Friday, October 06, 2006

Somalia and Sauerkraut

Friday, Oct. 6, 2006

Well, it's been a great day Here on Earth! This morning I had the honor and the pleasure of meeting a fantastic woman named Asha Hagi Elmi who is here in Madison to give the Soffe lecture. She arrived with her traveling companion and the two of them, big, beautiful black women fabulously dressed and be-jeweled in many-layered silks and scarves, Asha wearing silver, black and pink, and her friend in black with a red and black striped head scarf, filled up the reception room like a two-woman U.N. One of the many things I learned from them is that Somalis have no hostility toward their former Italian colonizers, indeed, they eat Italian food, pattern their dress after Italian fashion, and even decorate their homes al'Italiana! Asha was named one of the 1000 women eligible for a Nobel Peace prize and she surely deserves it, having founded an NGO called Save Somali Women and Children which is educating young women, training them for jobs, helping to end forced child marriages and the hideous practice of female genital mutilation. She is also a Machiavellian strategist having used the concept of clan to transcend it by creating The Sixth Clan, all women from various tribes united for political and social power. You'll be hearing from Asha in a future Here on Earth program.

I heard from several of you who were disappointed with our program on fundamentalism with Martin Marty which used a sensational device at the start of the program which juxtaposed The Jesus Camp with a Pakistani mudrassah. I can understand why you objected, and I appreciate your suggestions on constructive ways to depict Christian fundamentalists.

And to those of you who enjoyed meeting The Bioneers, you'll be pleased to know we're planning on future collaborations.

And now, even as I write I'm getting ready for an Ode to Sauerkraut!

Thanks for all your help.

Jean

2 comments:

Sahro Ahmed said...

Dear Jean,
As you write you you are probably trodding the streets of China!! I wish you a great time there!

I was listening to "Beasts of No Nation: Child Soldiers in Africa" on your radio show and went to read your blog. I was happy to have read that you had the opportunity of meeting our Somali Hero and member of Somalia’s transitional government, Asha Hagi Elmi.

Asha Hagi Elmi and her team are doing something that no men have ever addressed in Somalia, something no men have ever been able to accomplish and no men could ever be able to embark on. Where Clanism has been a major human divider, Asha is using the quality of being human in bringing people together in the hope to humanize life in Somalia.

I wish Asha and her team all the luck in the world in her exploits. We need more Somali women leadership.

I also want to thank you bringing cultures together and in creating awareness and sreading love among mankind- regardless of their geographic location.

Sincerely, Sahro M. Ahmed
The Netherlands

somaliwomenbloggers said...

she is a great woman with BIG heart