautiful country that’s need development instead of developing other people’s countries. In very corner of Mogadishu you will find a ghost buildings, roads with potholes and IDP camps, which has distorted the beauty of our capital.

Every citizen has a responsibility to protect life, properties and further defend our country, as a citizen what are you doing?

Why development other country while ours is in chaos?

Islam symbolizes love and peace as a Muslim country, where is the love and peace our religion stands for?