Somalia: Clan-blind and Educated Younger Generations to Save a Nation in Ruins

Published: November 30, 2015

DAAROOD – DIGIL & MIRIFLE – DIR – HAWIYE – JAREER WEYNE and equally all the REST, a chthonic deity often with ferocious and destructive potential. Let’s save and protect our younger and future generations from its ravages.
By Sharmarke Samatar

Oh. How I hate your generation, dad. You failed Somalia and made it a failed state.
My daughter who is reading social anthropology in London.

It is her antagonistic and profound feeling towards the Somalis who are in their 50s, 60s and older. Why does she feel this way? Why this hatred? Why this bitterness?
Before her first year in university, studying Sociology/anthropology in London, she had visited Somalia quite few times – when she was in her secondary school and also in primary. She had fallen in love with the people, the wildlife, the environment, and the culture and the food.
Seeing her parent’s country of origin which has an enormous potential and being destroyed by clan bigotry, clan hatred and clan intolerance, she cannot suppress or conceal her inner feeling and rational indignation towards those she thinks are responsible for the internecine wars across the whole country for over a quarter of a century – the generations during and right after independence.
Every time she comes across a photo of the landscape of Somalia, its pristine coastal line, its meandering rivers with the lush green and luxuriant vegetation, and its golden savannah bushes she would utter a statement of despondency and dejection. She would then equate the beauty, the weather and marvels of Somalia with many various regions of the word; quite incomparable to many countries in the world. Her anger and frustration tend to peak because my sole response is to just listen and agree with her and accept her ultimate verdict. “You, the older generations, did destroy my Somalia with your clannish mentalities.”
However, she is very hopeful and relentlessly optimistic. She is adamant that her generation and future generations, in the Diaspora and in Somalia, would definitely revive and reclaim this nation that “your older generations have been perpetuating its national suicide for so long. We shall turn over a new leaf.”
The lifeline for Somalia is in these younger generations only if they are clan-blind and patriotic. Many of them are educated in the developed world as well as in the country. Many have not been intoxicated with the clan venom that older generations had been propagating vociferously and quietly, in public and private.
SYLbilowBeing free from clan sentimentality and clan irrationality, these younger generations could be like the ones in 1940s of Somalia. Those youth were barely in their 20s with very little formal education and training and yet succeeded in uniting the whole Somali speaking nations in the Horn of Africa to rally for independence. The dictum on their membership ID cards stated that “Members of this organisation do NOT belong to any clan or Dariiqa[1].”
It would be extremely sad and hopeless if these younger generations of Somalis born in 21st century, wherever they may be, foster clan animosity that their forbearers were engaged when more than one fifth of the Somali population had perished and/or became displaced and dispersed all over the world.
That older Somali generations should learn from their past mistakes and endeavour not to indoctrinate, contaminate and pollute future generations with the evils of clan belonging can pave the way for a united Somalia with a population eager to participate its peace and state building. The result could be clan-blind generations ready to rebuild this nation with a single and solid identity – a Somali.
[1] Religious sect

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