Me against My Brother: At War in Somalia, Sudan, and Rwanda: A Journalist Reports from the Battlefields of Africa

By Scott Peterson | Go to book overview

FIVE

“CAMP OF THE MURDERERS”

I never saw a Somali who showed any fear of death, which, impressive though it sounds, carries with it the chill of pitilessness and ferocity as well. If you have no fear of death you have none of anybody else's death either.

-Gerald Hanley, Warriors

The muezzin called to prayer, his high-pitched song of Islamic faith reaching out at every dawn from mosque after mosque, creating an echoing holy web between tall white-washed minarets that drew Somalis for their religious rituals. The violence of the streets was forgotten, if briefly, during this exercise of the spirit; left at the mosque entrance with the shoes were the anxieties and responsibilities of feud and injustice, of revenge as a virtue. Prayers were to Allah, their god, for protection.

And each morning in early 1993, under the same bright blue sky, UN troops from Pakistan answered a similar call to prayer at their Mogadishu base. Every day, before lacing up their black military boots, before click-clacking brass-encased rounds into the chambers of their assault rifles and strapping on their blue helmets, these “peacekeepers” also asked their god-the same Allah-to protect them.

This common Islamic bond between Somalis and Pakistanis was considered by both sides to contribute to a special rapport in the first weeks after US forces handed over to the UN on 4 May 1993. As part of Unosom II, the Pakistanis were put in charge of Mogadishu. They greeted their Somali brethren in Muslim fashion, as-Salaam Alaykum, “peace be with you.”

At the handing over ceremony, a group of Somali schoolchildren, standing shoulder to bony shoulder in new red T-

-71-

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Me against My Brother: At War in Somalia, Sudan, and Rwanda: A Journalist Reports from the Battlefields of Africa
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Somalia 1a
  • Sudan 1g
  • Rwanda 1k
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Introduction xi
  • Maps xxiii
  • Part I - Somalia 1
  • One - Laws of War 3
  • Two - "City of the Insane" 19
  • Three - A Land Forgotten by God 37
  • Four - “club Skinny-Dancers Wanted” 51
  • Five - “camp of the Murderers” 71
  • Six - The Fugitive 93
  • Seven - Bloody Monday 117
  • Eight - Mission Impossible 137
  • Nine - Back to Zero 157
  • Part II - Sudan 171
  • Ten - Divided by God 173
  • Eleven - War of the Cross 197
  • Twelve - The False Messiah 217
  • Thirteen - Darwin Deceived 229
  • Part III - Rwanda 245
  • Fourteen - A Holocaust 247
  • Fifteen - “dreadful Note of Preparation” 267
  • Sixteen - Genocide Denied 289
  • Seventeen - In Perpetuum 303
  • Epilogue 323
  • Notes 329
  • Index 351
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