Category Archives: Somali

My Summer Smoothie Recipe!

 As the summer weather creeps in I have a recipe for a smoothie that I think everyone can enjoy! It’s refreshing, but not for those who are afraid of a little spice! It includes cantaloupe, honey, milk, yogurt, and cardamom.

I’m sure most readers of my blog are familiar with heyl (cardomom), for those of you who aren’t it’s a seed that most Arabs, East and North Africans, and South Asians use with tea or coffee and sometimes dessert!

For this smoothie depending on your taste you can grind the cardamom seeds for more impact or just drop in the seeds. Mind you, might get seeds in your drink that way. For someone who has never had cardamom seeds it might be a bit overwhelming.

Blend cantaloupe, cardamom, honey, milk, and yogurt for about 3 minutes and voila you have a tasty treat!

Be sure to take seeds out of the cantaloupe when cut into. And you can save whatever you don’t use in your fridge.



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Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama at the debate in Cleveland, Ohio on Feb. 26With two presidential candidates so close that the lead between competitors is virtually indeterminable….I had to ask myself what could make the difference between winning over Ohio and not?

I visited this website: and got substantial information on what just might make a difference.

Ohio is home to over 45,000 Somalis, and 15 percent of these Somalis have become United States citizens.  I wonder how many of these citizens are registered to vote, and how many will, indeed vote?

I urge all Somalian and Djiboutian citizens to get out there this season and vote!

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Somali Women and Mirage Sellers

Habone Djama Hassan article previously published at

Somali Woman

I am a Somali woman. I am from a tribe: the one I belong to. But that does not make me “tribalist”; I am also the sister to one tribe, cousin to another, mother to a different, and spouse of one more.

The Somali women factor

There was a time that we all believed in the greater Somalia. However the dream is shattered today beyond any possible reparation. Men have killed, looted and have done something unbelievable to the once existing Somali tradition.

Complicity of women

Men raped their own mothers, sisters, daughters and common wealth to all Somali men. We, as women are not innocent of these hideous crimes. We incited those crimes. We asked of our men to revenge us to other women. We did and still doing the King Kong gesture of slapping our chest and citing past clannish grandfathers as heroes. We have pushed and still pushing our beloved men afar. And we did get what we preached, as the old saying goes: women’s will is God’s will. Somali women and men are the origin of their own actions.

The mirage sellers

We tried to reunite the five Somali state in one. One must say we were fooling ourselves. We could not even manage two. But the sad part is even today, many educated men, looking for their interests, want us to buy the old agenda of the Greater Somalia, but are they suffering some kind unnamed undiscovered disease?

The sole foundation of the Greater Somalia was founded on the premise that we should reunite all the Somali territories in one. Ethiopia, Kenya and any other nation that will prevent us was our enemy. We are today competing for the attention of our erstwhile historical enemy, who is present everywhere today in the entire five Somalis region. In Djibouti they are governing them by their economy, in Somaliland they lured them for hope of recognition, and Somalia, shameless, they are invited to kill, rape and destroy their own kind so they can have the upper hand. And it is those vultures that are telling us what to do for our nation?

Reality check

Let’s not become amnesiac! I said that if we have better scores separate than united, then let be so! Djibouti refused the merger with Somaliland and Somalia. And see where they are today…. Sine their separation from Somalia, Somaliland even though unrecognized is not doing badly either. To this latter one, lot is to be done. Unemployment is high, the infrastructures is almost nonexistent. And it needs to secure its borders, but it is doing relatively well.

We are not the only homogeneous nation. We should take the eighteen Arab states as an example. They share, like us; same language, tradition and religion. Each nation kept has its identity, and, lives in harmony with their bothers. And at time of pain, they are all there for each other unlike Djibouti serving her own agenda in the Somali issue.

Setting the records straight

Every Southern Somali and the international community talked about the sixteen years of war, but unlike the other parts of Somalia, the Somalilanders struggle started in 1978, and, not 1991. The only memories of the generations late seventies and until the liberation they experienced fear and genocide perpetrated on their people. They suffered killings, jail, rape, and living in squalid refugee camps in Ethiopia.

The only decent life they ever had is the true one of Somaliland. Do they really believe that they will make the same mistake as their fathers sacrificed their country and people for a reverie? The few old men from Somaliland hallucinating still from a marvelous dream of the Five Somali are fading. And there is absolutely nobody to keep that torch unlighted in this northern part of the five Somali.

So what are the so-called Unionist will do now: call on the Ethiopian to come and unite us all five region by force? And then what is the Ethiopian gaining from that strong union? Let us not be ridiculous!

The question is very simple: What do we really want? A fantasy Somali State or two twin brotherly states that can help each other at times of need?

