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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Do Those Who Call The Shots In Nairobi Know Enough About Somalia?


I lived in Garissa for a while. I didn’t like it then. Boring town with hardly any entertainment to speak of and the heat and humidity is always crazy. But looking back now, it was a good experience. I learnt a lot. That experience comes in very handy today as I write about our Somali brothers. I seem to know them a lot more than most Kenyans do.

Indeed when the Clinton administration sent in troops to Somalia in the early 1990s, I laughed to myself, knowing full well what was going to happen next. What fascinates me greatly right now is how Kenyans are displaying the same ignorance on the Somalis that I saw in the Clinton administration.

It is true that Somalis don’t look too intelligent and in my view that is one of their greatest strengths. People always greatly underestimate and underrate them.

As you must know, if you are a regular reader here, I love to tell stories and I am going to tell you two today starting with what happened when I was in Garissa in the 1980s.

One day at about 8 pm loud sirens suddenly went off in the town. I panicked. What did they mean? I was quickly informed that there was a security emergency in the town. I later learnt that there had been a shooting incident in a bar in town where scores of people had been killed. This incident was never reported in the media. Later I learnt exactly what had happened.

A Somali man had earlier been arrested with Elephant tusks. The police were keen to get information from him, especially where he had stashed the cash for his illegal activities. When you want a man to talk, there is a particular area of his body that you press and they are bound to start singing like a bird. Well, this Somali man did not “sing” and the overenthusiastic cops are said to have completely disabled the man’s ability to ever sleep with a woman again. Later, the man managed to escape. He crossed the border into Somalia and came back with an automatic weapon and bullets wrapped across both his shoulders. Now the policemen responsible were having a quiet drink in this bar in Garissa town. The Somali man walked in and sprayed the table where they were seated with bullets, killing most of them instantly. He casually walked out of the bar and disappeared into the night.

I was told that no policeman would have dared follow the man into the darkness and the Kenya army, who have a presence in Garissa, were called in. Months later when the man was finally captured it was hard to believe that this one, small, wiry, thin man who did not look so clever had single-handedly caused so much damage.

One of the things about the dry arid North Eastern province is that it is extremely hot and humid. A Somali man has no problem crossing large tracts of the region on foot having taking only a single glass of water for the day. When you think about this simple fact you quickly realize that the odds would already be greatly stacked against Kenyan troops in the event of a war with Somalis to protect Kenyan terrain.

Story number two coming up. When I was a very young child (about 5 years old) we lived in Isiolo. This was in the late 60s. I still remember the house we lived in and the fact that sometimes in the evenings you would see the silhouette of an Elephant in the distance as the sun was setting. Very romantic I guess and one of the few benefits of being the son of a cop who regularly gets hauled all over the country and sometimes to the most arid and remote corners. One day we almost died. A fierce exchange of gun fire between some Somali Shifta warriors and the Kenya Army (the Shifta war was still very much on) ensued and spread into our compound at about 7pm. My dad had gone for his usual evening beer and he ended up not being able to make it back that night because his house had been transformed into a war zone. Loud gunfire echoed all around the compound. My mother took me and my kid brother and we all hid inside a cupboard where we spent the night. I remember my kid brother vomited inside the cupboard because of the fear he felt. But he did much better than some civilians at a nearby bar some of whom urinated on their trousers in fear (I kid you not). I think I was more excited than frightened. When I woke up in the morning it was all quiet.

Make no mistake about it, Somalis are the most shrewd entrepreneurs you will find anywhere and being an entrepreneur has got nothing to do with speaking good English. Typically you will observe a Somali man waking up very early in the morning and switching on their radio. They will then proceed to sip down their morning beverage while chewing Miraa (khat). You can be sure that the guy is not idling or trying to wake up properly like the rest of us would be doing. He is thinking and trying to roll the whole day ahead in his mind. In many instances he will come up with business ideas and deals that he may want to start implementing as soon as his active day starts. This is a habit I would love to emulate (without having to chew anything).

I can tell you scores of stories about these fascinating brothers of ours but I have to stop there.

