Since 1902

Quit the blame game on innocent Somalis.

Islam is a religion that abhors violence in all it's forms. Indeed the word Islam means peace,or may peace be upon you.

 The primary responsibility of any state is and should be to secure security for its population, regardles of whether they are refugees or foreigners.Everytime, there is violence, Somalis have borne it all-the sneering, reclimination, veiled threats, suspicion, we have seen it all-but we have developed thick skin.

We share collective responsibility with other Kenyans, but we have been victims as well of the horrendous bloodletting.A flip through our daily newspapers will bear me out. If the daily screaming headline on north eastern is not about disease, then it would invariably involve insecurity-whether its al shabab incursion, border disputes. We have borne the brunt of it all.

We are a people facing a sort of an identity crisis. We are always unseemingly tied to everything that is dysfunctional with our people. Not to mention,our people in Garissa, Mandera, wajir and other north eastern towns have become literally a punching bag for al shabab and the security services whenever there is an incident.

I dare say, the onus on everybody especially on the Government should be to win the hearts of the mostly innocent Somali population.

If KDF could win the hearts of the desolate populations of areas such as Afmadhow, Qoqani and other areas which were once considered al shabab strongholds, why can't it not win the hearts of the average somali man on the street?

Everytime there is an attack, people who should volunteer information cower away in silence.This though can be remedied. But it needs bold action, the Government needs to drop its all size fits all mentality when it comes to Kenyan Somalis. The concerned agencies need to cultivate and nurture trust, and trust as we have seen is a very tenous commodity. It gravitates and changes according to the situation,once lost, it's hard to regain.

I read the comments posted on most newspapers and what comes out is crystal clear-the vile abuse, sheer banality of the comments directed at us.This is exactly the kind of narrative that feeds into and provides lush fodder to the recruiting agencies of the same outfit we are purpotedly fighting. A faceless entity, that is so ravenous in it's appetite that it has and continues to consume us-yes-us Kenyan Somalis.

Let's stop the fingerpointing, the blame game or we will be swallowed in a dangerous miasma of self resignation and defeat and surely we do not want to hand this. I believe we will ultimately heal, but that will start by securing our wounds, by thinking more about inclusiveness, by remembering that we're all victims and that there are no winners. It has never been Somalis against all others, never will be and should never be allowed to mutate to anything that has a resemblance to that. I hope the great and good people of Kenya will prove me right.

photo:indianexpress.com