By Mohammed Guleid East Africa is beginning to have an impact and shine in the politics of the United States. The rise of East African influence in America started with Barack Obama, who has ancestral roots in Kenya. He became the President of the United States.
Once again, someone from Eastern Africa is causing a storm in America. Early this year, Ilhan Omar, a young woman from Minnesota was elected to the US Congress.
Somalia’s Prime Minister Hassan Khayre met with President Donald Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton at the White House on Wednesday. Khayre is seen as a key ally in the fight against the al Qaeda affiliated Al-Shabaab
“Pleased to have hosted Somali PM Khayre today. I congratulated him on Somalia’s economic reforms and urged sustained engagement on this front. We discussed ways to deepen the strong US-Somalia partnership on critical issues, including counterterrorism and regional stability,” Bolton wrote on Twitter Wednesday following their meeting.
Representative Ilhan Omar has a way of attracting attention. Four months ago, the Democrat became the first Somali-American — and one of the first two Muslim women — to serve in the U.S. Congress.
Just weeks into her first congressional term, Omar ignited a controversy with a tweet invoking an offensive trope suggesting U.S. lawmakers’ support for Israel was swayed by money from the powerful lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
Few Americans travel to Africa and even fewer have been to Somalia. But you can get a taste of African and international culture and goods right here in Louisville at the International Mall at Eighth and York streets.
A large warehouse-type building is separated into small rooms housing several businesses, including shops, tailors, groceries and even a barber, all owned by independent business owners who come together to support each other. If you’ve ever traveled to a country with a market area or medina, you’ll recognize the small stalls that use every inch of space to store and display wares. Brightly colored rugs, dresses and curtains line the walls and hang from the ceilings. There are beautiful golden tea sets, plates and stackable cookware, alongside faux flower arrangements and beautiful headscarves.
Where is the United States at war? It’s a hard question to answer. Inevitably though, at least in the last four years, this sentence has changed little: American troops are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria. But with a steady stream of airstrikes, militant deaths, alleged civilian casualties and two American troops killed in Eastern Africa since 2017, another country has since crept onto the list: Somalia.
On Sunday, my colleagues Eric Schmitt and Charlie Savagepublished a story about the escalating war there against the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Shabab, and how the number of American airstrikes in the country have steadily increased under the Trump administration. In 2018 alone, there were 47 strikes that killed 326 people. And 2019 is already on pace to exceed last year’s tallies.
Shortly before being sworn into office, the newest member of the St. Paul City Council received an unhappy social media message from “Mike from Facebook.” The topic: trash.
What could be done, said Mike, about the refuse accumulating at Minnehaha Avenue and Duluth Street?
Kassim Busuri and his legislative aide, Scott Renstrom, immediately contacted a store owner at the corner to discuss the situation, and then Metro Transit to determine who owns a bench at the location. By the end of the day, the likelihood of getting a trash receptacle installed seemed high.
“We’re going to make sure it’s going to be fixed,” said Busuri on Wednesday, minutes after being seated at his first council meeting. His first project as council member may not be one for the record books, but Busuri’s arrival at City Hall holds special meaning for the city’s growing Somali-American population.