As I sit here I worry that folks in decision-making positions in Nairobi may not know enough about our dear brothers. I fear that some of them typically display the same ignorance I have seen in many comments on my previous post on this topic. I will say no more about this seemingly hot topic.

P.S. I have read the comments accusing me of being an alarmist for nothing over our Somali brothers. Let me say that NOT all Somalis are involved in crime and NOT all of them are a threat to the security of our motherland. I know a number of who are good people and may get badly hurt reading my posts and knowing that I am the one who penned them. Sorry guys. However one has to get alarmed knowing what Kumekucha readers now know from my two posts. Especially when suicide bombers start popping up next door and a man buying land in the city centre suddenly and casually comes up with Kenya shillings 100 million.

My point is that there are enough bad Somalis hanging around to make Kenya disappear. May I also add that it hurts… and hurts real bad, when you host somebody for years and then they later turn round and threaten you. To me this is a clear illustration of the psyche in most bad Somalis. They will smile and kiss you shortly before plunging a knife deep into your back and twisting it. Every Somali with good intentions should join Kenyans in condemning this terrible habit.

Okay I will say no more now… for real.

60 comments:

M-Pesa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Ok,you cant fight the somalis,you cant kill them,you cant arrest them,you cant finish them,you cant this,you cant that....somalis are sooo tough!So what do we do,whats your solution?Put our head between our hands and howl?Big bad Somalis are here and there is nothing we can do......eeeh?Chris,can you get it into your head that it isnt the Kenya government provoking the Somalis.It is their damned militia thats threatening Kenya and also Ethiopia!

Anonymous said...

At the end of the day, the only way to deal with them is to integrate the Kenyan Somalis, and for that transitional government to become a federal government.

Somalia is not a functional state, it is only being held by international backing. Now we dont want the kind of thing happening now, but we need to understand that Somalia is a series of hinterlands run by different groups, so stop trying to integrate them into one banner, and let them run the country as a federation of Somalia or something.

Anonymous said...

Al shabaab Somalis are a bunch of unschooled fundamentalist Mohammedans who subscribe to a form of Wahhabi Islam which even moderate Muslims do not like.They are not as invincible as it is portrayed because Ethiopia proved to us last time that they can be defeated.Creating fear is not a solution to anything since it only embolden these fools.

Anonymous said...

Chris and Forum,

Are we talking about Kenyan Somalis, Somalis from Somalia, both.. or there's just a thin line?

Anonymous said...

Major Ali is a somali n so r many army officers!! n chris u av lived in so many parts of kenya wat abt pokots r they also invincible? Am currently thr!! Last time it was nandi warriors r this n that 2day is somali ths tht na kesho je? Sabaot ths tht?! Eehh?

Anonymous said...

Chris,

Give us a little break. To you everbody has become untouchable from Mungiki to pokots to Somalis. You are a Kibaki type who will hide from everything that moves.

When I was small, I remember mothers scaring children with some stories about spirits in the darkness, and now you are trying to scare us with some bandit stories. Find something else to occupy you idle mind.

Anonymous said...

I went to school in GT (discern which is this former ‘National school’) with Somalis and still remember the day they declared githeri as food for ‘black’ Kenyans not fit for somali’s ‘exotic’ tongues. A wararo is a proud, back-stabbing, kneer-do-well $*&%$..... Only good when you help him. I close my case

Anonymous said...

Kenya has been declared a failed state- See the 2009 Fund for Peace index out yesterday!!. Even Burundi of all places is far much ahead, also Congo Brazza!!. Wololo, ngai fafa..........what happened. Who is leaving last?...please remember the lights.Opss sorry, the lamp....there have been no lights for the last 1 month

M-Pesa said...

anon 2.40

Garba Tula?

Anyway I don't understand why tar everyone with the same brush. Maybe the dust from that little town got in the better part of your head.

Anonymous said...

If these guys are so tough,can Chris tell us why he soo many Somalia Somalis living in Kenya as refugees legally or otherwise?Shouldnt they be back there in Mogadishu,toughing it out in a kind of last man standing show of bravado as they clear their country of all inhabitants since they dont want any other country to tell them how not to finish each other.Or do they imagine after finishing with their country they will move on to the next?

Anonymous said...

