When you take a brief look at the recent news on Somalia, you quickly realize that most of it is about terrorism. News sites are filled with headlines such as "Bomb attack in Somalia," "Suicide attack in Somalia," "Explosion in Mogadishu." The main perpetrator of these incidents is the Al-Shabaab organization, the name of which is now almost synonymous with Somalia and which re-emerges every time after suffering casualties that are called "unrecoverable" and continue their bloodshed.
So much so that even the process that started with the parliamentary elections in October and concluded with the election of a new president in February and the new government's receiving of a vote of confidence in March, remains in the shadow of terrorism. From senior government officials and high-ranking military officers to civilian people, a large number of people lost their lives during the attacks. Moreover, all this took place after the "neutralization of about 150 militants in an organization camp with a major air strike" as Pentagon announced about a year ago.
Despite tens of thousands of African Union troops (AMISOM) located on Somali soil to provide security, air strikes by the United States, the military operations of neighboring countries like Kenya, Ethiopia, and many of their leaders and combatants dead, not to mention the lands they lost, the Al-Shabab organization is still putting up resistance. They continue carrying out suicide bombings, acts of violence and assassinations almost everywhere in the country with cruelty. At the same time, this situation is a brief summary of the past ten years.
Hotels, market places, government agencies, military bases, public transportation vehicles, in short, almost everywhere can be a target for this bloody terrorist organization, Al-Shabab. Additionally, as a new development, they have increased their attacks in the northern part of the country. Even though they couldn't prevent elections and the establishment of a government, they continue their war against Somali and its neighbors, which they call "enemies of Islam." The price of this savage terrorism is paid by the innocent people of Somali who already live among hunger, drought and epidemic diseases.
Another noteworthy issue in the recent times is the organization's use of more advanced attack strategies and high-tech weapons. This shows that the organization is aided and supported by the deep powers that aim to oppress Muslims. Due to these heavy weapons, the capital Mogadishu is filled with ruined buildings and the walls and roads are riddled with holes. The people used in these attacks are usually very young militants; more precisely, young people not only from Somalia, but also from East Africa and Western countries, who are then subjected to an ideological and military education. Violence, bloodshed, killing and dying are taught to these young people as a so-called method of claiming their rights. Violence, however, can never be a way of claiming a right. Violence always causes more violence, which in turn leads to more bloodshed.
The strategic partnership between Al-Shabaab and Yemeni Al-Qaeda (AQAP) is also noteworthy. Sharing a common radical ideology, there is cooperation between these two groups in terms of knowledge, experience and technology sharing for a while now. They provide weapons, soldiers and educational support to each other. This cooperation strengthens Al-Shabaab and allows them to carry out bloody attacks beyond the borders of Somalia. According to some sources, the recent ban on laptop and tablet computers and other electronic devices on flights was issued against possible attacks from these organizations.
There is no doubt that these two organizations share a trait which makes them so cruel and twisted, and which cannot be fought with bombs and weapons: Their strict, bigoted and radical ideology. In fact, this ideology is the secret behind their resistance. It is for this reason that the successes achieved by military actions remain only temporary.
Al-Shabaab, like other similar radical organizations, carry out their bloody attacks for the sake of a supposedly "holy purpose and a supreme ideal," for the sake of a heretical and false ideology that they think is religion. For the sake of an ideology that has no connection to the Qur’an, has no place in the Qur’anic Islam, and is composed of superstitions, fictitious hadiths and bigoted beliefs. The militants are fighting and shedding blood because they think they are right. They believe that religion requires them to act in this way but religion never calls for bloodshed. Religion is the way to invite people to goodness with kind words.
The only way to solve the problem for good is to intellectually destroy this bigotry which has emerged in the place of religion, this ideology which turns young people into terrorists. That is because the real problem is not the terrorists, but the radical ideology in their brains. What needs to be done is to explain true Islam to them in order to clear away the false beliefs from the minds; to call them to the Islam explained in the Qur’an, which never allows for hatred, resentment, anger, blood and terror to exist, which advices love, peace and friendship for all mankind. Radical terror cannot be eliminated with weapons or bombs, but only with the Qur’an; Somalia and East Africa can only achieve peace, comfort and stability in this way.
Adnan Oktar's piece in American Herald Tribune: