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147A4
OU
Am
M
UD
Mki-F-S.
CHAPTER V
291
THE END OF THE DERVISH PERIOD AND SUBSEQUENT
SEARCH FOR AN ALTERNAT M POLICY, 1919-1925.
Following his brief
visit
to the Protectorate,
Hoskins
prepared a memorandum assessing
the
gravity of
the Dervish
problem and recommending methods
for dealing
a
death blow to the
movement.
The Sayyid
was
believed
to be
residing
in the Taleh fort
with
the
main
Dervish
force. The
other
forts believed to be held in
consider-
able strength were
those
of
Jiladi, Wardair
and
Galadi.
Hoskins
advocated
two
alternative
lines
of action.
The
first, based
on
the
assumption
that the Dervish
movement
was
inýa
very weakened position,
involved
reinforcing
the troops, then
at
the disposal
of
the Protectorates
with one
battalion
of
the K. A. R.
and
then
making a raid
on
the Taleh fort. Hoskins
observed,
however, that
whereas*it was possible
to
scatter and
disperse the Der-
vishes
from that fort, he
could not guarantee
that
an
operation of
this
scale would
lead to
a
total
collapse
of
the Dervish
movement.
The Sayyid
and
his followers
might vacate
the fort
and make
for'the Ogaden
or some
other remote part of
the
country.
'The
alternative scheme
envisaged
the', despatch
of a
big
and well organised expedi-
tionary, force to destroy the Dervish
movement once and
for
all.
If the latter'plan
was preferred2
Britain
would
have
to
provide at
least 3
squadronss
R. A. F.; 3 battalions,
1. C. O. 535/54 Gen. Hoskins to W. O. 23/11/1918.
21
'ý`
K. A. R.; 2 Indian infantry battalions;
6
warships;
16
Hotchkiss
guns with an
Indian
cavalry unit;
I
company
sappers and miners;
5
pack wireless sets of
200
miles
radius and
1
general wireless set.
On the
administrative
side,
the
expedition would require,
inter
alia,,
1
motor
ambulance
transport
company;
40
Ford
vans;
1
stationary
hospital
and
5
companies
Camel Transport Corps,
complete
with saddles.
2
The
actual plan of attack
in the
event of
the
latter
plan
being
adopted was
to the
effect
that the
main
striking column should strike at
Taleh from the Ain
-
Valley,
while all possible avenues of escape were.
being
blocked by
subsidiary columns.
Aladi
was
to be blocked
and captured
by 2
columns advancing
from Las Dureh
and
Las Khorai,
spontaneously.
The Italians
were
to be
asked
to
render assistance
by
way of
landing their troops
at
Illig, installing
a wireless, Set
in the
same place and
permitting
the British troops to
operate
in their terri-
tory if
a need
for doing
so arose.
Sultan Ali Kenedid
of
Obbia., then
on
bad terms
with
the Sayyid,
was
to be
soli-
cited
to block Badwein
and
Galkayu
against possible
Dervish
escape
through those
corridors, while parties of
pro-British
tribeso together
with a number of subsidiary
columns of
the
expeditionary
force,
swung
in from the
Western
part of
the Protectorate,
raiding
the Bagheri in
the
south and
Galadi. Ethiopian
co-operation was also
to
be
required,
taking the form
of
5000
or so
Ethiopian
soldiers
to be
stationed at
Jigjiga
and
Harar for the
2. Ibid.
ýf
purpose of
blocking those
avenues of escape.
The
navy
and
the
airforce would
then
complete
the
network
by
blockading the
coast and
bombing Dervish
positionss res-
pectively.
The
colonial office was
disposed to
prefer
the
scheme
for the total distruction
of
the Dervish
movement
to that
which
did
not
hold
out strong
hopes for
a
final
solution.
There
were misgivingss
however,
regarding
the
idea
of soliciting
Italian
and
Ethiopian
co-operation
because the issue
was
likely
"to
raise all sorts of undesirable
international
questions which might result
in the
whole cam-
paign
being
shelved.
Moreover, it is
problema-
tical
-
to judge from the
present state of
Ethiopia
and our-experience of
Italian
co-
operation against
the Mullah in the
past
-
whether such co-operation would really
be
of
any value
from the
military point of view.
"
3
Hoskins'
schemes were
taken
up'
by the War, Office.,,
and
the Colonial Office
submitted such. remarks and recommen-
dations
as were
thought
necessary.
In January 1919 the Cabinet
met
to discuss the
Somaliland
problem, and reached.
'a decision
which
shattered
the hopes"and
expectations' of
'the
Colonial'
.
Offile
-e
and
I
the
Somaliland
administration.
All through the
war periods
the Somaliland
administration
had been
encouraged
to
believe that'.,
as
problem, would
be
Yet during the C
acting as
though
was
disturbed to
soon as
the
war was over..
the Dervish'
tackled
without
hesitation
or
delay.
abinet meeting
the Chancellor
of
Exchequero
he had
never
heard
of
the Dervish
problemo
learn that
I
Ibid.
293
"there
appeared
to be
a possibility of
General Hoskins becoming involved in
military
operations
in Somalilandj,
"
and
the Foreign Office,
rallying
to his
side, renounced
any
fflikelihood,
of our
being involved in
any
way.
'$
The War Office
armounced
that it too had
"no
intention
of allowing ourselves
to be
committed
to
military operations
in that
part
of
the
world"
4
The War Office, justifying its decision to dis-
sociate
itself from the
anticipated operationso stated
that
"the
Council have
carefully considered
the
scheme outlined
by General Hoskins
......
and are of
the
opinion
that
military results
could only
be
obtained
by the despatch
against
the Mullah
of a properly equipped expedition
of considerable magnitude
In
view of
the
general situation, particularly with regard
to
the demobilization
of
the
armies
in Palestine
and
Mesopotamia,
which will necessitate
the
full
employment of all shipping
for
many months
to
comep
the Council
are of
the
opinion
that it
will
be difficult to
carry out such operations
at present.
In
addition
to the
above considera-
tions there
would appear
to be
a certain element
of uncertainty as
to the future
of
British Soma-
liland,
and
it is
understood
that Italian
aspira-
tions
combined with
the
unfavourable
Abyssinian
situation might preclude effective co-operation
from those
quarters.
"
5
Machtig
predictedo and correctly sop
that
"this
decision
will
it
be
a
bitter disappointment
to the Commissioner
adding
that
4.
C. O. 535/55
"Extract
from the draft
minutes of a meeting
held
at
10 Downing Street,
on
Fridayo January 24th 19190
on
the Somaliland
situation.
"
5. C. O. 535/58 W-0. to C. O. 25/l/1919 No. M. 0.2
23D
"from the
purely
Somaliland
point of view
the
impossibility
of
dealing
with
the Mullah
once
and
for
all now
is
greatly
to be
regretted.
"
6
The Colonial Office
was not convinced
by the
excuses
advanced
by the
opponents of
the
anticipated expedition.
With
regard
to the
argument
that Hoskinst
scheme entailed
military requirements on such a scale as could not
be
arranged under
the
circumstances,
the Colonial Office
replied
that
what
had been
proposed
by Hoskins
amounted
to the
maximum possible, whereas
the
overthrow of
the
Dervishes
could
be
accomplished
by
operations on a
less
ambitious scale.
With
regard
to the doubts
expressed
about
the feasibility
and
desirability
of enlisting
Ethiopian
and
Italian
co-operation..
the Colonial Office
was of
the
opinion
that, though
such a co-operation
would
be
useful
if
available.,
"neither
can really
be
regarded as essential,
and we ourselves pointed out
to the War Office
that both
are undesirable.
"
7
On the doubts
entertained about
the future
of
the Pro-
0
tectorate, the Colonial Office
was confident
that
"it
is
surely out of
the
question
that the
Italians
should
be
given
the
whole of
Somali-
land.
"8
The
possibility of ceding
the
non-productive
parts of
the hinterland
of
the Protectorate
waso
howevero
not ruled out, and
Milner
made
it
clear
to the Italians
6.
C. O. 535/5-4, Minute
of
Machtig
on
Gen. Hoskins to W. O.
23/11/1918.
7. C. O. 535/58 Minute by Machtig
on
W. O. to C. O. 25/l/1919'-
No. M. 0.2-
Ibid.
that he
was
disposed to
cede
British Somaliland,
- except
the
coastal area,
if Italy
really
thought that
such a
concession would appease
her
colonial appetite.
As it
turned
out,
Italy's interests
were
in Jibuti
-
which
the
French
were unwilling'to
part with
-
rather
than in the
arid parts of
British Somaliland. Consequentlyo Orlando
declined
Milnerts
offer, and
later
remarked
that
ttit
appears
that there is
nothing
to hope for,
except
the
rectification of
the borders in
North Africa; the
cession of a part of
British
Somaliland,
which
it
would
be
a great mistake
to
accept,
for
without
Jibuti it
would
bring
us
burdens
and not
benefits
....
No
mandates
were assigned us.
In
sum,
the
colonial ques-
tion,
of
the highest importance-to Italy* is
about
to
resolve
itself in betrayal".
9
Italy
would
have
accepted
Milner's
offer
if
only-it
had
envisaged
the
cession of
the
entire
Protectorate. This
would
have
given
Italy
an outlet
to the
sea and a number
of valuable
ports on
the Somali
coast.
The territorial
controversy
between the European
powers was,
thus,
unleashed mainly
by Italyts
expansionist
policies
in
northern
Africa. Her
ambitions embraced
British
Somaliland, French S-
omaliland,
Jubaland, Kismayuj Kasala in
the Sudanj, Libyxand Ethiopia. These
objectives, which came
to be
popularly
known--as Italy's
"Maximum Programme"
,
were
based
on
the belief that the German territories
would
be
parcelled out
between. the Allied
powers,
-a
factor
which
would give
Italy the
right
to
claim
territorial
conces-
sions elsewhere.
Unfortunately, for Italys her
expectations
faded
under
the fire-.
of-self-determination,
a
term-,
coined
by the Allied
powers
towards the
end of
the
war and
generally accepted
by the
majority at
the Peace Conference.
It
resulted
in
placing
the
ex-German
territories
under
the
9. Robert Hesss-*Italy.
and
Africa: Colonial-,
Ambitions in the
First World, War" in J. A. H. Vol.
-IV
(1963)
p.
125. The
quota-
tion is taken'from Ministero. delle
Colonieo Direzione Generale
degli Affari Politici
e
dei'6ervizi relativi alle
Truppe
coloniali,
-Africa
Italiana Programma-massimo
e RroEramma minimo
di SistemazYo--nedei Possedimentl Itallani
nelXAfrica orientEl-e
e settentrionale,,
__Roma,,
TiFo-grafia-del Senato di Giovanni
T3ardi,,
1917-1920.. '
P.
-399-400. Letter'No.
'5959
from-the,
Minister
of
Colonies, to the Prime Minister., Rome,
-'30/5/1919.
"1
OJ..
L
mandate of
the League
of
Nationso
and,
by
so
doing,
robbed
Italy
of
the
pretext she
had intended to
use
in
the
course of campaigning for the
acceptance of
her
"Maximum
Programme".
In the light
of
the
new
develop-
ments..
Italy found it
necessary
to
curtail
her
programme
but,
even
then, British Somaliland
remained
for
a con-
siderable
length
of
time,
on
the list
of what she con-
sidered
to be
absolutely necessary
in the interests
of
justice
and of
the European balance
of power.
The
Italians
argued
their
case as
follows:
"If
we wish
that the
peace which
follows the
present
terrible
conflict shall
be just,
equitable and
lasting
and shall correspond
to the high
ethical ends
for
which
President
Wilson has declared himself,
it is
necessary
for
us
to foresee
and avoid all
future dis.
-i
agreements among
the Allies
of
today, in
order
that these
may remain allies of
tomorrow
....
In
order
to
reach
this
ends
the
most efficacious
means
is that
of rendering
impossible
any clash
of
interest
even
between friendly
and allied
powers., and
this
may
be through the
establish-
ment of colonial possessions
having
clearly
defined boundaries
...
As France., in the
possession of
Morocco, Algiers in the Mediter-
ranean., and as
England
possesses a vast unbroken
zone alsd,
beginning
with
Egypt
and extending
(thanks
to the English
conquest of
German East
Africa)
without
interruption to Cape Colony
; **0*
thus it is
only right
that Italy
also
hould*
as well as
her
allies, secure
for her-
self an analogous, sound colonial position
10
10. C-Os 535/57 Italian Memorandum'on her
claims
in Africa,
n.
d.
(Encl.
in P. O. to C. O.
4/i/1918).
Italy's demand-for terri-
torial
concessions was
based
on
her interpretation
of
the
London Treaty.
of
April 26th 1915..
which preceded
Italy's
entry
into the
war on
the
side of-the
Allied Powers. Article
13
of
the
above
treaty
reads.,
"In, the
event of
France
and
Great Britain
augmenting
their-colonial
possessions at
the
expense of
Germany
may claim some equitable com-
pensations, particularly
in the
adjustment
in her favour
of
questions concerning
the frontiers between the Italian
colonies of
Eritrea, Somaliland
and
Libya
and
the
neigh-
bouring
colonies of
France
and
Great Britain"
(see
Christopher Hollis, Italy in Africa,
(London).
1941,
p.
64.
rlý
Thus., the
question of
the future
of
British Somaliland
was a contentious
issue
at
the
end of
the
war and was not
resolved until
October 1919,
when
Milner, the British
Secretary
of
State for the Colonies,
managed
to
persuade
Orlando, the Italian Prime Minister, to forget
all about
British Somaliland
and content
himself
with accepting
full
Italian
sovereignty over
Kismayu,
plus some
territorial
concessions
in Jubaland.
11
This
was considerably
less
than Italy had
expected, and a
feeling
of resentment
haunted her,
eventually
driving her to invade Ethiopia
in 1935.
As
was
the
characteristic
trend
of
Somaliland
politics,
the Cabinet's decision
over
the Dervish
ques-
tion
put
the
matter
to
rest so
far
as
the British Govern-
ment was concerned.
This
was,,
however, far from the
case
so
far
as
the local
administration was concerned.
Archer
found himself in,
a particularly embarrassing position
11. Robert Hess
"Italy
and
Africa: Colonial Ambitions'in the
First World War" in J. A. H. Vol. IV
(1963'Lpp.
105-12
Milner
was strongly opposed
to the idea
of ceding
the
whole-of
British Somaliland, for he
considered
the
coast
to be
vital
for Britain's
strategic
interests in the Horn
of
Africa. Milner became Secretary
of
State. for the
colonies
in January 1919, bringing into the Colonial
Office the
experience of a
long.,
varied and
distin-,
guished career
both
at
home
and abroad.
He
graduated
from Oxford in 1876
and was called
to-the Bar in 1881.
He became
a private secretary
to the Chancellor
of
the
Exchequer in 1887
and
thenUnder Secretary
of
Finance in
Egypt froma889 to 1892. He
went-to,
South Africa'and
made a name with
his
unorthodox style., of administration
and
his team
of young officers,
which came
to be
popularly
known
as
the.
"Kindergarten".
-In
1916 he becamea
minister
without portfolio'in
Lloyd-George's
War Cabinet I
and
then
Minister
for War in 1918.
--
ri,
0
-,
.ja
having to
give a convincing explanation
to the
pro-British
tribes.
9
and especially
to the Warsengeli,
as
to
why
Britain
was still not prepared
to destroy the Dervish
movement.
He
had
earlier on assured
them
-
for
so
he himself had been
led to believe
-
that the destruction
of
the Dervish
move-
ment would
be
undertaken as soon as
the
war was over.
Thus
Archer
resolved not
to
relent
in his
effort
to
get
the
British Government to
reverse
its decision.
12
Archer's
efforts
in this direction
wum reinforced
by
a resurgence of
Dervish
raids
during the
early months of
1919. On the 25th
of
February, for
example,
the Camel Corps
at
Burao
was
informed
of a
Dervish force
which was
looting
.1
stock and
destroying
property on
the Soral Plain. The Camel
Corps
set out
in
pursuit and gained contact with
the
raiders
five days later
at
the top
of
the Ok Pass, 35
miles north-
east of
Burao. The Dervishes took
cover
in the thick bush
and caves, opening
fire
as soon as
the Camel Corps
was well
within
the
range of rifle
fire. The Camel Corps
replied
with rifle and machine-gun
fire
which
drove the Dervishes
out of
their hideouts, killing 250
of
their
men and
hundreds
of
their
animals.
The
survivors were chased and,
driven
southwards, and
the looted
stock was all recaptured.
The
Camel Corps
suffered casualties of
two deaths
and a
dozen
or so wounded.
The Colonial Office felt that
_&.

,
"there
can
be
no
doubt
as,,
the importance
of
this
successful action upon
the
activities of
the Der-
vishes and as
to its
general effect
in the Pro-
tectorate. It is
very satisfactory
indeed,
and
easily
the
most
important
engagement
in the
Protectorate
since
Shimber Berris.
"
1.3
12. Moyse Bartlett, The Kingfs African Rifles
op. cit. p.
421-423.
13. C. O. 535/55 Minute by Machtig
on
C-0-535/55 Archer to C. O.
4/3/1919.
0
Whereas Archer
was, obviously2 of
the
same view2
he
regarded
the
episode as one which emphasised
the
urgent
need
for. taking
prompt and
decisive
action against
the
Dervishes
rather
than
a
finality
over which
to
celebrate.
Whereas it
was relatively easy
for Archer to
placate
the
pro-British
tribes-in the
western part of
the
Protectorate
by
sending
the Camel Corps to
rescue
them
from
sporadic
Dervish
raids,
his task
was not so easy
when
it
came
to dealing
with
the Warsengeli.
Except for
the Indian
garrison at
Las Khorai, British
administration
in the Warsengeli
country was non-existent.
The Warsengeli
could,
if they
so
desired,
resolve
their differences with
the Dervishes
and
join hands
with
the latter
without undue
risk
of
British
reprisals.
ý
In the
event of,
Britain decid-
ing to take
punitive measuresj,
-they
could easily retreat
further
south
into the Dervish-held territory. Alter-
natively,
they
could make peace with
the Mijjertein,
and
cross
the border into their territory
which was still not
effectively administered
by the Italians. Moreovero the
Sultan
of
the Warsengeli, Ina Ali Shirreh, though
on
bad
terms
with
the Dervishes
at
that-time.,
was
the
sort of
man who could not
be
relied upon
to
pursue-a, consistent
line
of policy.
Jardine
speaks of
him
as onewho -,
,
"has
the face
of a
fox
and
his, face does
not
belie him. He has
a genius
for
crafty
intrigue.
"
14
14. Jardine, The Mad Mullah
of
Somaliland,
op. cit. p.,
256.
3a3
Thus,, Britaints
position among
the Warsengeli, though
secure
by the
end of
the
war,
depended for its
permanence
largely
on whether
Archer
could
fulfil his
pledge
to
relieve
them
of
the Dervishes. During the
closing years
of
the
war
the Sayyid had been
working
hard to
win
them
back to his
cause,
but his
overtures
had been
rebuffed
principally
because they
expected
Britain to take
prompt
aation against
the Dervishes in the
not-too-distant
future.
Thus, further
prolonged
inaction
was more
than likely to
undermine
the
confidence of
the Warsengeli in the British,
leading them to
seek alternative allies.
Archer
made a stop-over at
the Warsengeli
coast
while on
his
way
to
and
from Bunder KasSim,
where
he
was
scheduled
to
meet
Italian
officials
in February 1919,
with a view
to
completing
the Mijjertein-Warsengeli
claims and
disputes. The
meeting at
Bunder Kassim
was
convened on
the 2nd February,
and
the
elders of
the two
tribes
were
invited to
give
testimony in
settlement of
their
claims and counter-claims against each other.
As
the
settlement of
the
claims and
disputes turned
out
to
consume more
time than Archer
was prepared
to
spare,
he
delegated his
powers
to
a
junior
official and returned
to Berbera,
via
Musha Haled,
some
18
miles
behind Las
Khorai,
where
Ina Ali Shirreh had his
outlying
fort
on
the Dervish front. Trom the
mountains, of
Musha Haled,
Archer
and
his,
party got, a view of
the Dervish fort
at
Baran,
some_,
15
miles away.
The Jiladi fort, the
spring-
board
of
Dervish
raids on
the Warsengeli, lay further
west.
Archer described the
position of
the Warsengeli
9flri
as
"precarious
in the
extreme".
15
The
area within which
without
they
could graze
their
stock
/-
harassment
was extremely
limited.
"The
situation
in the Warsengeli
country..
"
noted
Archer,
"calls
for full
and early attention, and parti-
cularly so now
that the
war
is
ended.
Up to
now
I have been
able
to temporize,
attributing
our
failure to
carry out
the
operations
for
the destruction
of
Jiladi to
unforseen
develop-
ments arising out of
the
war;
......
and
the
difficulties
of
the
moment were appreciated
by
the Warsengeli themselves. But the time has
now come when
they
expect some amelioration of
their lot
....
the
only alternative
to this
step
that I
can see,
if
no offensive against
the Mullah is to be
carried out,
is the
removal
of
the Warsengeli
en
bloc from this
country.
They
would subsequently
Have
to be helped by
a government grant.
"16
The Colonial Office did
not even
bother to
comment on
this despatch. The Cabinet had
already made
its
ruling, and
there
was, evidently, no point
in
revert-
ing to the issue. Meanwhile the Warsengeli
plight was
growing
from bad to
worse.
Confronted by the Mijjertein
to the
east and
bottled
up on
the
coastal strip
by the
Dervish bases to their
south,
the Warsengeli
were exas-
perated.
Archer
revisited
Las Khorai
and summoned
Ina Ali
Shirreh
with a view
to impressing
upon
him the importance
and urgency of complying with
the terms
of
the
settlement,
warning
him,,
at
the
same
timeo that his failure to do
so
might stimulate
the Mijjertein into fresh
raids against
the
Warsengeli.
A
month
later, the Mijjertein,
who
had
15. C. O. 535/55 Archer tq C. O. 11311919.
16. Ibid.
3
-0
apparently
despaired
of
Warsengeli
co-operation,
took the
law into their hands
and
looted large
quantities
of
the
Warsengeli
stock.
17
Captain Le Fleming., Commanding officer
at
Las Khorais
reported
Ina Ali Shirreh
as
being
not only
hostile to the British but being the
main engineer of
internal feuds between different
sections of
the Warsen-
geli.
Summers,
then
acting
Governor,
authorised
Le
Flemming to
summon
the Sultan to Las Khorai
and arrest
him
on arrival.
On
receipt of
the
summons,
Ina Ali
Shirreh
retired
to Musha Haled
and
barricaded himself
inside the fort, thus
putting
the British
authority
to
a
serious
test
of strength.
Summers felt that
"the
moment
had
come,
in fact,
when we
had
either
to
enforce our orders and vindicate
our authority,
if
necessary with
force,
or
admit
that
we were unable
to do
so'"18
At this juncture the Sultan began to
make rapprochements
towards the Sayyid
with a view
to
making a new alliance
with
him, but the
move came
too later. On the 17th August
the
garrison at
Las Khorai
made a swoop on
the Sultan's
fort
at
Musha Haled
and, after a protracted confrontation
with
the Sultan's bodyguard,
arrested
the Sultan
and
shipped
him to Berbera.
19
Towards the
end of
August he
was sent
into
exile
in the Seychellesp joining Prempeh
of
Asante
and
Kabarega
of
Bunyoro.
17- C-0- 535/56 Summers to C. O. 5/9/1919-
18. Ibid.
19. Ibid.
.
JJj
In October Archer
paid another visit
to Las
Khorai to
assess
the
reaction of
the Warsengeli to the
arrest of
their Sultan. The-impression
he formed
after
his two days tour
was
that the
majority of
the
people
had
welcomed
the
removal of
Ina Ali Shirreh. The latter's
inability
to
provide sufficient security
to his
people
against external enemies, and
his involvement ino to
say
nothing
of
his'im tigation
of.,
internal feuds hads
evi-
dently,
cost
him
popularity and eroded
the base
of
his
support.
Summers
manouvred
the Warsengeli into
accepting
a new sultan,,
in the
person of
Gerard Ali Shirreh,
who
was
"very
aged and cannot
be
more
than
a
figure-
head.
"
20
Summing
up
the
outcome of
the
whole operations
Summers
reported..
"I
do
not anticipate
that
any serious
diffi-
culties will arise
from the Warsengeli tribe
whose chief requirements at
the
moment appear
to be the
establishment of peace with
their
strong
Mijjertein
neighbours. and protection
from the Dervishes.
"
21
Thus., by taking
prompt and
decisive
action against
Ina Ali
Shirreh, the British
successfully averted a crisis which
had been brewing. in the Warsengeli
country, necessitating'
careful
handling. A
number-of
factors
had
worked
in favo
-
ur
of
the British. Not least
of
these
was
the
personal unpopu-
larity
of
Ina Ali Shirrehp
a
factor
which
brought
relief
rather
than
rebellion after
his
arrest.
Then the fact
that he
was at
that time
on
bad terms
with
the Sayyid
and
20. C. O. 535/56 Summers to C. O. 24/lo/1919.
21. Ibid.
30)
the Mijjertein
meant
that he
could not seek and obtain
either
their
active support or refuge.
Thus the farthest
he
could go when pursued
by the British troops
of
Las
Kharai
was
Musha Haled, beyond
which
he
would
have fallen
into the hands
of
the Dervishes.
September 1919
marked a
turning
point
in
Britaints
position over
the Dervish
question.,
The
con-
tinuous harassment
of
the
pro-British
tribesp the
opening
of
the Dervish fort
at
Wardair
(discussed
in the last
'
chapter) and
the
unsatisfactory situation
in the Warsen-
geli country were
factors
which stressed
the
urgent need
for dealing
a
death blow to the Dervish
movement.
These
were reinforced
by two
simultaneousp
but
quite
independentp
episodes
towards the
end of
1919. First, in Septemberp the
question
as
to the future
of
the Protectorate
was
definitely
settled.
Italy had
not
been the
only aspirant
for the
acquisition of
the Protectorate. Ethiopia
was not only
hostile to Italy's
expansionist
designs but
was
herself
interested in
acquiring
the Protectoratep
particularly
Berbera, Zeila
and
Bulhar. She
wanted an outlet
to the
sea.
22
As
already noted#
the Colonial Office
was
decidedly
opposed
to
ceding
the Protectorate to Italyp Ethiopia
or
22. C. O. 535/57 F. O. Memorandum
on
Italian
aspirations., n.
d.
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 18/6/1919)
Ethiopiats designs
over
Berbera, Zeila
and
Bulhar
were made
known to
Thesiger by Kantibar Gabru.,
an
Ethiopian
official Who
led
an
Ethiopian delegation to
various
European
capi-
tals to
seek
the
support and sympathy of
European
countries against
Italian
encroachments on
Ethiopian
territory.
1.
any otheraspirant,
and
this
position was categorically
put across
by Milner
at
the Peace Conference. Ethiopia
did
nots apparently,
press
her
claims
-
in
any case she
was
herself
a potential prey
for European imperialism
-
but Italyts
persistance
caused considerable
difficulty
to the British Goverment. The Admiralty had found it
necessary
to
"emphasize
the importance
of
the
strategic posi-
tion
of
British Somaliland,
and particularly of
Berbera, in
connection with
the
probable
future
sources of supply of oil.
The importance
of
possessing ample sources of supply of oil
-
the
fuel
of
the future
-
on
British territorys
can-
not
be
over-estimated.
1'2,
-
The
settlement
of
the
controversy over
the future
of
the
Protectorate
in September
eliminated one of
the
pretexts
hitherto
advanced
by the War. Office in justifying its
reluctance
to despatch
an expeditionary
force to Somali-
land.
The
second episode which encouraged
Britain to
reconsider
her
earlier position over
the Dervish
question
was
the transfer by the Dervishes
of
their
main
head-
quarters
from Taleh to Jiladi, leaving the former fort
under
the
guard of some
20 to 30 Dervish
riflemen.
Summers
reported
that
"the
Mullah
with
family
and stock and practi-
cally all
fighting
men and war material moved
to Jiladi"'24
1
-1
This development had two implications. First, the
vulner-
abilitycf
the Warsengeli to Dervish
raids was aggravated
by
the fact that the Dervish front had
moved
further
north.
23. C. O. 535/57 Admiralty to F. O. 15/5/1919
(Encl.
in F. O.
to C. O. 20/5/1919)-o
24. C. O. 535/56 Summers to C. O. 30/9/1919.
311
On the
other
hand, the Dervish
move
to Jiladi
was an advan-
tage from the British
point of view
in that,
should
Britain
decide
on
initiating
offensive operations.,
it
would
be
much
easier
to
operate against
Jiladi than it
would
be to'operate
against
Taleh. Jiladi is
nearer
to both Las Khorai
and
Berbera than Taleh is,
and
this
meant,
in turnp that
Britain
could use sea planes with
less hazard
and
that
troops
advancing
from Berbera
and
Las Khorai
would
have
a comparatively short
distance to travel. This
would
reduce
the
risks,
hitherto
experiencedo of maintaining a
line
of communication
between the
coast and
the
remote
military areas.
In
short, whereas
the
new
Dervish
con-
centration at
Jiladi
rendered
the Warsengeli
position
more vulnerable
to the Dervish depredations,
the Dervishes
were
themselves
placed
in
a more vulnerable position
for
the British
military strategists.
According to Machtigp
the Sayyid's transfer
of
his headquarters to Jiladi
"shows
extreme
importance
and urgency
for
dealing
with
the Dervish
situation once and
for
all unless we are
to
embark upon a scheme
for the
permanent strengthening of our garri-
sons on
the
coast,
involvingo
apart
from
anything else,
increased
and continuous
military expenditure.
"25
A
new meeting
between the Colonial Office,,
the Prime
Minister
and
the Chancellor
of
the Exchequer
was
held to
discuss the Somaliland
question
in the light
of new
developments.
On the
8th
October 1919 it
was announced
that
a
full-scale
expedition was
to be
sent
to Somaliland
and
the Admiralty
and
the Air Ministry were
duly
asked
to
hold
a number of warships and aircraft
in
readiness
for
25. Ibid.
Minute by Machtig.
despatch to Somaliland.
At the
end of
Decembero Archer
addressed a
letter to the Dervishes
and ordered
the distribution
of
its
copies
by
aircraft
in the Dervish territories. The
letter
stated,
in
part, as
follows:
"This
letter is
sent
by the British Wali
(rep-
resentative)
of
the Somali to the Dervishes
of
the Mullah, It is
carried
by British
officers
who,
like the birds'in the
air,
fly far
and
fast
.....
The day
of
the destruction
of
the
Mullah
and
hi.
% power
is
at
hand. He is
a
tyrant
who
has destroyed the
country and
this
will.
be
avenged.
"
The letter then
went on
to demand the
unconditional sur-
render
of
the Dervishes if they
wanted
to
avoid
British
reprisals,
but this did
not apply
to the leaders
of
the
Dervish
movement:
and
to
your
leaders I
give no
"aman"
(safe
conduct).
These
men
have deserved the
punish-
ment
they
will get and
I
offer a reward
for
their
capture.
"
26
Archer listed
some
36 Dervishes to
whom
the
"aman"
did
not apply and put a price on
the head
of each of
the
leaders,
ranging
from Rs. 5,000 for the Sayyid to
Rs. 1,000 for his teenage
sons.
Archer's
effort
to
alienate
the
rank and
file
of
the Dervish
movement
from
their leaders
was a complete
failure,
and, after waiting
for three
weeks
in
vain,
Archer
reported
that
"the
Mullahts
position remains unchanged and
the Dervishes.
seem unconscious of
the impending
attack*"
27
26. C. O. 53V41
volume
3. Letter Calling
upon
Dervishes
to
surrender etc: signed.
b Archer., 30/1-2/1919
(Encl.
in Archer to C. 0 1/1/1920T.
27. C. O. 534/41 Archer to c. o.
8/1/1920.
jij
One
other precautionary measure which
Archer
deemed it
necessary
to take before the launching
of
the
expedition was
to
enlist
the
co-operation of
Sultan Osman
Mahmud
of
the Mijjertein
whose relations with
the Sayyid
were at
their lowest
ebb:
"Now
as
there is
a strong
friendship between
us,
and
the Wadad
(i.
e.
the Sayyid) is the
common
enemy,
I
send you
this letter to tell
you my
news and
to invite
your
help
....
The British
Government have
sent me many aeroplanes and we
have
made
the Camel Corps
very strong.
So
my
intention is to
strike
the Mullah
and
his Der-
vishes at
Jiladi
on
the 21st
of
this
month
....
We
shall smash
them
as we
did
at
Shimber Berris
. 6..
And
now,
Sultan,
...
the Mullah
may escape
from
us with a
few
men and
try to find
refuge
in
your country.
And in this
case
he is in
your
hands,
and you will render
the British Govern-
ment service
if
you
turn
out your soldiers
to
kill
or capture
him
....
And
you can
tell
your
people
that I
will pay
large
rewards
in
money
for the
capture or
death
of
the
son of
Abdullah
Hassan
and
his Maccadams
(sic)
28
A few
weeks
later, Archer
sent
his
representative
to
meet
the Sultan
at
Bunder Kassim,
and a solid alliance and
strategy was agreed upon.
The
expedition was
launched in the latter
part
of
January 1920. The
air operations were put under
the
command of
Group-Captain R. Gordon
whose assignment was
to
bomb the Dervish forces, forts
and stock.
The Governor
was
to be the
overall officer-in-charge of
the
ground
troops
which were
to
co-operate with
the
airforce.
The
expedition
consisted of
the following
(a)
One flight
of aeroplanes(D.
H. 9)
with six
spare guns.
(b)
His MajestYlt
ships,
("Odin"..
"Chio"
and
"Ark
Royal".
28. C. O. 534/41 Archer to Sultan Mahmud
8/1/1920 (Encl.
in
Archer to C. O.
6/2/1920).
t)
£
(c)
Somaliland Camel Corps
at
700
strong
(d) 6th
and
2nd Battalions
totalling 700
strong
(e)
Battalion, the lst/101st Grenadiers,
Indian Army,
400
rifles.
M
An irregular Somali levy, 1,500
strong
(9)
300 illaloes
(i.
e. scouts).
The Dervish forts
of
Jiladi
and
Medishe
were
reco
hlhoitred
and
bombed
on
21st January. Archer
reported
both
e
forts
as
having been
"practically
destroyed by
aerial
bombardments.
"
29
The Camel Corps
and
the tribal levy
were, meanwhiles moving
from Eil Afweina towards Taleh. The K. A. R. troopss
moving
from Las Khorai,
captured
the Dervish fort
of
Baran
on
the
24th, killing
some
70 Dervishes
and putting
the
survivors
to flight. Four days later, the Camel Corps
occupied
Jiladi
and
drove
out
the
remaining
Dervisheso
amongst whom
was
the Sayyid. The Dervish
party
took to, their heels
making
for the
south, and
the Camel Corps
took
up
their
pursuit on
the 30th January. On the 31st the
aeroplanes
spotted
the fleeing Dervish
party
to the
east of
Eil
Afweina,
and
bombed them from
a range of
100 feet. The
Dervishes
were scattered and
their
stock stampeded.
On
the
same
day it
was
learned that the
main
Dervish
party
had
reached
Danan
(Lat.
10 7'. Long.
47 49')
and
the
Camel Corps
-pursued
them..
arriving at
Gud Anod the
next
day. En
route,
the Camel Corps
could see
the fresh tracks
of
the fleeing Dervishes,
and, on-two occasions,,
'
actually
clashed
with small
Dervish
parties.
In the
meantime,
the
29. C. O. 535/41 Archer to C. O. 24/1/1920.
) i. j
warships
continued with
the
patrol of
the
coast and with
the
maintenance
of wireless communication
between dif-
ferent bases
of
the
expeditionary
force.