MPESA,

Yea, the dust got into my head while wasting away in Garba Tula, but not the better part of my head!. I do not need to paint any wararo no matter how good a painter i am - they do have their own unique colour, oil based!. Ati githeri ni chakula ya 'nywele ngumu' kumbaff waria

Anonymous said...

I asked if there is oil in somalia and intead of getting an answer, my comment was deleted. What kind of show is running around here?

Anonymous said...

We all have our prejudices , I once remember telling this wararo "anjere" (somali pan cake) is for the "softy " not the manly meru.So I don't think this should stick in your head , once one of them asked for my sisters hand and it was kelele all over the family my parents in Maua declared no way , this guys are only khat chewing lot . But latert it came to pass that my sister is in a very happy union .And the guy supports all . Take it easy.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4.50am,

Some somalis look more of arabs than africans - that's why. Remember the colonial categorisation of people in kenya in order of superiority was: whites, asians, arabs, somalis and africans. This categorisation, like all other colonial things, remains to this day.

Kose said...

I guess Chris works for FOX NEWS
Alarmist, Alarmist, Alarmist.

Darius Stone said...

Chris.

I'll step aside from the question about what to do with "Somali's" desperate the gross generalization here - and answer your question about what "Nairobi" knows about the Somali's they want to fight.

NSIS have had over 18 years to build up a decent intelligence odessa on the whole country. If they don't have the right answer then they're as stupid as the politicians who pay them.

Anonymous said...

Chris said,"A Somali man has no problem crossing large tracts of the region on foot having taking only a single glass of water for the day."

Uongo. All hotels in Garissa have full meals by 6.30am. A Somali will take a full plate of Ugali and half a kilo of meat at 7.00am before making his journey. They all also walk with a 3-5lt jerrycan of water for two purposes-to quench their thirst and to....

Anonymous said...

Chris, you are either a coward,not very analytical of everyday issues or both.The somali are just human like everyone else, nothing so unique about them, nothing so special. By the way Somalis were lucky they were dealing with Clinton and not Regan or Bush 43. Let them ask Gadafi or the taliban. If America wanted to, they would bombed mogadisu silly without even sending a ground army. Back to Kenya I wish to have you know that the geopolitical ambition of the Somali, both in Kenya and Somalia has since changed considerably. Any Somalian who has the wherewithall has invested in Nairobi or other towns in Kenya and it is in their interest that there is peace in Kenya. Kenya Somali are nolonger infatuated with the NFD which you seem to be stuck in as if you only learnt about this history the other day. If the Somali wanted to bomb Kenya they would have done it yesterday and not in future as you keep mongering. I would therefore advice you to please update you knowledge and analytical skills.

shondeshonde

Anonymous said...

Close all the borders, deport General Ali and leave Somali for Somalians.

Anonymous said...

@6:50
I'll chose to remain an African and not to be a Somali (not even to be an Arab), if I had a chance in my nxt life. Buddy I cant contain that body smell.

I have never met a Kenyan wanting to migrate to Somali. This is not a coincidence.

Anonymous said...

Chris is racists!

Anonymous said...

Let Somalis remain in ODM and Sharia where they belong.

Kiama said...

Somalis in Kenya are in heaven, but their couterpants in Somalia....WEll, that's another story.

Anonymous said...

"Do those who call the shots in nairobi know enough about somalia?"

Yes, yes, yes; at least they know more than you've gleaned from your juvenile experiences.

Here's something new on ODM love triangle:
http://www.nation.co.ke/News/regional/-/1070/618586/-/7jx3my/-/index.html

Anonymous said...

Content of their character not color of their skin (or ethnicity)

Anonymous said...

The army should be sent to and cordon the whole of Eastleigh, then pack these arrogant wariahe's into those green army trucks and deport them to that barren wasteland of a country mpaka wapate adabu!!

Anonymous said...

Adoon nywele ngumu mzungu arse kissing kenya can't do jack shit in mogadishu. bribe taking house wife gang raping army of coward go tackle mungiki,saboat and the pokot who are out of control within you borders by the way who's chinook did you army borrow this time round.

Kiama said...

Yusuf Hanji and all the ODM MPs are all from ODM.