As women, we are tired to see our kids dying by the thousand! Killed by the bullets of their arch enemies, defenseless in their own territories, vanishing of hunger while their soil is rich. Dying of disease while their doctors are spread throughout the globe. Each Somali life lost is a terrible agony for every Somali woman, that cares, not matter under which flag they are.


Filed under 3arabi, Africa, Clans, Colonialism, Culture, Current Events, Djibouti, Horn of Africa, Life, News, Somali, Somalia, Thoughts, World

Visit My New Page: Beauty 101

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Destination Europe…

Having a Djiboutian and Somali background means I am not foreign to the idea of migration.

Subsequently, I have been fascinated by this article that points out clearly where and why Africans migrate to Europe. This article is very informative.


Thousands of Africans try to make the journey to Europe each year as illegal migrants – risking people smugglers, deserts, sea crossings and the possibility of being sent home, all for the dream of a better life.

Economic attraction

Routes to Europe

Destination Spain

Immigrants in Europe

Sending money home


GDP comparison


Life expectancy: 80 years
Population growth: 0.6%
School enrolment, primary: 98.9%
HIV prevalence (aged 15-49): 0.3%
Internet users (per 1,000 people): 439.4
Time to start a business: 26.9 days


Life expectancy: 47 years
Population growth: 2.3%
School enrolment, primary: 65.7%
HIV prevalence (aged 15-49): 5.8%
Internet users (per 1,000 people): 29
Time to start a business: 61.5 daysSource: World Bank 2005


Key routes

The main aim of migrants is to reach European soil – be it mainland Europe or the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla or islands in the Atlantic and Mediterranean.

The main departure points are:

  • West coast of Africa: Northern Mauritania, Western Sahara and southern Morocco from where most head for the Canary Islands.
  • Northern Morocco to cross into Ceuta and Melilla or cross the straits to Spain.
  • Tunisia and Libya for boats heading for Italy’s island of Lampedusa, Sicily and Malta.But first the migrants must cross great distances.
    The main routes are:


    BY SEA:

    Africa to Canary Islands:
    1,000-1,500 euros

    North Morocco to Spain:
    1,000 euros

    Libya to Italy:
    1,500-2,000 euros

    BY LAND:

    Sub-Sahara to Morocco:
    1,000-2,000 euros

    Through Mali: 1,000 euros

    Across Sahara:
    1,700-3,400 euros


    South Asia to Africa to Europe: 9,000-16,000 euros

    Source: UN

    Route: West African coast
    Destination: Canary Islands
    Via: Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, The Gambia, Mauritania and Western Sahara to northern coast of Morocco
    Dangers: sea crossing to Canaries
    Who: Mainly migrants from these countries

    Route: Western Sahara
    Destination: Canary Islands
    Via: Mali, Mauritania, Western Sahara or southern Morocco
    Dangers: Crossing Sahara, guerrillas
    Who: Mainly migrants from Ivory Coast, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Togo and Benin

    Route: Central Sahara
    Destinations: Canary Islands, Spain, Italy
    Via: Niger, northern Mauritania, Western Sahara or southern Morocco; northern Morocco; Tunisia or Libya
    Dangers: Crossing desert and sea
    Who: Mainly migrants from countries south of Niger, via Cameroon and Nigeria

    Route: Eastern Sahara
    Destinations: Lampedusa, Sicily, and Malta
    Via: Tunisia and Libya
    Dangers: Desert and sea crossing
    Who: Mainly migrants from Sub-Sahara Africa

    Route: Horn of Africa to Libya
    Destinations: Lampedusa, Sicily, and Malta
    Via: Sudan
    Dangers: Desert and sea crossing
    Who: Mainly from Somalia and Ethiopia


    Migrants in Spain

    As the closest European country to the African continent, Spain is on the frontline for illegal migration. From there, migrants often make their way to other European countries.

    Spain’s enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla in northern Morocco are initial targets for many migrants. Once detained they can be expelled, repatriated or sent to mainland Spain, where many are reported to be released, pending expulsion.

    The enclaves’ authorities were forced to double the size of border fences around the coastal territories in 2005 when hundreds of migrants attempted to scale the defences. Two migrants were shot dead by a Moroccan guard.

    For years, people have risked crossing the sea to get to mainland Spain, but in 2006 there was a closer focus on its islands – thousands headed for the Canary Islands in former African fishing boats, prompting an increase in joint “Frontex” patrol operations by Spain, the EU and African nations. But tightening security at one departure point simply seems to shift it elsewhere.

  • Origin

    The latest report on migration by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) says African migration to developed countries is marginal in relation to overall flows.

    The majority of African migrants living overseas are in Europe – about 4.6m compared with 890,000 in the US, according to the International Organization for Migration. But the Migration Policy Institute believes there are between seven and eight million irregular African immigrants living in the EU – the actual number changing depending on regularisation schemes in the member states.

    About two-thirds of Africans in Europe are from north Africa (Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia). An increasing number are travelling from Sub-Saharan Africa, mainly heading for the former colonial powers of France, England, Germany and Italy.

