UN: Somalia on the Brink of Famine

Photo: Getty Images [via The Guardian]

The Facts

  • On Mon., the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) warned that the south-central region of Somalia will likely fall into famine between Oct. and Dec. of this year.

  • Martin Griffiths, the OCHA's Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordination, declared that "famine is at the door," as Somalia faces a deadly and historic drought that has forced hundreds of thousands from their homes.

The Spin

Establishment-critical narrative

Aid workers are terrified of either being kidnapped or killed in the conflict, or prosecuted for aiding and abetting terrorism if they cooperate with al-Shabaab in order to operate in areas they control - something that will cost innocent Somali lives. It's time that the world starts talking to al-Shabab and makes clear that humanitarian and charity workers won't be prosecuted for working with the militants who have widespread grassroots support in parts of Somalia.

Pro-establishment narrative

Al-Shabbab are a ruthless terrorist organisation dedicated to destroying Somalia, its people, and religion. It's time to declare an "all-out war" against them which will be sustained until every single region they control is liberated. Somalia only has one legitimate and internationally recognized government - these authorities cannot rest until al-Shabaab is destroyed.

Nerd narrative

There is a 50% chance that at least 10 countries will formally recognize Somaliland as an independent state by the end of Jan., 2055, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

Establishment split



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