Anonymous said...

Whay are somalis now so arrogant? coz of owning a few shops in Nairobi? coz of freely allowing them to own our internationally valued passport? Can you imagine if kenya was somalia and somalia was kenya? we would have been nywele ngumu slaves in 'kenya'

Anonymous said...

WHOSE RESPONSIBILITY IS IT TO INTEGRATE SOMALIS? WHO INTEGRATED ASIANS WHO NOW PLAY OUR NATIONAL TEAMS AND PROUDLY FLY OUR FLAG? IS IT GOVT OR SOMALIS? IF YOU DONT WANT TO INTEGRATE, ITS YOUR SHIT! I HATE THESE OILY BASTARDS

Anonymous said...

I can show you many arabs, indians, wazungu who have intermarried with nywele ngumu. any somalis? there you have it!

Anonymous said...

There is a serious problem happening among somali community. I have lived with them in a flat and seen many of their women wanting to get a 'release' when their men were away. I wondered why such beautiful religious women would want to cheat their hard working somali men at the pain of death, if caught. Then i was told by one their men cant perform "they are thin, small, get tired fast...." I was told they cant have a hard on thanks to miraa!

Anonymous said...

Chris you are right and wrong. The last bold part is right. The stories extolling somali 'bravery' is an indirect verdict on us that we are cowards. Have you heard the saying that the dog that barks doesnt bite? Look at the begining of last year and you will realise how devlishly brutal kenyans can be if pushed. I want to warn somalis not to push their luck...it will run out and you wont have anywhere to run except the sea!

Anonymous said...

Okay its not secret that 99% of somalis have made kenya their home. The rest 1% comprises of those in somalia and diaspora. So we are saying, if you start shit, you will be in shit

Anonymous said...

MPESA@ 2.47AM Take your load of SHIT back into your fucking behind!! Who is to blame for non itegration of somalis? Tell me one somali who has employed indegenous kenyans? I can tell you countless indians, arabs, white men, ugandans etc who have kenyans on their payroll. Any somalis? if any, the are negligible. Does that tell you something?

Anonymous said...

Shida ya hawa watu ni uginga!

Anonymous said...

The day kenya explodes is the day everyone will know who is dangerous. I DARE AL SHABAAB TO BLOW UP ONE BUILDING IN NAIROBI NOW! IN FACT I WANT THEM TO DO THIS SO THAT WE HAVE A GOOD REASON TO FINALLY SOLVE THE SOMALI BROBLEM!

Anonymous said...

These sick fuck tapewormed idiots are now arrogant spitting on our shoes

Anonymous said...

Hi my brothers somalis,

I am sorry you are going through this. When you achieve economic success, you attract attention, good and bad, ill intended and good intended, ignorant and informed.

Concerned kikuyu

Anonymous said...

Why do luos hate economic success? Is it coz somalis have now overtaken you?

Anonymous said...

Why do luos like war? you wanted us to fight Uganda, we refused, you uprooted the railway. So now what can you uproot for al shabaab? Why did RAO ask for military action on Somalia while kibaki is not for it? werent these the same people you were asking for votes the other day? Are these not the same people whom you asked for campaign money? I say let kenyan somalis be.....

Anonymous said...

Hey, wasomali wacheni vita

Kimi Raikkonen said...

What a liar. Why don't you try writing movie scripts for Mutua's Cobra Squad?

Kiama said...

I, Kiama, challege the whole of Somalia. How can people who look like sticks fight for more than one day. And now they are cuuting people hands off calling it Sharia Law. Frogging women left and right because the woman is unfaithful.

Remember that Somali got there ass kicked real good in the Ongaden War by the Ethopians.

Anonymous said...

So many fake kikuyu shrips andi shrinds in Kumekucha. Pathetic!

Anonymous said...

Somalis be advised that the most vile anti Somali comments here are most likely Kikuyus.

Any Indian or Somali bashing in Kenya typically originates from Kikuyus.

Anonymous said...