30
On the
6th
February, two
of
the
warships,
"Odin"
and
"Cliot'
carried out an
isolated
operation
against a small
Dervish fort
at
Galibaburj,
a
dozen
or
so miles
from Iýh
,
"mall coastal
town
of
Sanak. - This
naval
force
was armed with
31 Lewis
guns2
2
maxim guns
and a
12-pounder 4
cwt.
Field Gun. The
attacking contin-
gent
disembarked
at
Sanak
and advanced
to
within
500
yards
of
the fort before being
noticed.
The Dervish
garrison
was surrounded
and attacked; some
200
of
the defenders
were
killed by high
explosive shell and only a
few
managed
to
escape and
take to the bush.
31
-
The Sayyid
was reported
to have.
entered
the
Taleh fort
on
the 2nd February,
accompanied
by
a good
number of
the Dervishes
who
had fled from Jiladi. Taleh
fort
was
believed to be the
most
formidable
of
the Der-
vish
forts. It
consisted of a main walled enclosure
surmounted
by 13 blockhouses,
with
3
covering walls of
great
height
and strength.
The blockhouses
were
built
in
stone..
12 to 14 feet
at
the base
and--6
feet
at
the-.
top; the
covering walls were not
less than 50 to
60
feet high. There
were wells
inside the fortifications
and room
for
stock.
32.
The fort
was
bombed.
-on
the
30. C. O. 534/42 Archer to C. O.,
"Despatch
relating
to field
operations of
1920". 15/5/1920.
31. Ibid.
32. R. Hess,
"The
Mad Mullah
of
Northern Somalia". in J. A. H.,
Vo 5o
(1964)
p.
429.
1
4th
February
and
then the
6th.
On the latter day the
machines
flew low,
machine-gunned
the
position and
then
set
it
on
fire
with
incendiary bombs. Meanwhileo the
Camel Corps
and
the tribal levy
converged at
Kurtimo
(Lat. 8
381o Long.
47
35')
and
began their
march
to
Teleh. On the
8th
February, the Sayyidts
second son,
Abdul Rahman,
who
had deserted his father, informed the
British
officials at
Gaolo
of
the Sayyidts
plan
to
desert. the Taleh fort that
very night with a view
to
making
for the Ogaden. A tribal levy
of
200
strong was
sent
to
guard
the fort,
pending
the
arrival of
the Camel
Corps
and
the K. A. R. troops. The Camel Corps
arrived at
the
scene on
the
evening of
the 9th February
and spotted
a party of
70 to
80
Dervish horsemen
come out of
the fort
and ride away
in
a northerly
direction. This
was presumed
to be the Sayyid
and
his
personal
following
escaping.
The
fort
was attacked
that
same
day
and a
big
number of
its
occupants were either
killed
or
taken
prisoner after a
protracted engagement.
The following dayp the Camel
Corps began to
pursue
the fleeing Dervishes. Th(ygained
contact with a
Dervish
party at
Hulin, 23
miles away.,
and, after a short engagement, overpowered
them
and cap-
tured their
stock.
Another Dervish
party was overtaken
and engaged at
Bihen. The Dervish
party was wiped out,
while
th Sayyidts family
which was
travelling
with
the
party was captured and sent.
to Berbera. On the llth,
the Camel Corps
reached
Garrowei
and clashed with a small
force
of
Dervish
riflemen.
The latter
were put
to flight
and
their
rifles and stock were captured.
On the 12th the
pursuit
was called off and
the
expedition
declared
as at
v.
an end.
3-3
The Sayyid had
eluded capture and was
believed
to have
made
for the Bagheri
country
in the Ogaden.
There is
plenty of
Somali literature
-
both
oral
and written
-
on
the
events of
the 1920 Anglo-Dervish
con-
frontationx
and especially on
the
clashes at
Taleh. Sheikh
Jaamac Cumar Ciise, for instance,
relates
the Taleh
story
as
follows:
"Sayyid
Mohammad
reached
the
place with a small
group of
his
army,
but before the
other
forces
of
the jihad fighters
reached
it., the
enemy
surrounded
the forts
and
took
position on all
sides of
it
except
the
east side
....
The
bullets
rained
down
upon
them
as rain....
But
it did
not
take long before the Sayyid
ordered
the Dervishes to
evacuate
it before the
enemy
could get
hold
of
them. And he blew the trum-
pets and
beat the drums
proclaiming
the
retreat
..
"
34;
then he describes the Sayyid's
escape
in the following
manner:
"he
went out
through
a narrow opening
in the
fort. The
enemy saw
him
and opened
fire
on
him. The Sayyid
rode on
the back
of
his horse,
as swift as an arrow which
is
released
from its
bow
... 91'
35
One Somali
elder contends
that the Sayyid
was
spotted
by the Somali
soldiers. and would
have been
cap-
tured by them had it
not
been for
a previous conspiracy
between the
soldiers
to do
everything possible
to
pre-,
vent
the death
or capture of
the. Sayyid.
--It
is
claimed
that, however
much
the Sayyid
might
have"been dreaded
on
account of-his
high handedness
and other excesses,
the
Somali
recognized and, accepted-him as a-holy man.
Thus..
3,3. Ibid. See
also
F. S. Carosellio
Ferro
e
Fuoco
op. cit.
p.
248-275.
34. Sheikh
Jaamac Ciise, Tarikh
al
Sumal,
op. cit. p.
121.
35. Ibid.
no,,
Som&li, *as
preparedto,
condemnhimself
ý,
to,
eternalr.
--In--ý
damnatiori-. by
-Personally m6Lking -.
the Sayyid
,
a'martyr.
' The
otheiý-motiVe,
behindýthe-'Ipurported
Somali,
conspiracy
is
said
to have, been'theirl*reluctan'cd;
on'refleictionjito
seeTthe-endýbf--the', Dervish
movement. --The near-end-of
the,,
movement-
placed
i*the
Somali-,
-in"a*
dilemma,,
)
aeadingt-
them, to
.
ponder
(about'!
their, likely,
position
in
ýthepost-
Dervish7-period.
--. ýThd",
pro-British
tribes
,
"like-; the Sayyid's
followers,
ý
were,,,, aware
that., the,.,
end of, ý.
the-Sayyidlsý
move-
ment-would.
ýmark(the
beginning,
cof,..
an-, active-Briýish, admini-
stration
in
which,
-^all
the, Somali-ý--
regardless
ýof
their.
-
previous. t
-:
British:
_iallegýance_n,
wou14
be,
affected
by
policies
-
such-
-as,
taxation,. European. 'educationý
and-
Christian
proselytization.,
-Thus,, --it-Is -believedý
-that
as,,
ýthe,
'end
of
-the
!
Dervish,
-era-,
drew.
near-J,
-
a, substantial
section
of
the,
-pro-British'.
trib.
es, -gave only
half
-..
n.
heart.
ed:
ý
support
ý,
to,
--the-,
British
i,
ýn
Lastly;,, it.; is 'I
thought
that.., the., Ishaak,
who,
had,, hither. td beemtheý;
staunchest,, ý
supportersi-of,
the British,
were not
keen to
see
the
end
of
the Dervish
movemento,.
ý
for,, they.
were-bound-
ito,. -lose
the
jobs
and privileges
!
they"
ha'd, 'h-e-ld--'in",
th'e
special,. circum-
stances created
by the Dervish
conflict with
the British.
Many
of
them
were employed soldiers,,
-spies,,
messengers.,
scouts,, escorts and carriers
during the time
of
hostilities,
but the
assumption of
'a
pe'a'ce'f'ul administration would render
.
36-
most-of-these-posts-unnecessary.
Whatever-was-the-degree-

'o ýommitment'
f
-,
of,
the-, Britisii--soldiersto the, destruction,
of
'-t "-4 'F,
I.
-I ý'
36., MusaýGalaal., Alis, interviewedý.
-at,
the; Somali Academy
Mc;
jýddi'6hii
oii'ý'7th-Aug'-ust-'1974,
*----,
"ýý'ý'-"ýý-ý; -,
'ý.
p

.
L. J
the Dervish
movement,,
the
operations proceeded as plannedv
and., so
far
as
the British
were concerned,
the Somali
soldiers played
the
part expected of
them.
From Taleh, the Sayyid is believed to have fled
to Halin
and
from there to Godumel,
6
miles north east of
Adadero. After
a
day's
rest at
the latter
placeo
the
Sayyid
proceeded on
his
southward
journeyo
arriving at
Baria Tahroo
some
18
miles south west of
Adaderoo
and
from there to Damot,
via
the Haud. Early in March the
Sayyid
reached
Galadi
where
he
was re-joined
by his
brother,
Abdi Sheik,
and other
Dervish
notables such as
Mahdi Mohammad, Abdul Aziz., Abbas Musa., Yusuf Sheikh
and
about
70 Dervish
riflemen.
From Galadi the
party pro-
ceeded
to the Wardair fort
and arrived at
Gorahai
on or
about
21st. The Sayyid
was cordially received
by the
Bagheri., his
clansmen,, and
he decided to
settle among
them.,
and resume
his
struggle when conditions
had
improved
within
his following.
37
The Bagheri
country
is described
as
'To*..
accursed,, a no-man's
land
populated
by
fanatical Ogaden tribes,
and a refuge
for
out-
laws
and malcontents
from the
surrounding
territories. "
38
The British
attributed
the
rapid success of
their
operations
to the demoralization
which
the Dervishes
incurred
as a result of
the
aerial
bombardment
of
their
37. C
.
0.535/69
"A
narrative of movements of
the Mullah from
gth February-1920
until-his
death.
"
Compiled by the
Military
headquarters
at
Burao.
(Encl.
in Archer to
C. O. 24/6/1922.
38. Jardine, The Mad Mullah
of
Somaliland
op. cit. p.
285.
positions. This
was a new method of warfare which
baffled
the
Dervishes.
Jardine
claims
that
"when
the
six machines were seen approaching.,
the Mullah
was at a
loss to know
what
they
might
be. Anxiously he inquired
of
his
advisers
*. *.
some, with
the
orientalts native
penchant
for flattery,
suggested
they
were
the
chariots
of
Allah
come
to take the Mullah
up
to heaven.
A
certain
Turk
suggested
that they
were a
Turkish invention from Stamboul
come
to
tell the Mullah
of
the Sultan's
victory
in the
great war.
"
39
This
account
might
be
nothing more
than
a
humorous fabri-
cation
but there is
no
doubt that the
aerial warfare per-
plexed
the Dervishes
and made
them lose heart.
Although the Sayyid's
movement
had been dealt
a
severe
blow,
its leader had
managed
to
escape unharmed.
The fact that he
was given refuge
in the Bagheri
countryp
and was reported
to be
recruiting new
followersp became
a
source
of anxiety
for the British. Archer took
upon
him-
self
the task
of
inducing the Sayyid to
give
himself
up
to the British in
return qt'-which
he
would
be
given an
area
for
settlement
and a measure of autonomy.
Archer's
first
strategy was untactful.
It
was
based
on
his belief
that., by
pointing out
to the Sayyid the
plight of
his
people
and
the demise
of
his
movement,
he
would persuade
the Sayyid
to
appreciate-the.
hopelessness
of
his
struggle and
then
accept
Archerts terms.
f
ollows:
The latter's letter
went as
"You
are a,
SomaUWadad.
ý
I
represent,
the
British Government
who
have just beaten in
war
the German
and
the Turkish
people.
Your
strength
and
f
our strength
is thus
not
the
same.
Every
man s
hand is
against you
for the
wrong you
have
done. On
one side
there is Osman Mahmud,
on
the
39. Ibid
p.
266.
32
other
there is Ali Kenedid. They
are your
enemies.
You
cannot go
to them. In Abyssinia
Lij Yasu has
gone, and
Ras Tafari,
who
is
my
friend.,
rules
in his
place.
You, Wadads
are
now a
fugitive
and your people are
in
my
hands.
You have lost
your
leaders
and your stock and
Your women and children, your
forts
and every-
thing
you* possess
....
If
you yourself will
surrender
to
me, as
have
your people,
then I
will give you
"aman"
....
I
will give you a
place wheýe you can.
live
....
For
40
days,
therefore, I
make you
this
I
offer.
"40
Archer
was surprised
and
disappointed by the Sayyidts
reply which
demonstrated his
cool stubborness and a
determination
to die
a
fugitive
rather
than
a servant
of
the British.
The Sayyid
wrote:
"These
words are
from the
man who
is
oppressed,,
Ibn Abdillah Hassan, to the
oppressor without
cause
....
You
say
that the Dervishes have
become
weak and
I
am alone without
following,
all my people
having
run away
...
many
have
been killed
and
that
you
have
caught all my
habbabak
(confidants),
relativeso and
family,
and
that
you
have beaten the Turks
and
the
Germans
....
And to this I
reply:
to
what you
have
said about
the Dervishes
growing weak,
I
can say nothing, neither yes nor no.
God is
Almighty
and
if He desires to
confer power or
to
weaken
it, it is for him to do
so.
You
say
my people
have
run away.
To this I
say: some
of my people
have
run away, and some will
never
leave
me until
I die. You
say you
have
killed
many of my people:
that
statement also
I
cannot contest or
deny. You
say you
have
beaten the Turks
and
the Germans: it, is
not
for
me
to
enter
into that
....
You then
say
"return
to
my
family": there is
something
in this
as
even a
fool
would appreciate
....
In the first
place and
in the
middle
(sic)
you
have
never,
done
me any good.
You
should
have
offered me
some consolation.
And
now
if
what you say
is
true
and you want
to
offer me
terms, then let
me
be
myself-among
the.
people,
****"41
Two
months
later Archer, devised,
another strategy.
He
selected
three,
prominent
Sheikhs,
with a,
high
reputation,,
40.
C. O. 534/41 A
cher
to Mohammed Abdulla Hassan, 17/2/1920
(Encl.
in ArcRerto. C. O.
t-20/2/1920)
41.
C. O. 534/41 Mohammed bin Abdulla, Hassan to Archer
n.
d.
(Encl-.
in Archer to C. O. 9/4/1920)
1)
Ad
both in Somaliland
and abroado
for their
religious zealo
and seven
Akils,
and assigned
them the duty
of
following
the Sayyid into the Ogaden
with a view
to
offering
him
Archer's terms for his
rehabilitation.
The delegation
was
headed by Sheikh Ismail,
a prominent sheikh
in the
Salihiya Tarika,
and
his deputy
was
Sheikh Ismail Ishaak,
also a well
known
religious
teacher in the
same
Tarika.
42
The delegation,
on
being informed
of
its
assignments
was
gripped
by
panic,
believing that they
would
be
put
to
instant death
upon
their
arrival at
the Sayyidts
camp.
Everybody
was so convinced of
this
ultimate
fate that,,
as soon as
they
set out, members of
their families dis-
tributed their
property
to their
respective
heirs.
The delegation took
with
it Archerts letter
which stated,
inter
alia. as
follows:
"I
have
sent you
this letter
under my signature,
offering you
terms
of peace
in
case you wish
to
end a quarrel of
21
years and
live:, in immunity
for the
rest of your
days. You have tasted the
bitterness
of war.
You
will
do
well
to try the
consolations of comfort.
"4,
The terms
offered
by Archer included the
suggestion
that
the Sayyid
should accept a place of residence
for himself
and what remained of
his following in the
western part of
the Protectorate. This
residential area would
be
under
British jurisdiction but the Sayyid
would
be.
allowed a
degree
of autonomy provided
he did
not use
that freedom
for
stirring up anti-British
feelings. Above
alls
the
Sayyid
would
have his
stock., property
and
the
captured
44
members of
his family
returned
to him. The delegation
42.
Jardine
The Mad
43.
Ibid.
p.
-292-2
of
S
0
op. 01t. P. P-W.
44.
Archer, Personal
and
Historical Memoirs
of an
East
African Administrator
op. cit. p.
108
tj
I-- -?
.2
ýLo
set out early
in April
and reached
the Dervish
camp at
Gorahai
wheres contrary
to
general
beliefo they
were
well received and conducted
to the Sayyid's
camp at
Shinileh. The delegation
spent
there
seven
dramatic
days during
which period
the Sayyid
showed extreme anger
at certain
times
and courtesy at others.
Having
thoroughly
castigated
them'for their
complicity with
Europeans, the Sayyid
sent
them back
empty
handed.
Archerts
offer was unacceptable
to him. He
replied
to
the
effect
that the terms
would
be
accepted
if the British
undertook
to
pay
him
a compensation amounting
to 910,000,
the feathers
of
goo
ostriches which, allegedlys were
destroyed during the bombardment
of
his forts.. 30*000-
piastres,
20oOOO dollars, 20 boxes
of scent,
5 boxes
of
diamonds
and
1,000
pearls.
These
conditions were*
obviously, unacceptable
to Archer,
and
his'anxiety
about a possible revival of
the Dervish
movement were
heightened.
45
45.
Jardine
i
The Mad Mullah
of
Somaliland'op.
cit-, P-'2193.
Jardine
s-account of what
transpired
at
the Sayyid
s
camp
is
at variance with
Sheikh Jaamac's
story.
The
former,
whose account
is based
on
", almost
in the
very
words"
(i.
e. of
the delegation)s depicts the Sayyid
as one who was verging on madness and whose
health
was
in
very poor shape.
According to Jardines the Sayyid
used obscene
language,
was rude and unstable.
Sheikh
Jaamac,
on
the
other
hand,
quotes
the
perfectly sane
and
fiery
speech which
the Sayyid
addressed
to the
deleýation,
chiding
them for being loyal to the British
who
invade the
country
in
order
to
reap
the fruits
of
your-countryo and
to
suck your
blood
without your
being
aware of
it"
see
Sheikh Jaamac Cumar Ciise, Tarikh
al-Sumal
fi-l-
usur
....
op. cit. p.
123).
2
Towards the
end of
May, Archer
engineered a
raid against
the Dervishes, led by Haji Mohammed Bullalehp
alias
Waraba
(hyena),
and
his tribal band
of
the Habr
Yunis. The
raid
took the Dervishes by
surprise at
Gorra
and shattered what
little
remained of
their
morale.
The
raiders,
totalling
31000
riflemeno rounded up
the Dervish
stock,
killed
a number of
Dervishes
and seized
their
stock
and rifles.
The Sayyid-fled
southwardso
via
Shogap
arriving at
Imi
after
2 days'
march.
Unfortunately
for the Sayyid,
who
had
started recruiting new
followers
at
Imi, the
area was attacked
by
small-pox and
influenza
epidemics which
decimated the
population, and claimed
the
Sayyid himself
as a victim.
46
Muhammad Abdille Hassan is
thought to have died
sometime
between November 1920
and
January 1921. With his death the disintegration
ofýthe
Dervish
movement was complete.
Some
of
the
survivors
surrendered
to the Ethiopian
authorities and
the die-
hards_moved farther
south
into the
more
inhospitable
parts of
the Ogaden,
out of reach of
the Ethiopian
and
46.
Archer, Personal
and
Historical Memoirs
of an
East
African Administrator,
op. cit. p.
112.
British Goverments.
47
'13
r)

Ad
ii
The Dervish
movemento after
21
years of
its
existence,
left
some
important
marks on
the history
of
the Protectorate.
The Sayyid's
struggle claimed not only
many
lives
-
both
of
the Somali
and
the British
-
but
also
big
sums of
the British tax
payer's money.
The last
expedi-
tion
alone cost
04,000. The
real
loss in lives is
much
harder to determine.
Secondly, the fact that the Sayyid
eluded
death
or capture
for
all
these
years underlined
the
strength and craftiness of
his
movement, and
the
47.
The Habr Yunis
raid and
the
small-pox epidemic evidently
shattered
the Sayyid's hope
of ever
being
able
to
resume
the jihad. He died
a very
bitter
man.
His feelings
were revealed
in
one of
his last
poems, part of which
went as
follows:
Even if I had failed jo
get a
flag that
would
be
flown for
me
between
Here
and
Nairobi,
2. Have I failed to
get
honour in Paradises
and
victories as well as
defeats
(in
war)?
3. Even if I had failed to
get
the Ciid
(region),
luxuriant
with grass, and
the Nogal
(for
my
-
camels)
to
graze,
4.
Have I"failed to
get a riding
beast to
mount and
raid
to
war with success?
Even if-I had failed to
get people who would show
me sympathy and acknowledge
their kinship
with
me,
41
Have I failed to
get
Godts
mercy and
(the
gift)
to.
see
the Prophetts face?
etc
.
relative weakness of
the British
position
in the Protec-
torate. The fact that he forced the British to-ýevaauate
the interior in 1910
was a point
to his
credit which-is
hard to dispute. Moreover,
although
the Dervish
movement
ceased
to
exist as a united organization,
the Dervish
spirit
lived
on after
the
events of
1920$
and manifested
itself in defending
some principles and
ideas for
which
the
original movement
had
stood.
Thus, the Dervishes
bequeathed
the legacy
of resistance
to the
post-Dervish
Somali
generations, with
the
result
that,
even with
the
death
of
the Sayyid, British lives
and money continued
to
be
expended
in their desperate
effort
to
make
their
colonial
rule acceptable.
The Somali
who
had
supported
the British,,
espe-
cially
the Ishaak,
were
the beneficiaries from-the long
and
bitter
conflict.
The British depended
on
them
not
only
in
actively
fighting the Sayyid, but
also
in
serving
their
colonial
interests in
many other respects.
Conse-
quently,
they
accumulated substantial cash reserves with
which
they bought
property
in
urban areass married
the
most
beautiful
women,
travelled
abroad and surrounded
themselves
with urban
luxuries. The
most outstanding
example was a certain
Haji Musa Farah
who rose
to the
rank of
Chief Native Assistant., the highest held by
an
African in the Protectorate. He joined the British
administration
in 1884
as a constable
in the Police
Force
at
Aden. In 1891 he
returned
to the Protectorate
and was appointed
Jamadar, Somali Coast
mounted
Police
and was promoted
to the
rank of
Ressaldor
major on
1905.
The following
year
he became the Native Political Agent,
0
r) -1
4
4.
A
and
then Chief Native Assistant in 1907. By 1916 he
was receiving a salary of
Z208
per annum
-
and
this
compared
favourably
with
the
salaries of
the junior
European
staff.
In 1905 he
was awarded a
Sword
of
Honour,
a grant of
land
and
Rs. 2,000 in
recognition
of
his
"conspicuous
ability, sound
judgement
and
unswerving
loyalty
"48
In 1916 he
was awarded
the Imperial Service Order
and
a
further Rs. 2,000. The British
often
described their
collaborators
as
"enlightened"
and
their
opponents as
"backward".
Yet, the Dervishes despised
and
loathed the
pro-British
tribes,
referring
to them
as
"Gaal-la-Joog"
(servants
of
the infidel).
49
Last, but by
no means
least,
of
the Sayyid's
lasting legacies
were
the Dervish literary
workso
in
the form
of poetry, which are
highly
respected
for
their
scholarly standard.
The
overthrow of
the Dervishes brought
relief
to the British Government
and
the local
administration.
It
was generally
believed that,
with
the disappearance
of
the Sayyid,, the British
would, without
further diffi-
culty,
bring the Protectorate in line
with
the
other
colonies.
The'Somaliland Protectorate
waso
by
comparison,
not only
lagging behind
other colonies
in terms
of
develop-
ment,
but
was also a
financial burden to the Treasury
which
48.
C. O. 535/42 Archer to C. O. 20/3/1916.
49.
Musa Galaal Alip interviewed
at
the Somali Academy,
Mogadishu,
7th August 1974.
11 1)
1)
t)
ed
j
had to
pay annual grants-in-aid
to
make up
for the
chronic
deficit in its budget. The Treasury,
more
than
any other
department,
was
happy to
see
the
end of
the
Dervish
period,
for it
expected
the British
administra-
tion to initiate
taxation
and other revenue-earning
projects which,
in turn,
would make
the Protectorate
self-reliant. The Protectorate derived its
revenue
from the
customs receipts,
port and
harbour dues,
licences,
court
fees
and
telegraphs.
-
Yet..
revenue
from these
sources was always outstripped
by
expendi-
ture.
The following
figures
give a general picture of
the Protectorate's
financial
position :
_50
YEAR
REVENUE
(;
e) EXPENDITURE
(Z)
1916-1917 4o.
ooo 125,624
1917-1918 42.,
000 115,853
1918-1919
54,498 147,328
In the
estimates
for 1920-1921, the Governor5l
applied
for
a grant-in-aid of
Z107,939. He however$
explained
50. C. O. 535/56 Report
on
the Somaliland Blue Book for
1918-1919, by D. Jardine,,, Secretary to the Administra-
tion., 3/11/1919.
-
51. C. O. 535/56 Estimates
of
Revenue
and
Expenditure, for
1920-1921.
The title
of
the
officer administering
the Protectorate
was changed
from Commissioner to Governor in October
1919. The
change was necessitated
by the increased terri-
tory
under
British
administration and
the
anticipated
fall
of
the Sayyid,
an event which was
to
add
the hitherto
Dervish-held territory to that
already administered
by
the British. The
change was,
in
effect,, a
formal
repu-
diation
of
the
policy of coastal administration, and
the
acceptance of
the
greater responsibility of
governing
the
whole
Protectorate.
9
J2)
that..
"so
far
as can
be foreseen, this
request
for
a grant-in-aid of
Z108,000
constitutes
the
highest demand it
should ever
be
necessary
to
make
for this Protectorate; for,
with
the
improved
military situation which
is
confi-
dently
anticipated
in the
near
future,
our
military commitments should
be
reduced, while
the local
revenue
is
capable of considerable
expansion
by the impending development
of
the
Daga Shabel
oil
fields
and other potential
mineral resources, as well as
by the diversion
of
Abyssinian trade to the Protectorate,
on
which
it is
proposed
to
concentrate effort
next year.
"
52
For the first time in the history
of
the Pro-
tectorate, the
estimates
for 1920-21 financial
year showed
a
definite
shift of
the Protectorate's
attention
from
military
to
civil administration.
A
number of projects
were provided
for, the
most
important being
education,
medical services,
the
removal of
the
garrison
troops
and
a general reduction of
the
security
forces.
53
On the
question of revenue,
the local
administration evidently
regarded
the time
as premature
for initiating
radical
measures such as
direct taxation. The
omission of such
measures provoked
the Treasury to
"urge
that the
question of
bringing Somaliland
into line
with
the
other
East African Protec-
torates by the imposition
of some
form
of
direct taxation
of
the
natives should receive
earnest consideration.
"
54
on the Protectorate's
scale of prioritieso educa-
tion
was considered
to be the
most urgent andývital.
It
was
through Western
education
that the British hoped to
52. Ibid.
53. Ibid.
54.535/64 Treasury to C. O. 27/10/1921.
plant new values and attitudes among
the Somali,
and
especially among
those
who
had followed the Sayyid. The
Catholic Mission had tried to initiate
western education
without success.
Since the
closure of
the Mission in
1910
no other attempt
had hitherto been
made
to initiate
or even encourage
European
education.
In
anticipation
of
the
end of
the Dervish
movemento
the
same
Mission
applied
for
permission
to
re-open
its Berbera
mission
in August 1919 but the Colonial Office
was
firmly
opposed
to the idea. Parkinson,
a second clerk
in the Colonial
Office,
minuted
that
"there
is
no reason
that I know
of
for depart-
ing from the
present arrangement whereby all
missionaries are excluded
from British Somali-
land.
"
55
The
existing
form
of education consisted of a
large
number of
Koranic
schools which were scattered
in the
interior. The
curriculum
in these
schools was confined
to the
studying of
the Koran
and
Arabia. On the
coast
there
were
three
such schools, one at
Berbera,
another
at
Bulhar
and
the third
at
Zeila,
all receiving a subsidy
from the
administration.
The
average attendance
in 1919
was
72
pupils at
Berbera, 16
at
Bulhar
and
37
at
Zeila.
A
majority of
the boys
were
the
sons of
Indian
and
Arab
traders.
56
In 1918 Archer
paid a visit
to, the Sudan
and
was
"greatly impressed
with.
the desirability
of
sending a
few
specially selected
Somalis,
55.535/57
Minute by Parkinson
on
Fr- F. Card Bourne,
Catholic
Bishop
of
Westminster, to P. O. 18/8/1919
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 25/8/1919).
56. C. O. 535/56 Report
on
the Somaliland Blue Book for the
year
1.918-1919, by D. Jardine, 3/11/1919.
sons of notables
in this
country,
to the
Gordon College"
57
;
in fact he took
advantage
of
his
visit
to
negotiate
for
the
admission of
6
Somali boys for
a course
lasting
up
to
six years., and costing
930
per
head. He then informed
the Colonial Office
of
the fait
accomplij applyingo at
the
same
time, for
a government grant of
9200
per annum
to
meet part of
the
cost
for the
scheme.
The
project was
described in the Colonial office
as an
"excellent
idea,,
58
and
the Treasury
was successfully persuaded
to
sanction
this
sum.
Thus, the following
year, a number of
Somali
boys left for Khartoum,
and
this
set a precedent of
what came
to be
accepted as
the Protector
ate's policy
of education until such a
time
as
it
might
be
possible
to initiate
Government
schools
in the Protectorate.
In the
estimates
for 1920-1921 Archer
provided
for the
establishment of a
Goverment
secondary schoolp
arguing
that
"the
time has
come when
the local demand for
educational
facilities in the
country can no
longer be ignored
....
vie
hope
eventually
to
recruit our clerical and subordinate
depart-
mental establishment,
from the
school.. which
will
be beneficial to the
natives of
the Pro-
tectorate
and
in the interests
of economy.
"
59
He
asked
for
an
initial
grant of
91,000 to
cover
the
experimental stages
including,
as a
first
step,
the
appointment of a
headmaster. Douglas Jardineo then
57. C. O. 535/52 Archer to C. O. 11/7/1918.
58. C. O. 535/52 Minute by Robinsono lst
clerk
in the
Colonial-Officeo
on-Archer
to C. O. 11/7/1918.
59. C. O. 535/56 Estimates
of
Revenue
and
Expenditure for
1920-1921.
3
tS
2
Secretary
of
the Administration,
went on
to
prepare
a
detailed
plan
for the
proposed educational project.
According to this
plan,
the
educational scheme was
intended to train Somali boys
with a view
to turning
out
Government
clerks, wireless operatorss
dressers in
the
medical
department, headmen in the department
of
Public Works,
agricultural assistants etc.
"The
most
intelligent boys
who could probably
complete
the
whole course, would
be drafted
into the
graded clerical staff.
"60
It
was suggested
that the
course should consist of
English,
Arithmetic, Accountingo Geography, Arabic, Koramic
studieso
typing.,
gardening and
hygiene. School fees
were
to be
paid
by the
well-to-do parents while
those
who could not
afford
to
pay were
to be
exempted.
Physical
education,
was recommendedo was
to include English
games,
especially
football
and
hockey. The
school was
to be
under an
English headmaster
who must
be
"a
graduate of an
English
university,, anxious
and able
to
promote
the
physical education of
the boys
and
to
organise
their
games, and pre-
pared
to
subscribe
loyally to the
non-Christian
policy
insisted
upon.
vt
61
Jardine's
educational scheme got a warm recep-
tion in the Colonial Office, but
was not
taken
up at once
because the Dervish
movement
had
not yet
been
overthrown.
The
scheme was
later
superseded
by
an entirely new one
recommended
by E. R. J. Hussey, Chief Inspector
of
Schools in the Sudan,
who was-regarde-d'as a
better
expert
6"0.535/56 "Outline
of
the
scheme
to
establishing a
Govern-
ment school at
Berbera", by, D. Jardine, 25/6/1919
(Encl.
in Estimates
of.
Revenue
and'Expenditure
for 1920-1921).
61.
Ibid.
tj
than Jardine
on
the
question of establishing
European
education
in Muslim
countries.
Hussey's
recommendations
were made
following
his
visit
to the Protectorates
on
Archer's invitation.
Hussey's
educational scheme was elaborate and
extensive.
He
was at one with
Archer in
advocating
that
the
objective
of
the
educational programme should
be
"the
production
of a responsible and
literate
type
of
Somali, into
whom
the
proper
ideas
have been inculcated in his
early
training
-oo*
It is fully
realised
both
at
home
and
abroad
that
one of
the
chief objects of our
colonial administration should
be
gradually
to
guide
the
various races and peoples under
our control along
the
path of real progressp
and
to teach them to take
a more
intelligent
interest in their
own affairs
*"62
These-ideas
eflected
the
guiding principles upon which
the Sudan
educational system was,,
founded. Wingate
who
became
Governor-General
of
the Sudan in 1902 had
set
the
pace
by
advocating
the
establishment of
"a
carefully considered system
....
by
devising
some means of guiding
the
aspira-
tions
of native youth
into
channels
best
adopted
by the
evolution of
individual
character and racial progress and
-
most
important
of all
-
in
encouraging moral
,
and religious
instruction
which requires
a sense of
duty,
unswerving
integrity,,
and
loyalty in
public and private relations.
"63
James Currie
who
became Director
of
Education in 1900
shared
Wingatets
enthusiasm and made strides
towards the
realization of
these
goals
by
establishing a number of
62.
C. O. 535/62 Memorandum by E. R. J. Hussey
on
the
question
of
introducing Western
education
in Somaliland, 5/12/1920
(Encl.
in Archer to C. O. 23/12/1920).
-
63.
Mohamed Omer Beshir, Educational Development in the Sudan,
18
-1956,
(Oxford)
1969
p.
28 (i.
e.
ingate is
quoted
by
the
author).
This book is based
on
Beshirts B. Litt.
Thesis
for-Oxford, 1966.
schoolso of which
Gordon College
was probably
the
most
outstanding.
It
was
in the
same spirit of enthusiasm
and optimism
that Hussey
approached
his task in Somali-
land. However, the
enthusiasm of
the Sudan
administra-
tion jaf the
merits of
Europe=
education
for the Sudanese
was
damped
when
it
produced results which were contrary
to the
expectations
hitherto
cherished
by its founders.
Thus.. the
educational policy which aimed,
in 1918,
at
producing
"not
merely clerks and artisans,
but
officers and administrators"
064
gave way
to
a systematic curtailment of
the
number of
educated
Sudanese in the
administrative sector and
in
imposing
strict control on
the
curricula of
the
schools.
The
reason
behind this
change of attitude
lay in the
surge of nationalist movements and
the
outbreak of poli-
tical
violence
-
demonstrated inter
alia,,,
by the
assassination of
Sir Lee Stack, the Governor-General,
in 1924
-
which were attributed
to the
educated class.
In
short,
the
educational system,
far from turning
out
men of
"unswerving loyalty", had
produced opponents of
British
rule.
Consequently, the British
confidence
in
the
educated classo
let
alone
in the
educational system
as conceived
by
people
like Wingate,
was shaken.
The
enthusiasm originally expressed
in the Colonial Office
about
the
advocated educational system
for the Somali-
land Protectorate
suffered
in the
process.
The Treasury
which was already opposed
to financing
any
development
64.
M. 0. Beshir, Educational Development in the Sudan,
op. cit. P.
76.
3
projects
in Somaliland, found
a
favourable
climate
for
rebuffing
-
as will
be discussed later
-
Husseyts
and
subsequent educational
proposals when submitted
for
Treasury
approval.
65
The
most
important features
of
Hussey's
scheme
included the
appointment
of
the type
of
headmaster
who
would
"endeavour-to
become the friend
and'father of-
the
pupils under
his
charge.
He
should endea-
vour
to implant
and
foster in the
school
the
English
public school spirit., and
build
up
characters on
that foundation*
"66
In
addition
to the
establishment of
the Government
secon-
dary
school,
the Koranic
schools would, according
to the
scheme,
be
placed under
the
general supervision of
the
headmaster
of
the Government
school,
their
number
increased,
and
their
curriculum
diversified to include,
besides
Arabic
and
Koranic
studies, such subjects as
Arithmetic
and
Geography. With this
re-organizationo
the Koranic
schools would
be
re-designated as
Vernacular
schools and would
have their
subsidy guaranteed and
increased. Admission to the
secondary school would
be
on
the basis
of competitive examination
in the
vernacular
schools.
