US embassy cable - 90MOGADISHU10239

NEW OPPOSITION GROUP APPEARS

Identifier: 90MOGADISHU10239
Wikileaks: View 90MOGADISHU10239 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Mogadishu
Created: 1990-11-26 12:50:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PINS PGOV EAGR SO
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
R 261250Z NOV 90
FM AMEMBASSY MOGADISHU
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0817
INFO RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA
AMEMBASSY DJIBOUTI
AMEMBASSY LONDON
AMEMBASSY NAIROBI
AMEMBASSY PARIS
AMEMBASSY ROME
USCENTCOM REAR MACDILL AFB FLA
C O N F I D E N T I A L MOGADISHU 10239 
 
 
E.O. 12356: DECL: OADR 
TAGS: PINS, PGOV, EAGR, SO 
SUBJECT: NEW OPPOSITION GROUP APPEARS 
 
REF: MOGADISHU 9988 
 
1.  CONDFIDENTIAL--ENTIRE TEXT. 
 
2.  SUMMARY.  A NOMALI OPPOSITION GROUP, THE SOMALI 
DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT, HAS BEEN FORMED.  ACCORDING TO USC 
LEADERS, THE SDM GREW OUT OF THE SO-CALLED "MESOPOTAMIAN 
MANIFESTO," WHICH WAS DRAFTED BY RAHANWEYNE FARMERS TO 
PROTEST GSDR POLICIES, AND ESPECIALLY THE EXPROPRIATION 
OF SOUTHERN FARM LAND TO GIVE TO MAREHAN.  THE USC HAS 
TRIED UNSUCCESSFULLY TO PERSUADE THE GOVERNMENTS OF 
EGYPT AND ITALY TO INVITE THE SDM TO THE CAIRO 
ROUNDTABLE TALKS.  END SUMMARY. 
 
3.  A GROUP OF MEMBERS OF THE LARGELY-AGRICULTURAL 
RAHANWEYNE CLAN HAS ISSUED WHAT THEY CALL "THE FIRST 
MANIFESTO OF JUBA AND SHABELLE," NAMED FOR THE AREA OF 
THE TWO RIVERS OF SOUTHERN SOMALIA WHERE THE RAHANWEYNE 
LIVE.  THE DOCUMENT HAS SINCE BECOME KNOWN ALSO AS THE 
"MESOPOTAMIAN MANIFESTO."  POST IS POUCHING AN 
UNOFFICIAL EMBASSY TRANSLATION OF THE DOCUMENT TO AF/E. 
 
4.  THE MANIFESTO DETAILS THE EVILS BROUGHT BY THE 
CURRENT CIVIL WAR, WITH EMPHASIS ON THE PROBLEMS CAUSED 
TO FARMERS.  IN PARTICULAR, THE AUTHORS CRITICIZE THE 
GSDR FOR HAVING EXPROPRIATED FARM LAND TO GIVE IT TO 
MAREHAN, WHO FENCED IT OFF, ALLOWED IT TO LIE FALLOW, 
AND TOOK ADVANTAGE OF THEIR STATUS OF "FARMERS" TO 
QUALIFY FOR LOANS. 
 
5.  THE MANIFESTO CALLS FOR THE FORMATION OF A 
PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT, UNSPECIFIED CQNGES IN THE 
ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURE OF THE REGIONS AND TOWNS OF 
SOMALIA, THE RETURN OF ILLEGALLY-TAKEN STATE PROPERTY 
AND MONEY, AND THE NULLIFICATION OF THE FARM OWNERSHIP 
LAW OF 1975, WHICH THEY HOLD RESPONSIBLE FOR THE FALL 
IN FARM PRODUCTION. 
 
6.  THE AUTHORS REJECT THE USE OF ARMED STRUGGLE TO 
REACH THEIR GOALS.  THEY ALSO DISAPPROVE OF THE NEW 
CONSTITUTION "BECAUSE OF ITS MANY DEFECTS," WHICH THEY 
DO NOT ENUMERATE.  THEY CALL FOR A CONFERENCE TO BE 
CONVENED TO PREPARE A NEW CONSTITUTION. 
 
7.  AT A LUNCHEON WITH LEADERS OF THE ABGAL/MURUSADE 
WING OF THE UNITED SOMALI CONGRESS (USC) ON NOVEMBER 
25, THE AMBASSADOR WAS TOLD THAT THE DRAFTERS OF THE 
MESOPOTAMIAN MANIFESTO HAD FORMED AN OPPOSITION GROUP 
CALLED THE SOMALI DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT, AND THAT THE 
USC HAD--UNSUCCESSFULLY, SO FAR--ASKED THE GOVERNMENTS 
OF EGYPT AND ITALY TO INVITE THE SDM TO THE CAIRO 
ROUNDTABLE TALKS. 
 
8.  COMMENT.  RESENTMENT OVER MAREHAN EXPROPRIATIONS OF 
LAND, MOST OF WHICH OCCURRED YEARS AGO, HAS BEEN 
INCREASING.  AS REPORTED REFTEL, MEMBERS OF A SMALL 
DIR SUB-CLAN, THE BIO-MA'AL HAVE RECENTLY TAKEN UP ARMS 
AGAINST MAREHAN LAND OWNERS IN THE AREA SOUTH OF 
MOGADISHU. 
 
9.  IT IS NUT SURPRISING THAT THE SDM SHOULD BE 
SUPPORTED BY THE RELATIVELY PACIFIC ABGAL/MURUSADE 
WING OF THE USC.  BOTH GROUPS CALL FOR THE FORMATION OF 
A PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT AND THE DRAFTING OF A NEW 
CONSTITUTION, ALTHOUGH THE ABGAL/MURUSADE DO NOT REJECT 
THE CURRENT ONE OUTRIGHT.  NEITHER USC WING REJECTS 
ARMED OPPOSITION TO THE GSDR, OF COURSE, BUT THE ABGAL/ 
MURUSADE ARE CLOSE TO THE MANIFESTO GROUP, WHICH 
FAVORS PEACEFUL NEGOTIATION.  END COMMENT. 
 
 
BISHOP 

Latest source of this page is cablebrowser-2, released 2011-10-04