The country of Somalia is located on the eastern coast of Africa. It is a part of the land mass referred to as the Horn of Africa, which also includes the countries of Ethiopia, Kenya, Djibouti, and Eritrea. The land consists of mostly desert land and is hot in temperature for most of the year. However, Somalia also experiences monsoons that can last for months at a time and may also cause floods. Because of its proximity to the coast, and the current state of turmoil and unrest in the country, many Somali citizens have taken up piracy in order to get the resources that they need.
Before Somalia was known as a country of civil war and bloodshed, it was a place and culture based on clans and sub-clans. All Somali people are thought to be descendants of a man named Irir Samaale (Somali Culture). From that one ancestor, sub-clans were formed. These include Darod, Dir, Hawiye, Isaaq, and Rahanweyn (Cawthorne).
Somali people are by and large nomadic herders. They travel often in search of places to graze their livestock. Many herders use an aqal for shelter. An aqal is a dome-like hut that herders can easily set up and break down to accommodate their frequent travel (Shurgin). They also carry only a few items when traveling, including stools, water containers, and cooking supplies. Many Somali people still practice this lifestyle today.
Islam is the dominant religion in Somalia, making up 90% of the population (arab.de). Islam was first introduced to the region in the eleventh century when “a band of persecuted Muslims had…fled across the Red Sea into the Horn of Africa” (Library of Congress). Since then, Islam has remained the dominant religion in the region.
Unlike other wars and battles fought throughout history, the violence in Somalia was not spawned by religious conflict or persecution. The country’s path of self-destruction first began with the “Scramble for Africa.” Prior to 1880, “only 10% of Africa was controlled by European Powers” (Taylor). In...