Hussey then
claimed
that
"the
Somali
are certainly
far
more alive
to the
advantages
to be derived from
education and more
anxious
for its development than the
majority of
the
native races of
Africa
67,
65.
Ibid. Chapter V discusses Britain's loss
of
interest in
educational
development
of
the Sudan
as a result-of
the
political
disturbances
of
1923-1924.
66.
C. O. 535/62 Memorandum by E. R. J. Hussey
on
the
question
of
introducing Western
education
in-Somaliland, 5/12/1920
(Encl.
in Archer to C. O. 23/12/1920).
67.
Ibid.
306
Hussey's
memorandum was recommended in the
Colonial Office
and
described
as sound and
"astonishingly
complete",
but the
problem was stated
to be that
"Somaliland
finances
arep of course, chronically
bad
....
it is
greatly
to be hoped that
we shall
be
able
to
persuade
the Treasury to let
us carry
through
a scheme which
holds
out such
fair hopes
of promising results.
"
68
With this
encouragement
from the Colonial Office,
the
administration
began to
move
fast. In the Protecto-
rate's estimates
for 1921-22 Husseyts
scheme was earmarked
for Z3,397, to
cover
the
pay of
the headmaster
and
the
foundation
of
the
secondary school,
the
re-organisation
of
at
least
4
Koranic
schools.
Without
waiting
for the
Treasury to
approve or reject
the item, Hussey,
on
his
return
to Sudan,
selected
Richardson, then
a
teacher
at
Gordon College, for the
post of
headmaster
of
the
proposed
secondary school and
Inspector
of
Schools, Somaliland Pro-
tectorate. Richardson's
credentials which supposedly made
him the
most suitable candidate
for the
post were
his
fluency in Arabic, his two
years' experience
in the Sudan
and
the fact that he had
"commanded
a
battalion in France during the
war,
and,
in his
university
days,
was an associate
blue.
"69
On the 14th February Richardson
arrived
in the Protectorate
with a supply of
books
and other material
he intended-to
use
in his
work.
This development
provoked
Machtig to
remark
that
68.
Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
69.
C. O. 535/65 Archer to C. O. 2/2*1921.
3
() 101
01
"this
appointment should not
have been
made
pending a
decision
on
the
estimates.
As it
is,
we can
leave it to the local
authorities
to find
a way out.
"
70
The Treasuryts decision,
coming a month after
Richardson's
arrival, was a
blow to the local
administration.
The
education
item
was slashed
from the
estimates on
the
grounds
that
unless
the Protectorate had devised
new
sources of revenue, all
development
projects should
be
held in
abeyance.
Thus, together
with
the
education
scheme,
the Treasury
slashed
the following items: the
proposal
to
encourage agriculture
(C1,000).
the
construe-
tion
of a new
hospital
(95POOO)o
water
boring
schemes
(93,000)
and new
barracks for the
security
forces
(Z7.,
200).
71
Whereas
education was
held to be the key to the
moral and political re-orientation of
the Somali,
agri-
culture was regarded as
being the key to their
material
regeneration.
Twenty
years of warfare.. plus
the
unfavour-
able geographical conditions and recurrent natural
dis-
asters
had
reduced a great number of people
to
such a
state of
destitution that, by the
end of
19190 the
adminis-
tration
was running a number of relief camps on
the
coastal
towns.
"Somalilandts
twenty
years' war
left
nothing
more
tangible than
a
few
ramshackle
Ford Cars
and no
decent
roads or other means of communi-
cations.
ff
72
70. C. O. *535/65 Minute by Machtig
on
Lawrence, Acting
Governor,
to C. O. 11/3/1921.
71- C. O.
535/67 Treasury to C. O. 11/3/1921.
72. I. M. Lewiss A Modern History
of
Somaliland,,
op. cit.
P.
101.
Ju
Initiative towards the improvement
of agriculture was
taken by the Somali themselves. Towards the
end of
1920.,
a number of people
in Hargeisa began
an extensive culti-
vation of
jowari
(millet),
wheat, and
barley,
using
ingeniously
constructed
home-made
ploughs.
During his
tour
of
the interior, Archer
was
impressed by this
development,
noting
that
"a
splendid start
has been
made and
I
consider
it to be incumbent
on
this
administration
to
encourage
in
every way within
its
power
the
pursuit of agriculture among
the Somali
as.,
apart
from
other considerationso
it
will rapidly
lead to
a general adoption of a more settled
mode of
life.
"
73
Archer then
proceeded
to
make a number of suggestions,
the
most
important being
one
for the
appointment of a
West
Indian
agricultural officer who was specially qualified
in the
growing of cereals.
His
main
duties
would
involve
advising
the Somali in
modern methods of cultivation and
in
carrying out experiments with a variety of new crops.
The
other suggestion was
that
several ploughs should
be
purchased and
loaned
out
to
progressive
farmers for
a
small
fee. The Treasury's decision
on
the
above
item has
already
been
noted.
The Treasuryts insistence that the Protectorate
should pay
for,
or at
least
make a substantial contribu-
tion towardso
any
development
projects,
forced the
administration
to initiate
unpopular
revenue-earning
measures.
In November 1920 Archer reported
that he
was
prepared
to
experiment with a
form
of
direct-taxation,
but
warned
the Colonial Office
of
the
dangers
pertaining
73- C. O.
535/61 Archer to C. O.
6/10/1920.
9
.1
f)
43
1 ij
to this
measure.
74
Archer's
proposal
for direct taxation
was
the first
of
its kind in the
entire
Somali-inhabited
territory,
as neither
the French
nor
the Italians had
attempted
it in their
respective
territories. The kind
of
taxation
proposed
by Archer
was
to take the form
of
fixed
annual
tributes
for
each
tribal
section.
This
was
based
on
the
rationale
that.,
not only was
it impossible
to
collect
taxes from individuals, but
also
the idea
of
holding
each
tribal
section collectively responsible
for
raising
the fixed tribute,
would make sense
to the Somali
as
it
was similar,
in
principle,
to the traditional dia
system.
75
In the
event of
the failure
of
the taxation
scheme,
Archer
proposed
to increase the
customs
duties
by 15%
at
Berbera,
a step
he
would
take
reluctantly as
it
would
hit
only
the
small section of people who
depended for their livelihood
on
imported-foodstuffs.
The
part of
the
population who
lived
entirely on
their
stock and subsistance agriculture would
be
unaffected.
The
other revenue-earning measures proposed
included
the
annual registration of rifles
for
which a
fee
would
be
paid and
the introduction
of poll-tax
for the
non-
Somali
residents of
the Protectorate. He
also proposed
to levy
a
fee
on-the
Hajeebhoy. Lallje Company
which
operated a number of-businesses at
Berbera
and
in Aden.
74. C. O. 535/62 Archer to C. O. 29/11/1920.
75. The Dia
system was a custom
by
which each
tribal
section was collectively responsible
for the
payment
of camels
towards the
settlement of a
dispute
arising
out of a crime committed-by an
individual
member of
that tribal
section against a member or members of
another section.
In the
case of murder,
for
example,,
the dia
was
100
camels
for
a man and
50
camels
for
a
woman.
34
-D
On the
expenditure side
Archer intended to
make a saving
by
reducing
the
security
forces
of
the Protectorate to
the
minimum as soon as
the
conditions
for doing
so were
favourable.
76
Even
with all
these
proposals,
there
was
no prospect of
the Protectorate balancing its budget
within a
foreseeable
futureo but the
grant-in-aid was
expected
to fall to
no more
than Z50jOOO
per annum.
77
This
was a comparatively
small
figure
which,
hopefully,
the Treasury
would not refuse
to
sanction, especially
in
view of
the hopes
cherished
by the local
administra-
tion in the
mineral and commercial potentials of
the
Protectorate.
In December Archer
summoned a conference of
the
administrative
officers,
the Akils
and
the leading
sheikhs
to discuss his tax
proposals and
devise
a
strategy
for their implementation. He later
reported
that the
proposals
had,
on
the
wholep
been
"fairly
well
,,
78
received
.
and so
he intended to
put
the
scheme
into
effect without
delay
or
hesitation. The
only opponents
of
the
scheme were
the
representatives
from Burao
who
argued
that the taxation
of
the Somalio besides being
a
contravention of
the Islamic law,
would cause
hardships
to the
already
impoverished Somali. They
suggested
that,
instead
of
imposing the tax
proposals on
the
people,
76. C. O. 535/62 Archer to C. O. 29/11/1920.
77. Ibid.
78. C. O. 535/62 Memorandum by Archer
on
the
proceedings
of
the District CommissionePs Conference
of
29th
November 1920p held
at
Berbera, 23/12/1920.
.
0.4
3
14
1
Archer
should
introduce
the
"Zariba"
scheme under which
the
administration
would collect a
fee
on everything
coming
into the towns for
sale.
79
Whereas the Zariba
system commended
itself to Archer for the
relative ease
with which
it
was possible
to implement it, he
was
inclined
against
it
on
the
grounds
that it
would
bring in less
revenue
than the tribute
scheme, and would not affect
those
who
did
not engage
in trade
with urban areas.
It
was also easy
to
evade.
Thus, during the
conference
Archer insisted
on giving a
trial to the tribute
system,
and
the dissident
voice of
the Burao
representatives was
hushed.
The
onus of collecting
the tributes
was
to fall
0
on
the
shoulders of
the Akils,
while
the
administration
gave support
in those
cases which necessitated coercion.
On the
question of
introducing
compulsory registration
of rifles,
the Conference,
while recognising
the
expediency
of
the
measure,
felt that
"compulsory
registration of rifles might
lead
to
a measure of
distrust in the
native mind,
and
it
was
thought to be better
not
to
press
the
matter at
the
present moment
....
t180
On their
return
to the interior the Akils found that
a
lot
of exaggerated reports
had been
circulating regarding
the C)
new
tax
measures.,
At Hargeisa the Akils
were
heckled
and
stoned
by
angry mobs.
The
situation came under control
only after
the District Commissioner
of
Hargeisa had
per-
sonally
intervened
and, promised
to investigate their
grievances.,
At the beginning
of
1921 the
administration
79. Ibid.
80.
Ibid.
92
announced
the decision
to implement the taxation
scheme
as proposed
by Archer
and endorsed
by the Conference. It
was stressed,
at
the
same
time, that
any refusal on
the
part of
the
people
to
comply with
the decided
policy
would
lead the
administration
to introduce
alternative,
and
by far harshero
methods of
taxation. Reaction in
Hergeisa
and
Burao
was so
hostile that
a general uprising
seemed
imminent.
The
anti-tax
feelings
were stirred
by
the Wadads
(men
of religion) who announced
to the
people
that the
payment
of.
taxes by Muslims to the Europeans
-
the infidels
-
was a
blatant
violation of
Islamic laws,
punishable
by
excommunication
and eternal
damnation.
81
Archer
came
to the
conclusion
that
"direct
tribal
payment can
be-enforced in full
without any chance of
failure
or opposition
by
proceeding at once with
the formation
of a
small air-force
......
One battalion in Aden
should
be
stationed at
Sheikh
as a
temporary
measure.
"
82
Archer's taxation
scheme was self-defeating.
Its
main
aim was
to
raise revenue
for the Protectorate
and so
alleviate
Britain's financial liabilities, but the
implementation
of
the
scheme required
the
expenditure
of
the British taxpayer's
money on punitive action
against
the
recalcitant
elements, and
the
establishment
of a non-productive air-force.
Ando
even
then, Archer
could not guarantee
that the
cost
incurred
as a result
of
the
proposed punitive and security measures would
be
offset
by the
ultimate
tax targets he hoped to
achieve.
81.
Mss. AFR
891-907,
op. cit.
82.
C. O. 535/62 Memorandum by Archer
on
the
proceedings of
the District Commissioner's Conference
op. cit.,
23/12/1920.
j
'. 1
:)
Machtig
remarked
that
"the
imposition
of
tribute
now would
lead to
trouble. As
a matter of
fact
we cannot supply
adequate
forces to
ensure
that
such
trouble
as
would arise would
be
promptly put
down, but
even
if
we
had them
available,
it
would
be
doubtful
policy
to turn the Protectorate into
a
"bear-garden"
in
order
to
collect
Z30,000
worth of revenue.
The
proposal must
therefore
be
regarded as
inexpedient
and should
be
dropped. "
83
With
regard
to Archerts
alternative proposal
for increas-
ing
customs
duties., Machtig
objected
to the idea
Of
partly
because the drastic increase
proposed
is
clearly very
hard
on
the
poor and partly
because it
may produce
the
same situation as
regards
the
unrest as raising
Z30,000 by
direct taxation.
"84
Milner
expressed similar views, remarking
that
"I
am strongly opposed
to the introduction
of
tribute
proposed since
it
appears
likely to
lead to
general unrest.
I do
not regard
forma-
tion
of a
Protectorate
air-force or
the
suggested
despatch
of
British troops from
Aden
as practicable under present conditions
-oeo
I
consider
that
measures should
be
dropped
as regards alternative suggestion
relating
to
customs*
85
It is interesting to
note
the
sharp contrast
between the
attitude
taken by the Somali in the Somali-
land Protectorate
and
that taken by the Somali Community
-
particularly
the Ishaak tribe
-
in Kenya
(excluding
the
Northern Frontier District).
Taxation in Keny,
was on
three
levels: European tax
was
the highest., Asian tax
was
the
second
highest
and
the African tax
was
the lowest. The
Somali
were originally placed
in the latter
class
the
83.
Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
84.
Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
85.
C. O. 535/65 Milner to Archer 3/2/1921.
91
11
so-called native grade
-
but they later
resented
this
status,
demanding to be
classified as
Asians,
which also
implied
payment of
higher taxes. Their
aspirations were
partially achieved
when
the Somali Exemption Ordinance
of
1919 defined them
as non-natives and permitted
them to
pay
higher taxes
as well as enjoy privileges and
facilities
hitherto
reserved
for the Asians. In 19360 howevers
a
change
in the law
resulted
in
a new sliding scale of
taxation
which placed
the Somali in the
native grade.
This brought
about a great
deal
of agitation among
the
Somali for the
restoration
of
their Asiatic
status and
the
attendant
higher tax
scales.
The
agitations nearly cul-
minated
in
a general
Somali
uprising and
it
spread
to
Uganda
and
Tanganyika. A letter
was also addressed
to
the Ishaak in the British Somaliland Protectorate. It
went as
follows:
i
"We
are
in
a very
bad
condition and
treated
very severely
in
respect of
the tax,
and some
regulations
have been issued
against us.
Because
we agreed
to
pay yearly
the
same
taxes
as
theIndians
and
Asiatics
*
and now
we are ordered
to
pay
the
same
taxes
as slaves,
as
if
we are
the
natives of
Africa.
"86
It
will
be
observed.
-therefore,
that the Somali
in diaspora did
not regard colonial
taxation
as an
infringe-
ment of
their'religious
principles.
They, instead,
saw
it
in terms
of
the
racial-grades
fostered
and enhanced
by the
86.
A letter by
an
Ishaak trader in Moshi to-a
group of
Ishaak
elders
in Burao,
as quoted
by Dr. R. Turton
in
an article
"The
Ishaak Somali Diaspora
and poll
tax
agitation
in
Kenya 1936-1941",
in African Affairs,
Vol.
73, No. 292
(JulY
1974)
P.
325-346.1
3
LJ
colonial system.
Since the Africans
were at
the bottom
of
the
racial
hierarchy,
the Somali
aspired
to identify
themselves
with
the
middle class,
the Asians,
even
though
this
entailed greater sacrifice
in terms
of
taxation. The
British Somaliland Protectorate,
on
the
other
hand, being
fairly homogeneous
did
not experience
this
or similar
racial categorization
with
its
attendant
tensions.
Nevertheless, the lines
of action
taken by the Somali in
diaspora
and
those
at
home
were
both
expressions of
Somali
nationalism.
It
was
because the
conditions
in
Kenya
were
different from those in Somaliland that
this
nationalism was expressed
in fundamentally different
ways.
The
surprising point
is that,
although
the two
communities
took different.,
and essentially contradic-
tory, lines
of action with regard
to the British taxation
schemes,
they did
not seem
to be
aware of
this
contra-
diction. Far from it, they
regarded
their
cause* and
even
their
method., as
being the
same and
they
actually
managed
to take
a common and
joint
stand on many other
issues,
such as
in their
opposition
to the introduction
of written
Somali in Roman
script.
With the
collapse of
Archer's
revenue-earning
schemess
the Treasuryts
attitude
towards Somaliland
stiffened.
In February 1920 Archer
reported
that, in
view of
the failure
of
his taxation
schemes
he had
also
decided to drop the
pr oposal
for taxing the
non-Somali
residents and
businessmen because it
could not
be
"proceeded
with
independently
of
Somali
taxation.
"86'
86.
ibid.
P,
4-0
Consequently the Treasury
was asked,
to
approve a grant-in-
aid amounting
to 9110,500 for the 1921-1922 financial
year.
The Protectorate's
revenue
from the
customs receipt
and other sources was estimated
to
amount
to Z45,000
or
less.
87
986,00o
of
the
estimated expenditure was
to
defray
a
deficit incurred during the
previous
financial
year,
Z30,000
was
to
make up
for the failure
of
the
direct taxation
scheme,
910,000
was
for
retaining
the
Indian
soldiers whose removal, originally proposed
by
Archer,
was
found impracticable in the light
of
the
unsettled situation, and
92,500
was necessitated
by the
abandonment
of
the taxation
proposals
for the
non-Somali.
The balance
was
intended to
provide
for those development
projects whose
demise in the
corridors of
the Treasury
has
already
been
merttioned.
88
Churchill found the
attitude of
the Treasury
disagreeable.,
and
this
prompted
him to
propose
that
#a
strong
letter
should
be
written
to the
Treasury
with regard
to the
arbitrary cutting
of
these
votes
....
It
89
This tug-of-war
was superseded
by
a new
idea, initiated
by Archer, to the
effect
that the Somaliland Protectorate
should
be
amalgamated with
Aden, for he
regarded
the
former
as
being
"too
lacking in
resources and
too
small
to
stand on
its
own.
"90
87.
C. O. 535/65 Archer to C. O. 13/2/1921.
88.
Ibid.
89.
C. O. 535/65 Churchillts
minute on
Archer to C. O.
13/2/1921.
90. C. O. 535/68 Archer to Fiddes 21/2/1921.
C'
f
In
any case.,
Somaliland
and
Aden
were already
inextricably
linked through trade,
a
long history
of cultural contact
and religious
identity.
Thus, the
prevailing administra-
tive division,
so
Archerts
argument wents was artificial
and unrealistic.
"Aden
is
already
his
(i.
e.
Somali)
metropoliso
his trading
centre;
Aden
and
Somaliland
are
commercially
inter-dependent. Meat
supplies,
skins etc.
from Somaliland
go
to Aden
and all
food
supplies
to Somaliland
come
from Aden.
If Aden becomes the headquarterso dual
manage-
ment expenses will
disappear.
"91
Archer's
proposal met with outright
hostility
from Machtig:
"it
would seem
that
as a result of
the
rejec-
tion
of
his ill-conceived
proposals
for direct
taxation
of
Somalis, he has leapt to
(a
quite
erroneous) conclusion
that the financial
posi-
tion
of
Somaliland is desperate
and necessitates
the
amalgamation of
Somaliland
and
Aden,
and,
taking this
as
his
starting point,
he
arranges
his
view
to fit his theory
without considering
or even mentioniný
the
very serious objections
and
difficulties.
t
92
Some
of
the
objections
to the
proposed amalgamation were
that Somaliland
was more
linked to the
"larger
Abyssinian
problem"93
than to Aden,
and
that the Colonial Office had
already made progress
towards
establishment of an admini-
strative system
that
was unique and meaningful
to the
conditions of
Somaliland. All this
would
be destroyed
by
changing
the
whole structure and character of
the
Goverment. At
any rate,
Machtig
could
find
no
basis for
II
supposing
that
91. Ibid.
92. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
93. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
"the
new arrangements will
decrease the
cost
of
Somaliland
to the Exchequer
94
In March 1921 Archer
was
invited to defend his
amalgamation
proposals
at
the Middle East Conference
which
had been
summoned
to discuss.,
among other
things,
the
conflicting
claims
to legitimate
power
in the Persian
Gulf between Ibn Saud
of
Persia
and
Sheriff Hussein
of
Mecca.
95
When the Somaliland
question came up
for dis-
cussion.,
Churchill
was
inclined to
support
the
amalgama-
tion
scheme, saying
that
"considerable
advantages could
be
gained and
economies
effected
by integrating Aden
and
British Somaliland.
"96
Churchill
then
set up a committee
to
study
the technical,
financial
and political
implications involved in the
amal-
gamation
scheme.
On his
return
to London,
and
in the
light
of
the Committee's findings, Churchill decided
not
to
press
for the
amalgamation proposals
"till
India's financial
contribution
is
settled.
fl
97
The Committee had, in the
course of
its investigationso
discovered insurmountable differences
of opinion
between
the Colonial Office
and
the India Office
on such crucial
matters as
the
advantages
to-be derived from
amalgamation
94. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
95. Mss. AFR. S.
605
OP-cit- p.
4-7-
96. C. O. 535/65 Churchill's
minute on
Archer
to C. O. 13/2/1921
97. C. O. 535/68 Churchill's
minute-on
Archer
to Fiddes
21/2/1921.
4
11
Ila
and on
the
amount of contribution
to be
paid
by
each of
the two
offices.
The India office
wasp on
the
whole.,
reluctant
to
accept
the
amalgamation scheme,
taking the
view
that
such a measure would
thrust the burden
of
administering
a non-productiveo
let
alone recalcitant,
territory
on
the
shoulders of
India.
The
post-Dervish search
for
alternative policies
embraced nearly
every aspect of
Somali life. Archer
and
his
successor,
Summers, did
not appear
to be
vexed or
dis-
heartened by failure
and
the Treasury's
obstinacy.
The
other preoccupation
which engaged
the
efforts and resources
of
the
administration
was
in
attempting
to
revive
the
com-
mercial
fortunes
of
Zeila
which
had been
usurped
by
Jibuti.
During the
early stages of,
Arab influence
on
the Somali
coast,
it
was
Zeila
rather
than Berbera
or
Jibuti
which was
best known to the
outside world as one
of
the
outstanding centres of
trade, learning
and
Islamic
culture.
It
was a
dependency
of
the Yemen
and
the
ruler
of
Mokha
used
to
appoint
the townts
governor.
The
Governor
was,
in turn,,
accountable
to his
superiors
in
the Yemen. Zeilats fortunes began to decline in the
19th
century when
Egypt
conquered
the Somali
coast and,
by
so
doing., disrupted the
established. pattern ofitrade
and government.
Egypt.
's
reign was short
lived but the
decline it
unleashed went on unabated.
During the
second
half
of
the 19th-century the town. became
a
target
of
scramble
between European
powers until
Britain's
claims
were recognized at
the Berlin Conference
of
1885ý
'France,
whose
aspirations
had been frustrated..
contented
herself
with
having her
claims over
Jibuti
recognized.
French
C)
policy
in Jibuti
was,
however, different from Britain's
policy
in Zeila,
or
indeed in
any
town
on
the Somali
coast.
While France
strove
to
convert
Jibuti, hitherto
a relatively
obscure
town, into
a prosperous commercial
centre) going
as
far
as
building
a railway
line to link
it
with
Ethiopiao
Britain
not only concentrated at'v-%
Berbera
at
the
expense
of
Zeila but
was also on
the
wholep reluctant to invest
capital
in the development
of
her towns
on
the Somali
coast.
Thus, the
rise of
Jibuti
was matched
by the
corresponding
decline
of
Zeila. The
hinterland
tribes
which
had
all along made
their
commer-
cial
transactions
at
Zeila began to
channel
their business
to Jibuti
which was
both
well supplied with
facilities
and
was connected
with
the interior by
railway.
Begiming
with
1919, the D. C.
of
Zeilas Raynes
expended a great
deal
of resources
and effort
in the
attempt
to
revive
the fortunes
of
Zeila
and usurp
Jibuti's trade. Firstly, he
persuaded
Archer to keep
Zeila
customs
duties to the lowest
minimum so
that the
traders
might
be
attracted away
from Jibuti
where
the
customs
duties
were relatively
high. He
also made an
effort
to
modernize and expand
the trading facilities
of
Zeila
which
had been
neglected.
93
Rayne's
efforts
resulted
in
some
improvement in the
commercial
life
of
Zeila but Jibutits
position remained unrivalled.
The
Treasury's
parsimony over
the Somaliland
projects was
one major stumbling
block to Rayne's
schemes while
the
Jibuti
railway was an asset
for
which
Rayne
could
find
no
98. MSS. AFR. S.
605
op. cit. P.
5-6.
35.1.
equivalent at
Zeila. Moreover, the hinterland
of
Zeila
stretched
to
more
than
60
miles of waterless
land
while
the immediate hinterland
of
Jibuti
was endowed with
the
additional attraction
of abundant water.
That Zeila
had
continued
to
survive as a commercial
town
was, as a
matter of
fact,
a source of wonder
to the
administration
and
the
only reason was
thought to lie in the
"conservative
habits
of
the
natives
in
clinging
to
what
has
always
been their
port., spurred
by
continual effort of
the District Commissioner.
"
99
Another
area
in
which
the
administration expended
considerable energy was
the internal
administration.
Twenty
years of warfare
had
made
it
virtually
impossible for
Britain to
pay adequate attention
to the
need
for
estab-
lishing
a sound and viable administration as she
had
already
done for the
majority of
her
other colonial posses-
sions.
The
only administrative
feature
of
importance
was
a
body
of government agents,
the Akils,
who were charged
with
the duty
of
implementing
government policies and
acting as
intermediaries between the British
and
the
ordi-
nary citizens.
The Akil
system was a great
disappointment
to the British in that
not only were
the Akils despised
and
hated by the
ordinary citizens
but,
even more serious
than that..
a good number of
them
used
to
pay
lip
service
to the British
while
their loyalty
and sympathies
remained
with
their kinsmen'.
The
administration of
justice had,
all
through
the Dervish
period,
been left largely in the hands
of
the
Somali Sheikhs..
while-the
Indian Penal Code,,
which was
99. c. O.
879/121
Correspondence
relating
to the Estimates
of
Revenue
and
Expenditure for 1925-1926.

')
J
ild
supposed
to be the basic law
of
the Protectorateo
existed only
in
name.
During the District Commissioners'
Conference
of
1920 Archer
pointed out what
he
considered
to be the loopholes
in the
administrative system.
He
stressed
the importance
of
initiating important legisla-
tion to
regulate
various
aspects of
the
administrative
life,
and of
the
urgent
need
to
exert
the
weight of
the
administration in those
areas
in
which
it had hitherto
been impossible
to do
so.
In the field
of
justice, Archer
proposed
the
introduction
of capital punishment
in those
cases which
involved
brutal
and pre-meditated murders, especially on
the
caravan roads.
Although
a number of
Akils
were
opposed
to the
proposal,
Archer
argued strongly
in its
support
both
at
the Conference
and
in the
subsequent
despatches
to London. The Colonial Office felt that,, in
view of
the divided
opinion among
the Akils, the time
was
premature
for the introduction
of capital punishment, and
it
was not until
1924 that Summers
sought and acquired
permission
to impose
capital punishment
in
cases
involving
"murder
of particular
brut
-
ality or wantonness
when
I have
no
doubt that I
shall
be
supported
by
a considerable volume of opinion among
the
natives
themselves. "
100
The
other
departments
affected,
by, the
re-organiza-
tional
phase of
the
post-Dervish period
included the Police,
the Camel Corps, the Customs department
and
the
game
depart-
ment.
In
addition., a number of, ordinances were enacted
dealing
-
with such matters as
the
chewing of
kat,
101
the
100. C. O. 535/74 Summers to C. O. 11/4/1924.
101. Kat is
a
type
of narcotic plant whose
leaves
are chewed
in
some parts of northern
Africa
and
the Arab
world.
It has
a stimulating effect and,
if
chewed
in
great quantities,
can
be harmful to health.
exclusion of alien vagrants
from the Protectorate,
pension
schemes
for
widows
and orphans, and several other adminis-
trative
matters. Of these, the
re-organization of
the
Camel Corps
was
the
most significant administrative mea-
sure
deserving
some
detailed
examination.
Shortly
after
the fall
of
the Dervisheso the
Inspector General
of
the K. A. R.
paid a visit
to the Pro-
tectorate for the
purpose of
inspecting the Somaliland
Camel Corps
and recommending,
if
necessary, reorganiza-
tion. He
expressed general satisfaction with
the
way
the force
was organized and administeredo commending
in
particular
the
presence of
Indian
soldiers who consti-
tuted the foreign
element
in the force. He
was also
impressed by the training
programme,
the
quality and
condition of arms., equipment and clothing,
the
standard
of
discipline
and
health
and
the functioning
of
the
Intelligence Department.
102
The
most
important
recom-
mendations made were
that the Somali
should
be
placed
in
positions of responsibilityo such as
in the
signal-
ling department,
and
that
a
full-time Intelligence
Officer
should
be
appointed.
Another
significant
issue
to be tackled
was
Archer's
earlier proposal
to do
away
with
the Indian
soldiers.
The
original rationale
for
recommending
this
step was
that this
expedient would
reduce
the Protectoratets
expenditure on
the
military
vote.
This
proposal
had been temporarily
suspended as a
result of
the
anti-tax agitations at
the beginning
of
102. C. O. 535/65 Col. Hawthorn, Inspector General
of
the
K. A. %p to Summers 26/5/1921
(Encl.
in Summers to
C
.0-
7/5/1921).
I
35:
1921j, but
conditions were,
by the
middle of
the
year.,
considered
to have improved to the
extent
that the
administration
decided to
revert
to the issue. Hawthorn
the Inspector General..
K. A. R.
was opposed
to the
proposed
reduction of
the forces
on
the
grounds
that
"the
present composition of
the Corps is
a
suitable
one, as
the Indians furnish the
more phlegmatic element which
tones down
the
naturally excitable
temperament
of
the
Somali. "
103
He then
recommended
-
and
the Colonial Office
concurred
-
that,
since
the force
was,
for
all
intents
and purposes,
an
integral
part of
the K. A. R. it
should
have its title
changed
to the
"7th
Battalion
(Somaliland
Camel Corps)
Kings African Rifles
.,,
104
In October Summers
revived
the
quettion of
the
reorganization
of
the Camel Corps,
proposing
the
removal
of
the Indian
soldiers and
their
replacement with
55
men
of
the
reserve.
He
also suggested
the division
of
the
reorganized
force into 3
companies,
two
of which would
be
mounted and
the third dismounted. He
contended
that,
with
this
reorganization,
"an
annualýk economy of
Z3PO70
will
be
effected
as well as a
triennial
saving of approximately
Z3,420 in
special expenditure on account of
recruitment and
disbandment
of
the Indian
Company.
t'
105
Summers
pointed out,
however, that
were
it
not
for the
pressing need
to
effect some economy.,
he
would
have
103. Ibid.
104. Ibid.
105. C. O. 535/66 Summers to C. O. 19/10/1921.
-C
ei U
preferred
to
retain
the Indian
soldiers:
"the
need,
however,
exists and
I have there-
fore
put
forward
a scheme
for
re-organization
which
I
now consider may
be
adopted without
reducing
the
strength of
the local forces
below
a minimum safetyo
but in doing
so
I
wish
to
make
it
clear
that I
consider
that
the
scheme embodies
the
minimum of safety
at
the
present
time.
"
lo6 ,
Summers
proposed
to
put
his
scheme
into
effect
during
the first half
of
1922,
and
hoped that the Treasury
would
thereafter feel inclined to
sanction a number of
projects which
had been turned down. Machtig
remarked
that Summerst
proposals
"represent
a very satisfactory arrangement
**..
they
will secure a very useful saving
in
expenditure".,
107
and
Read
added
that
Itno
one
is better
qualified
than Summers to
advise
in
a matter of
this kind,
and
I think
that
we should accept
his
views.
"108
On his
return
from leave towards the
end of
1921, Archer
announced
his determination to
renew
efforts
for
making
the Protectorate
economically viable,
notwithstanding
the
earlier
disappointments. The,
Treasury had
expressed
disatisfaction
with
Summers'
scheme
for
reorganization of
the Camel Corps
on
the
grounds
that the
saving
he hoped to
realize was not
sufficient
to
make
the Treasury
change
its
attitude.
In
January
of
the following
year,
Archer
came up with
fresh
schemes which superseded
those
of
Summers. He introduced
increases in
customs
duties
calculated
to bring in
some
lo6. Ibid.
107- Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
108. Minute
by Read.
35C
Z13., 000
additional revenue.
He
also
initiated
a
transit
rate of
10%
of
the Protectorate's
rates on goods
bound
for Ethiopia..
109
He described his
objective as
being to
"reduce
the
grants-in-aid
from
some
Z80,000
annually recurring,
to Z25., 000",
and of ultimately
making
the Protectorate
self-supporting
"in
the
course of
the
next
few
years-"
110
Archer
was convinced of
the
necessity of making
the
Somali
make a
direct
contribution
towards the
revenue of
the Protectorate
but
was realistic enough
to
admit
that
"the
Somali have
expressed
themselves
unwilling
to
contribute
by
any means of
direct taxation to
the
cost of
the Government;
and,
in the
present
state of affairs,
I
see no means of-compelling
the
compliance of a nomadic peopleo who
for
a
greater part of
the
year wander
far
afield
across our
frontiers
and would
be likely to
remain
there,
outside our
jurisdiction., to
avoid
taxation.
"
ill
With
a view
to
making progress
towards the
stated objectives,
Archer
proposed reductions
in the
administrative establishment.
He
wrote,
"I
advocate no withdrawal or
drastic
change of
policy, no undoing of
the
work of
the
past,
but
great reduction of staff and military estab-
lishments.,
and an administration conducPed on
purely political
lines
which adequatelybeet
the
needs of
the
country
*"112
At this time the
average annual expenditure on
the
armed
forces1was
over
Z70sooo,
of which
the Camel Corps
claimed
109. C. O. 535/69 Archer to C. O. 13/1/1922-
110. C. O. 535 Archer to C. O. 12/l/1922.
111. Ibid.
112. Ibid.
"
Z43., 911
and
the Police 921,764.113 Archer's
reorganiza-
tional
scheme was
intended to
cut
this by
more
than half.
In defence
of
the
proposed reduction of
the
security
forces, Archer
claimed
to be
supported
by
a majority of
the British
administrators
with along record of service
and experience
in Somaliland. Capt. Gibb,
who
had
worked
in the Protectorate
as an administrative officer
for
more
than twenty
years, was,
for instanceo
quoted as
having
stated
that
"the
present system of administrations although
satisfactory
in
many wayss
is
very expensive ands
in
my opinion, more suited
to
a country with a
future than to Somaliland
....
it
would appear
unwise
to
expend
large
sums of money on an
expensive administration when our only object,
which at present
is to keep the Somalis from
fighting
and
looting
each other.. could
be
achieved
by
much cheaper methods.
The Mullah's
Dervishes having
ceased
to
exist, a military
force in the
country
is
urmecessary.
"114
Major Rayne,
also speaking with
twenty
years experiencep
is
also quoted as
having
said
that
"In
the first instance I
consider
the
present
administration
broke down
when
it failed, in
December last
year,
to institute the
principle
of
direct taxation
....
we
have to face the
hard fact,
and
to
make
the best
of
it, that
the
revenue resources of
this
country are
strictly
limited
and very easily exhausted.
