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Commentary Last Updated: Jan 17th, 2008 - 00:46:25

Ahmed Dirie: imprisoned or murdered?
By Gure Q. Cowl
Online Journal Guest Writer

Jan 17, 2008, 00:19

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For every hero�s goal to help others, some are afraid to risk their livelihood, let alone to risk their life. Ahmed Dirie, a prominent Somali
Hawiye Clan spokesman Ahmed Dirie
leader, who opposed the Ethiopian occupation in Somalia and refused to be silenced with money, threats, and under the peril of a gun, was snatched from his Mogadishu home by the Ethiopian occupying forces last November 11 without due process. Nobody has heard from him since.

Ahmed Dirie was one of the few individuals who was uniquely characterized as altruistic. He served his fellow countrymen/women and humanity selflessly. Prior to his involvement with the peaceful struggle and appeal to the international community to have Ethiopia stop massacring, raping innocent Somali girls and mothers, looting public and private properties and to withdraw from Somalia in its entirety, Mr. Dirie served the people of Galgadud and Mudug regions to live together in peace and harmony.

Among other things he is known for is his emphasis on tolerance and patience as desires and views don�t always match and are different in all given communities. He was the voice of peace and hope. He spearheaded countless efforts to help establish normalcy and fight crimes, and eradicate piracy in and around Haradhere district, etc. For all Somalis, nationalist/Islamist, in the country and in the diaspora, Ahmed Dirie is a hero and true Somalis nationalist.

In his last capacity as speaker, Ahmed Dirie eloquently spoke against the occupation and the immoral stand of the international community that sits and watches as Ethiopia carries out genocide against innocent Somalis and wipes Somalia from the world map. Of course, as a partner of peace and vocal advocate of Somali unity, Ahmed Dirie was under constant threat for his life. In a number of accounts, Somalis who shared similar views knew that he was in danger and recommended he go into hiding, but he bravely refused. Therefore, his imprisonment doesn�t come as a surprise to the Somalis, but murdering him in prison goes beyond human indecency.

Somalis are outraged to hear not only that Ahmed may have been murdered, but that this horrific news didn�t generate an international outcry, sympathy and condolences for all Somalis and Somalia.

In the last two weeks, the suspected dreadful news came to the Somalis in drips and they increasingly became convinced that Ahmed Dirie was murdered in an undisclosed location in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

In an interview with VOA, Sh. Sharif Sh. Ahmed, the Somali Re-liberation Alliance chairman, said his organization received a credible report indicating that Ahmed Dirie was murdered in Addis Ababa. As delayed justice implies no justice, and should the international community have responded earlier, Ahmed Dirie could still be alive. This case continues to demand a rigorous investigation and sharp response from the international community.

If nothing else, as difficult as it is to bury your love one particularly when murdered, Ahmed Dirie, as any other human being, deserves proper burial by his family. Correspondingly, Somalis ought to know their hero�s whereabouts. Rest assured, as there are so many noble and brave Somalis, his children included, the struggle will continue. And one day, Somalis will realize their dreams and reclaim their rightful country.

One would expect a country that is receiving enormous amount of support, capital, intelligence, training and else, from the U.S. (proclaimed democracy and defender of human rights) and is a member state of the United Nations would not only respect and be accountable to international laws. To the contrary, Ethiopia seemed to have been praised for its inhuman acts in not only Somalia but also Eritrea. Like other newly introduced doctrines, this sets a new precedence for world order. To say the least, this implies so long as you are not opposing the only supper power and the new imperialist�s policy that it doesn�t matter how heinous of a crime you commit, you wouldn�t be held responsible let alone be treated with the same standard as the ones viewed as enemies or potential enemies.

God save us, if a person with similar a philosophy as the current president is elected in the next election circle of the United States, one could easily guest the type of world we are going to be living in: a dog eat dog world.

George W. Bush has successfully misled the American public and changed the highly praised American value of respect for others, democracy, and high moral standards. To reverse the damage will certainly take years if not centuries. The responsible world community must wake up to these new realities and craft skillful strategies to combat Bush and like-minded people, Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia, and the new doctrines and approach to world order.

The international community must step up to its long ignored responsibilities to investigate crimes committed against innocent Somalis and bring to justice to those responsible. The international community must not only show its dismay of the Ethiopian occupation but work to free innocent Somalis, particularly highly respected leaders such as Ahmed Dirie, Jimale Mohamud Nor, Abdullahi Dhere, Hassan Rage, Sh. Ahmed Ali Gees and many more.

Related reading:

Tensions Grow in Somalia,, Nov. 20, 1007

Somali Clan Leader Hiding After Ethiopian-Backed Government Launches Crackdown, Voice of America, Nov. 12, 2007

Somalia: Hawiye Clan Elders Welcome UN Position,, Dec. 20, 2007

Somalia: Hawiye spokesman killed in Ethiopian jail, Islamist leader says, SomaliNet, Jan. 11, 2008

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