Saturday, May 17, 2008

Somaliland overrides 17 years of underestimation
By Bashir Goth

Come 15th of May and they have sworn on hell breaking lose; the naysayers. They trumpeted, with weird satisfaction, the imminent death of the Somaliland’s dream; the doom prophets. They misjudged our people’s wisdom, derided our nation’s resolve and underestimated their history; hired spin doctors. They used all kinds of scare tactics: tribal cards, myopic and jaundiced geopolitical theories, and marshaled all slander expletives in the book; the fifth columnists. They tried to rubbish our peace and stability and our homegrown democratic process as a child’s play before ensuing tantrums; blog pundits. They mistook our political debates as gathering death clouds over our skies; the hate mongers. They predicted doom, death and disarray; all Somaliland enemies.

But to their great disappointment 15th of May has come and gone and they saw Somaliland still standing as peaceful as ever, as stable as ever, as resolved as ever, as ambitious as ever and as wise as ever to put their house in order and to forge ahead with even greater tenacity to sustain their democracy, strengthen their institutions and maintain the international image they have earned as “Africa’s Best Kept Secret.”

With their government, their opposition leaders, their elders and the whole people, Somaliland has again proved wrong those who misread its democratic debate as political crisis and sang for the collapse of what they had sworn to be another myth of a much hyped bubble of an African success story.

Somaliland has once more set a brilliant example of how a small and unrecognized African country can resolve its conflicts; maintain its peace and stability and hold a robust democratic debate with all its labor pains without any foreign help, without Security Council decisions, without foreign mediation efforts, without regional reconciliation conferences and without expensive peacekeeping forces.

Read more Washington Post/PostGlobal.
The Affordable Chinese
By Bashir Goth
China makes into way to the hearts and minds of developing countries by building roads, sports stadiums, national theatres and water wells. Chinese businessmen come to Africa, for example, with a spade, hammer and cash in one hand and their cheap merchandise and business deals in the other. Mention America, and people will immediately think of its firepower; mention China, and people will point at everything they use in their homes, offices and farms.

Read More in Washington Post/PostGlobal.