"
115
These
views were re-inforced
by Lawrence
who
had,
served
in
the Camel Corps
since
1906. He is
reported as
having
stated
that
113. Ibid.
114. Ibid.
(Gibb
as quoted
by Archer).
115. Ibid.
(Rayne
as quoted
by Archer).
"it
is
no
longer
necessary
to keep
a
large,
mobile
force in the
country
....
I
should
like to
see a skeleton administration
brought
into being
....
the
officials must
harden
their hearts, ignore
much, and
be
careful
not
to
if
be
persuaded
to take
up petty
cases.
116
The
right course of action, according
to Archer,
"is
clearly
to
occupy, not administer
the
country.
We
cannot withdraw
from the interior
without results similar
to those
arising out
of
the
previous evacuation,
but
we can very
sensibly curtail our
liabilities
117
He
proposed
to
revert
to the Constabulary
policy whereby
the
prevailing military and police
forces
would
be
merged
into
one establishment of no more
than 540
rifles.
He
estimated
the
scheme
to lead to
a saving of over
940,000
annually,, and
"in
a
few
years
it is fairly
safe
to
predict
that the
revenue and expenditure
in Somaliland
should
balance
at about
f, 100,
p
annually.
"118
A
month
had barely
elapsed after
the
submission
of
these
proposals
to London
when
the
politics of
the Pro-
tectorate took
a
drastic
and altogether unexpected
direc-
tion. At the
end of
January
a number of
Somali
elders
met
Archer
at
Sheikh
and
informed him that,
after much
reflection and
internal discussion, they had themselves
changed, and
had
persuaded a majority of
the
people
to
change,
their
attitude
towards the taxation issue. They
were now prepared
to
accept
the taxation
scheme as
originally proposed
by Archer. The latter
reported
that
116.
Ibid.
(Lawrence
as quoted
by Archer).
117. Ibid.
118. Ibid.
5
L)
"the
Mullahs
who
had
previously
been the
chief
opponents now seemed
to be the
chief supporters
of
this
step.
"iig
In
view of
this development, Archer
requested
the Colonial
Office to
postpone
the
endorsement of
his
proposals
for
the
curtailment of
the
administrative establishment.
Archer
attributed
this
change of attitude on
the
part of
Somali to their
suspicion
that Britain intended to
evacuate
the interior
as she
had done in 1910. The Somali, it
was
claimed,
dreaded British
withdrawal more
than the
payment
of
taxes,
a
factor
which explained
their
preference
for
the latter in
order
to
avoid
the former. Archer took the
elderst word at
face
value and
did
not
bother to
ascertain
whether
their
views represented
the
attitude of
the
majority
of
the
ordinary people.
With
conspicuous enthusiasm,
he
began
a country-wide
tour
of
the Protectorate for the
purpose of prescribing specific
tax targets for
each
tribal
section.
As
part of
his itinerary, he
addressed a meeting
of elders at
Burao
on
the 24th February
and explained
his
decision to
revive
the taxation
scheme.
At the
end of
the
meeting,
two
of
the Government Akils
went
to the
countryside and
instigated
a group of armed
Somali to
proceed
to the toim
and
demonstrate
against
Archer's
taxation
proposals.
The D. C.
of
Burao, Gibb,
set out
against
the
advice of
Archer
and
Rayne to
meet, and
probably
to
admonish,
the
I
demonstrators.,
and was
instantly
120
shot
dead. Rayne
escaped
death
narrowly,, as
he followed
119. MSS. AFR.
891-907
po
2.
120. MSS. AFR- 552
p.
113-115.
C, 6
')
11 0
Gibb in
an attempt
to
restrain
him. Rayne
collected
Company
"B"
of
the Camel Corps, then
stationed at
Burao,
with a view
to dispersing the
angry crowd.
The Company,
however,
mutinied and refused
to
open
fire into the
crowd.
Recounting his
experience
Rayne
wrote:
"I
glanced
down the
machine gun and saw
it
was
shooting over
the tops
of
the high trees
under
which
the
riflemen stood.
I tried to
get
the
gun myself
but
could not
do
so.
I
ordered
it
to be depressed but the team
quietly
ignored
my orders.
"
121
The death
of
Gibb
and
the behaviour
of
the Camel
Corps disheartened the Colonial office
and caused serious
doubts
as
to the
soundness of
the
policy which
the local
administration
had
advocated.
The belief that the Der-
vish movement
had been
solely responsible
for the
anti-
British feelings had to be discarded. The
events at
Burao had demonstrated that the Somali
were still
hostile
to the British
policies which
tended to interfere
with
their freedom,
property and religion.
Above
all,
the
earlier
doubts
about
the
reliability of
the Somali
soldiers
in
situations which
demanded the
suppression
of
their kinsmen
were confirmed.
Not
only was
Archer's
proposal
for
a reduction of
the
security
forces
abandoned.,
but
also
the
question of1maintaining
a substantial ele-
ment of
foreign troops in the Protectorate
was given
serious
thought.
122
121. C. O. 535/69 Rayne to Archer 25/2/1922
(Encl.
in Archer
to C. O. 26/3/1922).
122. Archer, Peýsonal
and
Historical Memoirs
of
An East
African Administratorp
p.
135-1,35.
C'l
A
t!
Before
assessing
the long-term implications
of
the Burao
uprising, however, Archerfs immediate
concern
was
to take
such measures
as would prevent
the
uprising
and mutiny
from
spreading. He
sent
for two
aeroplanes
from Aden, but did
not
think it
necessary
to
acquire
troop
reinforcements. He tended to
regard
the
uprising
as an
isolated
incident
engineered
by
a
handful
of a
dis-
contented
section
of
the Habr Yunis.
123
He
convened a
meeting
of
the Rer Sergulleh, the
section
.
he held
responsible for the disturbances,
and gave
them
a weekts
ultimatum
to
pay a
fine
of
3,000
camels and, at
the
same
time,
capture and surrender
to him the
perpetrators of
Gibb's
murder.
By the
expiry of
the
ultimatum period
there
were no signs
to indicate that the Rer Segulleh
"had
any
intention
of complying with
the
ultimatum, and
on
the 5th March, Archer
ordered
the
aerial
bombardment
of
Burao town.
124
He then
reported
that the
"effect
of aeroplane
demonstration
on
the
country
has been
electrical and
it is
unlikely
now
that I
shall require
troops from Aden
....
The Habr Yunis
sections
have
come
in
and under-
taken to
pay without
demur the Goverment fine
of
3sOOO
camels.
"
125
The
aerial raids on
Burao
caused extensive material
damage
and
demoralization.
They
were reminiscent of
the
aerial
raids on
the Dervish
positions
two
years earlier.
In
view
of
the
effectiveness of
the
aerial raids,
Archer
recom-
mended
the
permanent retention of
two
aircraft
in the
123. C. O. 535/69 Archer to C. O. 27/2/1922.
124. Archer, Personal
and
Historical Memoirs
of
An East
African Administrator
op. cit. p.
136.
125- C. O. 535/69 Archer to C. O.
6/3/1922.
aGk.
,,
Protectorate
to be
used
as a
threat
against any anti-
Government
uprising in the future.
126
The Colonial Office
received
the
recommendation favourably
and referred
it to
the Air Ministry
for
endorsement.
In June, Archer
was
duly
informed that the Air Ministry had
authorized, until
further
notice,
the
retention
of
two
aircraft
in the
Protectorate.
127
Archer
instituted
a commission
to inquire into
the implications
of
the Burao incident
and
to
recommend
appropriate
steps
for
safeguarding against a recurrence of
a similar
situation. On the
question of
the loyalty
of
the Camel Corps, the Commission
came
to the
conclusion
that
'"the
troops
were reluctant
to fire
on
the towns-
people and
there is
evidence
to
show
that
mally
of
them
were
down in town in the
course of
the
morning.
"
128
Thus,
without
the knowledge
of
the
administration,
the
Somali
soldiers and some
Akils had
conspiredvLth
the
ordinary citizens
to
oppose
the tax
proposals.
With
regard
to the degree to
which
Somali
soldiers
could and should
be
relied upon under similar circumstanceso
the Commission
concluded
that Somali
soldiers coulo4be
trusted to
enforce
Government
orders only
in
exceptional
cases, such as
in the
recapture of stock
looted by
one
tribal
section
from
another and
in beating back
external
raiders such as
the Mijjertein. The Commission
was of
the
126. Ibid.
127. C. O. 535/69 c. o. to Archer 15/6/1922.
128. C. O. 535/69
"The
findings
of
the Court
of
In5uiry
appointed
to-investigate the behaviour
of
"B
Company
25/4/1922
(Encl.
in Archer to C. O. 7/5/1922).
4:
1 U
opinion.,
however,
that Somali
soldiers could not
be
relied
upon
if it
came
to
enforcing
those
policies which were
generally unpopular
or
to
arresting a
"religious
agitator or
Sheikh
who may
be
inciting
the
people
to disobedience
or
violence.
"
129
It
was also
thought
unlikely
that the Somali troops,
with-
out
the
support of outside
troops,
would
take
strong
punitive action
against
a combination of sections
from
which a
large
number of
the
soldiers were recruited.
The
Commission
observed:,
"We
are of
the
opinion
that the Somali troops
without support
from
a
foreign
garrison cannot
be
entirely replied upon
for
every
kind
of
service
they
may
be
called upon
to
perform
e.. *
It
should
be
remembered
that the Somali
of
the Corps is
a soldier
today
and a
tribes-
man
tomorrow. "
130
In the light
of
the Commissionfs
reporto
Archer
came up with
fresh
proposals
for the
reorganization of
the
security
forces
and
the
administration.
He
recommended
the
permanent retention of not
less than 120 foreign
troops in the Protectorateo to be
stationed at
Hergeisa
and
Burao. He then
expresses
his
preference
for Nyasa-
land
soldiers or,
failing that, Indians. He
also
proposed
the
recruitment
of some
200 Somali
reserves
to
be
calledupon
for
service when and
if the
necessity arose.
Archer's
recommendations
were welcomed
in the Colonial
office
and
immediate
authorization was given
for their
implementation. Towards the
end of
the
year, a contin-
gent of
the lst K. A. R. Nyasaland troops
arrived
to
129. Ibid.
130. MSS. AFR. S-552
op. cit. p.
116.
C! A
constitute
the
recommended
foreign
element of
the Camel
corps.
131
The
most crucial
issue for Archer to tackle
was
whether
he
should
drop his taxation
scheme on account of
the Burao incident.
Hargeisa
and
Berbera, far from
revolting,
had
actually
initiated the idea
of
having the
taxation
scheme revived and were reported
to be
making
progress
towards the
collection of quotas prescribed
for
them. Archer
made
his
position clear:
"It
will
be
as well
to
say at once
that the
incidents lamentable
as
it is,
cannot
be
allowed
to interfere
with
the
carxying
into
effect of
the
revenual measures now under
report
....
In fact I
might go
farther
and
say
that
what might previously
have
presented
some
difficulty in this district
(i.
e.
Burao)
is
now completely easy and assured
for the
-
bubble
of
Rer Sagulleh independence is
pricked.
"
132
Thus, Archer
was
determined to
go
by the
assurance given
by
various
tribal
sections,
hoping that Burao
would
follow
suit.
The
only concession
he
was prepared
to
make was
to
revise
the figures, in
a
downward direction
of
the tax targets he had
earlier on
fixed for
each sec-
tion. Hargeisa
and
Burao
were allocated a new
target
of
Z3,500
per annum each while
Berbera, Zeila
and
the Makhir
coast were
to
collect
Z1.000
each.
The feeling in the Colonial Office towards
Archerts judgment, let
alone
the
proposed
line
of action,
was one of pessimism.
Machtig
remarked,
131. Ibid.
p.
117.
132. C. O. 535/69 Archer to C. O. 26/3/1922.
36
"')
"it
remains
to be
seen
to
what extent
these
special contributions., promised under
the
impulse
of
fear
of
immediate
consequences of
withdrawal,,
will actually
be
paid and,
if
paid once, will
be
continued.
It
would not
Pay
to
enforce
them by
military measures.
However.,
all action
has been taken
already
by the Governor
and we can only await
results.
"
133
By the
end of
June Archer
was already
busy
touring the Protectorate
with a view
to
encouraging,
and sometimes
threatening, the
people
to
comply with
his
tax
measures.
Towards the
end of
August he
reported
that
"In
Hargeisa
and
the
surrounding villages,
nearly all
the Habr Awal
and most of
the
Aidegallah have
conformed
to the
measure
of revenue
....
and
have
paid
the
amount
of
tribute due
either
in full
or
in
greater
part
....
but the Habr Yunis
of
Burao
are
.
in definite
and open oppositiono
doing
their
utmost
to induce
others not
to
comply*,
'134
He had
already
found it
necessary
to
attempt
the
arrest
of
two
of
the
most outspoken opponents of
the Govern-
ment's measures.
The
effort
had failed
and
the
wanted
men
had
managed
to
escape across
the border into
Ethiopian territory. The 150 Camel Corps
sent
to
effect
their
arrest
had
met with stiff opposition cul-
minating
in the
shooting of
5 Habr Yunis
men-135
Archer found himself in
a particularly
difficult
position,
having to decide
either
to
confront
the
angry
mob or capitulate.
Choosing the former'line
of action
would
have been
a risky undertaking
in that,
not'only were
133. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
134. C. O. 535/70 Archer to C. O. 23/8/1922.
135- C. O. 535/70 Archer to C. O. 23/8/1922.
1 ex
3vi)
the troops
at
his disposal inadequate in the
event of a
general uprising
taking
placep
but
also
the Colonial
Office
would
have
most certainly censured
that
course
of action.
Capitulation
was equally ghastly;
besides
the loss
of prestige which
the British
would
have incurred,
capitulation at
that
moment would
have
probably encouraged
the
mob
to take
more
daring
steps.
Archer found
a way out
of
his dilemma by taking
advantage of a previous announce-
ment
to the
effect
that Summers had
already
been
earmarked
as
his
successor and
he
was
to be transferred to Uganda.
Although
no
date had
yet
been fixed for these
changes,
Archer
announced
to the
protesters
that he did
not
intend
to take
punitive action against
them
since
he
was
due to
leave the Protectorate for
good
in
a
few days time. Hav-
ing, thus,
shifted
the
whole
burden
of
dealing
with
the
turbulent
situation
to S
umm ers,
Archer left in Septem-
ber.
136
Archer found
no sympathy
in the Colonial Office.
Machtig
ventilated
this feeling
as
follows:
"I
am afraid
it looks
as
though Sir G. Archer
has let down the Secretary
of
State
and
his
own successor, and
that he has himself to thank
s; =
for the difficult
position and
loss
of
prestige which
he has incurred.
"
137
'
Not least
of
the Protectorate's
preoccupations
during the
post-Dervish period was
the
exploration of
vario*us ways of
tapping the
countryts natural resources.
Two
strategies were adopted:
Firstly the
administration
136. Annual Colonial Report for 1922 No. 1193
p.
2.
137. C. O. 535/70 Ar"cher to C. O. 23/8/22- Minute by
Machtig.
r
36,01,
tried to
get
the Colonial Office to its
side
in
persuading
the Treasury to
sanction
expenditure
for
whatever projects
the
administration
might conceive ando secondlyo efforts
were made
to
encourage
private companies
to invest
capital
in
various prospecting
projects.
Towards the
end of
1919
N11
a private company
known
a:
ýAbyssinian Corporation took
a
keen interest in the
supposed unexploited resources of
the
Protectorate,
and applied
for
a concession
for
constructing
a railway
line between Berbera
and
Jigjigaj
via
Hargeisa.
The Corporation had been founded in April 1919
with a
capital of
Lls005,000
and
its
aims embraced
trade
and
investment;
acquisition of concessions, charters and grants;
organizing prospecting expeditions and working mines;
bank-
ing
and railway construction.
138
Although Thesiger, the
British Minister in Addis Ababa, had
expressed
hope
and
confidence
in the bright
prospects of
the Corporation
and
had
actually played a major role
in its foundation, the
Corporation turned
out
to be
a
failure. Mismanagemento
poor planning and over-ambition sapped
its
strength
to
the
extent
that
within a year of
its inception the Cor-
poration was
in deep financial trouble. By the
end of
1924
the Corporation's debit balance
stood at
Z454,202
and
two
years
later it
went
into liquidation.
139
Although Archer
expressed
interest in the Cor-
porationts
railway scheme
he
was sceptical about
the
feasibility
of
the'project. He
was.,
he
contended,
138. F. O. 371/3495:
"Prospectus
of
Abyssinian Corporation"
14/4/1919.
139. F. O.
..
371/11574, Bentick to Chamberlain 31/5/1926.
eb
i
.
IG
-,
ffpremature
and open
to
some objection.,,
140
He
preferredo
instead, the
construction of a road
between
Hargeisa
and
Berbera to
supplement
the Berbera-El Dab-
Burao
one which
had just been
constructed as part of
the
preliminary arrangements
for the
anti-Dervish operations.
The Foreign Office
whose views about
the
proposed railway
project
had been
sought, expressed
doubts
as
to the
feasibility, let
alone profitability, of
the
project
in
view of
the
unsettled
political situation
in Ethiopia.
141
The
matter was subsequently closed until
June 1920
when
the British Legation
at
Addis Ababa
revived
the issue,
urging
Archer to invite the Corporation to
undertake a
road construction contract
for the
same area which
they
earlier on earmarked
for
a railway
line. Dodds, then in
charge of
the Legation,
explained
that,
"as
soon as
they
(i.
e.
the corporation)
estab-
lished themselves here they
came up against
difficulties
at
Jibuti
....
owing
to the
obstructive and very short sighted policy of
the French. The Corporation
cast around
for
" solution.
The
obvious alternative of using
"
British Somali
port as a means of communica-
tion
with
Abyssinia
presented
itself.
"142
The Colonial Office
was
divided
over
the
ques-
tion
of whether
it
was proper and wise
to
grant
the
Corporation the desired
road contract.
Machtig
was
in
favour
of granting
the
contract
to the Corporation
because
140. C. O. 535/57
Archer''to
C. O. 21/12/1919.
141. C. O. 535/57 F. O. to C. O. 5/12/1919.
142. C. O. 535/60 D. H. Dodds to Archer 2/6/1920
(Encl.
in
Archer to C. O. 18/6/1920).
I
.
3G3
"it
is
most essential
for the future
prosperity
of
the Protectorate that
as much encouragement
as can reasonably
be
afforded should
be
given
to the development
of commercial resources of
Somaliland.
The financial
situation at present
does
not warrant
lavish
expenditure.
"
143
Read,
on
the
other
hand, felt that
as
the
cost of construc-
ting
a road
from Berbera to the Ethiopia border
was not
likely to
exceed
910,000,
"It
would seem
better that the Somaliland Govern-
ment should construct
this itself
rather
than
complicate matters
by
giving
the
group conces-
sions
for
a comparatively small outlay
-"144
The Corporationts interests in the Protectorate
suffered a
severe
blow
at
the
end of
the
year when
the Corporation's
financial
problems
forced it to
retract.
The following
year
the Somaliland
administration
prepared a
long
memorandum proposing
different
ways
in
which
the
countryfs resources should
be
exploited.
With
regard
to livestock it
was suggested
that improvement
of
the industry
should
take the form
of
finding
more overseas
markets
for the Somaliland
mutton,
beef,
skins and
hides.
145
In
addition,
the
administration recommended
the
appointment
of a
Veterinary Officer to deal
with
the
recurrent out-
breaks
of epidemics as well as advise
the Somali
in
modern
methods of curing
their, hides
and skins.
With
regard
to, the
exploitation of
the
supposed
mineral wealth of
the Protectorateo the
administration
tended
to
put
its faith in. the
rumoured existence
of an oil
field
143. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
144. Ibid. Minute by Read.
145. C. O. 535/65 Summers to C. O. 20/5/1921.
at
Daga Shebelli, 30
miles
to the
south-east of
Berbera.
146
In the
middle of
1920
a private
company.,
the dtArcy
Exploration Company
(later
renamed
the Anglo-Persian
Petroleum Company)
applied
for
and acquired a concession
to
prospect
for this
oil
field. At the
same
time
a
Government
geologist was appointed
and sent
to
survey
for
more minerals elsewhere
in tle Protectorate.
147
The
XW'Arcy Company
spent several month's
in the Daga Shabelli
area$ only
to
end up with
the disappointing
discovery that
the
oil
fields there
were so
limited
and
the
rocks
in the
area so shattered
by faults
as
to
make mining
both
unprofi-
table
and
difficult.
148
In the
middle of
the following
year a new prospecting concession was granted
to Messrs.
Hajeebhoy Lalje Company
which was
based in Aden. The
concession was,
however,
not
taken
up at once and
in June
1924 Summers
recommended
its
cancellation.
149
In October
of
the
same year
the
concession was shoved on
to the Anglo-
Persian Petroleum Company. The
concession
gave
the Company
prospecting
rights over an area covering
20., 000
square
miles
in ten
years.
150
The Company
considered
the terms
of
the
concession
to be inadequate, insisting
on
having
a
monopoly of prospecting rights over
the
whole
Protectorate,
and
the
exemption
from
payment of any royalty
for
up
to ten
years.
The
crown agents were reluctant
to
accede
to the
Companyts
demands,
and
the
negotiations
which ensued as a
146. Ibid.
147. C. O. 535/65 Archer to C. O., 11/1/1921.
148. C. O. 535/65 D. K. Willie,
on
behalf
of
the DtArcy Company,
to Summers,
21/4/1921
(Encl.
in Summers to C. O.
-25/4/1921).
149. C. O. 535/73 Summers to C. O. 15/3/1924.
150. C. O. 535/73, Memorandum
of a meeting
between the Crown Agents
for the Colonies
and
the Anglo-Persian Petroleum Company,
14/lo/1924.
371
result of
these differences
were eventually
bequeathed to
Kittermaster
who succeeded
Summers
in 1925.
The hunt for
oil
by the
private
companies went
on
hand-in-hand
with
the
explorations
of
the Government's
geologist.
After
an-extensive
tour
of
the Protectorate,
Farquharson, the
geologist, confessed
to having found
no
resources of such
importance
as
to
warrant
investment
of
capital.
He
remained
hopbful, howevers
of
the
existence
of some mineral resources
in those
areas
he had
not yet
visited.
151
Early in 1925
an
individual
prospectors
Frank
Moss.,
appeared on
the Somaliland
scene and acquired a
concession
to
prospect
for
minerals as well as manufac-
ture fibre from the local fibrous
plants.
152
Among the
minerals
Moss hoped to firdwere
coal,, goldo
lead
oreo
and oil.
He threw
a
big
sum of capital
into the
enter-
prise and
lost it
all.
In April 1925 Summers
reported
that Moss had left the
country and
"did
not suppose
he
would return
to Somaliland
to
examine
fibre
or prospect
for
gold or
lead
ore
... ell 153
It
will
be
observed
that, by
and
largeo
the
post-Dervish
efforts
to tap the
supposed
natural
resources
of
the Protectorate
were no more successful
than the
attempts
to introduce direct taxation.
This
was
largely
due to the fact that
expectations
as
to the
amount of
resources
had been
grossly exaggerated.
Moreover,
the
151.
C. O.
535/75 Far
quharson,
Goverment Geologisto
to
C. O. 13/5/1924.
.,
-
152. C. O. 535/75 Kittermaster
to C. O. 23/2/1925.
153. C. O. 535/76 Su=ers to C. O. 12/4/1925.
 
Treasury's
parsimony was a stumbling
block to the
adminis-
trationts
programmes,
especially
in
respect
to the
improvement
of communications
and promotion of small
industries.
The
only achievement of
importance between 1920
and
1925
was
in the field
of veterinary services.
Towards
the
end of
1923 the U. S. A. threatened to boycott the hides
and skins originating
from Somaliland
unless
the
merchants
ddaling in them
could produce
documents
signed
by
a quali-
fied
veterinary
officer certifying
that Somaliland
stock
was
free from
anthrax.
This threat
was
taken
seriously,
for
a
"should
the Government
of
the U. S. A. find it
necessary
to impose
such an embargo on skins
it
would cause a very severe check
both to
the
export and
import trade
of
this
country.
"154
With the failure
of
Archer's taxation
scheme and
other revenue measuress
the Protectorate's
principal source
of revenue was
to
remain customs
duties. Hides
and skins$
being the
chief commodities of
the Protectorates
were
the
most
important
revenue-earning commodities of
the Protec-
torate. In 1923, for
example,
the
customs receipts amounted
to 957,605
out of
the total
revenue of
978,541,155
and
in
the following
year
they
contributed
Z60,955 to the Pro-
tectorate's
revenue of
982,607.156 Thus the
gravity of
the
threat by the U. S. A. to boycott Somaliland hides
and skins
could not
be
overemphasized.
Summers
explained
the
position
154. C. O. 534/72 Summers to C. O. 21/11/1923.
155. Annual Colonial Report for 1923 No. 1226.
156. Annual Colonial Report for 1924 No. 1271.
to the Colonial Office
and stressed
the
need
to have
a
qualified
Veterinary
Officer. Representations
were made
to the Treasury,
and
in December 1923 the latter depart-
ment endorsed
the
proposal
.
157
In February the following
year
the Veterinary
Officero Bryan Cocksedgeo
arrived
to
take
up
his duties. He
was authorized
to
establish a
veterinary
department
and recruit a small staff
to
assist
him. His first task
was
to deal
with
the
rinderpest
epidemic which'had already wiped out nearly
73%
of
the
cattle
in Sheikh.
158
By the
end of
the
year.,
Cocksedge
had
managed
to
contain
the disease. Anthrax
was of
low
incidence
and
during his first
year
he
only observed
it
once.
In
co-operation with
the
officers of
the Camel
Corps he founded
a stud of
35 Somali
mares with
two
stallions.
The
stud,
though
an outstanding successs was
closed
in 1932
as a result of
the
policy of stagnation
which was
then being
pursued.
159
The
success of
Cocksedgets
efforts was
demonstrated by improvement both in the health
of
the
animals and quality of skins and
hides. That the
U. S. A. took
no
further
action
in
connection with
their
threat
underlined
their
satisfaction with
the improvements
made since
the
appointment of a
Veterinary Officer.
In
addition
to
grappling with
the
economic prob-
lems, Summers had the
unpleasant
duty
of
tackling the
delicate
situation stirred up, and
then left, by Archer.
157. C. O. 535/73 Treasury to C. O. 3/12/1923.
158.
MSS. AFR- S. 144
"The
Veterinary History
of
the Somali-
land Protectoratep 1924-196o" by E. F. Peck, formerly
Veterinary Officer in the British Somaliland Protec-
torate,
P-3.
It is found in Rhodes House, Oxford.
159. Ibid.
P.
3-4.
The
ruthlessness with which
he dealt
with
the
anti-British
elements won
Summers the
nickname of
"Garr
Ba'one"
(eater
of shoulders).
The Somali
remember
Summers
not only as
having been
cruel
but
also
disrespectful
of
the Somali
customs and religion.
160
He took
over
from Archer in the
middle of
October 1922
and
began his investigations into
the implications
and gravity of
the
political situation.
He
came
to the
conclusion
that
"under
the instigation
of certain
Mullah's
,
opposition
to the tax had developed
on a reli-
gious
basis
and serious combined
effort
appeared
to be
certain
in Burao, Berbera
and
Hargeisa Districts. A definite
revolt was
prevented
by Archerts
proclamation
which
deferred,
until my arrival,
the final decision
as
to Government
policy
....
The
people are
under
the impression that they
"
have
success-
fully
resisted
the Government.
161
He
advocated strong punitive measures, recommending either
the
enforcement of
Archer's taxation
proposals
by force
of
arms or,
if the Colonial Office insisted
on abandoning
the
whole
idea
of
taxation, the
severe punishment of
the Habr
Yunis
sections which
had
engineered
the
uprising.
If the
first
alternative was
taken, the
existing
forces in the
Protectorate
would need
to be
reinforced with
two infantry
battalions, 20 Ford
cars and
6
aeroplanes.
If
on
the
other
hand, it
was
decided to limit
action
to the
punishment of
160. Interview
with
Sheikh Ali Ibrahim
and
Sheikh Ali Hersi
Awaid, 5/9/1974
at
Hargeisa. The former is
aged about
75
and
is the
advisor
to the District
Department
of
Justice
on
Islamic law. The
latter
I
is
about
the
same
age and a respected
Sheikh.
Summer
s style of govern-
ing
was again
described during
an
interview
with a
group of elders at
Berbera
on
the 9/9/1974. The
elders
were
1. Haji. Aadan Hassan Buluke
(aged
about
80);
2. Oliyood
Ahmed Farah
(about 80).
born
at
Berbera
and served
in the K. AR.; 3.. Ali Muhammad Kawdan
(about
60). born
at
Berbera
and a
former
member of
the Somali
Youth
League in the 1950s.
161.
C. O. 535/70 Summers to C. O. 27/10/1922.
P%j

4,
j
certain
Habr Yunis
sections,
it
would
be
necessary
to
bring in
j
infantry battalion,
and
2
aeroplanes.
162
if
neither of
the two
proposed
lines
of action commended
itself to the Colonial Office, it
would
be
necessary,
argued
Summers, to
reduce
the
administrationts commit-
ments'and,
ff
at any rate,
to
evacuate
for
some
time,
cer-
tain
areas.
"
163
Summers' first
proposal was
dismissed
off
hand in the
Colonial Office
as
being
"altogether
out of
the
question as
it
would
be beginning
a new war with vengeance.
"
164
The idea
of punishing certain sections of
the Habr Yunis
and, at
the
same
time dropping the taxation
scheme, was
more warmly received.
Summerst third
alternative which
amounted,
in
practice.,
to
partial withdrawal was rejected
on
the
grounds
that
"our
experience of
the
years of coastal concen-
tration
which proved a
disastrous failurex
remain such a vivid memory,
that it is impossible
to deprecate too
strongly any proposal
tending to
partial evacuation.
"165
The Treasury
was
duly informed
of
the three
pro-
posed alternative
lines
of action, and
the Colonial Office's
preference was pointed out.
It
was relatively cheap
in
terms
of expenditure and
did
not
involve
risks pertaining
162. Ibid.
163. Ibid.
164. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
165. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
to
partial withdrawal.
The Treasury
was adamant
-
it
was
not prepared
to
release
funds for the
proposed punitive
measures.
Consequently,, the Colonial Office
was
left
with
no choice
but to
authorize
Summers to
act
in
accordance
with
his
recommendation
for
partial withdrawal.
This
withdrawal was
to be
"accompanied
by
an announcement
that
administra-
tion
will
be
resumed when circumstances permit.
"166
This
announcement was, evidently.,,
intended to
act as a
blackmail; the Colonial Office
seems
to have hoped that
the Somali,
remembering
the
repercussions of
British
withdrawal
in 1910,
would not only plead
for the
continua-
tion
of an effective administration
but
might also soften
their
attitude
to
various policies
to
which
they had
hitherto
shown stubborn opposition.
Before implementing the
policy authorized
by
the Colonial Officeo Summers decided to
make one more
tour
of
the interior
with a view
to
assessing
the impact
of
the
arrival of
the Nyasaland troops
and of
the
news,
already
in hot
circulationo about
the intentions
of
the
British. As
a
first test to the
peoplets attitude
to
the
new
developments, he instructed the
residents of
Hargeisa to
remove
the
road
blocks
which
they had
erected
since
September
with a view
to
preventing
British troops
167
from
proceeding
to Burao to
punish
the
anti-tax elements.
To Summerst
reliefo and
indeed
surpriseo
the
road
blocks
were removed, enabling
him to
proceed
to Hargeisao BuraoO
Oadweina
and
Adadleh. His tour
convinced
him that the
166. C. O. 535/70 C. O. to
Summers 28/11/1922.
167. C. O. 535/70 Summers to C. O. 12/12/1922.
37
attitude of
the
people, and
that
of
the Camel Corps, had
changed considerably and,
in the light
of
this
change,
he
was
inclined to
modify
his
earlier proposals;
"I
believe that it
may not
be
necessary
to
carry out
the
withdrawal of
the
administration
from the Burao
and
Hargeisa Districts
....
I
have
ordered
the
representatives of
the tribes
to
meet me
here
(i.
e.
Berbera)
on
the 18th
December
....
On the
results-of
this
meeting,
much will
depend.
"
168
The
meeting was
held
as scheduled and
Summers
announced a number of measures
he intended to take. The
most
important
was
that he had decided to
substitute
Archer's taxation
scheme with an
increase in the
customs
duties
and
Zariba taxes. This
step was
intended.,
so
he
explained,
to
make up
for the
revenue which would
have
accrued
from the
original
taxation
proposals which
they
had
rejected.
He
also ordered
the'sections
of
the Habr
Yunis he held
responsible
for the Adadleh incident to
surrender
their
rifles
to him
within a monthts
time.
Failure
on
their
part
to
complyo
he
warned
them,
would
entail severe punishment.
169
Neither
of
the two
orders
were complied with.
The
ultimatum regarding
the
surrender
of rifles was particularly unrealistic and
tactless. The
possession of arms was a crucial matter among
the Somali
tribes
since
the
absence or
insufficiency
of arms
in
a
tribal
section could and
did
make
that tribal
section vul-
nerable
to depredations from the better-armed
sections.
Thus, Summers'
attempt
to dis
arm sections of
the Habr
Yunis
while
the
other
tribes
remained armed was
bound to
168. Ibid.
169. C. O. 535/70 Summers to C. O. 19/12/1922.
be
resisted
to the
utmost.
Moreover, the
measure was more
than likely to
convince
the
other
tribes that the
ultimate
aim of
the British
was
to disarm them. In those
circum-
stances
the Habr Yunis
could
have
easily gained
the
support and sympathy
of
those tribes
which
had hitherto
been
well
disposed to the
colonial policies.
Summers decided
not
to
enforce
this disarmament
order.
Nevertheless, towards the
end of
January 1923., he
applied
for,
and received, permission
to take
punitive
measures against selected sections of
the Habr Yunis.
170
On the 28th January the Camel Corps
moved out
in two
columns,
the
main
body from Burao
and
the
pony
troops
from Hargeisa. In
a combined action
lasting
over a week,
the force inflicted
punishment on
the Abdulla Isaac
sec-
tion
of
the Habr Yunis
who were allegedly
the
ring
leaders
of
the Adadleh
uprising.
The
operation culminated
in the
confiscation of property worth
three times the
value of
the
rifles originally
demanded.
"'The
operation was executed
in
secrecy, so
that
villages were
taken by
surprise
-
the tribes
succumbed
....
the
situation
throughout the
country
is
generally
improving
and
there is
no
danger
of
incurring
resistance
in
carrying on
the
administration of
the tribes
171
Machtig described the
outcome as
"very
satisfactory
in
every sence"
*172
Four
months
later Summers
organized another punitive opera-
tion
against
the Ogad Omer
section which was
believed to
170. C. O. 535/70 Summers to C. O. 23/1/1923- Minute by
Machtig.
171. C. O. 535/72 Summers to C. O. 16/2/1923.
172. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
375
have
played a
big
part
in
engineering
the
uprising.
The
Ogad Omer, like the Abdulla Isaaco
was
taken-by
Burprise,
dispersed
and
dispossessed
of plenty of
their
stock.
Machtig
observed,
this time that
"the
serious state of affairs which arose after
the incident
at
Adadleh is
now at an end, with
the
result
that the Governor
will
have
a
free
hand to deal
with
the Dolbahanta
on
the Italian
frontier. "
173
The turmoil
on
the Italian frontier
was rooted
in Italy's
attempt
to bring the
northern parts of
her
Somaliland
colony,
hitherto
under
Italian jurisdiction
only
in
name, under effective
Italian
administration.
