Saving Somalia

As the U.S. strikes al-Qaeda, a new government tries to restore order. Here's what it will take

The center of Mogadishu is an awesome, ghostly monument to war. The streets are lined with rows of crumbling, freestanding Italianate fa├žades sprayed with bullets, splashed by rocket-propelled grenades and showing clear blue sky where their roofs and walls used to be. Somalia's capital is less a city than a collection of tribal neighborhoods. Its back alleys lie under several feet of dirt and plastic bags, traffic is regularly held up by armed privateers demanding payments, and the air is thick with gunfire.

That's the sound of normality in Somalia. Nearly two decades of war have reduced this country of 9...

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