by Cem ErtÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¼r
Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012 at 5:34 AM
After playing a leading role in the occupation of Kosovo (1999), Sierra Leone (2000), Afghanistan (2001), Iraq (2003) and Libya (2011); Britain is now simultaneously threatening Iran, Syria and Somalia with war.
‘War games’ drawn up for air raids on pirates and
Nick Hopkins and Richard Norton-Taylor, The Guardian, 22 February 2012
concern about the twin threats posed by pirates and Islamic insurgents
operating in Somalia has led Britain and other EU nations to consider
the feasibility of air strikes against their logistical hubs and
training camps, the Guardian has been told. [...]
According to sources, the international coalition that has been
spearheading the fight against the pirates drew up contingency plans in
the summer of 2010, and again last year, for what was termed "over the
beach" air strikes against Somali camps.
The UK has also considered plans for attacking targets in places where
al-Shabaab and the pirates appear to co-exist, particularly in southern
It is believed the British, Dutch, French and Americans would be the
most likely to support military action, if the need arose.
The US is already taking great interest in Somalia and has begun
missile strikes from unmanned drones against members of al-Shabaab,
which is said to have growing links with al-Qaida affiliates in other
countries, and is attempting to "export" violence to other countries in
The group claimed responsibility for twin bombings in Uganda two years
ago that killed 74 people as they were watching coverage of the World
Cup in South Africa. In recent months statements said to have come from
the group's leaders have proclaimed greater links with al-Qaida's goals
of global jihad.
Up to 200 foreigners, including 40 Britons, are know to have travelled
to Somalia in the past six years seeking al-Shabaab's training camps,
in the same way that extremists went to Afghanistan and Pakistan in the
1990s. Some have been caught and are facing trial in the region, but
intelligence agencies say it is only a matter of time before one of
them attempts to bring terror back to their homeland.
With words that seemed to echo the reasons for invading Afghanistan,
Cameron recently said that Somalia was a "failed state that directly
threatens British interests".
The head of the British military, General Sir David Richards, also
appeared to hint at the potential for military action in a speech
shortly before Christmas. "Treating the causes of instability and
terrorism at source is better and cheaper than dealing with the
consequences, as Somalia's piracy demonstrates," he said.
of the print edition
Somalia, […] there are a significant number of UK residents
training in Al Shabaab camps to fight in the insurgency there. Al
Shabaab, an Islamist militia in Somalia, is closely aligned with Al
Qaida and Somalia shows many of the characteristics that made
Afghanistan so dangerous as a seedbed for terrorism in the period
before the fall of the Taleban. […]
We need to do whatever we can to stop people from this country becoming
involved in terrorism and murder in Somalia, but beyond that I am
concerned that it is only a matter of time before we see terrorism on
our streets inspired by those who are today fighting alongside Al
of MI5 Jonathan Evans, speech at the Worshipful Company of
Security Professionals, London, 16 September 2010]
 Address at the Worshipful
Company of Security Professionals by the Director General of the
Security Service, Jonathan Evans
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