Steps towards this direction
went as
farback
as
1908
when
Italy
appointed a
Commissioner for the two
northern pro-
vinces, namely,
the Sultanates
of
Obbia
and
Southern
Mijjertein. In 1912 the basic law
which operated
in the
south was
declared
as applicable
to the
north as well and,
two
years
later,
a permanent administrative residence was
established at
Alula. Even
with
these
measureso
Italyts"
authority remained nominal until
the
advent of
the Fascist
era
in Italy. The Fascists
were committed
to
a policy of
subduing
her
colonies
by force
of arms whenever and where-
ever
there
was resistance
to her
colonial penetration.
A
new
Governor, De Vecchi,
a soldier
by
profession, arrived
in the
colony
in 1923
and
declared the
establishment of
direct Italian
rule
to be the
primary concern of
his
administration.
De Vecchits
policies provoked widespread
uprisings
throughout the
colony and
he., in turno
ruthlessly
173. C. O. 535/72 summers to C. O. 2/5/1923. Minute by Machtig.
ý
C)
A',
3er
v
suppressed
them.
174
One
area
in
which
De Vecchi
met with
the
stiffest
resistance
was
the
southern
Mijjertein
country
where
the
Sultan
Ali Kenedid had built
up a
big
and well
armed
force with which
he
carried
out widespread
raids. In
1921,
for
exampleo
Ali Kenedid
was reported
to have
gained
a
foothold
at
Gorahai in the
Ogaden
country,
a
factor which prompted
the Foreign
Office to
complain to
the
Italian ambassador
in London that
11
....
while
His Majestyfs
Government
recognize
the difficulty
of controlling
the
nomadic Somali
tribes,
they
are reluctantly
compelled
to
con-
sider
that the failure
of
the
authorities in
Italian Somaliland to
restrain
Ali Kenedid
of
the Dlijjertein from
allowing
his followers
to
occupy
Gorahai
and other places and
to
raid
the Dolbahanta tribe in British Somaliland
is
likely
to
cause
the
very
difficulties
on
the
frontier that both Governments
are armious
to
avoid
oooo*lf 175
Earlier on
Summers
had
addressed a
letter
couched
in
similar
terms
to the Italian Governor,
stating
that,
"I have the honour to inform Your Excellency
that two further
raids
have been
made
by
Mijjertein and other
followers
of
Ali Kenedid
on
the Dolbahanta
of
this Protectorate
....
they
(i.
e.
the Dolbahanta) lost 900
camels,
1,000
herds
of cattle and-many sheep and goats.
The
looted karias
were
burnt
and
12 Dolbahanta
killed
176
Thus,
by the time
of
De Vecchits
arrival
in Somali-
land,
Ali
Kenedid was a real menace
to the
peace of
the
neighbouring
tribes. There
was growing
fear, in fact,
174.
Robert
Hesso Italian Colonialism in Somalia Chap. VI.
175.
c. q.
879/123 F. O. to Italian Ambassador in London
31/12/1921
No.
8.
176.
C. O.
535/66 Summers to the Governor
of
Italian
Somali-
land
25/10/1921
(Encl.
in Summers to C. O. 27/10/1921).
38,
that he
might rise
to the
same power as
the Sayyid.
177
British
representations
to Italy,
which were occasionally
punctuated
by threats, led to
a
Joint
meeting
between the
administrations of
British
and
Italian Somaliland in 1922.
The
objective of
this
meeting was said
to be to
"arrive
at a settlement,
if
possibles regarding
claims and counter-claims
between
our people and
Ali Kenedid
... 0" 178
The
meeting,
held
on
the British
side of
the border, turned
out
to be
a
fiasco. The British blamed the Italians
saying
that their
co-operation
f1seems
to have been
singularly valueless.
The
two Italian Commissioners
arrived
from Obbia
without witnesses;
they
expressed
themselves
unwilling
to take
or produce any evidence,
in
that they had full
confidence
in the
statements
of
Ali Kenedid's 2 Naibs
(envoys)
who
had been
sent with
them
179
-I
Archer believed that the Italian delegates had
avoided
committing
themselves to
any
binding
resolutions
because
they did
not possess sufficient power or
influence
over
Ali Kenedid to
make
him
comply.
Summers, then in Londonp
agreed with
this
point of view, adding
that
"I
am
inclined to think that the
unhelpful
attitude
they
adopted was meant
to disguise
the fact that they had little
or no control
over
Ali Kenedid
. 991118o
Whoever
was responsible
for the failure
of
the
meeting,
the
whole exercise underlined
the
absence of good will
177. A. full
account of
De Vecchits
period, see
his
own workp
Orizzonti d'Impero: Cinque Anni, in Somalia
(Milan)
1935.
178. C-O-. 535/69 Archer to C. O. 19/3/1922.
179. Ibid.
180. Ibid. Minute by Summers.
8
2,
between the British
and
Italian
administrations and
emphasised
the
weak position of
the Italians
over
the
Mijjertein. This is
what
De Veachi
was
determined to
rectify.
In. February 1924 De Vecchi issued
an ultimatum
to Ali Kenedid,
giving
him
one month. within which
he
was
to
submit
to the Italian
rule or risk a confrontation
with
the Italian forces. Although Ali Kenedid
was
reportedly
inclined to
make a rapprochement
towards the
Italians, he
was overruled
by the
young men who were
determined to
resist
the Italians by force.
181
The
Italians launched their
operations against
Ali Kenedid
in the
middle of
1924
and
the disturbances
which ensued
spilled across
the border into the British Protectorateo
forcing Summers to despatch troops to the Ain
and
Nogal
Valleys to
maintain
law
and order as well as prevent
the
warring
factions from
using
the British territory
as a
battle
ground.
182
Towards the
end of
the
year
Ali Kenedid
resis-
tance brought
more
threatening
omens
to the Protectorate
when
he
addressed nine
letters to
various
tribes
within
the British Protectorate
and
beyond,
urging
them to
assist
him in his
struggle against
the Italians.
183
Ali
Kenedid's
style was reminiscent of
Lij Yasuls
and
the
Dervish days,
and
this factop
confirmed
Summerst
earlier
fears
about
the
possibility of
Ali Kenedid
becoming
another
Mohammed Abdullah Hassan.
181. C. O. 535/74 Intelligence Report for January
and
February
1924
(Encl.
in Summers to C. O. 19/4/1924).
182. MSS. AFR. S-552
op. cit.
183. C. O. 535/74 Kittermaster to C. O. 20/10/1924.
331
Fortunately for the British
and
the Italians, Ali
Kenedid's
overtures stimulated
little interest in their
recipients and
his
popularity with
his
subjects soon
faded. Italyts
policy of
divide-and-rule had
success-
fully
alienated
the
northern
Mijjertein;
O
under
Sultan
Isman Mahmud,, from Ali Kenedidts
southern
Mijjerteins
with
the
results
that the two
sections were..
by the
beginning
of
1924,
grappling against each other rather
184
than
against
the Italians. Pressed by Sultan Isman
Mahmud from the
north,
by De Vecchi from the
south and
by the British from the West, Ali Kenedid's
position
became hopeless
and
desperate. He
sent messages of
rapprochement
to the Italians
and, as a gesture of
his
bona fide., handed
over
to them
a certain
individual
wanted
by the Italians for
prosecution.
This
action
cost
Ali Kenedid
what remained of
his
popularity among
the
young militant members of
his
subjects.
Meanwhile,
De Vecchits
operations were gaining
in
momentum, exploit-
ing the
personal unpopularity of
Ali Kenedid
and
the dis-
unity of
the Mijjertein
people.
Ali Kenedid
was even-
tually defeated in 1925
and
his Sultanate
was
divided
into
small administrative units
.
185
Isman Mahmud's honeymoon
with
the Italians
came
to
an end as soon as
it dawned
on
him that,
with
the fall
of
Kenedid, he
would
be the
next
Italian
victim.
With
a
view
to
avoiding a clash with
the Italians,
he led
a sub-
stantial
section of
his
people
further
west and established
184.
MSS. AFR. S-552
op. cit.
185. C. O. 535/76 Lawrence to C. O. 13/3/1925.
ti
U
a
base in
an old
Dervish
fort
at
Baran
which was well
within
the British Protectorate.
Lawrences then
acting
Governor.,
sought and acquired permission
to
evict
Isman
Mahmud
and
his
people
from Baran,
and
this he did in June
186
1925. Lawrence
accused
the Italians
of
having insti-
gated, or at
least
given
tacit
consent
to, Isman Mahmud.
's,
tz7-move to Baran
and
the
subsequent charges and counter
charges
between the two
administrations strained
their
relations
to the
extent
that
a new meeting was called
to
settle
the
quarrel and many other
disputes.
187
The
meet-
ing
was
held in Berbera in August
and an agreement was
drawn
up.
The
most
important
provisions of
the
agreement
included
one
for the immediate
withdrawal of
the British
troops from Baran
so as
to
enable
the Mijjertein to
graze
their
stock as
they 14ad
always
done*. In turn, the Italians
promised
to
pay
to the British tribes, by
way of compensa-
tion,
some
Rs.
6,000
and
34
rifles.
This
compensation was
paid
the following
month, and, so
far
as
the British
were
concerned,
this
settled, at
least for the time being, the
main. source of conflict
between themselves
and
the Italians.
Britaints hope
of making
the Berbera Agreement
a
basis for the
restoration
and maintenance of
law
and order
on
the borderwere'
shattered within a matter of
three
months
of
the
signing of
the Agreement. And this
was
inevitable.
So long
as
Italy
was still embroiled with
her
resistant
186. MS. AM. S. 552
op. cit.
187. Ibid.
C) 8, F-
3
elements, so would
the
r6percussions reverberate across
the border. The British had
mercilessly evicted
Sultan
Mahmud from Baran, throwing him back into the hands
of
the Italians. In November 1925 the latter
sent an expedi-
tion to force him into
submission or
destroy him by force.
Kittermaster
who
had
already
been
warned
by the Italians
of
the
proposed operations,
found it
necessary
to
send
the
Camel Corps to
patrol
the border
areas.
It
was,
in fact,
feared in British Somaliland that Sultan Mahmud
might
be
supported
by
some
British tribes,
something which would
have
escalated
the
conflict and
involved Britain.
188
Italian
operations were swift and
decisive. The
Sultan's forces
were attacked and routed
towards the
end
of
December. In February
of
the following
year
the Sultan
fled
with a
following
of
300
men and sought asylum at
Ber-
bera
where
the British kept him
a virtual prisoner.
189
The Sultan's
son,
however,
refused
to
surrender and
took
up
the
struggle against
the Italians. In 1927, he too
was
defeated
and
forced to flee from his territory.
With his flight, the Italian
conquest of
the Mijjertein
country was, more or
les;,
complete-190
The
situation on
the French
and
Ethiopian
sides
of
the border
was
far from
settled.
As
already mentioned
in the last
chapter,
Archer had
gone
to Addis Ababa in
1917 for the
purpose of reaching some negotiated agreement
with
Ras Tafari
on
the border
problems.
The
mission
had
188. C. O. 535/76 Kittermaster to C. O. 21/11/1925.
189. MSS. AFR. S*552
op. cit.
190. Robert Hess, Italian Colonialism in Somalia
op. cit.
Chapter VI.
3811"o
failed. This led the British Government to
adopt a
resigned attitude,
there being
no
hope,
so
far
as she
could
judge,
of
inducing Ethiopia to
come
to
a round
table. In August 1919, Archer
revived
his
protests
against what
he
regarded
as
Ethiopian
violation of
the
international borders.
By this he
was referring
to the
Ethiopian tribes
which occasionally crossed
the boundary,
looted
stock and
then
re-crossed
the border.
191
He laid
part of
the blame
on
the fact that
no steps
had hitherto
been taken to
mark
the
exact position of
the boundary
as
negotiated and agreed upon
by Rodd
and
Mackonnen in 1897.
Summers
wrote:
"I
consider
that it is
most
desirable that the
border
should
be
marked
by
some means such as
cairns of stones or
beacons
situated at
inter-
vals along
the frontier
....
I
would
therefore
ask
that H. M. Government
should arrange
for
a
commission
to
carry out
this
work at an early
date.
"192
The idea
was commended
by Machtig but the time
was
thought
to be inopportune for this kind
of work.
In the first
place
the
political situation was still unsettled and
the financial
position of
the Protectorate
was
in
a most
despicable form. Above
all, a
big
question mark still
hung
over
the future
of
Ethiopia,
and
this
would
have
made
demarcation
at
that time
rather unwise.
193
The issue
was
then
shelved and subsequently revived
by
various
Somaliland
administrators at
different times. Owing to
Ethiopia's
general suspicion of
European
motives after
191. C. O. 535/55 Summers to C. O. 23/8/1919.
192. Ibid
-
193. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
387
the
war, and
the Treasuryts
reluctance
to
spend money on
demarcation
-
an essentially non-productive project
-
the
proposed
demarcation
of
the Protectoratets
boundaries
was
not undertaken until
the 1930s.
visq
j
CHAPTER VI
HAROLD KITTERMASTER"S GOVERNORSHIP:
THE TWILIGHT OF BRITISH SOMALILANDtS COLONIAL HISTORY
(1926-1931)-
The
untimely
death
of
Gerald Summers in November
1925 left
a power vacuum which could not
be
easily
filled
from the
manpower resources
then
at
the disposal
of
the
Protectorate. Lawrence,
with a record of nearly
twenty
years of service
in the Protectorate
was., admittedlys
the
most experienced and
knowledgeable
man
in Somaliland
poli-
tics, but he
was considered
too junior for the
post of
Governor
and
Archer's
reports on
him had
not
been favour-
able.
Lawrence's
career
in Somaliland
went as
far back
as
1905
when
he
was posted
to the Protectorate
as an
officer
in the
6th
Battalion, K. A. R. Somaliland.
After
Britain's
withdrawal
from, the interior in 1910 he found
himself
redundant and returned
to England. The following
year
he
was appointed
Assistant Resident for Northern
Nigeria,
and
in 1914 he
returned
to British Somaliland
and
served ad'District
Commissioner
and
Commanding
officer of
the Camel Corps. Relations between him
and
Archer
strained
and
Archer found it
necessary
to
recommend
the
removal
of
Lawrence. from the Protectorate
to the Consulate
of
Harar. He
stayed at
the latter
station
between-1915
and
1919. He
returned
to British Somaliland in 1920 to
take
part
in the
anti-Dervish operations.
When the
operations
were over,
Lawrence
stayed on and served
in
different administrative capacities and
finally
succeeded
i
Kittermaster in 1932.
3891
In the
circumstances caused
by Summerts
sudden
death the Colonial
Office
appointed
Kittermastero
a
relatively new man on
the
scene,
to the Governorship
of
the Protectorate.
Kittermaster had
served
in the Trans-
vaal
Education Department between 1902
and
1907 before
his transfer to the East Africa Protectorate
as an
Assistant District Commissioner in 1908. He
was sub-
sequently promoted
to District Commissioner
in 1915,
and was appointed officer-in-charge of
the Northern
Frontier District the following
year.
He held the
latter
post until
1921
when
he
was
transferred to
British Somaliland
as
Secretary to the Administration.
He
succeeded
Summers in 1926
and was
transferred to
Honduras in 1932.
Unlike his
predecessors,
Kittermaster had
not
been involved in the
anti-Dervish campaigns.
This
fact
seems
to have
started off
his
career
in Somaliland
on a more
favourable footing than his
predecessors.
The
Somali found him
a sharp contrast o1l'*Summers and nick-
named
him
'Glingilit (the
active one)', on, account of
his keen interest-in
work, sharp vigilance over,
the-
administrative machinery and,
frequent,
_country-wide
tours.
COVtCt
The Somali b=d
not
helpeý feeling that the
excessive ruthlessness with which-people
like Summers
and'Archer
had'dealt
with'-the'anti-British elements, and
the
callousness
they had-shown towards the Somali in
1. Interview
with
Ahmed Hassan Ibrahim
and
Mahmud Ahmed
Ali
at
Hargeisa
on
26th August 1974.
general.,
had been
motivated
by
sheer vengeance
for the
humiliation
the two
officers
had
personally
incurred
at
the hands
of
the Dervishes.
2
Summers, for
example,
had
suffered
physical
injury during the
confrontation
between
Corfield's Constabulary
and
the Dervishes. As for Archer,
not only was
he
a witness
to Britaints humiliation
at
Dul
Madoba, but
also
his
own post-Dervish policies
brought him
so much
disgrace that he
was
forced to leave the Protec-
torate in
a most undignified manner. I
The
appointment of
Kittermaster
wasp
thus,
fortunate in
many ways
both from the
point of view of
the
Somali
and of
the British Government. On the
one-hand..
the Somali
could not attribute
to him the
same motives
8.11"
and sentiments as
they believed to have
=iaSUA
his
predecessors.
On the
other,
he
could
be trusted by the
Colonial Office to
approach
Somaliland
problems
with an
open mind since, unlike
Archer, he had
made no promises
and no predictions about
the future
of
the Protectorate's
finances
or about
the
response of
the
people
to the
post-
Dervish
colonial policies.
Hence, he
was not
likely to be
haunted by
a sense of personal
failure
whenever
his
admini-
stration experienced shortcomings.
Moreover2 the
previous
period of experimentation with various colonial policies
had
already revealed
the Somali
attitude
towards
colonial
%_2L.
Interview
with
Musa Galaal Ali,
at
the Somali Academy.,
Mogadishu,
on
7th August 1974;
and with
Ahmad Hassan
Ibrahim
and
Mahmud Ahmed Ali
at
Hargeisa
on
26th August
1974. These informants
attributed
Kittermaster's
popu-
larity
with
the Somali to the fact that he
was a new man
on
the
scene, and
thus did
not
bear the Somali
any
grudge.
rule., and
the British had, in the
processp
learnt
new
lessons. The hope
of making
the Protectorate
economi-
cally viable
had long been discardedo
and
the
ensuing
attitude of
the Treasury towards the Protectoratets
budgets
was no secret.
In
short,
Kittermaster's
career
benefitted from the bitter
experience of
the
preceding
years, while
his
neutrality
in Somaliland
politics seems
to have
weighed
in his favour.
Kittermasterts
pressing concern was
to
encourage
the
completion of
the
negotiations
between the Crown Agents
and
the Anglo-Persian Petroleum Company for the
grant of
an oil prospecting concession.
This
was one of
the
most
important
projects
bequeathed to him by the
previous
administration, and,
indeed, the
only revenue measure
which
had
not yet suffered a setback.
After
a series of
meetings and correspondence
between the Crown Agents
and
the Company, the first draft
of
the
agreement was con-
cluded
in March 1927
and submitted
to the Colonial Office
for further
amendemtns.
In July
of
the following
yearl
the final
agreement was signed, and
the Company
proceeded
to
appoint
its directors. Mr. H. F. Marriot
was appointed
by the British Government
as
its
representative on
the
board
of
directors, this being
one of
the
provisions of
the
agreement.
3
The Company
sent a
team
of engineers and
surveyors
to the Protectorate in 1930 to
carry out some
preliminary exploration of
the
oil
fields,
and, some eight
months
later, the
party
issued the disappointing
report
to
the
effect
that it had found
3- C.
O.
535/84/38ol2
Croim Agents to C. O.
8/6/1928.
CD
C)
t9
t1no
oil
field
of sufficient size
to
warrant
t4
the
continuance of operations
in the
country-
The
concession,
ipso facto,, lapsed.
Kittermaster's
period was also greeted
by
a
handful
of new prospectors who still cherished
the hope
of
tapping the
supposed mineral wealth of
the Protecto-
rate.
Towards the
end of
1926, for instanceo
an enter-
prising
Englishman by the
name of
Cooperp
formed the
British Somaliland Mica Syndicate Limited
and acquired a
concession
to
prospect
for
mica,
beryl
and garret.
5
Then in April 1928, Colonel Sanfordo
a
British
business-
man
based in Addis Ababa,
acquired a concession
to
manufacture salt at
Zeila. Like the
previous
conces-
sionaires,
these two
came
to
nothing.
Cooper
abandoned
his in 1927
after
having failed to discover
sufficient
quantities of mica,
beryl
or garret.
Sanford too
met
with
insurmountable
odds which eventually
forced him to
abandon
his
concession
in 1931. His initial
problem
was
one of capital,
but Kittermaster
was prepared
to
recom-
mend
him f
or a
loan from the Colonial
Fund.
While this
expedient was still under consideration,
India
announced
her
protectionist policy
for Indian
salt and
the introduction
of stiff
tariffs
on salt originating
from
other parts of
the
world.
This dealt
a
deathblow
to Sanfordfs hope
of opening up
Indian
markets
for his
salt.
It
was
inconceivable, for
example,
that he
would
4.535/91/38258 H. F. Marriot to Crown Agents 26/9/1930.
5. Colonial
Report for 1926 No. 1355.
39];
stand competition with
Aden
salt merchants who were
automatically
to
receive
preferential
treatmento Aden
being
a
dependency
of
India. Furthermore, Sanford's
plans were shattered
by Ethiopiats
decision to
grant a
monopoly
for the import
of
her
salt
to
a
French
company.
6
With the Indian
and
Ethiopian
markets closed
to him,
and
in
view of
the
shortage of capitals
Sanford had
no choice
but to
give up
the
project.
Henceforth, Kittermaster's
administration
turned
its
attention
to
minor administrative questions and
to the
initiation
of various schemes
intended to
ameliorate
the
conditions of
the
people without putting
the Treasury to
another severe strain.
Two
areas
to
which
Kittermaster
directed
considerable attention were
those
of agriculture
and, geology.
The latter department, it
will
be
recalleds
had been
established as a
direct
response
to Archer's
expressed optimism
ý= the
mineral wealth of
the Protec-
torate. When the
geologist's
investigations
yielded
disappointing
results,
the Colonial Office had
a mind
to
abolish
the
post altogether
but Kittermaster
successfully
campaigned
for the
retention of
Farquharson, the
geologist,
in the Protectorate. He became in
addition
to his
original
position,
the Director
of
Agriculture. Thus, in
early
1927,
the Department
of
Agriculture
was established
with a staff
of
two
extra assistants.
7
The Treasury,
notwithstanding
its
reluctance.,
was prepared
to
endorse an estimated sum of
6.
C. O. 5ý5/90/38238 N. Webster
(Col.
Sanfordts Agent in
London
to C. O. 5/6/193o.
7. C. O.
830/1
Report
on
the Somaliland Agricultural
and
Geological Department for 1927
and
1928.
(a
Z1,715 for the
establishment of
the department. Of this
sum,
Z961
was
to
cover
the
salaries of
the
staff;
Z476
was
to
cover
the travelling
expenses and
L200
was
for
8
experiments
.
Hargeisa
was chosen as
the headquarters
of
the
department
as well as
the
centre
for
major
demonstrations
and experiments.
It
was
hoped that
11as
results of
improved
methods
become
evident,
the less
sophisticated natives at greater
dis-
tances from the
station will
be influenced.,
and
more
by the
experience of
their
own people
than
by Europeans.
"
9
The
administration was encouraged, and even surprised,
by
the
positive response of
the Somali to the
new agricultural
schemes.
Within
a matter of a
few
monthso
the
people
in
Hargeisa
were grabbing plots of
land
and
inviting the
agricultural staff
to
give advice on methods of cultiva-
tion. The
whole project,
however,
was
dealt
a shattering
blow during the
second
half
of
1927
when
the Protectorate
suffered a serious
drought for
which very
few
parallels
10
can
be
recalled
in Somali history. The following table
of rainfall will provide a general picture of
the
gravity.
of
the
situation
Ibid.
9. Ibid.
10. Interview
with
Dahir Afqarshe
at
the Somali Academy,
Mogadishu,
on
3rd August 1974;
and also with
Mohamed
Haji Hussein.,
at
the Somali Academy Mogadishu,
on
4th
August 1974. The Somaliland Intelligence Report for
March to June 1928
(C.
O. 535/86/38078) describes the
drought
as
"the
worst
drought
on record".
.
s3
21
CC)
Oj
CA
r-i
t-
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r-I
n

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01%
A
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CM H
r-I
C\j
r-I
-,
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r-4
Id v
1-
CD 0
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r-i
9)
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Cd
02
Cd
0 0
Cd >
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tko
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10
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-ri
;4
W
39-
b
The drought
reduced a great number of people
to
absolute poverty,
forcing the
administration
to
open several
relief camps
in the Protectorate. The'loss in
stock was
heaviest in the
east among
the Warsengeli
and
Habr
Toljaala
where
the death toll
amounted
to
80%
or'more of
the
cows, sheep and goats, and
from 10% to 20%
of
the
camels.
The Habr Awal
who
lived
on
the Guban
and
the
11
Golis lost
about
60%
of
their
stock.
About half
of
the
Habr Awal
were
forced by the hardships
of
the drought,
to
cross
the border into Ethiopian territory in
search of
scanty grazing.
It
was not until
April
of
the following
year
that the Protectorate
experienced
the first
rains.
Two
months
later, the Protectorate
was
invaded by locusts
which
destroyed
what
little
remained of
the
agricultural
projects.
12
By the
middle of
1929
conditions
had improved
considerably, allowing
the
administration
to
resume
its
agricultural programme.
In July
of
this
year an
Inspector
of
Gardens
was appointed and,
in
order
to
mitigate
the
conditions of
the drought, the
administration
distributeds
free
of charge,
large
quantities of sorghum,, groundnuts
and cow peas
to the farmers.
13
The Veterinary DepartMent too
engaged-a great
deal
of
the
energy and resources of
Kittermaster's
11. C. O.
830/1
Agricultural
and
Geological Report for 1927
and
1928.
12. Colonial Report for 1928 No. 1451.
13. Colonial Report for 1929 No. 1479.
I
Ok
administration.
In
view of
the
shattered
hopes in the
mineral potential of
the Protectorateo
the importance
of
livestock in the
economy of
the Protectorate
could not
be
over-emphasized.
"The
real capital wealth of
the
population con-
sists solely of stock, and
the
moment
drought
becomes
sufficiently severe
to
affect
the
breeding
stock,
the
capital of
the
country
is
reduced.
"
14
Besides
putting up a
determined fight
against
the
spread
of animal epidemics such as anthrax and rinderpest,
the
administration
introduced
modern methods of
improving the
health
of
the
animals and
their
products.
In 1927., for
example, a cattle
dip
was established at
Hargeisa but
a
substantial number of
the Somali
were at
first
reluctant
to
make use of
it. In 1929, howevero the dip
was reported
to have
received a
"fair
use,,
15,
and
by 1930 the demand for
dips
was so widespread
that the
administration
had to
make
a new outlay
for
constructing
three
more
dips. These
schemes culminated
in
a
long
and comprehensive memorandum
by the
veterinary officer
in
which
he dwelt
on
the impor-
tance
of
the livestock industry for the
economy of
the
Protectorate,
and put
forward
a number of suggestions as
to how it
could
be improved. Animals
which could
be
considered
to be
commercially
important
were sheep, cattle,
goats and ponies.
The
memorandum
then
set out
to
consider
14. Colonial Report for 1927 No. 1390.
15. MSS. AFS. S. 141
(in
Rhodes House, Oxford): The
Veterinary History
of
Somaliland Protectorate 1924-
1960 by E. F. Peck, formerly Veterinary Officer,
Somaliland.
39S
(a)
how to increase the head
of stock of
the
above
mentioned animals
(b)
the
possibility of
increasing
permanent grazing areas
by
providing permanent wells
(c)
some organized system of marketing
the
products so
that
greater value
is
returned
to the African for his
produce.
16
The
value of sheep and goatso according
to
Cocksedge's
memorandum,
lay in the
skinso
for
which new
markets could
be found
outside
Somaliland.
"I
believe.,
"
he
wrote,
"I
am correct
in
saying
that the
value of
the
skins can
be
enhanced
if
the
propaganda and
teaching
of new methods of
skinning and curing are more energetically
carried on.
"
17
In the
commercial value of cattlep
Cocksedge
was equally
optimistic.
He
advocated
the full
exploitation of
the
demand for
cattle and
their
products
in Aden
and
Jibuti,
and advocated an extensive use of
bullocks-for
cultiva-
tion. The
commercialization of
the
camel was,
howeverp
problematical
because
of
the
conservative attitudes of
the Somali towards their
camels:
"but
it
must
be borne in
mind
that the
camel
provides
food in the form
of milk and
is
also at
the
moment
the
usual method of
transport for the
native and caravans
into the interior.
"
,
18
Turning to the task
of stimulating
a steadY
increase in the
number of
livestock
and of providing
them
with permanent wells,
Cocksedge
urged
the
administration
16. C. O. 535/93/38527 Memorandum by Major T. A. B. Cocksedge,
the Veterinary Officer.
- on ways of
increasing
animal
products,
31/l/1931.
17. Ibid.
18. Ibid.
399
to learn from the
experience of
the 1927 drought. This
catastrophe
had found the
administration
totally
unprepared
to
cope with
the
situation, and
this had
exacerbated
the
plight of
the Somali
who
looked to the
administration
for
advice and encouragement
but
received
none.
In
order
to
avoid a recurrence of a similar situa-
tion.,
"it
is
possible
that
artificial water-holes
could
be
arranged
foro in the large
grazing
areas such as
the Haud
....
If
such watering
places could
be
arranged
foro the head
of
stock
that the
country could carry could
be
increased to double,
certainly
in the
most
productive animal,
the
sheep.
Secondly,
energetic propaganda should
be
carried on
to try
and
impress the
natives with
the
fact that it is better to
grow sheep and
cattle
than it is to
grow camels
19
The
memorandum was appreciated
in the Colonial
Office,
which expressed
its
preparedness
to
assist
the
administration
in implementing those
recommendations
which were
feasible
and realistic
in the
circumstances.
With
regard
to Cocksedge's
recommendation
that
more
external markets
be
sought,
Montgomery, the Advisor to
the Colonial Office
on
Animal Health,
observed
that
"the
demands
of
Egypt
appear especially
worthy of
inquiry,
as owing
to the diminution
of
the
garrison at
Aden, the
requirements
there
have been
materially reduced.
"
He
went on
to
recommend
the
establishment of
internal
markets
"so
that
animals and animal products can
be
sold and
bought
at, established market places.
The
existence, of established markets will.,
inter
alia, reduce
the
spread of
disease
19. Ibid.
409
which
is
encouraged
by itinerant trade
system.
Established
markets would also
lead to
price
control
by the Government
and reduce
the
exploitation
of villagers
by
speculative
traders
and
brokers*'
20
The Colonial Office
managed
to
squeeze
Rs. 1,000
out of
the Treasury to
meet
the
expenses of
demonstrating
a variety of
husbandry techniques to the
willing
Somali,
and a
further Rs. 1,000 for
constructing more
dips.
21
In
additiono
Cocksedge
was authorized
to
visit
Egypt
and
the
Sudan for the
purpose of exploring possibilities of
opening up new markets
in those
countries
for the Somali-
land
products.
He
visited
Egypt in July
and returned
the
following
month, empty
handed. Egyptts
markets were
already
flooded
with animals and animal products
from
the Sudan
and other countries
in
northern
Africa. More-
over.,
Egyptian
quarantine rules stipulated
that
all sea-
borne
animals
bound for Egypt had to
enter
through the
quarantine at
Alexandria., there being
no quarantine
facilities
at
Suez.
22
This
would
have involved the
Protectorate in
a
long
and expensive
journey. The
administration
tried,
without success,
to
persuade
Egypt
to introduce
quarantine services at
Suez,
and consequentlyp
the
whole
idea
of opening up a new markets
in Egypt
was
dropped.
23
20. Ibid.
minute
by Montgomery.
21. MSS. AFR. S* 141 The Veterinary History
of
the Somaliland
Protectorate
op. cit.
22.535/93/38527
Kittermaster to C. O. 11/8/1931.
23.535/93/J
3338/16 Percy Loraine
(High
Commissioner Cairo)
to F. O.
i4/11/1931
(Encl.
in P. O. to C. O. 25/11/1931).
40
Cocksedge's
recommendation regarding
the
estab-
lishment
of'permanent
watering places
for the
animals was
not a new
idea in the history
of
the Protectorate. The
need
to
provide
the Protectorate
with permanent water
resources was
first taken into
serious consideration
in
1927,
when
Kittermaster
appoirbad a special
Commission to
look into the
whole water problem and recommend a solution.
The
commission
had
come up with a number of recommendationsp
the
most
important being
one
for the
provision of permanent
water resources
in the
main grazing areas and on
the
caravan routes.
The
commission
had then
stressed
the
need
to launch tests for the
presence of sub-artesian
water, as a preliminary step
for the
proposed water-
drilling
programme.
24
After the
usual procrastination,
the Treasury
sanctioned
the funds for the
employment of an engineer
to
carry out an extensive and
intensive investigation into
the
possibilities and requirements
for the
commencement
of a water-boring and conservation scheme. ýThe engineer
started
his
work early
in 1930
and submitted'his'report
to
the Colonial Development Advisory Committee in March
of
the
same year
for
a
detailed
study.
This Committee
sat on'the
26th March
and was
"impressed'with
the'thoroughness'with
which'the,
report
has been
preparedo and are satisfied of
the-desirability
of adopting
the
proposals which
it
contains.
"
25
24. c. o.
830/1
Report
on
the Somaliland Agricultural
and
Geological Department
op. cit.
25. C. O. 535/89/38217 Colonial Development Advisory
Committee to the Under Secretary
of
State for the
Colonies
29/3/1930-
40
#24 A free
grant
totalling Z16,000
was awarded
to the Pro-
tectorate from the Colonial Development Fund for the
water-boring and conservation programme as recommended
by the
engineer.
In
addition,
the Committee
gave a six-
wheeled
lorry to the
scheme.
26
The
necessary equipment
for the drilling
opera-
tion
arrived at
Berbera in October 1930
and
the
operations
commenced
in
earnest at
Zeila two
months afterwards.
27
By
mid-1931
the
water-boring and conservation operations
had
reached
Boraxna
and
Hargeisa,
making
it
possible
for the
Protectorate
administration
to
put nearly
80,9000
acres
under
irrigation for
cultivation.
28
The
other problem
to
which
Kittermaster
addressed
himself
seriously was education.
At the beginning
of
1928
the first Somali
graduates of
Gordon College
returned
to
the Protectorate
and
took
up clerical posts
in the
adminis-
tration. Their
experience
in the Sudan
and
their
contact
with people
from
many parts of
the
world
had
revealed
to
them the
relative
backwardness
of
their
country and
inspired them
with a
determination to
agitate.
for
change
in their
own country.
On their
scale of prioritieso
education was considered
to be the
most crucial and urgent
requirement
for the Protectorate. It
was
high time the
Protectorate
advanced
beyond the level
of'Koranic schools.,
These Khartoum
graduates
became the
vanguard of protest
26. Ibid.
I
27. Colonial
Report for 1930 No. 1524.
28. Colonial Report for 1931 No. 1570.
in
-
Li j
against what
they
saw as
Britain's
neglect of
their
country.
They brought
a great
deal
of pressure
to bear
on
Kittermaster.
29
Kittermaster found it
necessary
to
re-open
the
whole question of
introducing Western
education
in the
Protectorate,
notwithstanding
the Treasury's. let
alone
the Somalils,
attitude.
By 1928 the
annual expenditure
of
the Protectorate
on education amounted
to 930p this
being the Goverment's
subsidy
towards the four
odd
Koranic
schools on
the
coastal
towns..
30
Kittermaster
appreciated, and even sympathised witho
the
grievances
of
the Khartoum
graduates against
the
educational
back-
wardness of
their
country,
but held the Somali
responsible
for this
state of affairs since
they
were opposed
to the
idea
of making a contribution
towards the development
of
their
country while others were not even prepared
to have
any education other
than that
provided
by the Koranic
school.
He
advocated
the introduction
of
an educational
scheme organized along
the lines
of a reformatory school.
