The concept of the failed state continues to dominate the Somali situation from all aspects and indicators; and that includes the weakness of the central authority, the spread of violence and terrorist incidents, the inability to control the security situation and many other aspects that a failed state must have. Even after the term has been changed from the failed states to the fragile states, Somalia maintained its presence on this list and the only marginal development occurred that Somalia has moved from first place globally in the index of failed states, or fragile states, to the second place, when South Sudan ranked first in 2014.
It seems that the Somali authority is not aware of the seriousness of being classified as a failed state for years, and yet acts in a manner that promotes the continuity of its presence in a quagmire of failure, confusion and revocation of agreements, in favor of rapprochement with forces supporting terrorism, which have interest that Somalia remains as a failed state, hence easy to control. No one is thinking of this opportunistic tendency except Qatar, which is very keen to keep Somalia in the quagmire of failed states. Indeed, Doha has worked in secret and in public during the past period to obstruct the development efforts of the United Arab Emirates in Somalia, and through paying bribes and creating ideologically fanatic allies, it aimed to obstruct the process of pulling the Somali state out of the bottleneck and from the fragile situation in which it lives.
What is worth mentioning of the Emirati role in Somalia is that it started at early stages, despite the difficult local Somali conditions, which did not encourage any level of coordination and cooperation and especially that the targeted environment for development, modernization, reconstruction is in a country that is trying to find its way after years of war, years of absence of the state and its institutions which are supposed to be the part of any joint plans and projects. The UAE initiative towards Somalia came at a time when all other countries abandoned to work and help Somalia, while the UAE, since 2014, has made extraordinary efforts to normalize the situation and lift Somali society out of international estrangement and neglect because of the intensification of acts of piracy that used to start from the Somali coasts and caused troubles to the international community.
Unfortunately, whenever there are signs of a positive shift in the Somali scene and a better ranking in the list of fragile and failed states, setbacks take place. Some of which are attributed to the performance of the Somali government and the lack of strategic thinking as well as the suspicious Qatari role which is looking crazily for external foci that can host its intrusion, with the aim of easing the Qatari tension on the internal level and with the Gulf region.
The most serious problem Somalia is facing that deprives it from the possibility of finding an alternative to the generous role of the United Arab Emirates is the continuing terrorist operations in Mogadishu, which are causing a decline in the number of countries and international organizations which might think to pay efforts for helping the Somali people of moving to a better stage.
Instead of maintaining excellent bilateral relations with the UAE, which Somalia’s security risks have not prevented it from helping and launching a variety of aid programs, we see that Mogadishu has surrendered to the Qatari illusory temptations, while everyone knows that the Qatari role has always based on supporting and providing the terrorist factions with the fuel of sabotaging communities.
Somalia, which has not yet get rid of the Youth Movement, which is accused of committing dozens of bombings there, has allied with the wrong side this time, because Qatar will only provide Somalia with more jihadist elements, within the framework of a Qatari plan to deploy and resettle the terrorist organization “Daesh” in Africa, to ease the pressures on the organization in other regions.
Mogadishu has abandoned the hand that has been extended to spread welfare and establish security and stability and decided to cooperate with a party that put Somalia in its sphere of interest as a kind of challenge, stirring sedition and implementing the Turkish agenda that is using the hatred of the Doha rulers and their failure to renounce terrorism and reconcile with the Gulf.
Al Mezmaah Studies & Research Centre
23 April 2018