Somalias you are most welcome in our beloved peace loving country. You are very industrious and take risks turning them to opportunities. Stupid kikuyus are just envious that they've been beaten at their own games. Yes, warias sell their wares cheap, and a motherfucking kikuyu want to double their fake products, I say welcome Somalis, we love you so much. My you own the whole of Nairobi and beyond.

Anonymous said...

Chris is a neo-nazi racist who hates Somalis because they are muslims.

Anonymous said...

the only racist is you waria who keeps on saying nywele ngumu. Take your load of shit to mogadishu. The day nairobi was bombed by al qaeda operating cells from somalia, it was nywele ngumu that died, luos and kikuyus included, the two silly communities obssessed with fighting each other even in topics not relevant to them.

Anonymous said...

Madhmadhoo---nywele ngumu.

Abass said...

Well, let us wait and see where it all ends up.

Anonymous said...

Kikuyus and Luos are like hyenas and lions.

The Luo, the lion, will make the kill only for the pack of hyenas, the Kikuyus, to sneak in and snatch the meat from the solitary lion.

That is Kenya in a nutshell.

Anonymous said...

Somali militia set camp in Nbi posh estates

http://www.eastandard.net/InsidePage.php?id=1144018545&cid=289

Anonymous said...

the saddest part of this whole saga is that inspite of our political foolishness as a nation we the ordinary kenyans have welcomed somalis in kenya with open hands.....other parts of the world like SA they get killed......But were the situation to reverse and somili was stable kenya in chaos.....I do not see kenyans entering somali...they would be short on sight......i have lived with somali and Ethiopians.....they don't think much of as daker skinned africans.......we should just let the finish each other off...

Kose. said...

Guys you are sounding like those white trash racits from Alabama, Mississippi with all these hate. I guess if they are that low or bad why all these attention to them??.
Inferiority complex is matter of mind and brains.

Anonymous said...

It is interesting how every topic in this forum ends up being a luo vs kikuyu analogy. Does it mean the two tribes are the only ones that matter in this country?

Anonymous said...

U almost seem like to be in awe of them Kumekucha!!! But then it could be just me.

Anonymous said...

Kenyan Somalis have always been good people to the best of my knowldege. I went to school with a few, granted some of them are kinds racist in wanting to keep to their bloodlines and strongly against intermarriage. However I feel that our corrupt officials have looked the other way for too long and as a result our beloved city ( Nai) and Kenya itself has been another Mogadishu. Hii ' Toa Kitu Kidogo' has totally ruined our country. Not only too many Somali refugees plaging us, but you name it Sudanese etc. In their greed, these officials have been a major part of this problem. Now we have little Mogadishu's popping up everywhere, what has that left for the odinary mwananchi? I dont begudge those who have entered the country legally, but even that is suspect at times becoz it you know someone who knows someone..oh well, you get the picture! If they can give foreigners in US, UK and other countries a hard time and make them jump through hoops to be citizens, why cant we as Kenyans do the same? Why are we not proud of our country and make sure whoever comes in to reside also does so after a long stcrutinizing procedure? As a result with the world as it is, our country now is flooded with such people and arms and its a strain itself on our people and economy.On top of that we have corrupt officials willing to sell any and everythign about this lovely country of ours. I read an article on how celebrities are now eyeing places like Lamu. Malindi has gone to the Italians. Is nothing safe or sacred in this country of ours? We are so ruled by greed and corruption! The beautiful thing about Lamu was its isolation, and how it still kept a part of its history, now a few fat cats what to even destroy that. Am so sad and angry. Will this never end? You have brought enemies and problems right to the shores of our beloved country! Shame on you...Wananchi, its time to say no to this, to stand up to this greedy politicians and officials. enough is enough!

Mtoto wa Kenya!

Anonymous said...

Somalis are not your "brothers" nor do they consider you as such. They are your neighbors; nothing more, nothing less. And even this wasn't always the case (look up the Bantu Expansion). Please try and get this straight. Your actual brothers are in western, central, southern, and southeastern Africa -- not in northeastern Africa. Here are some helpful links on this:

http://evoandproud.blogspot.com/2008/02/origins-of-black-africans.html

http://books.google.ca/books?id=HUBe0wjowLMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=98%25+Chimpanzee#v=onepage&q=Somalis&f=false

Google
 
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