He believed this to be the
most suitable and realistic
type
of education
in the
unique circumstances of
Somali-
land.
"I
am
inclined"., he'wrote.,
"to
the
opinion
that
a reformatory-school
is the best line
of
develop-
ment
....
My idea is to
start a reformatory school
at
Hargeisa
at which-instruction would
be
given
in,
29. Interview
with
,
Ahmed Hassan Ibrahim
and
Mahmud Ahmed
Ali. The latter is
regarded
by
many
Somali
as
the
"father
of education"
in British Somaliland.
30. C. O. 535/85/38052 Kittermaster to C. O. 14/4/1928.
40,
T ac
Agriculture
and
in technical
education.
A
certain amount of clerical education would
also go with
it
....
it
might
be found
possible
to
enlarge
the
scope of
this
school
by
admitting
thereto
other
boys
who might wish
to
attend.
"
31
He
estimated
that
an
initial
outlay of
Z2,000
would suffice
for the
scheme.
Kittermaster's
proposal amounted
to
saying
that
since a majority of
the Somali had
expressed unwilling-
ness
to have European
education
in their
country, and yet
the
need of
having this kind
of education was
beyond dis-
pute,
the
administration would
be justified to introduce
it by fair
or
foul
means.
What he
proposed
to do
was,
more or
less, to
educate
the Somali by force. The
merits
of
this
scheme would
have been to
circumvent
the hitherto
encountered, and
indeed the
anticipated, resistance of
the
Somali to the introduction
of
European
education.
The
other advantage of
having
a reformatory
type
of education
for the Protectorate
was
that it
would combat
the
growing
volume of
juveniles in
urban areas.
Kittermaster's
scheme was submitted
to the
Colonial Office Advisory Committee
on
Native Education
where
it
was
thrown
out.
The Committee felt that
"to
introduce
education
for the Somali by
way
of reformatory schools
for
criminals
would
be
a
bad thing. There
was,
however,
a strong
feeling that
something should
be done by
way
of providing some opportunities
for
education
in Somaliland.
"
32
31. Ibid.
32. Ibid. Minute by Vischer, Secretary to the Colonial
Office Advisory Committee
on
Native Education in
Tropical Africa.
4013,
The feeling
of
the Committee
was
that it
would
be disastrous
to
associate
European
education with crime.
The free
citizens would never come
to
respect
it. The Somali
ought
to
accept
European
education on
its
merits or
do
without
it. Britain
would
be
none
the
worse.
With the,
rejection of
Kittermaster's
scheme,
initiative for
devising
an alternative educational programme passed
from the hands
of
Kittermaster to those
of
the Colonial
Office. Machtig
called
the Colonial Office's
attention
to Hussey's
memorandum on
Somaliland
education of
1920
which
the Treasury had turned down
on
the
grounds of
economy.
He
proposed
the
revival of
this
memorandum
and
the
adoption of
its
recommendation:
"we
might
be
able
to
overcome
Treasury
objec-
tions but
we
have to bring the Governor into
it
as well as
the Advisory Education
Committee.
",
_3
The Advisory Education Committee took
advantage of
Kittermaster's
presence
in London
and convened a meeting
on
the 26th September 1929 to
which
he
was
invited.
During the
second sitting of
the Committee
on
17th October
1929., it
was unanimously
decided to keep the idea
of
reformatory education separate
from
any
Government
educational programme
054
The Committee
recommended
the. improvement
of
the
existing
Koranic
schools at
Berbera
'33.
C. O. 535/85/38052 Kittermaster to C. O. 14/4/1928.
Minute by Machtig.
34. C. O. 535/85/38052 Extract from Minutes
of
the
meeting
of
the Advisory Committee
on
Education, 17/10/1929.
40 6
f1so
that boys
going
from there to the Gordon
College
would
be less handicapped
than
at
present.
"
35
It
was also
thought
possible
to
establish one or
two
vernacular schools with a programme
for training
religious
teachers in
charge of
the Koranic
schools.
36
In the light
of
these developments Kittermaster,
on
return
to Somaliland.,
made specific proposals on
how he
intended to implement the
policy approved
by the Advisory
Education Committee. He
proposed
to increase
or
initiate
Government
subsidies
to those Koranic
schools which would
agree
to be inspected by
a
Government Inspector
with a
view
to
satisfying
himself that
"the
boys
are acquiring some practical
knowledge".
37
By this he
meant
that, besides the
recitation of
the Korans
the
schools would
have to include
such subjects as arith-
metic, reading and writing,
in their
curriculum.
This
would
be the
qualification
for
a subsidy.
In
addition,
the
schools would
have to have
a
high
enrolment, and steady
attendance.
A
school with
20
pupils or more was
to
qualify
for
an annual grant of
Z9. those
with
30
pupils were
to
receive'Z18 each annually and
those
with-40 pupils and
above would qualify
for L27
each per annum.
The
subsi-
dized
schools would, on
top
of
the
granto, receive
free
35
-9^ -
Ibid.
36. Ibid.
37. c. o.
8.30/3
Education Department, Somaliland Protectorate
Annual Report for 1938. The Department
of
Education
was
established
in 1938. This
was
the first
report of
the
Department.
40
'61,
38
supplies of stationary and other equipment
The
whole
programme was earmarked
for Z250
per annum
in the first
stage, so
that
t'if
the
people appear
inclined to
work with
the Goverment in these
schools,
I
shall
feel
encouraged
to
go on
to the
second step
in
development i.
e.
the
establishing of
the
existing school
in Berbera
on a
better basis
by the
provision of
better buildings
and a
better
staff.
"
39
The
second stage of
development
would also engender
the
expansion of
the
curriculum
to include historyo hygiene,
geography,
English, Physical Education
and
Social
Services.
Selected boys
who would show exceptional
ability would receive
further
education at
Aden
or
Khartoum.
4o
Vischer., the Secretary
of
the Committee,
commended
theseproposals,
describing them
as
Itwise
and, very sound
....
If the Governor
can successfully
bring Koranic
schools under
effective supervision
-
as
is the
case
in_ý.
the Sudan
-.
he
will
have laid
a sure
founda-
tion for
all
future
educational
developments
in the Protectorate.
"41
The Treasury
agreed
to
sanction
the funds for
the first
stage of
the
programme, and
Kittermaster duly
laid the
plan
before the
parents of
the
children
then
attending
the two Koranic
schools at
Berbera. Since the
average attendance at each of
the two
schools was
between 70
and
90, he
offered
them the
maximum subsidy
on condition
they
promised
to introduce
new subjects
into
38. Ibid.
39- C.
'O.
535/85/38052 Kittermaster to C. O. 26/11/1929.
40.
Ibid.
41.
Ibid. Minute by Vischer.
0S
the
curriculum.
The
offer was
turned down,
and
Kittermaster
was
informed that the Somali
preferred
to
be
poor and
independent to being
rich and subservient.
42
This
was a serious setback
to Kittermaster's
enthusiasm
but he
was
determined to look for
a
favourable
response
elsewhere
in the
country.
He
visited
four Koranic
schools
-2
at
Burao
and
2
at
Sheikh
-
with a view
to
assessi nlihether
they
passed
the
required
test. The
schools, much
to his
relief, accepted
his
offer and
began to
receive
the
same as
from July 1930. Throughout
the Protectorate, however, there
was a general
lack
of
enthusiasm
in Kittermaster's
educational scheme, and a
substantial number of
Koranic
schools refused
to be
inspected.
T. L_. Rowan.,
an
Assistant Principal Clerk
in the Colonial Office,
observed
that
ttit
is
evident
from the Governorfs despatches
that the
second step
in this
scheme
-
the
development
of
the Goverment
school at
Berbera
cannot yet
be
considered.
Any hurry
would
be
fatal. The
main
trouble is
evidently.
that the
Somali
are either unable or unwilling
to take
steps on
their
own*"43
Kittermaster
was, accordinglyo
instructed to
slow
down his
pace, and
the
remaining part of
the
programme was subse-
quently shelved.
All hopes
of
finding
a cure
for the,
ailing
financial
position of
the Protectorate having faded,
there
seemed no alternative
left for the British but to
take
such measures as would reduce
to the bare
minimum
42.
C. O. 353/94/38465 Kittermaster to C. O.,
8/5/1931.
43.
Ibid. Minute by Rowan.
I"")
'Uj
the
costs of maintaining
the Protectorate. The
gravity
of
the financial
problem
is illustrated by the following
figures
of revenue and expenditure.
/
Year Revenue
(9)
Expenditure
(P, )
1924-25
82.8o6
150s564
1925-26
89.,
057 167., 955
1926-27 90.
-569
149,125
1927-28 157,478 198,628
1928-29 101*541 207so67
1929-30 105004 199., 027
The
exceptionally
high
revenue realized
during
the 1927-28
and
1929-30 financial
years came about as a
result of
the
severe
drought
which
forced the
people
to
sell
large
numbers of
their
stock.
Secondlyo the high
death toll
of
the
stock added more
hides
and skins
to the
market.
Thus, the
customs receipts
for 1927-28
and
1928-29 financial
years amountedo respectively.
-to
Z121,875
and
Z79,577
compared
to 963,419
and-967,716
for
1925-26
and
1926-27 financial
years, respectively.
The
relatively
high
expenditure
for the-1927-28 financial
year
was caused
by--the,
cost of
famine
relief
ýmeasures..
'This
item
claimed,
Z7,7ý4,
and
Z24,000 for the
years
1927-28
and
1928-29,
respectively.
By 1930 the
effects of
the'1927
drought
were-beginning
to. disappear. The Protectorate
received
good
rains
in May-, 1930,
and a good number of
the
famine
camps were clo'Sed
down before the
end of
the
year.
As the Somali
recovered
from the
shock of
the drought.,
they displayed a great
deal
of enthusiasm
in trade
and
in
41
f)
ý
local industries. This
encouraged
Kittermaster to
consider opening a savings
bank for the
emerging class
of
businessmen. In June 1930 he
promulgated
the Savings
Bank Ordinance
which provided
for the
establishment of
the first
savings
bank in the British Somaliland
Protectorate.
44
The
need
for Britain to
reconsider
her
policy
was given serious
thought towards the
end of
1930.
Besides the
economic considerations,
Britain
was
gradually
losing
confidence
in the
system of
Akils
which
had been their basic instrument
of administration.
45
The
unreliability of
the Akils
was clearly revealed
during
Archer's
period, when many of
them
conspired with
the
ordinary citizens
behind Archer's back to
oppose
his
taxation
schemes.
Those Akils
who
tried to
serve
the
administration
loyally, frequently incurred insults
and
ostracization
from the
people.
On the
whole.,
the insti-
tution had
come
to be
regarded
by the Somali
as a means
of self-enrichment.
In 1930 the
salaries of,.
the Akils
totalled
well over
Z5,000'per
annum.
' The distribution
of
the Akils
was as
follows by the
end of
1930. Berbera
District: 16, Burao 72; Hargeisa 79; Erigavo
45
and
Zeilah 71. It'was
estimated
that there
was: one
Akil
for
every'10000 people.
44.
These figures.
wereýobtained
from Annual-Colonial Reports
for the Somaliland Protectorate. The following Reports
were consulted:
Colonial Report for 1926 No". 1355;
Colonial
Report for 1927 No. 1390; Colonial Report for
1928 No. 1451; Colonial Report for 1929 No. 1479; Colonial
Report
for 1930 No. 1524;
and
Colonial Report for 1931 No.
1571.
45.
The Akil
system was
initiated by the Egyptians during their
short administration
in the 19th
century.
The Akils
were
individual Somali
elders selected
by the
administration
to
act as
Government Agents.
411
"In
spite of
this
representation one of
the
most
common requests
for
me
to
receive
is for the
appointment of additional
Akils
....
in
practice
no
individual is
prepared readily
to listen to
orders or advice except
from
a very near rela-
tive
...
"
46
Kittermaster
recommended a
drastic
reduction of
the
number of
Akils
so
that the
power
base
of each
Akil is
broadened
and
his
responsibility
increased. He
also
advocated
the
recognition of
the dia
groups as viable
political units.
The
reduction of
the
number of
the
Akils, he
recommended, should
be
accompanied
by the
appoint-
ment of
dia headmen. The dia headmen
should serve on a
voluntary
basis
"otherwise
we shall merely
increase instead
of
diminish
our pay roll,
47
Lastly, Kittermaster
recommended
the increase
of
the
number
of
District
officers
from 2 for
each
district
as was
then
the
case,
to 3 for
every
district.
48
These
proposals coincided with a growing
uneasiness
in London
over
the future
of
Somaliland. The
Treasury's
attitude was
becoming
progressively stiffer
and every expenditure
it
authorized
had to be
scrupulously
scrutinized.
There
was
hardly
any
item
passed without a
protest.
The Protectoratets Estimates for 1928, for
example,
became
a
bone
of contention
between the Colonial Office
and
the Treasury,
provoking
the latter to
write as
follows:
46.
C. O. 535/922ý38-508 Kittermaster to C. O. 24/11/1930.
47.
Ibid.
48. "The
Development
of
the Somali", Journal
of
the African
Societyo
31,1932,
p.
234-2440-by H. Kittermast.
er.
"1- 1.
ti,
...
They
(i.
e.
The Lord Commissioners
of
the Treasury)
realize
that the
military
expenditure
is
unavoidably
increased by the
relief of
the Nyasaland
contingent
....
but
in
a year
burdened by
such charges
it
would
generally
be desired,
and would
indeed be
imperative, to
curtail expenditure
in
other
directions
**0*"49
Kittermaster's
proposals
for
re-organizing
the
administra-
tion
were not considered
far-reaching
enough
tomke the
Treasury
change
its
attitude.
Consequently, the Colonial
Office decided
to
submit
the Somaliland
question
for dis-
cussion
to the Committee
of
Imperial Defence. The
question
was
taken
up
by the
relevant sub-committee, namely
the Sub-
Committee for Questions
concerning
the Middle East,
at a
meeting of
9th September 1931. This turned
out
to be
a
turning
point
in the hitherto
uncertain position of
the
Protectorate. The
meeting was chaired
by Sir John
Shuckburgh., Deputy Under-Secretary
of
State in the Colonial
Office,
and among
the
attendants were
Capt. Cunningham,,
Director
of
Plans Division, Admiralty; Brigadier Walkero
Inspector General
of
the K. A. R.; Air Vice-Marshal Burnetto
Deputy Chief
of
the Air Staff; Col. Hainingo
of
the
General Staff, War Office; Mr. Petersono Counsellor$
Foreign Office; Mr. Skevington, Principal Secretaryp
Treasury; Mr. Walton, Assistant Secretary, India Office
and others.
The
chairman
described the
purpose of'the meeting
as
being to find
a solution
to the
problems of
the British
Somaliland
Protectorate'which
had
already cost
the'Treasury
an average
of
981,000
per annum
for the
past
thirty
years;
49.
C. O.
879/122
Treasury to C. O. 13/3/1928 No. 71.
41"
,
"the
continuance of expenditure on
this
scale
for
any
inadequate
return, was
difficult to
justify
*50
The Treasury
put
it to the Committee that four
conceivable alternative courses of action presented
them-
selves
in the
circ=stances :-
(a)
evacuation
(b)
withdrawal
to the
coast
(C)
a policy of
development
(d)
continuing with
the
status quo
With
regard
to
evacuation,
the Committee
was unanimous
in
denouncing it,
unless
there
was some
kind
of organized
administration
to take
over.
The
possibility of giving
the Somali
self-Government was
debated
and
then dismissed
on
the
grounds
that
nthere
was no outstanding personality capable of
taking
charge.
The tribes., if left to themselvess
would renew
their former feuds
and
indulge in
inter-tribal fighting
on an unlimited scale.
The
result would,
in fact, be
chaos.
n
51
What
about
handing it
over
to
some other colonial power or
to the League
of
Nations? There-appeared to be three
alternative countries
to
which
British Somaliland
might
be
ceded
-
France, Italy
or
Ethiopia. Howevers before
any
such
transaction
could
be
entered
into, Britain though it
her
obligation
to
consider
the
effect of
the transfer
of
tke-
Protectorate to
any one of
the'three
nationso upon
Britaints
relations with
the,
other
two
or upon
their
relations with
50. C. O. 535/94/38567 Minutes
of a meeting of
the Sub-Committee
of
the Committee
of
Imperial Defenceo held
at
No. 2
Whitehall
Gardens
on
91911931.
51. Ibid.
411
one another.
The Committee
was
initially inclined to
favour Ethiopia
as
the
country which could annex
British
Somaliland
without either causing
friction between France
and
Italy
or endangering
Britain's
strategic
interests,
Ethiopia being
a relatively weak country.
Yet, there
seemed
to be
no adequate quid pro quo
that Britain
would
demand from Ethiopia in
return.
On the
other
hand, it
might
be
possible
to
obtain compensation
-
territorial
or
otherwise
-
from France
or
Italy in the
event of
Britain
deciding to
cede
the Protectorate to
either of
the two.
52
The Foreign Office
was
firmly
opposed
to the loss
of
Somaliland
under any circumstances.
Britain's
prestige
and strategic
interests
would, so
it
was argued, suffer
irreparable damage. The
possibility of
handing
over
the
Protectorate to the League
of
Nations
was opposed
by
Captain Cunningham for
"it
afforded no safeguard, as
there
was
nothing
to
prevent
the
mandatory power
from
using
the
coast
line
as a
base-of,
operations.
"
53
The
alternative choice, of resuming
the
policy of
coastal administration was unanimously rejected not only on
the basis
of past experience,
but
also
in the light
of
Italyts
expansionist policies
in the Horn
of
Africa. With-
drawal to the
coast,
it
was considered,, would simply pave
the,
way
for Italy to fill in, the'vacuum..
a
development
that
was-more
than--likely to
spark off clashes
between Italy
and
Ethiopia
as well, as,
involve. Britain.
5,4
52. Ibid.
53. Ibid.
54. Ibid.
F-
1
Should Britain, then,
pursue
the
policy of
development? Elaborating
on what
this
option engen-
i
dered., Shuckburgh
contended
that
"it
was a policy
that involved
expenditure,
sometimes on a considerable scaleo
in the
early stages of
development; but it
was
expenditure
that
could
be described
as pro-
ductive in that its
object was
to
place
the
territory
on an economic
basis that
would
enable
it
eventually
to
pay
its
own way.
11
55
He
regarded
the
policy as
the ideal
one
if
only money
were available.
But the
salient
feature
of
the
situation
was simply
that the
money was not available ands
ipso
facto,
a policy of
development
was outside
the
range of
practical politics.
The last
alternative seemed
to be to
continue
with
the
policy already
forced
upon
the Protectorate by
the Treasury's
attitude, namely, stagnation.
Commenting
on
the
policy of stagnation
the Treasury
expressed
the
view
that
"the
policy was obviously not an
ideal,
one:
but
as
there
was no practicable alternative,
it
was necessary
to
make
the best
of
't"'56
The Committee, thus,
ended
the
uncertainty of
Kittermaster's
period
by
adopting stagnation as
the
policy
to be
pursued
henceforth. It
was
then
announced
that the immediate
concern of
the Colonial office
was,
to
effect an annual
reduction of
Z30,000 from the Protectorate's
budgets54
The details.
of
this
exercise will
be discussed
in the
55. Ibid.
56. Ibid.
S1 16;
4.
4i
cl,
next chapter.
In
spite of
the
apparent absence of vigorous
interference
on
the
part of
the
administration
in the
internal
affairs of
the Somali,, Kittermaster's
period
was not without
its few
moments of
tension
and anxiety.
In fact it
was
the
policy of
inactivity
-
the laissez
faire
attitude of
the
administration
-
which
became the
source of
danger. One
might say
that inactivity
on
the
part of
the
administration produced results which were
the
very reverse of what
it
was
intended for. During
Archerts
and
Summerts
period
the
contrary
had been the
case:
the Camel Corps had hardly
experienced a moment of
rest,
this being the turbulent
period
in
which
the Somali
were responding
to
various post-Dervish colonial policies.
Kittermaster's
period, on'the contrary, was remarkable
for
its
reluctance
to involve Britain in
armed conflicts
with
the Somali
again.
This
relatilve,
inactivity
seems,
to have
had
a
deleterious
effect upon
the discipline
of
the Camel
Corps,
making
the
soldiers prone
to
commit excesses when-
ever a pretext,
however
minoro
for taking disciplinary
action arose.
ItAs
on
the background
ofýthese-circum-
stances
that the few incidents
of
1927
ought,
to be.,
examined.
In January 1927
a small, conflict occured
between
the Barkat'and, Ba Arsamao both
sections,. of,
the Dolbahanta
tribe,
living-in the Nogal Valley. The Barkat lost two
of
their
men and receivedo
by
way of compensation,
350
camels
417
from the Ba Arsama. Yet the feud
continued and
it
was
now
the Ba Arsama
who stood
in the
way of peace.
In
August, the Camel Corps
was authorized
to take
a
limited
punitive action against
the Ba Arsama
with a view
to
searing
them into
submission
to British
arbitration.
In
order
to
minimize
the
risks of a setback,
the Camel Corps
at
Hudin
was reinforced
from Burao
and
the
advance against
Ba Arsama karias
was carried out on
the 23rd
and
24th
August. It
resulted
in the destruction
of more
than 200
gurgis
(huts),
extensive areas of cultivated
land
and
in
the
capture of more stock
than had been
authorized.
It
also claimed six
lives
of
the Ba Arsama.
58
The
amount of
force
used
by the Camel Corps
was clearly out of propor-
tion
with
the
gravity of
the feud. In
any case,
there
was no resistance
offered
by the Ba Arsama to the
advancing
Camel Corps. The
explanation
for this lack
of self-
restraint
could not
be
anything other
than
a slight
deterioration
in the discipline
of
the Camel Corps.
The
operation
left
a
bitter taste
on
the
minds of
the
Ba Arsama.
It
exacerbated, rather
than
solved,
the
Barkata
-
Ba Arsama feud.
A
month
had barely
passed after
this
operation
when
Hargeisa became the
scene of another
local feud.
The.
whole
issue
started
in the form
of a
local dispute
over a-love affair.,
in
which a suitor
belonging to the
Habr Awalo Rer Ahmad.,
made a point of spotting and
booking
his future bride,
-' and paying, asýsecurity., a number of
camels
to the
parents of
the
girl.
For
some undisclosed
58. MSS. AFR.
S'9'552.
418
reasons.,
however, the
suitor
took
no'further
steps
to
claim
his bride
and
the latter,
who was apparently
becoming impatient
with waiting
for
an absentee suitor,
married a
different
man
belonging to the Habr Awal,
Rer Shirdone, thereby breaking the
original suitorts
contract,
to
say nothing of
his heart. The
aggrieved
party
took the
case
to the District Commissioner but the
choice of
the
girl was upheld.
The Habr Awal, Rer Ahmad
were,
however, instructed to
compensate
the losing liti-
gants.
The latter
were not satisfied with
the
verdict
and
they
promptly
took the law into their hands, invading
the Rer Ahmad
and
the District Commissioner's
residential
quarters, simultaneously.
The Camel Corps
at
Hargeisa
was reinforced
from Burao
and,
for two days, the Rer
Shirdone
suffered another
humiliation
by being
pursued
from their karias,
and
having
plenty of
their
stock
captured.
Five
of
their
men were
killed.
59
Whereas internal
politics were, admittedly, of
concern
to Kittermasterts
administration,
it is to the
borders
of
the Protectorate that
we shall
find the
main
focus
of
the
resources and energy of
Kitterýnasterls
administration.
Italian
expansionism was one major
problem
to
which
Kittermaster
addressed
himselfo
and
the'sporadic-trans-frontier
outbursts of violence were
another problem which. called
for
constant vigilance.
Early'in 1926 Kittermaster
reported
that Italyts
expansionist policies were
directed
as much against
59. Ibid.
4ts
Ethiopia
as against
British Somaliland. He
also
believed
that
De Vecchils
campaigns against
the Mijjertein had the
veiled
objective of pushing
forward the Italian borders.
6o
Britain's
attitude
towards Italian
operations against
the
Mijjertein
was announced
towards the
end of
1926. It
was
to the
effect
that Britain
ought
to try
and prevent
the
Italians
and
the Mijjertein from fighting
on
British
territory.
This
was a
formidable task for Kittermaster
and
he
duly told the Colonial Office that
"the
area
to be
watched
is
some
3,000
square
miles.
You
will realize
that it is
not possible
for
me
to
comb out
the
villages scattered over
this
wea searching
for
armed men.
"61
He
regarded it
as
his
responsibility
to
modify
this
policy
in the light
of
the local
conditions.
The best that he
could
do
was
to
send a section of
the Camel Corps to
patrol certain
areas of
the border
and
disarmo
whenever
possible, those Mijjertein
who might
be
captured.
The
repercussionslof
Italy's
clashes with
Ali
Kenedid
and
Isman Mahmudo
already
briefly discussed in
the last
chapter, were only
the tip
of an
iceberg. The
presence of
Sultan Osman Mahmud
at
Berbera became
particu-
larly
embarrassing
to the British
administration which was
at a
loss to know how to dispose
of
him. They
proposed a
reconciliatory meeting,
to be held
at
Aden between the
60.
For
a study of
De Vecchits
period, see
De Vecchi
Orizzonti d'Impero: Cinque Anni in Somalia
op. cit.
61.
C. O. 535/80/22012 Kittermaster to C. O. 31/12/1926.
42O
Sultan
and
the Italians,
under
the
mediation of
the
British
Resident.
62
While the Foreign Office
was still
negotiating
with
the Italian Embassy in London
about
this
proposal, more
bands
of
the Mijjertein
continued
to
Pour
into British territory in headlong flight from the
Italians.
This last
wave of
the Mijjertein
was
led by
Sultan
Osman Mahmud's
son,
Hersi Osman
(alias
Bogor).
63
The Italians
were no
less
anxious
than the
British
to
wash
their hands
of
the Sultan
and
his
son.
Thuso
at
the
end of
February they
announced
their
opera-
tions
as
having
come
to
an end.
The British, however,
would
have
none of
this. The Sultan
and
his
subjects,
according to the British,
were still a problem
for Italy
to
solveo
and
if the latter
were not prepared
to
negotiate
a settlement
with
the Sultan, the British
might consider
taking
such arbitrary action as
they
might
deem
neces-
sary.
64
Kittermaster held
an
interview
with
Sultan Osman
and put
to him three
alternative courses of action.
The
first
was
that he
could
try to
negotiate a settlement with
the Italians
and return
to his
country or
he
might wish
to
settle
permanently
in British territory
with
his followers.
In the
event of
his
choosing
the latter
option
he
would
have to
accept
Britaints terms
which would
include
a pre-
scribed residential, area and
his
submission
to British
62.
C. O. 535/80/22012 Kittermaster to C. O. 22/2/1927.
63.
For
a
detailed
study of
Italy's
military campaigns,
see
Italia,
(Italian
Ministry
of
War Publication
Rome
193 );
and
C. Cesario La Somalia Italiana
(RoQ,,
1935.,
P.
87-178.
64.
C. O. 535/80/22012 Kittermaster to C.
o.
16/3/1927.
4,2
1
surveillance. The third
alternative was
for him to break
south and seek refuge among
the Ogaden tribes
and
thereby
declare himself in
open revolt against
the Italians.
65
The Sultan
promised
to
consider
these
options and
inform
Kittermaster
of
his decision in due
course.
The following
month
the Italians
shattered
Britaints hope
of effecting reconciliation
between the
Sultan
and
themselves by their
announcement
to the
effect
that
"the
Italian Goverment do
not agree with
the
proposal
that the Consul
at
Aden
should negotiate
direct
with
the Sultan. They
see no advantage
in
further
negotiations which could result
in
nothing
more
than the
offer of a
full
amnesty and of a
treatment
similar
to that
of
the Sultan
of
Obbia.
The Italian Government
expressed
the hope that
the Sultan
will
be kept
at a
distance from the
frontier.
"66
Kittermaster
proposed
that, in
view of
the-stalemate.. he
should
be
allowed
to
attempt a military solution
to the
impasse. Using the Camel Corps
as a striking
force, he
would
take the Mijjertein
bands
in Erigavo District by
surprise, round up
their
stock and
disarm them. The
opera-
tion
would
have three
simultaneous objectives.
The first
would
be to
neutralize
the Mijjertein
militarily so
that
they
might cease
to be
a
threat to the British tribes,
and
the
second objective would
be to
push
them
out of
the
rich grazing grounds and confine
them to the Baran-Taleh
area whichwas recognized as
"an
area
to
which
they have
a partial prescriptive right.
t* t67
Some Mijjertein
might
65.
Ibid.
66.
C. O. 535/80/22012
British Embassy in Rome to F. O. 5/4/1927
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O.
8/4/1927)-
67.
C. O. 535/8/22012
Kittermaster to C. O. 29/4/1927-
42
solve
the
problem
by deciding to drift back into Italian
territory. Thirdly, Kittermaster
wanted
to take
advan-
tage
of
the
operation and seize
1,000
camels
from the
Mijjertein, this being
an outstanding claim of
the
British tribes
against
the Mijjertein. Should the
Italians
complain against
Britain's
action,
Kittermaster
proposed
to
reply saying
that they had
only
themselves to
blame
since
they had failed to
make, peace with
their
subjects.
68
The Colonial Office
was sceptical about
the
line
of action proposed
by the Governor. To begin
withp
the idea
of capturing
1,000
camels
due to the British
tribes
was contrary
to the
policy
hitherto
pursued.
In
all previous cases
the
colonial administration on either
side of
the border
was responsible
for
collecting and
,
handing
over whatever
compensation was
due to
or
from
their
respective
tribes., Moreover, the
reply
Kittermaster
proposed
to
give
to the Italians in the
event of,
their
complaining
left
a
lot to be desired;
-
"the
Italians do
not seem
to be
much
interested
in the Sultan
-
or ex-Sultan
-
and we should
not give
the impression that
we are
trying to
arrange negotiations.
"69
In the
meantime..
the Sultan's
attitude
towards the Italians
was stiffening.
In June 1927 he informed Kittermaster that
under no circumstances would
he
make a
deal
with
the Italians,
to
which
Kittermaster
replied
that, in that
case,
the Sultan's
people would
be
asked or
forced to leave Erigavo.
The
68.
Ibid.
69.
Ibid.
Minute by Greene.
423
Sultan
might also
be
expelled
from Berbera
and ordered
to
go anywhere
he
wished, save
Erigvao District.
70
The
situation
in Erigavo District
was
becoming
potentially explosive.
The Italian
soldiers were reported
to have frequently
crossed
the border
and
harassed British
scouts several miles
inside the border. In
one
incident
two British
scouts were wounded
by Italian
rifle
fire,
an
incident
about which
Kittermaster
protested
to
Mogadishu.
71
Towards the
end of
June Kittermaster
was
authorized
to
use
his discretion in dealing
with
the
Mijjertein,
and
the following
month
he took drastic
action against
the Mijjertein in Erigavo. He issued
them
an ultimatum
to the
effect
that they
should either
move
to Taleh-Baran
area or else return
to their
country
of origin.
The Mijjertein
gave
him their firm
reply
that
they
would stay where
they
were even
if he decided to
send
the Camel Corps to
raid
them. Moving to the Taleh-Baran
area,
they
contended, amounted
to throwing themselves into
the hands
of
the Italian
soldiers stationed only a
few
miles away at
El Laghodeh. However, their
refusal
to
comply with
the
ultimatum
did
not amount
to
a show of
strength on
their
part.
Should Kittermaster
send
the
Camel Corpso the Mijjertein
were prepared
to lay down
their
arms and stage a passive resistance.
The
prospect
of raiding a group, of passive resisters was, one
to
which
Kittermaster
was not ready
to
stoop.
In
any case,
the
70. C-0- 535/80/22012 Kittermaster to C. O. 16/6/1927-
71- C. O. 535/80/22012 Kittermaster to C. O. 16/6/1927-
42
Mijjertein fear,
of
the Italians
could not
be disputed.
72
In the
circumstances,
Kittermaster decided to
modify
his
attitude and even reverse
the
ultimatum.
This
was,
how-
ever, conditional
to their
agreeing
to
pay
the
outstanding
debt
amounting
to 1,000
camels and
to their
surrendering
400
rifles and
400
bandoliers
of ammunition
to the British
administration.
These
conditions wereo evidently, unaccep-
table,
especially
that
concerning
the
surrender of arms.
The Mijjertein began to drift back into Italian territory,
thereby demonstrating their
preference
to
suffer
Italian
reprisals
to
surrendering
their
arms.
Kittermaster then
reported,
"I
am now
doubtful
whether
the Mijjertein
still
left in British territory
are
in
a position
to
pay
1,000
camels or
400
rifles.
I
am certain
that if the
suspicion of
the
good
faith
of
the
Italians
can
be dispelled the Mijjertein
will
return wholesale
to their
country.
"
73
The decision
of
the
majority of
the Mijjertein
to
return
to their
country was a
blow to Sultan Osman
Mahmud. He felt
abandoned and even
betrayed by his
people.
It
was
their
presence
in the British Protectorate
which
had
given
him the
moral strength
to bargain
with
the
British
and rebuff
the Italian
efforts
to
make
him
submit.
Now that he
was virtually alone,
the British
could mani-
pulate
and
intimidate him. It
was not surprising,,
there-
fore., that two
months after
the
return of
the''Mijjertein
to'the Italian
colony'th6"sultan
declared his
acceptance
72. C.
.
0.535/80/22012
Kittermaster to C. O. 1/7/1927-
73. Ibid.
of
the Italian terms for his
submission.
These
were-
(a)
Hewas to
reside
in Mogadishu
under
the
surveillance
of"the
Italians
(b)
He
was
to
renounce
his
claim
to the
sultanate of
Mijjertein
and content
himself
with a subsidy
(c)
He
was
to live in Mogadishu for the
rest of
his life*74
Kittermasterts
administration was anxious
to turn the
sultants submission
into
a
diplomatic
score
for the
British. Thus,
arrangements were made
to hand
over
the
Sultan to the Italians
at a
big
ceremonys and a meeting
to
make preliminary
arrangements
for the
occasion was
held
between the two
administrations at
El Laghodhe in August.,
While
arrangements were underway
howevero the
sultan
frustrated the hopes
of
the British by
escaping
from
Berbera
and giving
himself
up
to the Italians
on
the
border.
75
I
The
surrender of
Sultan Isman Mahmud
solved only
part of
the
problem.
His
militant son,
Bogor,
was still
at
large in the Erigairo
area with a
band'of diehards.
_
Nevertheless, Kittermaster did
not
think
much of
Bogor
either as a powerful
leader
of men or as, a
tough fighter.
It
was
best to leave him
and
let his
movement
die
a natural
death.
76
What
needed
to be
watched more carefully was
Italy's
expansionist policies which
had
already pushed
Italyts frontiers-deep into the Ogaden, This
was a
74. MSS. AFR.
-S.
605.
75. Ibid.
76.1. M. Lewis The Modern History
of
Somalialop.
cit.
P.
99.
42v
flagrant
violation of
the
prevailing
Italo-Ethiopian
agreements
in
which
Italy had
pledged
to
respect
Ethiopiats
sovereignty.
Italy's
expansionism caused
considerable anxiety
in British Somaliland
as well as
in
London. In April 1927, for
example,
Italy
occupied
the
wells at
El Laghodhe
and started
to
repair
the Dervish
fort in that
area.
El Laghodhe is
close
to the
49th
meridian,
the line defined by the Anglo-Italian Protocol
of
1894,
as
being the
eastern
boundary between British
and
Italian Somaliland. Kittermaster
was not sure
whether
El Laghodhe
was on
the British
or
Italian
side
of
the 49th
meridian.
