We also invite the contribution of our readers to the efforts of exposing the truth.
Anyone with a genuine story to tell about the subject matter is welcome to send his/her
contribution to Somalia Watch. We shall use all the stories judged to be genuine.
Names of the contributors shall not be used unless SW is instructed otherwise.
Genocide In Galcayo
(USC's assault In the Mudug Region)
Concerned Somalis - March 19, 1991
At 3:00 A.M. on February 26th , 1991, the USC attacked Galcayo, the
capital of the Mudug region in the central rangeland of Somalia. Initially, 1000 highly
trained commandoes infiltrated the city, entered the homes of the civilian population and
slaughtered the women, the children, the disabled and the elderly. Simultaneously,
professional soldiers armed with heavy artillery and rockets bombarded Galcayo
indiscriminately. Recent reports estimated the civilian casualty to number 500 dead ,1000
wounded and 200 hostages. On February 28th 1991, USC London office announced that the city
of Galcayo was " liberated from the remnants of the Siyad Barre's regime."
This assault was directed against the civilian population of the Darood
clan that inhabit the Mudug and Bari regions. USC carefully and meticulously planned the
operation, targeting the elders, the intellectuals and the business men and their families
for elimination prior to the indiscriminate bombardment of the city.
Astonishingly, the attack on Galcayo followed after USC sent a well
known Somali nationalist, Mohamed Abshir Muse ( a prominent Darood) as an envoy to extend
USC's willingness to include the Mudug and the Bari region in a reconciliation talks.
Despite, the reign of terror in Mogadisho against all Darood Civilians, the Mudug and Bari
regions were willing to negotiation with the USC to establish a post Siyad Barre
democratic government and an end to bloodshed and destruction.
Unfortunately, the Galcayo attack was nothing but a genocide attack
based on extermination of Darood clan. The question is what did USC achieve by
attacking Galcayo and why did the USC attack Galcayo?
1. In the Galcayo attack the majority of the dead and the wounded
were women, children and elders over 70 years of age . Some of the elders and their
families who were butchered by the USC are:
Warsame Abdi Xoosh ( 85 years old)
Jamac Bixi (78 years old)
Mohamud Haji Xassan (70 years old)
Ahmed Xashi ( nickname Xudi, over 80 years old
Mohamud Mahad (78 years old)
Mohamud Ali Nur (70 years old)
These elders were prominent men who had opposed the Barre's regime and
had been subjected to frequent detention and abuses.
2. The attached USC communiqué dated
March 3,1991 attests that USC had waged a " large scale offensive aimed at
liberating Mudug and Majerteenia regions" and the communiqué gleefully claims that
USC had " smashed the rest of Faqash ( enemy) forces." This press release
clearly shows USC's motivation in attacking Galcayo.
First of all, Galkayo was liberated from Siyad Barre's forces long
before the United Somali Congress was formed in 1989 and before the civil war reached
Mogadisho. Galcayo is the capital city of the Mudug region which gave rise to the first
popular appraisal and armed insurgency against the Barre regime. The Somali Salvation
Democratic front, (SSDF) formed in 1978, waged a bitter battle against Barre's armed
forces for over a decade in the Mudug and Majarteenia regions. The Barre dictatorship
retaliated against the civilian population with mass massacre, prosecution, indefinite
detention, and summary execution of dissidents. Siyad Barre's professional army were
instructed to destroy the towns, poison the wells and rape the women. At the time Siyad
Barre enjoyed the support of most Somali clans, and this campaign were carried out by army
composed of all clans. In fact, General Galaal,
who is today the commander of the USC militia attacking Kismayo and the southern regions,
in 1980 was the commander of the Barre's army that committed the brutal atrocities in the
Mudug and Majerteenia.
Ironically, Siyad Barre considered the clans that inhabit the Mudug and
Majerteenia as threat to his regime. In a systematic manner, Siyad Barre's regime
destroyed these regions socially and the economically. The main exports of Majerteenia and
Mudug are livestock, hides and skins and frankincense and myrrh. By decree, The export of
frankincense and myrrh, and hides and skins were made illegal and the right to export were
given to Siyad Barre's cronies. The Bossaso port which used to be the main port for the
export of livestock, was inactivated and the trade was diverted to the ports of Mogadisho
The economic war waged against Mudug and Majerteenia region by the Barre's
regime, was coupled with political repression of elders and intellectuals from these
regions. In early 1980's the SSI)F operated radio Kulmis which used to broadcast the
atrocities committed by the Barre's regime, and use to urge the Somalis to unite against
the Barre's dictatorship. Unfortunately, it took a decade before other regions followed
suit and revolted against the dictatorship. By 1989, Mudug and Majerteenia has become in
all aspect independent from Barre's regime and established an administrative
3. The USC communiqué also characterizes SSDF forces lead by Ali
Badiyo and Jamac Ali Jamac as the enemy and claims that the " so called" SSDF
have been defeated. It is incredible that Ali Badiyo and Jamac Ali Jamac who have been in
solitary confinement for 10 and 19 years respectively are now considered enemies while
Mohamed Aidid, Siyad Barre's ambassador to India as late as 1987 is now the"
liberator." According to the USC communiqué, Mohamed Aidid is the " Commander
in Chief of the USC military forces and the de facto leader."
Hence considering the above mentioned facts one can only conclude that
USC attacked Galcayo not to liberate but to consolidate the political power of all of
Somalia into the hands of the USC. The USC is exclusively clan based and can not be
elevated to a national level, unless the aim is to establish another dictatorship.
Unfortunately ,what USC achieved is: a) hundreds of unsuspecting civilians have been
butchered. b) the city of Galcayo had been destroyed. c) the national reconciliation has
been postponed indefinitely. d) USC ignited a war against the civilians in the central
rangeland. e) it has dealt a blow to Somali nationalism. f) it has brought instability
into the central rangeland of Somalia. g) it has transformed the conflict to USC against
SSDF and its allies, In conclusion, the Galcayo attack made the USC a major shareholder in
the record of human rights abuses in Somalia.