    Most Sub-Saharan migrants are from West Africa – Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal, in particular.

    About 22,016 people reached Italy by boat in 2006, down slightly from 2005. But the sea crossings are not without their dangers – it is thought hundreds die attempting to reach Europe. In June this year, 24 Africans drowned after a dinghy capsized south of Malta.



    Having migrated, many migrants send money home to family they have left behind. Billions of dollars each year is sent back to Africa from the diaspora around the world – in some cases making up a sizeable chunk of the home country’s GDP.


    Filed under Africa, Current Events, Diaspora, Horn of Africa, Life, London, Media, News, Somali, Somalia, Thoughts, Traveling, World

    Djibouti Celebrates Mass Wedding


    Djibouti wedding couples

    All expenses, including the dresses, were paid for

    Thirty Djiboutian couples, chosen from hundreds of people who replied to an advert offering a free wedding, have been married in the capital, Djibouti.The BBC’s Abdirahman Koronto says Djibouti’s first mass wedding has been the talk of the town.

    An Arab businessman offered the all-costs paid nuptials as the former French colony celebrated its 30th anniversary of independence this week.

     His spokesman said it took two months to whittle down the applicants.

    I am very excited, and I hope to have sons and daughters from my marriage

    Bride Amina Omar Aden

    He told the BBC that his boss, Dubai businessman Sheikh Ibrahim Said Ahmed Loita, had advertised on television, radio and newspapers to find the perfect candidates.

    Osman Abukar Omar said they had to answer certain criteria:

    • The couple had to be Djiboutian
    • It had to be a love match
    • One of them had to have a job
    • They had to demonstrate they had enough money to bring up a young family.

    Late night dancing

    More than 600 guests attended the lavish party at a five-star hotel on the Red Sea coast.

    Among the guests were the president and first lady.

    Djibouti wedding couples

    Many poor Djiboutians find it difficult to afford weddings

    Our correspondent says the dancing went on till the early hours of Friday morning.

    “I am very excited, and I hope to have sons and daughters from my marriage,” Amina Omar Aden, one of the 30 brides all dressed in white gowns, said.

    “I am very happy, because it is the 30th anniversary of our country and we are marrying. Ibrahim Loita has helped us so much,” Ibrahim Dhaban Hufane a bridegroom from the Arte region told the BBC.

    Mr Loita paid for all the festivities, including the clothes, hotel party and accommodation and the dowry of $400 given to each bride and an undisclosed amount to her family.

    The first lady has bought all the newly-weds new furniture.

    Many young couples find it difficult to marry in Djibouti because of the expense, our reporter says.

    The cost of living in Djibouti is reported to be one of highest in Africa and most Djiboutians live on less than $2 a day. (I beg to differ…but okay.)

    Because of all the traffic I’ve been getting on this post; I’ve decided to post a video I found that shows where the wedding took place! Enjoy!


    Filed under 3arabi, Africa, Culture, Current Events, Customs, Dancing, Djibouti, Horn of Africa, Life, Love, Media, Middle East, Mode, News, Somali, Style, Thoughts, Video, World

    Chewing Khat/Qat

     By Lin Noueihed

    Yemeni men chew qat/khat in the main qat market in Sanaa May 9, 2007.

    SANAA, May 28, 2007 – Lunchtime in Sanaa. Offices begin to close, the crowds disappear from the ancient souqs, restaurants hurry their last customers out: the qat is here.

    The arrival of this mildly stimulant shrub by truck from the countryside heralds the end of the working day as Yemenis settle down to chew its leaves for the next four, six or even 10 hours.

    On any given afternoon, many men sit, drive or walk the streets with a tennis ball-sized wad of qat in one cheek, looking at first glance like they desperately need a dentist.

    Cramming a few choice pickings into his already bulging cheeks, driver

    Zayed al-Rehani, 28, swears by the stuff.

    “It keeps me up 24 hours. If I am on night duty, it keeps me up,” he said, five hours into the eight-hour drive from Yemen’s southern port of Aden to the capital in the north. “I started when I was around 15 … we grow it in my village.”

    Qat, or catha edulis, has become the national pastime in this poor Arab country of 19 million, but one many experts say is ravaging Yemen’s frail economy and sucking up precious water.

    Demand for qat is so high and Yemenis are so inclined to spend a large chunk of their paltry incomes on it that farmers are uprooting their fruits, vegetables and coffee in favor of the popular evergreen that provides year-round profit.

    Qat production has grown by more than 41 percent to 147,444 tones in the decade to 2006, according to official figures.

    That makes qat Yemen’s biggest cash crop by far; just 22,002 tones of its nearest rival, cotton, were produced in 2006.

    Already filling terraces across much of Yemen’s mountainous north, qat is now making inroads into the plains further south.

    For full article go here:

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