77
In
view of
this
uncertainty,
he did
not consider
it
advisable
to
make
formal
protests
to the Italians. Kittermaster thought it
necessaryo
how-
ever.,
to have Italy
notified of
Britain's
reservations
about
Italy's
claims over
El Laghodhe. He
also
did
not
object
"to
the Italian
party remaining
there
until
its
position
has been fixed
provided
that
our right
to
water
there is
not
disputed"
78
The Colonial Office
authorized
Kittermaster to
write
to Mogadishu in the
sense of
his
recommendation.
The Italian Goveýnor
returned a non-committed replyo
which nevertheless
led Kittermaster. to believe that the
Italians had
no wish-.
to
exclude
the British from El
Laghodhe. In June-. the,. District_Co=issioner',
of,
Erigavo
sent
two British
scouts-to'El
Laghodhe'with the
evident
77. C. O. 535/82/22359--Kittermaster to C. O. 28/4/1927- El
Laghodhe.
was,
in fact,,
on
the Italian
side of
the
boundary.
78. Ibid.
427
intention
of
testing Italian
attitudes.
The two
men
-
were seized,
insulted
and subjected
to
rough
treatment.
One
of
them
was eventually released while
the
other was
sent as a prisoner
to
an undisclosed
destination.
79
Kittermaster's
pleas
for the
man's release were simply
ignored
and
the
scoutts
fate
was,
thus,
sealed.
Shortly
afterwards a party of
Italian
soldiers
looted
some
karias
of
the Warsengeli
situated some
10
miles south-
east of
Baran,
claiming
that the
area was
inside the
Italian border
and
that the
operation was
directed
against some recalcitrant
Italian
subjects.
8o
Once
more
Kittermaster
sent strong protests
to Mogadishu.
These incidents
underlined
the
urgency of
demarcating the boundary, for it
was
the
very uncertainty
of
the
exact position of
the
boundary line
which exacer-
bated the border
problems.
Kittermaster
applied
for
a
Royal Engineers Officer to
proceed
to Somaliland
-
f1with
the
necessary
instruments to
satisfy
me as
to the
exact position of
the
49th
meridian, or anyway
the
exact position of
essential points such as
Baran
and
El
Laghodhe
"81
The
response
in the Colonial Office to the
proposal was
favourable. Machtig
remarked
that
"the
idea
of getting a
R. E. Officer to
verify
the
position of points near
the
49th
meridian
is
an attractive one, especially
if he
could
be
sent
from Aden. Treasury
approval would
be
required and we should
have to
carry
the
Foreign Office
with us, as,
if the Italians
are
in
occupation of
El Laghodhe, he
can
hardly
be
sent
there
without notifying
the Italians
"82
79. C-0.535/82/22359
Kittermaster to c. o. 11/6/1927-
80.
Ibid.
81.
Ibid.
82.
Ibid.
Minute by Machtig.
428
Towards the
end of
June the Italians
at
last
broke their
silence over a number of
issues
about which
Britain had
raised persistent complaints.
On the
ques-
tion
of
delimiting the boundary the Italians
replied
to
the
effect
that they
would welcome
the
appointment of an
Anglo-Italian Commission to demarcate the boundary. The
aim of
the Commission
should, according
to the Italians,
be to
re-examine
the
whole
boundary
question with a view
to
modifying
it in the light
of
local topographical
condi-
tions
and
fresh
evidence on
the traditional
grazing and
watering rights of
the border tribes. In the
opinion of
the Italians, the intentions
and spirit of
the 1894
Anglo-Italian Protocol
was not so much
to lay down
rigid
boundary lines
as
to define, in
general
terms, the Italian
and
British
spheres of
influence,
pending
the delimitation
of realistic
tribal boundaries
at a
later date.
With
regard
to British
claims over
Baran-Taleh
area,
"the
Italian Government
observe
that it,
-appears
that those locations
have for
centuries
been
considered as
Mijjertein.
The Mijjertein
only
retired
from Taleh
when
the Territory
of
Mogal
was assigned
to the Mullah.,
an
Italian
protege.
The Mullah having died they
resumed possession
of
the locality. As forBaran., it
was
held by
Mijjertein
until
1925,
and
in that
year,
Sultan
Mahmud, being
sure of
his
rights,
had the
old
tower
constructed
by the Mullah
restored
"'"83
Lian
Ondon
to F. O.
83.
C 0-'ý3ý/82/22359'jt
''Embassy
in L
24/6/1927
(Encl.
in-F. O.
-to
C. O. 7/7/1927). The
contro-
versy was of
two kinds. There
was
the
problem of
the
uncertainty
as
to, theýexact,
position, of,
El Laghodhe
etc.
in
relation
to the
49th
Meridian. There
was also
the
question of whether areas such as
Taleh
and
Baran,
admittedly
British territories
according
to the 1894
Protocol, should remain soo regardless of
the fresh
evidence
regarding
the Mijjertein
claims over
these
areas*,
429
Italy's interpretation
of
the Anglo-Italian Protocol,
let
alone
the
criteria she proposed
to
advance as a
basis for demarcation,
were unacceptable
to Britain.
The latter took the
view
that the Protocol
was explicit
and
definite,
and
the duty
of
the joint boundary Commis-
sion ought
to be to
mark
the boundary line
as stipulated
therein.
The
specific
terms
of reference
for the
proposed
Anglo-Italian
Commission
were, undoubtedlyo a crucial
point of
debate between Britain
and
Italy. Nevertheless,
the
urgency of
the
necessity
to
appoint a
joint boundary
commission which would
determine the
position of
the
most
controversial places, was accepted
by Britain
and
Italyo
in
principle.
While
negotiations
continued about
the
terms
of reference
for the
proposed commission,
Britain
set
the
pace
by
appointing
Capt. Phipps,
of
the Royal
Engineers, to
proceed
to Somaliland
and verify a-number
of places near
the
49th
meridian.
He
was,
thus,
a pre-
cursor of
the
proposed
joint
commission.
The
main'obstacle
to the
project
-
the Treasury
-
was overcome
in July.
After
a series of
letters
and
inter-departmental
meetings,
the Treasury
allocated a preliminary sum of
Z1.000
and
promised
to,
g,
ive favourable
consideration.
to, future
appli-
cations
for
more
funds in
connection with
the demarcation
of
the-, British Somaliland
-Italian-Somaliland
boundary.
84
The..
controversy over what constituted
a
legiti-
mate claim.
to-jurisdiction"in-the*disputed
areas assumed
dangerous
dimensions during the first
months
of
1928. Was
84.
C. O. 535/82/22359 W. O. to C. O. 19/7/1927.
31
0
the
purported
Mijjertein
ovmership of
Baran*and Taleh
to be taken
and accepted as a criterion
for Italian
claims
to those
areas, or was
the 1894 Protocol to be
the
overriding
determinant
of
the boundary line? Italy
reiterated
its
position as
follows
:-
11
the Italian Government desire that the
app*ýin*tment and
despatch
of
the Joint Commis-
sion
be
preceded
by Britain's
acceptance of
the
view
that Mijjertein
ownership of
Baran
is
not
in dispute
***"85
With
a view, evidentlyo partly
to blackmail
Britain
and partly
to demonstrate Italian impatiences
Italy took the drastic
step of closing
the borders
of
Italian Somaliland to British tribes in February 1928.
The dispute had,
undoubtedlys now reached a stage
for
top-level
consultations
in London. Kittermaster
was
summoned
home,
and on
the 22nd February 1928
an
inter-
departmental
meeting
between the Colonial Office, Foreign
Office
and
War Office
was
held
with a view
to
re-assessing
the Somaliland border
situation
in the
circumstances of
Italian
closure of
the borders
and
her
o.
ther demands.
86
The
meeting resulted
in the
reversal of
Britaints
attitude over
the
most contentious
issue,
namely,
the
criterion
for legitimate
claim
to jurisdiction in the
disputed
areas.
On
reflection
the inter-departmental
85.
C. O. 535Z83/38006 Italian Embassy in London to F. O.
23/j/1928,
(Encl-in
F. O. to c. o.
6/2/1928).
86.
'C.
O'. '535/83/38001'"Note
of a conference
held
at
the C. O.
on
February
22nd 1928 to
consider
the
position
in
regard
to, the-frontier
-
between British Somaliland
and
Italian
Somaliland" n.
de
431
meeting discovered that Italy's insistence that the
usage
of a piece of
territory
by
a
Somali tribe
wass
12so
facto,
a
basis for the
colonial master of
that tribe
to
claim
jurisdiction
over
the
same area, could
have
a
backlash
to Italy
since several
British tribes
also
possessed
certain grazing and watering rights
in Italian
territory.
"It
was
thought that in
view of
this,
we should
be
prepared
to drop
our attitude of maintaining
that the Protocol
(meridian)
line
was
the
only
boundary,
and
that. the task-of the boundary
commission
should
be to delimit this
and nothing
else
"87
It
must
be
pointed outs
howevers that Britain had
no wish
to
push
her
borders into Italian territory
on
the basis
of
the
grazing
and watering rights possessed
by her tribes in
Italian
territory.
She
only
hoped to
make
it-clear to
Italy
that her
claims on
the basis
of
Mijjertein
usage of
Baran
and
Taleh territory
could
be
countered
by
an analo-
gous claim
on
the basis
of
the
rights possessed
by British
tribes
in Italian territory. In the long
run.. neither
Britain
nor
Italy
stood
to
gain.
Far from it, the type
of
theoretical
guidelines advocated
by Italy
might compli-
cate
further the border
problems
inflame the Somali
and
even add
to the
administrative
bills
of
the two
countries.
With
regard
to Italy's
closure of
the border to
British tribes., the
meeting advised
the Colonial Office
and
the Foreign Office to
spare no effort
in
protesting
to
the Italians both in Rome
and
Mogadishu. The Italians
87.
Ibid.
432
ought
to be told that
"Just
as
the British
authorities
have
respected
the Mijjertein
prescriptive grazing and watering
rights, so
the Italians
will continue
to
allow
unarmed
British tribesmen to
graze and water
in
Italian territory"
88
This-was
a veiled
threat for
retaliation against
the
Mijjertein
should
the Italians
persist
in denying the
British tribes
access
to 1ralian
grazing and wells.
Britain's
new policy which amountedo
in
effect,
to
a
tit-for-tat threat
made no visible
impact
on
the
Italians. The latter
sent protests
to Kittermaster
against
an alleged
intrusion into Italian territory
of
British
tribes
and
irregulars,
under
the instigation
of
Barryo
the British
administrative officer
in the Nogal. At the
same
time Barry
reported a number of
Italian
soldiers as
having
crossed
into the Nogol
and
looted British tribes
there.
89
The
situation was clearly
deteriorating both
between the border tribes
and
the local
administrations.
Britain
reminded
Italy
of
the
pressing need
to
get
the
proposed
demarcation
of
the boundary
off
the
ground.
It
was also suggested
that the Italian Governor
should
hold
a preliminary meeting with
Kittermaster
at
Aden,
and
the
two
men should
try to
end
the
outstanding
disputes
as well
as suggest a solution
to the deadlock
over
the terms
of
90
reference
for the
proposed
joint Commission. The
meeting
between Kittermaster
and
Corni, the Italian Governor.,
was
88.
Ibid.
89.
C. O. 535/84/38006 Kittermaster to c. o. 19/10/1928.
go.
C-0.535
38006 F. O. to Graham
(British
Ambassador
in
Ro
Y132/'1928.
(Enal.
in F. O.. to
C. O. 12/12/1928).
433
subsequently
held in December 1928. It
was a
fiasco.
91
The two Governors disagreed
practically on every subject
brought forward for discussion. Their
uncourteous
beha-
viour
towards
each other proved particularly embarrassing
to their host, the Italian Resident
at
Aden,
who, needless
to
say, expected
the two
esteemed gentlemen
to do better.
Kittermaster
wrote:
It
I do
not regard
the
result of our
talk
asoLýtisfactory
because it
was negative.
It
was obviously out of place
for
me
to try to-
discuss the
many untoward
incidents
which
occurred on
the frontier
of
late
years as no
decision
on such crucial points could possibly
be
reached except on
the
spot where witnesses
would
be
availablet'92
Five
months
later, Italy
surprised
Britain by
announcing
the
appointment of
her
own
boundary
commission.,
accusing
Britain,
at
the
same
time,
of
dragging her feet
on
the issue. By the
end of
May the Italian
commissioners
were already
in Mogadishu
waiting
for Britain to
complete
arrangements
for the
selection and
despatch
of
her
own
commissioners.
In June Britain
selected
Major Stafford
as
the Senior Commissioner
on
the Joint Boundary Commis-
sion and selected a
handful
of experts
to
assist
him.
Stafford
and
his
party
left England in July to begin
demarcation in October 1929. This
was preceded
by
Italy's
acceptance of
Britain's
proposal
that the Joint
Commission
should concern
itself
with
(a)
the delimitation
of
the boundary
as
defined by the Anglo-Italian Protocol
of
189ýý-(b)-co'llection anh compilation
by inquiry from the
local
inhabitantso
and'such other-me'ans as might appear
91. C. O. 525/8V38oO6 Kittermaster to C. O. 13/12/1928.
92. Ibid.
3
.
10,
expedient,
information
as
to the
existing rights of
grazing and watering of
the border tribes. In the light
of
the
collected evidence,
the Joint Commission
would
consider
the
necessity,
if
any,
for
adjusting
the Protocol
boundary.
93
The first
meeting of
the Joint Commission
was
held
at
Bunder Ziad,
an
Italian
coastal
towno
with a view
to
reaching some
basic
agreement as
to
what each side
considered,
in
general
terms, to
constitute
the boundary
line. Bunder Mad became the first test
case as
to the
prospects
for
success of
the
whole undertaking.
The
position was,
briefly, that
when
the 1894 Protocol
was
drawn
up,
it
was assumed
that Bunder Mad lay to the
east of
the
49th
meridian and.,
therefore,
within
Italian
territory. Subsequent
astronomical observation,
howevers.
revealed
that Bunder Mad lay to the
west of
49th
meridian
and was,
therefore,
on
the
strength of
the Protocol,
-a
British town. A
subsequent exchange of notes
between
Rome
and
London
solved
the
problem
by
upholding
the
original mistake whereby
Bunder Ziad
wasýconfirmed as an
Italian town.
94
Thus,, Italy
was
to
retain
Bunder Ziad
although
it
was
to the,
west of
the Protocol line.
-The.,
crucial
question,
however,
-,
was
to define the--limits
of,
Bunder
Ziad-since-the
49th
meridian was no.
longer-.
relevant.
Italy,, tried, to,
',
exploit.
this-ambiguous
situation
to her
93. Cý-P-
535/
,
89/38219/111
Memorandum by the
Colonial Office
on
the background
of
the Anglo-Italian
border
problems
and, proposals as
to the
attitude
to be
adopted
by
Britain over
Bunder Ziad,
n.
d. December
1930.
94. Ibid.
435
best
advantage.
The Italian Commissioners
claimed
that
Bunder Ziad included Hais,
a
British town lying
some
5
miles or so
to the
south-west of
Bunder Ziad. Their
argument was
to the
effect
that
11some
of
the inhabitants
of
Bunder Ziad had
gardens
there
(i.
e. at
Hais)
and
Bunder Mad
was
dependent
on
the
well at
Hais for
water
The Italians had
occupied
Hais for
some
ýears
without any protestýfrom
the Governor
*00
of
British Somaliland
...
and
Hais
was a
Mijjertein
watering place.
"
95
These
claims and arguments were
bitterly
con-
tested by the British Commissioners. The
argument
that
Bunder Mad depended
on
the
well at
Hais
was
dismissed
on
the
grounds of
having
no
basis in fact. Bunder Ziad had
several wells of
its
own.
The Italian
claim of
Hais
on
the basis
of a previous unchallenged
Italian
occupation
was
deemed to be irrelevant. The Italian
occupation could
have been
-
and
indeed
was
-
illegal.
' It
was absurd
for
Italy to
reclaim
Ha'is
on account of an
illegal historical
event.
The Italian
claim on
the'basis
of
the Mijjertein
use of water at
Hais
on some occasions was also unacceptable
to Britain. The
wells were - used at
least
as much
by the
Warsengeli
as
by the Mijjertein.
96
In
view of'the
failure
of
the Joint Commission
to
resolve
the dispute
over
Bunder Ziad,
a relatively
minor
issue
compared
to
what
lay
ahead.,
Lawrence., the
acting
Governor.. 'urged'the
British Goverment to
agree
with
Rome'to
restrict
the Joint Commission to the delimi-
tation-of
the-Protocol boundary.
-
He
could see no prospect
95. Ibid.
Bunder Ziad is
sometimes spelt
Banda Ziad.
96. C. O. 535/87/38111 Stafford to C. O. 19/10/1929.
31 6
of any agreement
being
reached when
it
came
to determine
whether or not
it
was necessary
to
alter
the Protocol
boundary.
97
The
situation was considered sufficiently
serious
in London to
warrant an
inter-departmental
meeting.
Not least important
of
the items
on
the
agenda
was
the
question of what ought
to be done
when
demarcation
reached
the Ethiopian-British Somaliland-Italian Somaliland
tri-junction
point
(at
the junction
of
470
longitude
and
80
latitude). Italy
might
insist that demarcation
should
continue westwards
beyond this
point, claiming
the
area
to be
within
Italian territory. This
was
bound to
pro-
voke
Ethiopia into bitter
protests and
Britain
was reluc-
tant to
antagonize
Ethiopia. The latter
might even appeal
to the League
of
Nations
and
thereby
catagorize
Britain
as
one of
her
arch enemies.
Against these
possible negative
consequences of
Britaints
compliance with,.
Italyls,,
wishesp
however,
was
the
conceivable advantage
that Britain
mightpe-n1l"e,
'_
Italy,,
as a quid pro quo,
to
re-open
her border to
British'tribes.
98
The
meeting resolved
to bear these
options
in
mind-until
Italy
raised
the
question of
demarcating beyond the
470/80
junction.
-Britain
would
first'inquire from Italy
on what grounds
-the.
latter-claimed
this territory
and,.
the
subsequent
decision.
by, Britain
would
depend
on-the ensu-ing
discussion
between Rome
and
London.. If,
_on,,
the,.,
o.
ther hand, the Italians
made no
97. C'. O.. 535/87/38111 Lawrence to C. O. 28/12/1929.
98. C. O. 535/89/38219/111 Note
of a conference
held
at
the
Colonial
Office
on
24th March 1930 to discuss
questions
regarding
the delimination
of
the boundary.
437
request
for demarcation to
proceed
beyond the
470/80
junc-
tion the
work of
the Joint Commission
would
terminate
at
that
point.
The
meeting
then turned to the
most crucial
issue,
namely
the
recognition or otherwise of
the Somali
grazing and watering rights on either side of
the border.
Since the Italian
closure of
their border, inter-tribal
clashes
had
not only reached
their
peak
level but
also
the
suffering of
the border tribes
was progressively
worsening.
99
The
problems were exacerbated
by Italyts
persistent,
but
unacceptableo claims over
Baran
and
Taleh. The
meeting concluded
that
since no
immediate
solution was apparent,
"an
attempt should
be
made
to
collect
further
information
and
to
secure agreement
between
the British
and
Italian
sections of
the Commis-
sion as
to the
respective native grazing rights
0000 100
The third item to be discussed
was
the deadlock
over
Bunder Ziad. The
consrs of opinion, at
the
meeting
was
that
"the
issue is
not
important in itself,
apart
from the
question of possible
loss
of prestige
if the Italian
claims are admitted"
101
Kittermaster had
already expressed a similar point of view
and
hinted
at
the
possibility
of
Britain
giving
inýover
Bunder Mad
and
demanding
a quid pro quo elsewhere.
The
meeting,
howevero
noted
that, if-Britain
gave
in to Italian
99. Ibid.
loo. Ibid.
101. Ibid.
438
demands, the latter
might
be
encouraged
to
make even
more exorbitant claims,
thinking that Britain
could
be
tossed
around.
The best
way
to treat Italy, it
was
felt,,
was
to be tough
with
her
right
from the
start.
Leaving the Bunder Ziad
problem
to the tender
mercies of
Rome
and
London, the Joint Commission turned
southwards and
began to demarcate the hinterland. By the
end of
February 1930 demarcation had
gone as
far
as
the
junction
of
49
0
Longitude
and
80
latitude,
and
in the
102
middle of
April the Commission demarcated
480/80
.
The
British Commissioners had been instructed to
proceed with
the Italians
as
far
as
the tri-junction
point
(470/80)
unless
the Italians
raised
the
question of going
beyond
this
point.
Britain's
response
in the
event of
Italy
raising
this
question
has
already
been discussed. In May
the Italians
surprised
the British by
notifying
them-that
they
accepted
the tri-junction
point as
the final-part
of
the
common
boundary between British Somaliland
and
Italian
Somaliland. In the latter
part of
June the Joint Commission
demarcated the tri-junction
point and
declared their
main
duty
as
having been
accomplished, except
for Bunder
Ziad.
103
ý
This was, however, far from being the
end of
the
102. Francesco-Saverio'Caroselli Ferro'e-Fuoco in Somalia
,
(Rome),,
1931
P.
''310
-315
103. C. O. 535/89/38219/111 Memorandum by the C. O.
on
the
background-of,
the-Anglo-Italian border
problems and
proposals
as
to the
attitude
to be
adopted
......
op. cit.
ý
4ýD
Joint Commission's
tasks. Besides Bunder Mad, the Joint
Commission
was supposed
to
reach an agreement on
the
ques-
tion
of
the
grazing and watering rights and recommend.,
if
necessary.,
boundary
changes.
There
was also
the
question
of
the
outstanding claims and counter-claims
between the
border tribes to be investigated
and settled.
In
accordance with
their instructions, the Commis-
sioners collected
information from the border tribes
about
the
extent and nature of
the
grazing and watering rights
of
the border tribes. The tribes
on each side of
the
border
made such extravagant and contradictory claims of
rights
in
each other's
territory that the Joint Commission
found it difficult to
construct any meaningful and consis-
tent
picture.
The, Joint Commission
met
in March
and
then
April 1930
with a view
to
analysing
the
contradictory
evidence collected
from the
elders, and reaching some
tentative
conclusions acceptable
to both
sides.
The
attempt was a
dismal failure. Instead
of examining
the
evidence objectively, each side was
interested in
support-
ing the
claims of
its tribes
and rejecting
those
of
the
other side.
The two
sides ended up
by
quarrelling and
ultimately
dispersing
without
having
achieved anything
by
lo4
way of a settlement.
London
and,
_Rome.
were
then
consulted
and., after
some correspondence
between the two had taken
place, nego-
tiations
between, the, two
sides-of
the Commission
were
resumed.
-,
The
atmosphere was, now more relaxed., and
the
104. C-O-,
5ýý/89,
/3821ý/Jjj
Stafford to C. O. 22/4/1930.
i,
Commission decided to ignore
a great
deal
of
the
evidence
they had
so
far been
collected and,
instead,
rely on
the
advice of
their
administrative officers.
Consequently,
a general. agreement was
drawn
up setting out what
the
Commission believed to be
a
fair
representation of
the
Somali
grazing watering rights.
The
agreement
described
three
categories of grazing areas.
The first
category
was
labelled Habitual Grazing Area. This
was
defined
as
an area
in
which some sections of
the tribe
were always
to
be found
at any
time
of
the
year.
The Normal Grazing Area
was
then described
as an area within which a
tribe
normally
moved
in
search of grazing and water
in
a normal year, and
included the habitual
grazing area.
The third
category
was
labelled Abnormal Grazing Area. This
was an area
in
which
a
tribe,
when compelled
by
adverse circumstances such as
drought.,
could seek grazing area.
105,
The
most
important
clauses of
the
agreement
were:
(a)
In the
northern area
there
was no,
definite
boundary between the tribes,
namely,
the Mijjertein
and
the Warsengeli.
,
(b)
,
In, the
past
the Warsengeli
and
the 14ijjer-
tein had been in the habit
of. grazing
in
each otherts
territory
up
to

limit,
of
,
15
-
miles, on either side of
the
49th-meridian.
--,
ý
.
(c),,,,
The Mijjertein-had-grazed, in British terri-
tory_t-o
ablo. utl
15
miles west of
the Protocol line,
as
far
south'as.
Gerrowei
(480
25t Long.
80
231 Lat.
)
105. C. O. 535/89/38219/111 Kittermaster
to C. O.
8/8/1930.
a
(d)
The Warsengeli had
grazed
in Italian terri-
tory between Sunto
and
El Laghodhe,
up
to 2
miles east of
the Protocol line.
(e)
The Dolbahanta
(British
tribe) had
grazed
in Italian territory
east and south of
the Protocol line,
to
an area varying
from 15 to 30
miles
from the line.
lo6
What
policy,
then,
was
Britain to
adopt
in the
light
of
these
conclusions?
This
was one of
the
crucial
questions
for
which an
inter-departmental
meeting was
summoned
in December 19,30.
action presented
themselves.
Two
alternative
lines
of
The first
was
for Britain
to
negotiate with
Italy
with a view
to
altering
the
Protocol boundary to
conform more closely with
the tribal
limits
as
defined by the Joint Commission.
(see
map).
The
second alternative was
to
make a new agreement with
the Italians in
which
the Protocol boundary
would
be
confirmed.
It
would
be
necessary,
to
guarantee
the Somali
on
both
sides of
the border their
ancient grazing and
watering rights.
The
weight Of opinion was
in favour
of
the latter
course of action
because
"this
had been the"poli
I
cy
hith
erto contem-
plated
by His Majesty's Government
whose main
pre-occupation
is to
secure
freedom
of movement
for British tribes
rather
than
accessions of
territory in this
area.
"
107
The'second,
and
by far
most
important,
reason was
that the
alteration of
the Protocol line
was
bound to
cause unneces-
sary complications'and
quarrels
between Italy
and
Britain,
lo6. C. O. -535/89/38219/III
Memorandum by the C. O.
on
the
background
of
the Anglo-Italian border
problems and
proposals
as
to the
attitude
to be
adopted
by Britain
over
Bunder Ziad
n.
d. December 1930.
107. Ibid.
S
'--
G0O
TE
(ý;
ee r
Vtl
Y'A
6''
(
"-"
is'
7r
4-
CA
ý,
9-
ty
Ci
44.3
as well as raise
the
suspicions of
the Somali. In
any
case,
the
grazing zones marked
by the Commission
were
not static.
They
were
liable to
change under
different
circumstances.
Thus, it
would
have been
erroneous
to
assume
that the
alteration of
the boundary
would
have,
ipso facto,
restricted
the Somali
nomads and eliminated
the
usual causes of
inter-tribal feuds.
"It
is therefore impossible to lay down
a
boundary line
more
in
accordance with
tribal
areas
than the
present one
...
it is
very
strongly recommended
that
no change at all
should
be
made
in the Protocol line,
which
is becoming
well-known
to the
natives
...
"
lo8
Bunder Ziad
remained
the
most
difficult bone
of contention.
Following the inter-departmental
meeting
of
March 1930, Stafford
was
instructed to
oppose
Italy's
definition
of
the limits
of
Bunder Ziad
with a counter-
definition to the
effect
that Bunder Ziad
started
"from
a point on
the
coast at
the
middle of
the
mouth of
the Da Dowah
(alias
Daboh
or
Dadarbo) Tug,
situated
just
west of
the town
of
Bunder Ziad
-
thence
east along
the
west
line
of
the Garbo hills to the
49th
meridian2
east of
Greenwich".
109
If the Italians-were
ready
to
accept
this definition
which
left
out
Hais., then Stafford
would
be
prepared
to
start
demarcating the Bunder Ziad
enclave at
the beginning
of
October.
The Italian Commissioners
referred
the
matter
to'-Rome'and
r6deiived'6: reply
in'August. Britain's
108. Ibid.
109. C. O. 535/89/38219 Stafford to Corni 12/6/1930
(Encl.
in Kittermaster to C. O. 14/6/193o).
I
 .
p
definition
of
the limits
of
Bunder Ziad
was unacceptable
and no
further
steps were
to be taken in the
matter
until
Rome
and
London had
sorted out
their differences.
110
Britain
was
becoming impatient
with what she
believed to
be Italy's delaying tactics. The latter
was notified
that if
no
immediate
steps were
taken by her to
come
to
an agreement with
Britain., Stafford
would return
to
London in the
middle of
October, leaving the demarcation
of
Bunder Ziad
unaccomplished.
This
was a veiled
threat.
The intention
was, evidently,
to frighten Italy into
capitulation.
If this
was
Britain's intention it
failed,, for Italy
remained adamant.
Consequently.,
Britain's threat to
recall
Stafford
was shelved, and
the Commission
resumed
their
negotiations
in November.
The
outcome of
their
attempts
to
resolve
the dispute
was
reported
in
a
telegram:
11meeting
took
place on
4th
November
with
Italians. They
stated
the limits
as previously
reported.,
I
repeated
Britain's limits
which
were not accepted.
Conference
closed.
"
A few days latter Stafford left for London.
This final breakdown
of
the
negotiations
I
unleashed another phase of conflict
between London
and
Rome,
as well as
between their
respective
local
administra-
tions. The Italian
complained
that
110.
C. O. 535/89/ý8219 Kittermas
-
ter to C. O.
8/8/1930.
lll*-C. O. 535ýPq/3P219 Kittermaster to C. O.
6/11/1930.
while
the Italian delegate, in full
fuiiilment
of
his instructionso declared
himself
ready
to
negotiate
for the
attainment
of a
transactional
solution
based
on
the dip-
lomatic
situation and on
the
actual state of
affairs,
the British delegate limited himself
to
again requesting
the
acceptance, pure and
simple, of
the
proposals already rejected
by
the Italian delegate
....
The
refusal of
the
British delegate to
renew
the
negotiations
with regard
to the frontier line
of
the
enclave
has
rendered vain
the hope that the
mixed commis-
sion,
before leaving Somaliland.,
would
be in
a
position
to
submit
to the two
governments a
solution reached upon
the
only point remaining
to be discussed.
112
The Colonial Office
reacted angrily and accused
the Italians
of
having been the
stumbling
block in the
way
of an amicable settlement.
They
were said
to have
"re-affirmed
their
previous contentions regard-
ing the location
of
the boundary
of
Bunder Mad
-
contentions which
have
proved unacceptable
to
H. M. Government. Col. Stafford had
no option
but to tell him that he
could not accept
their
proposals"
113
The Colonial Office
perceived
two
alternative courses of
action.
The first
was
for Britain to
maintain
the',
atti-
tude
she
had taken hitherto
and
the
other was, as'al: ready
noted,
to
give
in to the Italians
and
demand
a quid pro
quo elsewhere.
114
While keeping these two
open alternatives
in
mind,
Britain decided,
nevertheless,
to let Italy take
the initiative
of reviving
the issue. Britain
would
then
gauge
the
possibility and advantages-ofýacceding
to Italy's
demands for
some other concession.
But Italy
was equally
112. C. O. 535/89/38219 Italian-Ministry
of
Foreign Affairs
to the British Embassy in Rome 21/11/1930
(Encl.
in
F. O. to-C. O. 27/11/1930.
113. Ibid. Minute by Lee.
114. C. O. 535/89/38219 Memorandum
by the
C. O.
on
the back-
ground of
the Anglo-Italian
border
problems
op. cit.
44C
determined to
play
the
waiting game.
In January
1931
Britain instructed her Embassy in Rome to
remind
Italian
authorities of
the
unaccomplished work
in
Somaliland. The British, however, did
not put
forward
any new proposals of
how they intended to
overcome
the
original obstacles, and
the Italians
seem
to have ignored
this half-hearted initiative.
115
There being
no conceivable solution
to the
problem,
the Bunder Ziad dispute
was
left in
abeyance
while
the Joint Commission
proceeded
to London to
write
up
their
report.
The Bunder Mad
controversy was still
unresolved
at
the time
of
the defeat
of
Italy during
the World War II. Thereafter Britain
assumed respon-
sibility
for
administering
both Italian
and
British
Somaliland.
The Joint Commission
met
in London 1931 for
the
purpose of writing up
their
report.
It
was completed
and submitted
to their
respective
Governments in June for
ratification.
It had
very
few
recommendations
to
make
to
the two Governments. The
most
important
recommendation
was one regarding
the
grazing and watering rights of
the
Somali in
relation
to the Protocol boundary. The Joint
Commission
was unanimous
in
urging
Italy
and
Britain to
attempt no! alter
.,,
ation: of
the Protocol boundary. They
were equally unanimous
in
recommending
the two
countries
to
respectiland recognize-the,
Somali
grazing and watering
115. C. O. 535/92/38508/A Graham
(British
Ambassador
in
Rome) F. O. 20/1/1931
(Encl.
in P. O. to C. O.
5/2/1931).
44
IJ
rights which
bore
no relation
to the Protocol boundary.
116
Another duty
with which
the Joint Commission
had been
charged was
to
settle
the
outstanding claims
and counter-claims
between the border tribes. It
was
desired by Italy
and
Britain that
some
definite formula
should
be devised
not only
for
settling
future disputes
and claims
but
also
for
avoiding unnecessary quarrels
between the two local
administrations, or
indeed between
London
and
Rome. At Britain's
suggestion,
the Joint
Commission
appointed a sub-committee of
4
members and
designated it the Anglo-Italian Claims Sub-Committee.
It
was charged with
the duty
of
looking into,
and
settling, all
the
claims and counter-claims arising out
of
the border
raids.
The first
meeting of
this Sub-
Committee
was
held
at
El Dofar
on
March 15th 1931
with
a view
to discussing
methods of
its
procedure.
It
was
decided to divide the
claims
into four
categories.
A
total
of
224
claims were compiled and categorized as
follows
:-
(a)
Category 1
(claims
accepted
by
all parties
'without
discussion): British
6,
Italian 3.
(b)
Category 2
(claims
to be investigated):
British
45;
Italian 56
(c)
CategorY 3
(claims
without
foundation):
British
44;
Italian-36
(d)
Category
4 (petty
claims
to be
referred
to
ordinary cI ourts):
British 24; Italian 7.
116. C. O. 535/92/38508/"A" The Report
of
the Anglo-Italian
Boundary Commission
(Encl.
in Stafford to c. o.
61-611931).
L. 4r
The Sub-Committee.. thus,
got
down to
settling
the
claims
in
category
2. Quarrels
and protracted arguments erupted
between the Italian
and
British
officials almost
immediately.
The first bone
of contention was an
Italian
claim
for
stock
which
had been brought into British territory from the
Mijjertein
country
by the British Magan117
at
the time
of
Italian
operations against
her
recalcitrant subjects.
After the
storm of
Italian
operations
had
receded and
the Mijjertein had
returned
to their
country,
these
Magan
who
had been the
clients of
the Mijjertein..
not
only refused
to
return
to their
servitude
in the Mijjer-
tein
country
but they
also retained
the
stock
they had
brought
across.
This
stock., according
to the Italianso
belonged to the Mijjertein
as
by
right and ought
to be
captured
from the Magan
and returned
to their
rightful
owners.
The British
contested
this
claim, saying
that
the
sub-Committee was responsible
for
settling claims
arising out of
the trans-frontier
raids.
The Magan
action
did
not,
technicallys
constitute a raid and.,
theref
ore,
did
not really come within
the terms
of
reference of
the Sub-Committee.
118
In
any case..
the
Italians
could not produce concrete evidence
to
prove
that the
claimed stock actually
belonged to the Mijjertein.
It
might
have, been the
personal-property
of.
theýMagan- Thus.,
so
far
as
the British
were concerned,.
the
case was nothing
117. The Magan is
a
Somali tribe
which was regarded as
inferior
by the
other
tribes. The Magan
earned
their
living by
affiliating
themselves to'the
other
tribes
and-serving
them in
a servile relationship.
The Magan
werbo
however, famous for their
skill
in
manufacturing
weapons,
fighting
and making medicine.
