Hey, why not quote Toto twice in one evening?
As the World Cup wound down, we learn of carnage in Uganda:
(Reuters) - Somali Islamists said on Monday they had carried out two bomb attacks in Uganda that killed 74 soccer fans watching the World Cup final on television.The world just seems to be getting more and more batshit crazy, doesn't it? Take special note about that AMISOM, we'll get back to it in a moment:
The explosions in the closing moments of Sunday's match ripped through a crowded restaurant and a rugby club in the capital Kampala.
Al Shabaab militants in anarchic Somalia had already threatened to attack Uganda for sending peacekeeping troops to prop up its fragile, Western-backed government.
In Mogadishu, the group threatened more attacks unless Uganda and Burundi withdrew their peacekeepers.
"Al Shabaab was behind the two bomb blasts in Uganda," spokesman Sheikh Ali Mohamud Rage told reporters.
"We are sending a message to Uganda and Burundi: If they do not take out their AMISOM troops from Somalia, blasts will continue, and it will happen in Bujumbura too."
Ethiopian troops invaded Somalia in 2006 to oust an Islamist movement. That sparked the Islamist insurgency that rages today.Already there is talk about demonstrations being held in Uganda to convince the government to remove the peacekeeping force that is currently working in Somalia -- though the 'peacekeepers' are basically holding an area similar to the Upper West Side vs. the rest of the city. And by "holding" we mean "slowly losing".
The blasts came near the end of the match and left shocked survivors reeling among corpses and scattered chairs.
"We were watching soccer here and then, when there were three minutes to the end of the match, an explosion came ... and it was so loud," witness Juma Seiko said at the rugby club.
Heavily armed police cordoned off both blast sites and searched the areas with sniffer dogs while dazed survivors helped to pull the wounded from the wreckage.
Uganda, east Africa's third largest economy, is attracting billions of dollars of foreign investment, especially in its oil sector and government debt markets.
But investors in Uganda and neighboring Kenya, which shares a porous border with Somalia, often say the threat from Islamic militants is a serious concern.
"I certainly think the blasts will make risk appraisals tighter on Uganda. If it does transpire to be al Shabaab, that will certainly raise the concerns of Western investors and also Chinese investors in Uganda," said Alex Vines, Head of Africa Programmes at London's Chatham House think-tank.
The Ugandan shilling fell slightly against the dollar on Monday.
Somali residents of Kampala said they feared a backlash.
"We are in fear and locked in our homes today," said Bisharo Abdi, a Somali refugee. "Some Ugandans are saying 'Kill Somalis'."
Anyways, the peacekeepers from Uganda and Burundi are there as part of AMISOM, an African Union initiative. The whole idea, you may recall, was to have a peacekeeping force not involving either the "evil colonial powers"(TM) or the "Great Satan"(TM) or "the batshit crazy Russians or ChiComs"(TM). This was to be the African Union's great triumph: the nations of the dark continent [as this phrase was typed, a black chick popped up on MSN. -ed] banding together to dig one of their own members out of despair and civil war: the idea being that African nations helping out their communal brothers† would have a greater moral authority to be involved and would give better results.
Unfortunately, the moral authority argument turns out to be less than persuasive: the Islamic Courts Union rejected AMISOM from the get-go, and the ICU later morphed into the very same Al Shabaab that now blows up good Christian
The big danger now will be that Uganda pulls its peacekeeping contingent. If Burundi follows suit, the remaining forces in the region won't even have enough manpower to dig their own graves: of the two largest armies in north Africa Ethiopia has basically pulled out of the country, and Eritrea is more interested in helping the ICU and its splinter factions than helping build a prosperous Somali society.
If the planned demonstrations affect change, then Uganda will be pulled from the list of 'African countries interested in having Somali become a peaceful society'. A list that, quite often, seems to be solely comprised of Uganda.
† For those Third Edge of the Sword readers not fully up on contrasting Afro-Marxist political theory into the real world, when they talk of "communal" the proper word is "tribal", and when they talk of "brothers" the proper word is "enemies". On some level, the Afro-Marxists are aware of this, but on some far shallower level when AMISOM and similar initiatives fail to work out as planned, they are still somewhat surprised.