Even the capital city of Mogadishu (capital in name only as there is no real government) is ruled by multiple armed bands much like inner city gangs holding neighborhoods hostage. The difference in Mogadishu is that there is no 911 to call to bring in law enforcement when the thugs get out of hand. The thugs are the law.
One area of Mogadishu is run by Islamic Radicals under the name Al Shabaab. Reports indicate that they are related to Al Qaeda. In a way, I hope those reports are accurate. Why? Simply because these morons in Al Shabaab are doing themselves more harm than anyone else could do to them. The idea that Al Qaeda could be so poorly run is a good sign.
Al Shabaab has declared war on immorality in their little corner of the land of anarchy. They have banned dancing, watching movies, playing soccer and ringtones on cell phones. Yes, ringtones are banned. Listening to music is forbidden and that includes ringtones on cell phones. All cell phones are required to use only the reading of verses from the Koran for their ringtones.
Unfortunately for these rocket scientist radicals, people can’t answer their phones at all now. You see, it is a violation of Islamic Law to interrupt the reading of the words of the Prophet. So, when your phone ‘rings’ and some cleric starts reading the verse from the Koran, you’ll be in violation of Islamic Law if you interrupt the reading to answer the call.
It is this kind of inability to think through their asinine radical moral crusade that is doing them more harm than armed opposition. The people are being shown just how impossibly moronic fundamentalist Islamic law is and they’re learning a valuable lesson in the process. If Somalia ever does have a government again someday, experiences like this one will ensure that it won’t be based on Islamic Law.