- 24-02-2012, 13:08 #71Shabaab abandons western city as Ethiopian troops advance
By Bill Roggio February 22, 2012
As Ethiopian forces continue to press their offensive in Somalia, Shabaab forces have relinquished control of a key southern city that has been under the terror group's control for three years.
Fighters from Shabaab, al Qaeda's affiliate in eastern Africa, today abandoned Baidoa, the provincial capital of Bay, as large numbers of Ethiopian troops backed by Somali forces advanced on the city from the west. Shabaab is also reported to have withdrawn from Bardere, which is southwest of Baidoa. A Shabaab spokesman confirmed that Shabaab withdrew from Baidoa but claimed the terror group would fight to retake it.
"Our fighters left town this morning without fighting. Now we are surrounding the town," Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab told Reuters. "Baidoa will be a cemetery for the Ethiopians."
Shabaab seized Baidoa in January 2009 after Ethiopian troops withdrew from the country. One month later, Ayman al Zawahiri, al Qaeda's emir, praised Shabaab for taking control of Baidoa. Prior to their withdrawal, Ethiopian forces had occupied much of southern and central Somalia after ousting the Islamic Courts Union from power in early 2007. And Baidoa had served as the capital of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government, from 2006 until the Shabaab takeover in January 2009.
The recent loss of Baidoa has put Shabaab on the defensive. The terror group is being pressed by African Union and Ethiopian forces on three fronts. In addition to Ethiopia's advance from the west, Burundian and Ugandan forces have taken control of Mogadishu after Shabaab abandoned much of the city last summer, and are slowly pressing westward to Afgoye, a Shabaab stronghold just 15 miles outside of the capital.
In the south, Kenyan forces are slowly moving northward toward the Shabaab strongholds of Afmadow and the port city of Kismayo. Kenyan troops have been fighting in Somalia since mid-October, and have only advanced to about 40 miles inside the country.
Shabaab still controls other major towns and cities along the coast between Kismayo and Mogadishu, including Jilib, Baraawe, and Merca. Shabaab recently held parades and celebrations in many of these towns after announcing its official merger with al Qaeda on Feb. 9. One day later, Shabaab's affiliate in Kenya, the Muslim Youth Center, also said it has become "part of al Qaeda East Africa."
Despite Shabaab's recent setbacks in Somalia, US intelligence officials who follow the terror group closely said that even if it loses many of the cities and towns it currently controls, the group still will remain a threat and will be capable of retaking lost ground after the African Union forces leave.
"Shabaab has been in this situation before when it was part of the Islamic Courts back in 2007 up until when the group fractured in 2009," one official told The Long War Journal. "As soon as Ethiopian troops left, the TFG [Somalia's Transitional Federal Government] couldn't hold its ground."
The officials cited a lack of unity among Somali factions, corruption, poorly trained security forces, and sympathetic elements within the government as reasons to be pessimistic about the government's chances to hold the ground seized by the foreign forces. One official also said that Shabaab has staying power and is committed to the cause of jihad at all costs.
"Ultimately Shabaab is committed to its cause, and it won't give up easily," the official said. "To them, these setbacks are temporary. They'll switch from an active insurgency to a guerrilla campaign of terror attacks and assassinations when they need to, and they'll ride out the 'Christian occupiers' to take on the weak government," the official said, referring to Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, and Djibouti, whose troops have been battling Shabaab.
Given the chaotic nature of the ground conflict(s), the Prime Minister would do well to think carefully before committing to any form of action. He should also remember that Libyan terrain provided optimal conditions for an aerial offensive in both the 20th and 21st centuries.
B"It is pointless having armies deployed abroad when there is no prudent council at home." Seneca (c. 3 BC – 65 AD)
"Government's a fuck up, half the Civil Service is out to lunch. The Foreign Office is as much use as a wet dream, the country is stoney-broke and the bankers are taking our money and giving us the finger." D J M Cornwell (1931AD- )
- 24-02-2012, 13:50 #72
- Join Date
- Jul 2011
- 24-02-2012, 14:41 #73
- 24-02-2012, 16:01 #74
- Join Date
- Jul 2005
However, I'd be immensely surprised if RN Admirals agreed to serve under a Chinese lead mission even if it got past the politicians. With the most interest at stake, once they make the respources available, I see no reason why the Chinese may not asked to take over the opration from NATO/EU etc
Morever, it does bring into question - or at least create a wee dilemma in the rhetoric - that growing Chinese naval power (projection) is bad and needs to be countered with more spending on the RN.
- 24-02-2012, 16:20 #75
- Join Date
- Feb 2012
I know a decent marsec course is quite expensive, but I would have thought all they'd need is a bit of weapons handling and marksmanship training.
After all, the skinnys aren't ex-special forces ninjas. If a poorly paid third-world crewman can fire an acurate shot with an AK, he's probably better trained than the pirates, at least enough to act as a deterrant.
And poorly paid third world security guards with little training are seen as good enough to guard ISAF assets. (no not the TA )
- 24-02-2012, 18:48 #76
- Join Date
- Oct 2008
African News : it seems (unknown and not owning up) already launched strikes against al-Shabab/militants in Somalia. Looking at the situation with al-Shabab/Al Qaeda, radical youth movements are no small problem and we host not a small community of Somalis and other unhealthy, unstable types. Also, Al Qaeda could be considerably bigger these days, feeding on disillusioned youths and promising them in hand with al_Shabab, " a better life". I also believe the mini Independent has referred to retaliatory threats here if we don'rt behave ourselves. Looking at all the evidence let's hope the conference and the countries involved can keep a lid on it all.
PM warns of risk to Britain from Somali radicals - UK Politics - UK - The IndependentNever tell your problems to anyone...20% don't care and the other 80% are glad you have them
Being Old and Bold. It's the Mind in a bit of a state. You may already have it.
- 24-02-2012, 19:24 #77
A reasoned argument......
"with out afull intergaration of Somali community I am afraid The threat to our national security will keep growing.
The best way forward will be Lets remove the big Bariers like KHAT who is helping the likes of ALSHABAAB fanicialy and man power.
those khat addict who are not thinking clearly is the kind of young man alshabaab is looking for.
Our massege is
Stob sagrigaration and Pormote Intergration
Ban khat inline with rest westren world."
How big are our bombs without going nuclear.... how many would we need to wipe out this shower of shite?
Last edited by vinniethemanxcat; 25-02-2012 at 09:56.
- 24-02-2012, 19:33 #78
- 24-02-2012, 19:39 #79
That was a quote.... have you ever found anyone who has a good word to say about these ****ers.....?
- 24-02-2012, 19:42 #80