Somaliland Recognition & Western Gay Activists
Abdikarim Ali Xandule
For the past 16 years the wily and dedicated proponents of “Somaliland” recognition as a State recruited a wide array of people to help them achieve their illusory goal. They recruited academics from the US and South Africa, Washington-based Lobbyists, renegade African Parliamentarians, and foreign spouses of “Somaliland” women.
All these efforts came to a dead end when, on March 22, 2007, the British Government categorically rejected a mass appeal and a Petition that “Somaliland” be recognized as a separate State. The British were their last hope after a series of setbacks and humiliations in the African Union, the UN, the Arab League, and elsewhere in the international diplomatic arena.
But driven by blind pursuit for dismemberment of the country, Somalia’s secessionists will stop at nothing. It recently came to light that they recruited key leaders in the Gay community in the UK and Canada to wage a campaign in support of their project. This is in spite of the fact that homosexuality, the life style modus operandi of the international Gay movement, is against the basic tenet of Islam and equally against fundamental teachings of Somali culture.
A Somaliland advocate from the Toronto Gay Community
As the first salvo of this unholy joint campaign, a Mr. Tyler Stiem, writes a flattering warm article about the “Toronto Somalilander Community”. In his profiling “the Toronto Somalilander community”, which he treats as distinct from the “Toronto Somali Community” he interviews and quotes among others a local “Somalilander” psychiatrist: a Dr Abdishakur Jowhar, whom I was told by friends in Toronto is a Born-again Somalilander from a respectable religious Awdalite family, who since the election of Dahir Riyale, a fellow Gadabuursi, to the “Somaliland’ presidency, became a loud and sometimes embarrassing advocate of Somaliland recognition as a separate State.
As reported by Mr. Stiem, in the company of a young Somalilander he goes on a leisurely stroll in a Somali Mall, Suuqa Ceel-Gaab, and refers in the article to seeing “a mix of Somali and Somalilander-run shops”. I wonder how one can distinguish between a “Somali” and a “Somalilander” businessman/woman who owns a unit in that Mall.
Through further cyber sifting it came to light that Mr. Stiem’s advocacy for Somaliland recognition is not confined to this article. Mr. Stiems was an honoured guest of SOPRI’s , a US-based Somaliland Think Thank, annual international conference held in Washington in September 2006.
On checking the background of Mr. Tyler Stiem  I was astonished that he currently lives in Hargeisa . What a Canadian Gay Activists is doing in a relatively desolate Somali city? According to sources close to the secessionist movement he was recruited by Faisal Warrabe, a well-known Opposition Leader, while on a visit to Toronto in 2005. Upon further enquiry
on what he does in Hargeisa, I was told he is a guest of Mr. Warrabe, who frequently alternates between Somaliland and Finland where his wife and children reside. Mr. Stiem, according to sources in Hargeisa, also advises Mr. Warrabe’s party, the Justice and Welfare Party (UCID), on the burning issue of Somaliland recognition as an independent State.
Another Gay Somaliland Recruit from the UK
Upon first coming across the above-mentioned subtle advocacy of Somaliland recognition by Mr. Tyler Stiem, my friends and I shrug it off as a one time anomaly that a Western journalist, who happen to be Gay, will lobby for the recognition of Somaliland. However, another jolt was in the wait for us. It seems there is a troubling pattern.
Few days later we read a blunt bipartisan Guardian article with the loaded title Africa’s Success Story , written by a Peter Tatchell , repeating verbatim, the usual secessionists’ trade-mark propaganda that Somaliland, unlike their neighbors in the South, is stable with thriving parliamentary democracy, Freedom of the Press, and an exemplary human rights record, and that the world should not ignore this unique African ‘success story’. Curious of the identity and background of this British Knight coming so strongly for Somaliland recognition, we checked the Internet for clues.
Mr. Peter Tatchell is a leading activist and lobbyists for Gay Rights worldwide. Check out his website and you will come across the variety of Gay and Lesbian causes he fervently defends: from the UK to Algeria.
From the main stream Somali Muslim perspective homosexuality is seen as immoral and a blunt contravention of Islam and traditional Somali culture. Having said that, an individual breach of moral teachings is between that individual and his Creator. However, when extremist groups within a Muslim Community recruits non-Muslims, who champion non-Islamic life styles, to promote a Somali constituency project (Somaliland Recognition) whose national symbols include a flag with Quranic verses, it is appropriate to raise the red flag on this affront and insult to the Somali people.
The people of Somaliland deserves to know the unIslamic UnSomali manner in which their name is used or misused by some diasporas-based fringe elements who are encouraged and coached by extremist clan chauvinist politicians, such as Faisal Warrabe of the UCID party. It seems this misguided group will do everything to promote a divisive pipedream project that sure, if realized, will bring conflict and mayhem for the long suffering people of the Somali Republic and in the process de-stabilize the relatively peaceful northern regions of the country.
By Abdikarim Ali Xandule