118. C. O. 535/90/38219/t'D" Kittermaster to C. O. 3/5/1930.
more
than
449
"a
civil suit arising out of
the
circumstances
of a
domestic
nature which should
be investi-
gated
by the local
magistrate and should
there-
fore be
placed
in
category
4"
119
The Sub-Committeets
proceedings came
to
a standstill, with
the Italians threatening to boycott further
meetings
if
this
particular claim were
dismissed. A
crisis was even-
tually
averted when
it
was agreed
that the issue be
set
aside, at
least temporarily,
while
the Sub-Committee
proceeded with
the
settlement of
the less
controversial
claims.
t-I
The Sub-Committee
resumed
its
tiberations
in
May
at
Sunto. After 20 hours
of argument, extending over
3 days,
only
four
claims were examined
-
one
British
and
three Italian. In
one of
the
remaining claims,
the Italians
refused
to
accept
British
evidence which
they
purported
to
have
written at
the time
of
the
allegedlooting.
Conse-
quently, the British
accused
the Italians
of
having
obstructed
the
course of
justice,
and
the, Italians
counter-
charged
the British
with
having fabricated
evidence-
The
Sub-Committee
once more
broke down. Kittermaster rallied
to the
support of
Horsely, the British
representativey
accusing the Italian
representatives of
incompetence:
"The-Italian
Commissioner
known
no
Somali,
and
Horsely
complains of
deliberate
corruption and
interference-by the-Italian; interpreter. To
our
idea
of proceedings,
the
procedure adopted
by the., Italians-,
was, repugnant
0'
It
120
I
The Colonial Office
was at a
loss to know how
119.
Ibid.
120.
C. O. 535/90/38219/"D"
Kittermaster to C. O. 19/5/1930.
50
salvage
the
situation.
progress and yet
it
wa
per
day. This did
not
housing the
elders who
give evidence.
121
Lee
being interested in
The Sub-Committee
was making no
s costing
the Treasury
nearly
910
include the
cost of
feeding
and
had travelled long distances to
accused
the Italians
of not
flan
impartial investigation: the justice
or
otherwise of native claims
is
entirely subor-
dinated to the
advancement of
Italian
political
aims.
It is
no exaggeration
to
say
that their
aim
is to
make
themselves
as
troublesome'as
possible
in the hope that
we shall eventually,
for the
sake of peace and quiet,
let them have
their
way
...
"122
The Sub-Committee
was resuscitated
in June
when
the Italian
authorities
decided to
strip
Mosconi.. the
Italian
representative on
the Sub-Committee,
of
his
posi-
tion. The British had held Mosconi
responsible
for the
difficulties
encountered
hitherto. The Colonial office
made
the
analogous gesture of
instructing the British
representative
to
11make
concessions wherever possible
to
secure
agreement, provided.
that by doing
so no
important
interest is
sacrificed"123
After the
replacement of
Mosconi, the
state of
things took
an unexpected
turn for the better. The
Italians began to demonstrate
a
flexible
attitude over a
number of
issues
on which
they
had
previously stood
firm,
with
the
result
that by the
121. Ibid.
122.
'Ibid. Minute-by
Lee.
123. C. O. 535/90/38219/ttDt' C. O. to Kittermaster
111611930.
451
end of
September 1930 the Sub-Committee had
settled a
great
bulk
of
the
claims,
including the
one of
the Magan
stock.
The final
settlement awarded
the British tribes
Rs. 114,654
and
the Italian tribes Rs.
84,178.
This
left the Italians in the debit balance
of
Rs. 30,476.
Kittermaster
commended
the Italian
officials
for their
co-operation
"but
it is
with
Major Horsely that the honours
of war rest.
Major Horsely, keeping in
view
the
main objective, was willing
to
give way on
points of
detail
where no
important
principle
was
involved"
124
Connected
with
the
settlement of claims was
the
more
fundamental issue
of
finding
a permanent
formula for
settling
future
claims and avoiding conflict.
The
Italians took the initiative
on
this
particular
issue
and proposed
to the British that
periodic meetings
between the two local
administrations should
take
place
after every six months
for the
purpose of settling out-
standing claims and reviewing
the border
situation
in
general.
125
The first
of
these
meetings washeld
at
Gerrowei, in Italian
territory,
on
the 3rd. August 1931.
Two items
were on
the
agenda.
The first
was an
Italian
complaint about an alleged violation of
the boundary
by
a group of
British tribesmen. These
were said
to have
crossed
into Italian territory, looted
stock and returned
to the British Protectorate.
took the
case of
the Somali
The British,,
for their
part,
scout who
had been
captured at
124. C. O. 535/90/38210
Mittermaster to C. o. ii/q/193o.
125.
C. O. 535/93/38508/"A"
Italian Ministry
of
Foreign
Affairs
to the British Embassys Rome, 27/1/1931
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 5/2/1931).
4-52,
El Laghodhe
and
locked
up
in
one of
the Italian jails.
"The
result of
the
meeting"j,
Kittermaster
reported,
11was
disappointing
as
it
seemed
to
indicate that the Italian Government
was not
treating the
matter seriously.
"
126
Even
more serious
than the deadlock
over
the two disputes,
was
the
attitude adopted
by the Italians
over
the
question
of
the Somali traditional
grazing and watering rights.
Contrary to the
recommendation of
the Joint Commission.,
the Italians
asserted
that they
regarded
the Protocol
boundary
as a
hard
and
fast line
which
the Somali
on
either side should
be forbidden to
cross or, at
the
most,
only allowed
to
cross under stringent conditions
.
127
The
Italians
proceeded
to
warn
the British to
restrain
their
tribes
accordingly, since a contravention of
this direc-
tive
was
bound to
provoke
the Italians into taking
punitive measures against
the tribes
concerned.
The
British
were
left
with no choice
but to take
such steps
as were necessary
to
warn
their tribes
against crossing
into Italian territory. In the
meantime
the
new
develop-
ments were re ported
to London in the hope that fresh
negotiations of
the border
questions might
be
opened with
Rome.
128
Italy..
so
it
appeared, was systematically
draw-
ing
an
iron
curtain around
her
colony's
borders
with
British Somaliland.
ýhis
might
be
explained
by the
Fascist
colonial policies
then being
pursued
in the Horn
of
Africa. Internally, the Italian
colony was a scene
126o' C. O. 535/93/38508/"Att Kittermaster to C. O. 1/9/1931-
127. Ibid.
128. Ibid.
Pl
'J
of extensive and
intensive
economic projects which were
intended to
make
the
colony economically viable.
Like
the British Protectorate.. the Italian
colony
had hither-
to
proved an economic
burden to Italy. Unlike Britain,
however, the Fascist Government in Italy
was
determined
not
to
accept
failure,
and she
had
no scruples about
the
use of
force
whenever any obstacle appeared
to block her
way.
Externally, the Italians
were gradually extaiding
the
colonyts
frontiers into Ethiopian territory. By 1932
the Italians
were already
in
occupation of various points
in the Ogaden.
129
It is
quite apparento
therefore, that Italyts
hands in Somaliland
were
full. If there
was one
thing
she must
have desired it
was
to
minimize peripheral ,
problems so as
to be
able
to
concentrate on
her
pursuit
of vigorous economic policies within
the
colony and
expansionism
into Ethiopian territory. It is in this
light that her decision to
close
her borders
with
British Somaliland
-a
policy which
brought
misery
to
the border tribes
and strained relations
between Rome
and
London
-
might
be
conceived.
It
was assumed,
evidentlyo
that the
closure of
the boundary
would
eliminate or at
least
reduce problems which
had hitherto
arisen-out of,
the-advocated
moral principle
to the
effect
that the Somali traditional
grazing and watering rights
should
be
recognized
in
utter.
disregard
of
the
colonial
boundaries.
The
manner and'extent of
the
abuse of
this
129. Robert Hess, Italian Colonialism in Somalia,
op. cit.
chapter
VII; Also Sylvia Pankhursto_Ex-italian
Somaliland,
op. cit. chapter
X.
43
principle
by the border
tribes is
probably
the
most
persistent
theme
of
Somaliland's
colonial
history.
The
other explanation
for Italyts
wish
to live
behind iron
curtains
in
relation
to British Somaliland
was
that the Fascist Government
was making
far-reaching
military preparations
within
the
colony.
This
was
absolutely essential
for Italy's
expansionist policy
which was
bound to bring her into
collision with
Ethiopia. Britain
was, on
the
whole
hostile to Italyts
expansionism.,
and
Ethiopia tended to look to Britain for
support against
Italian
encroachment.
The
closure of
the
border, therefore,
would appear
to have been
motivated
by
Italy's
anxiety
to
minimize
leakage
of
information to
Ethiopia
and
the
outside world, of
the
extensive military
preparations she was making and of
her
gradual advance
into the Ogaden.
The Ethiopian
side of
the border
was another
persistent
thorn in the flesh
of
Kittermaster's
administra-
tion.
_.,
One
main source of
trouble
was
the Aysa tribe
which
inhabited
roughly
the
area
between the
meridians of
Longi-
tude
40
0
30'
-
430
-
15' E
and
the
parallels of
Latitude
10
0-
12
0
N. Thus, they lived
on
both
sides of
the border
and exploited
the
situation
to their best
advantage.
An
additional advantage
in their favour
was
the
geographical
condition of
the Aysa
country.
It is
a conglomeration of
hills in
wl,
ýj, military operations, especially
by
mounted
troops
. would be
particularly
difficult. Moreover, in the
event of
troops
moving against
them., the Aysa
could.. and
often
dido
retreat
to Ethiopian territory.
The
most
notorious sections of
the Aysa tribe
were
the Rer Kul
and
I
455
the Rer Gaidi
whose
karias lay
astride
the
caravan route
to Zeila. Thus, they had it
within
their
power
to dis-
rupt
Zeila trade
and render unsafe
the
passage of officers
between Zeila
and
the interior. The
administration's
reluctance
to
clash with
the Aysa had
apparently enhanced
their
sense of
independence,
encouraging
them to defy
and
even
despise the
administration.
130
By 1927 the
position of
the
administration was
becoming
untenable.
One
of
the test
cases of strength
between the
administration and
the Aysa
occurred
in
March 1927. Towards the
end of
this
month, a group of
eight
Gadabursi tribesmen, then living
among
the Aysa.,
Rer Gaidi,
seized a young girl and committed a
brutal
sexual assault on
her
without any apparent reason.
The
girl was subsequently
treated
at
Berbera but the
culprits
remained at
large,
notwithstanding
Kittermaster's directive
for their
surrender.
The incident
was
interpreted
by the
administration as a
definite
challenge, and
Kittermaster
declared that he
could no
longer
If
afford
to disregard
so
fraglant
a case of
refusal
to
comply with
Government
orders as
is
shown
in the
protection of
the
eight
culprits.
"
131
Kittermaster
proposed
two
alternative
lines
of
action.
The first
was
for him to ignore the
matter and
risk
further defiance. The
other was
to
send a strong
detachment
of
the Camel Corps into the Aysa
country with
a view
to threatening,
or coercing
them if
necessary,
to
surrender
the
wanted men.
In
case coercion
became
130. MSS.
AFR. S.
605.
131. C. O. 535/82/22341 Kittermaster tO C. O. 31/3/1927.
456
necessary.,
the Governor
proposed
the
aerial
bombardment
of
the Aysa
country,
this being the
method of warfare
the Somali dreaded
and
feared
most.
132
The Colonial
Office
consulted
Rayne, the D. C.
of
Zeila then
on
leave
in London,
as
to
what
he thought
of
Kittermaster's
proposed
lines
of action.
Rayne
was
definitely
opposed
to the
use
of aeroplanes
in
attacking
the Aysa. Aerial
raids would
only
destroy
stock without guaranteeing, at
the
same
time,
that the Aysa
would comply with
Kittermaster's
orders or
change
their
attitude
towards the
administration.
Far
from it, they
might, as
they had done in the
past, cross
into Ethiopian territory
until such a
time
as
they
might
deem the
situation
to be
safe
for them to
return.
Rayne
advocated,
instead, the despatch to the Aysa
country of
troops to
capture stock and,
if
possible,
the
culprits.
The Colonial Office.,
while accepting
Raynets
views with
regard
to
aerial attacks.,
felt that the troops
at
the
command of
the
administration were not sufficient
for
the
operation recommended.
In
any caseo
it
was
Britain's
policy
to
void clashes with
the Somali. Consequently,
Kittermaster's
proposals
for
punitive action were
turned
down
and
he
was
informed
accordingly.
He
was,
howevero
to
persist with
the demand for the
surrender of
the
cul-
133
prits, short of use of
force.
In theýmiddle
of,
August the-Gadabursi
went
behind
the back
of
their-allieso the'Aysa.,
and negotiated a settle-
ment-with
Kittermaster by
which
they
undertook
to
pay a
132. Ibid.
133. Ibid. Minute by Green.
4
3"
fine
of
100
camels
for the
crime committed
by their kins-
men.
The Aysa interpreted the Gadabursi
action as a
betrayal
of
their
alliance, especially since
they had
risked a quarrel with
the
administration
in
order
to
protect
the Gadabursi
criminals.
This
was a good
opportunity
for Kittermaster to break the Gadabursi-Aysa
alliance, and
this he did by
accepting
the Gadabursi
offer of
100
camels
in
place of
the
eight criminals.
By
the
end of
August the Gadabursi had
completed
the
payment
of
the fine, but this fact, far from
solving
the
problem,
implicated the
administration
in
another and more serious
round of
internal feuds between the Gadabursi
and
the Aysa.
The later
were
determined to
punish
the Gadabursi for
their treachery.
134
The Aysa
mobilized a
big force'and
attacked
the
Gadabursi karias.,
capturing
their
stock and
killing
S
of
their
men.
The Gadabursi
retaliated
by
ambustling a party
of
the Aysa
and
killing
an equal number of men.
Hence-
forth, the
conflict escalated and
forced the
administration
to intervene,
especially when
the Ethiopians began to
pro-
test
against
the
use of
Ethiopian territory
as a
battle
ground.
135
Kittermaster
sent an
Aysa Akil to
remonstrate
with
his kinsmen
against
their lawlessness.,
but the Akil
was promptly stabbed
to death. Thereaftero
military
inter-
vention'by
the
administration
became inevitable; further
inaction
would
have
undermined
the
administration
IS
prestige
and encouraged
the Aysa
and other
tribes to
commit
more serious-outrages
against
the British
with
impunity.
134. MSS. AFR. S.
605.
135. Ibid.
4
-j
Thus.. in January 1929 the Governor took
advan-
tage
of
the
continuing quarrel
between the Aysa
and
the
Gadabursi to deal
a
blow to the former. Capt. Kaye
with
part of
"B"
company and
Lieut. Hobbs
with part of
"C"
company of
the Camel Corps, totalling, in
all,
200
men,
moved out
from Burao towards the Aysa
country.
Most
of
the Aysa
stock was on
the
open plain which stretches
60
miles south of
Zeila. The Camel Corps
rounded up
l.. 200
camels without encountering any opposition.
The
next
day, however, the Aysa
collected and
tried to
stampede
the
captured stock,
though
no actual attack was made on
the troops.
The
attempt was
frustrated
and
the Aysa
repulsed.
Nevertheless, the Aysa had
apparently not
ceased operating
in
spite of
the
presence of
the Camel
Corps,
and, consequently,
Kittermaster
acquired permission
to
operate against
them
again at
the
end of
February. This
operation claimed eight
lives
of
the Aysa
and
dispersed the
Aysa force.
Up to this
point no real opposition
had been
encountered
by the Camel Corpss but
on
the
night
following
the
second operation
the Camel Corps
was attacked at night
by
a strong
force
of armed
Aysa. After
a protracted engage-
ment,
the latter
were repulsed, with many casualties.
The
Camel Corps-lostIone
soldier and
had two
others seriously
wounded.,
'.
Irýnticipation,
of more-severe reprisals, a
large
number of
the Aysa
crossed
the border into Ethiopian terri-
tory.
136
136. C. O. 535/87/38122 Kittermaster to C. O.
6/6/1929.
459
The border
problems were exacerbated
by the
non-existence of clear marks
to
show
the
position of
the boundary
as negotiated
by Rodd
and
Makonnen in 1897.
This
was a
loophole
which was
fully
exploited not only
by the Somali but
also
by
a number of
Ethiopian border
chiefs who,
lacking
proper supervision as
they did, took
advantage of
their
autonomy
to
enrich
themselves
with
stock
they
managed
to
capture
from the Somali
nomads on
the
pretext
that this
was part of
their tax
collection
operations on
behalf
of
Addis Ababa. In
addition, when-
ever a
British
or
Ethiopian tribe
committed a crime or
rebelled against
its
governing authority
it
would escape
across
the border beyond the jurisdiction
of
the
country
in
which
the
crime or rebellion
had taken
place.
The
authority of
the
offended country might
try to
pursue
the
offenders
but it
was never sure of
the
extent
to
which
it
could
do
so without violating
the
unmarked
boundary. The
realistic solution would
have been for
Britain
and
Ethiopia
either
to devise
a common adminis-
trative
system
for the border districts
or
to have
granted each other
the
right
to'pursue the
wanted
criminals or rebels
into
each otherts
territory.
Alternatively, the two
countries could
have
agreed upon
a reciprocal extradition
formula. Yet, Ethiopiats
general suspeiion of
European
motives
-
and
this
was
not without
foundation
-
precluded
the-possibility
of
any of
theseworking
arrangements evolving
between the
British and-theýEthiopians.
One
more example will serve
to
emphasize
the
awkwardness
and gravity of
the border
situation.
In
460
November 1928
a group-of
the Aysa Rer Kul
and
Rer Gaidi
living
seasonally
on either side of
the border,
became
incensed
with
the Ethiopians because
a number of
their
kinsmen
were
in
an
Ethiopian
prison at
Addagalla..
one of
the
posts on
the Ethiopian-Jibuti
railway.
There being
no prospect
for the
release of
these
prisoners,
the Aysa
decided to
release
them by force. This
enterprise was
organize'd and
led by
one named
Bulaleh Farah
(alias
Bulaleh Wingil)
who was an employee
of
the Ethiopian
Government.
Farah
collected a party of
his kinsmen,
went
to Addagalla
and
demanded the
release of
the
prisoners. On the demand being
refused,
the Aysa
party
promptly
killed the
prison guard and six other
Ethiopian
soldiers
in the
vicinity.
The
prisoners were set
free
and,
together
with
their liberators, they looted
stock
and other valuable
property and
then
crossed
the border
into British territory.
137
The incident bore the hall-
marks
of
Serenleh in 1916.
The
presence of
Farah in the British Protec-
torate
put
the
administration
in
a
dilemma
and
threatened
to
spark off a quarrel
between Britain
and
Ethiopia.
That Farah
ought
to be
arrested and
tried,
was
beyond
dispute for he had been
a nuisance
both to the British
and
Ethiopian
authorities.
Yet the
crucial question
was: under whose
jurisdiction
was
Farah
and
his
party
to be tried
and punished?
Ethiopia
obviously wanted
these
men
back for trial
under
Ethiopian law but Britain
was'reluctant
to hand them'over
not only on
the
grounds
137. C. O. 535/86/38098 Kittermaster
to C. O. 14/11/1928.
6
of
the
uncertainty of
their
actual residence
but
also
because Britain
regarded
Ethiopian legal
system as
unjust and
brutal. It did
not
tally
with
the Rule
of
Law
as conceived
in Western Europe. Thus, the
extradi-
tion
of
Farah
and
his
party was contested on
the
moral
principle
that they
would
be
punished or even
executed
-
without
fair trial. In
any case,
Britain
was under no obligation
to hand
over
the
men
to Ethiopia
since
there
was no extradition agreement
between the two
countries.
138
The
stage was,
thus,
set
for
a
long
and
bitter
tug-of-war between Britain
and
Ethiopia. Farah
was
arrested
by the Camel Corps
at
the
end of
November,
and
Kittermaster duly inquired
qf""what
he
was supposed
to do
with
him. The
question was a very
important
one
for
Britain in that
any
decision taken in this
case was
bound to
set a precedent
for
subsequent cases of a
similar nature.
The Colonial Office's
point of view
was expressed
by Machtig:
"the
Governor
should
hand the
man
Bulaleh
Farah to the Abyssinians
....
but he
should
ask
the Abyssinian Government to
agree
to the
presence and participation of a
British
con-
sullar officer at
the trial in
order
to
secure
a
fair trial.
"
139
This
amounted
to Britain's
claim of a quasiý-Judicial
status
in Ethiopia's legal
system.
It
was unacceptable
to EthioPiao
and
the latter-would-settle for
nothing
less than Britain's
unconditional
surrender of
Farah
and
his
party
to the
138. Ibid.
139. Ibid. Minute by Machtig.
Ethiopian
authorities.
140
4 rj
4fý)
The Foreign
Office
came
in
at
this
point and
asked
for the
views of
Dunbar, the British Minister
at
Addis Ababa. The latter
was at one with
the Colonial
Office in insisting
on
the
presence and participation
of a
British
official at
the trial
of
Farah
as a sine qua
non
for the
extradition of
the
prisoners.
141
Kittermaster
held
similar views and advised
the Colonial Office that,
in the
event of
Ethiopia
remaining adamant,
the
prisoners
should not
be handed
over
to her. He
noted,,
however,
that,
"in
that
event we can
hardly disdain
respon-
sibility
for
making good
the damage,
more
especially as all
looted
goods
have been
brought into British Protectorate
....
I
suggest
that the
most satisfactory method
of settling
the
matter
is to
see
if the
Abyssinian Government
will accept a
financial
settlement
of
blood
money
for their
soldiers
killed
...
"
142
As
a result of
this
controversyo
the
relations
between the Ethiopian Government
and
the British Legation
began to deteriorateo
and some rude notes were exchanged.
Dunbar found it
necessary
to find
some ways of circum-
venting
the impasse. He
recommended
that Farah be trans-
ferred to the British
consulate
in Harar
where
he
would
be
cross-examined
by both the Ethiopian
and
British
officials.
14o. C. O. 535/87/ý8122 Dunbar
(British
Minister, Addis Ababa)
to F. O. 20/1/1929
(Encl.
in P. O. to C. O. 24/l/1929).
141. Ibid.
142. C. O. 535/87/38122 Kittermaster to C. O. 7/2/1929.
63
"If
after examination
by H. M. Consul Harar,
and
deputy Governor
of
Harar, the
accused
is
considered guilty, and
the
relatives of
the
murdered men refuse
blood
money,
the
accused should
be tried'in
my presence.
"
143
The
concession
Dunbar
was prepared
to
make was
for him
to
attend
the
court proceedings an observer rather
than
as an active
judge. Nevertheless, in the
event of a
death
sentence
being
passed on
the
prisoners,
Dunbar
proposed
to
veto
it
on
the
grounds
that
"Abyssinia
has
never passed
death
sentence on
its
sub ects who murdered
British
protected
tribes.
'
144
Thus, in
practice
Britain
was not ready
to
wash
her hands
of
the
whole matter.
In fact Ethiopian
authorities were
warned well
in
advance
that Britain
would not stand
by
and see
Farah
and
his
Party executed.,
but
was quite
willing
to
endorse any verdict
involving
payment of
fines
or short prison sentences.
145
Ethiopia
regarded all
this
as
Britain's infringement
of
Ethiopia's sovereignty and
spared no efforts
in
making protests
to the British Lega-
tion. The
awkward
diplomatic
situation was solved,
by the
death
of
Farah from tuberculosis in May 1929.146, His
death
paved
the
way
for
a settlement
between the British
and
the Ethiopian
authorities,
for the
rest. of
Farahts
conspirators were,
it
was presumed,
nonentities
who might
have been led by the
nose.
In the
absence
of
their leader
143. C. O. 535/87/38122 Dunbar to F. O. 22/4/1929
(Encl.
in
F. 0'.
'to C. O. 27/4/1929).
144. Ibi'd.
145. Ibid.
146. C-0-535/87/38122
Kittermaster to C. O. 23/5/1929.
464
it
was
thought
unlikely
that they
would, on
their
own,
commit a similar crime.
Problems
such as
this, let
alone
the turmoil
caused
by inter-tribal feuds,
underlined
the
need
to
delimit the boundary. At least this
would make
it
possible
for the British
and
the Ethiopians to know the
location
of a
tribe
or
tribal
section, at a particular
time, in
relation
to the boundary.
This
would not solve
the border
problem
but it
might alleviate
it. Moreover,
should
Britain
or
Ethiopia
wish
to
close
her borders
as
Italy had done, it'vras
essential
to know the
exact
loca-
tion
of
the boundary line. And last, but
not
least,
of
the
advantages
Britain hoped to derive from the delimi-
tation
of
the boundary
was
that
she would
henceforth be
able
to
capture and prosecute
Ethiopian tax-collectors
who
had hitherto
seized
Somali
stock within
the British
Protectorate,
pleading, when apprehended,
ignorance
of
the
position of
the boundary line.
In May 1926 Britain formally
asked
Ethiopia if
she would
be
prepared
to have the boundary delimited by
an
Anglo-Ethiopian
Commission.
147
It took
nearly
two
years
for Ethiopia to
reply
but
when
the
answer eventually
came,
it
swept
the Colonial Office
off
its feet by the
sheer
force
of
its
enthusiasm.
Not
only was
the idea
acceptable,
but Ethiopiawnted the
proposed
delimitation
to
commence
in
a month's
time. Lawrence, then
acting
Governor,
was
totally
unprepared
for this kind
of under-
taking
at such short notice.
He had to
confess
that
147. C. O. 535/79/22239 Intelligence Report for M4y,
and
June 1926
(Encl.
in Kittermaster
to C. O. 9/8/1926).
4C:
"we
cannot
be
ready as soon as
April.,,
148
He
suggested
July
or
August but
even
this
was considered
too
soon
by the Colonial Office. The
whole machinery of
the
administration.,
both in London
and at
Berbera,
needed
time to be
put
in full
gear
for the
undertaking.
Ethiopia
was, evidently, underestimating
the
obstacles
to
overcome.
Britainfs
main stumbling
block
was
the Treasury.
Then the War Office
needed ample
time to find the technical
staff, while
the Air Ministry's
co-operation
had to be
sought
for
aerial mapping.
The
most
difficult
obstacle,
however,
existed on
the
scene of
the
proposed exercise:
Britain
and
Ethiopia had to
agree on
the terms
of reference
for the
Commission
as well as on
the financial
and
technical
con-
tribution to be
made
by
each country.
In
view of
Ethiopiats
distrust
of
European
motives,
let
alone of
their diplomatic
jargon, the
patience and
time
needed on
both
sides
to
pre-
pare
fully for the
proposed undertaking could not
be
under-
estimated.
Moreover, Ethiopia's
shortcomings
in technolo-
gical matters,
to
say nothing of
the financial
oneso meant
that
either
Britain had to
agree
to
make greater sacrifices
or
Ethiopia had to
seek assistance
from
other
European
powers.
All these
problems could not
be
solved within a
matter of months.
Some
progress was made
in London in August 1928.
In this
month
the Treasury
succumbed
to
pressure and
alloted
Z16,0_00
to, the delimitation
of
the boundary. The
War Office
too
announced
that it had
no
difficulty in
appointing
the
necessary personnel
but
would
do
so on
148. C. O. 535/85/38034 Lawrence to C. O. 9/3/1928.
4CC
condition
Ethiopia
promised
to
accept
the decisions
of
the Joint Commission.
Otherwise the
whole effort might
be
wasted
if the Ethiopians
were
to
repudiate
the
work
of
the
commission.
An inter-departmental
meeting was
then held to discuss
what
instructions
were
to be
given
to the British Commission
as well as recommended
to
Ethiopia for her
own
Commissioners.
149
Britain's
progress with regard
to the
appoint-
ment of
her boundary
commission was regularly reported
to
Addis Ababa. At the
same
time, the Ethiopian Government
was urged
to take
similar steps.
Ethiopiafs
original
enthusiasm
in the
project seems
to have
evaporated.
Thus, Britaints
constant pleas
to Ethiopia to
appoint
her Commissioners
went unanswered
for
more
than two
years.
In November 1930 Ethiopia
at
long last
notified
Britain that
she was now ready
to
start
the delimitation
of
the boundary
and suggested
that the
exercise
be
under-
taken the following
year.
She had
already
taken
steps
to
recruit
her technical
personnel
from
other
European
countries.
In February 1931 Britain
released
the
names
of
her Commissioners. These
were major
Clifford,
the
Senior British Commissioner; Captain Godfrey-Fausset
and
Lieut. Taylor. They
were
to be
accompanied
by
a medical
officers, a geologist and
Mr. Plowman.. the British Consul
at
Harar.
150
149. C. O. 535/85/, 38034 F. O. to Dunbar 7/9/1928.
150. C-0
535/93/38506/"Bl' W. O. to C. O. 9/2/1931/1957
(M.
LI)
Plowman
was-later replaced
by Mr. T. Curle.
467
The British Legation
at
Addis Ababa
was
then
instructed to
negotiate with
the Ethiopian Government
about
the terms
of reference
for the joint
commission.
The Ethiopians
were
to
undertake
to
accept
the decisions
of
the joint
commission and
they
were
to
agree
to
aerial
mapping of
the boundary
after
demarcation. These
sugges-
tions
were put
to the Ethiopians in August
and rebuffed
almost
immediately.
151
The British Minister
at
Addis
Ababa
reported
that
"the
Ethiopian Government
could not agree
to
the
grant of
full
powers
to their
commission
for
any modifications whatever, nor
to the
use of aircraft
for
mapping purposes.
"
152
This
stalemate exasperated
Britain. Strong
protests and
veiled
threats
were
issued to the Ethiopian Government.
After
considerable pressure
had been
exerted,
the
Ethiopians
gave
in
and accepted
Britaints terms
of
reference
for the
proposed
Joint
commission.
The
most
important
were
(a)
The delimitation
of
the boundary
would
be
undertaken as soon as
Ethiopia
had
succeeded
in
recruiting
her
personnel
(b)
The
expenses of
the
joint
commission were
to be divided between the two
countries.
(c)
The two Governments
undertook
to
give
every possible assistance
to the joint
commission
(d),
During
the time
of
demarcation, the Ethiopian
Commis-
sioners
would
have
access
to the
roads
in the British
Protectorate,
-and
vice-vers'a.
(e)
Aeroplanes
were
to be
151. C. O. 535/92/38506/A Barton
(H.
M. Minister Addis Ababa)
to F. O.
8/8/1931
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 7/9/193ý)k-,
-
152. Ibid.
4613)
used
for
mapping and surveying
(f)
The joint
commission
was
to have full
powers
to
make, on
their
own respon-
sibility and without referring
to their
respective
governments, minor adjustments and modifications of
the
treaty frontier.
(g)
Disagreements between the Commis-
sioners were
to be
settled amicably
by the Ethiopian
Government
and
the British Legation.
153
The British
commissioners
left London for Berbera
on
26th November
1931
and
the delimitation
of
the Ethiopian-British
Somaliland boundary
commenced
in
earnest
the following
year.
The
problems on
the French
side of
the frontier
were of a
different
nature and scale
from those
on
the
other
two fronts. The boundary between the British Pro-
tectorate
and
Jibuti had been
settled on paper
by the
Anglo-French Agreement
of
February 1888. By this Agree-
ment,
French Somaliland
and
British Somaliland
were
separated
by
a, straight
line from
a point on
the
coast
situated opposite
the
wells of
Hadou
and
leading to
Abassouen. From the latter
place
the line
was
to follow
the
caravan road., as
far
as
Bia-Kabouba,,
and
from there
follow the
caravan route
from Zeila to Harar,
passing
by
Gildessa.
154
This
was a relatively short
boundary line,
stretching
to
no more
than
40
miles, which could
be demar-
cated without serious
difficulty
or
heavy
expenditure.
Above
allj,
French
policy
in the Horn
of
Africa bore
a
153. Ibid.
154. British
and
Foreign
state papers vol.
100
p.
493-
494.
6 09
great
deal
of resemblance
to that
of
Britain. France,
unlike
Italy
was not
interested in
pushing
her borders
beyond the treaty boundaries
and she was neither
committed
to
a policy of violent suppression of
her
subjects nor was she
interested in the
pursuit of
vigorous economic-policies
in her
colony.
Thus, the
French
and
the British
could see eye-to-eye on a number
of
issues,
a
factor
which contributed
to the
relative
calmness on
the French
side of
the border. Consequently,
the
need
to delimit this
side of
the boundary
was
less
pressing
than it
was on
the
other
two fronts. The
only
important issue
of contention
between the British
and
the French
was
the illicit
arms
traffic
across
the
border.
Kittermaster's
period was marked
by
a steady
development
of cordial relations
between Jibuti
and
Berbera. Mr. Waterloo., the British Resident
at
Adeno
paid a visit
to Jibuti in January 1929
and was
impressed
by the
way
the French Governor, M. Chapon-Baissac was
running
Jibuti
affairs.
He
also
took
a
liking for
Madame Chapon
and
her
sister.
The Chapon family
seems
to have been,
administering
Jibuti
more as
their household
than
as a colony.
Waterloo
reported
that the two ladies
had done
"admirable
work
in
organizing
dispensaries
and
generally pulling
the
place
together
...
f,
155
.
155. C. O. 535/87/38121 Memorandum by Waterloo
on
"Relations between Jibu. ti
and
British Somaliland"
n.
d.
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 9/2/1929/J. 321/25/1)..
He
attributed
this
wonderful work
to the fact that
"Mr.
Chapon-Baissac, his
wife and
his
sister-
in-law
are
Protestants
...
In
addition
they
are all
three
unusually cultivated and
intel-
ligent
people, singularly
free from
narrow
French
prejudice
156
Waterloo
suggested
that Berbera
should
take
advantage of
the
presence at
Jibuti
of a man so wonderful
as
Chapon to
establish cordial relations
between the two
administrations.
In fact M. Chapon-Baissac had taken the
initiative
of
informing Waterloo that he
would
be happy
to be
visited
by Kittermaster
with a view
to disb6ýsing
the
problem of
illicit
arms
traffic
and other questions
of mutual
interest. The Colonial
Office
welcomed
Waterloo's
suggestion and authorized
Kittermaster to
proceed
tolibuti
whenever
he felt like doing
so.
Accordingly,
Kittermaster
visited
Jibuti in October but
was
disappointed to
find Chapon
on
leave in Paris. The
acting governor,
M. Cochard,
was
less friendly
and
he
made a point of
denying
all
the
charges
brought by
Kittermaster
agai
, nst
Jibuti in
connection with'the
arms
illicit traffic. M. Chapon-Baissac
returned
from
leave
at
the
end of
the
year and
Kittermaster
sought per-
mission
to
revisit
Jibuti for the
purpose of meeting
the
Governor
who was
believed to be
more well
disposed
towards the British than Cochard.
Kittermaster's
period might
be
seen as
the
twilight
of
British Somaliland's
colonial
history. It
was marked
by
a gradual,
but
real cooling-off of
the
hopes
and enthusiasm
felt
and expressed
by Archer
and
156. Ibid.
47
Summers in the future
prosperity of
the Protectorate
after
21
years of continuous warfare.
Kittermaster's
governor-
ship was a period of reflection
both in London
and at
Berbera
on
how this
cinderella of
the British Empire
was
to be
governed without
over-straining
the
generosity of
the British taxpayer. There
was also a great
deal
of
mourning over
the
shattered
hopes. The twilight
period
could
be
seen
to have
come at an end at
the
end of
1931
when
Britain
adopted stagnation as
the
policy
to be
pursued, removed
Kittermaster
and appointed
Lawrence
as
his
successor with
the
reduced rank of
Commissioner.
The
overriding concern of
Kittermaster's
administration
had been to
avoid anything
that
was
likely to
embroil
Britain
with
the Somali in
a
Dervish-like
round of
conflict or revive memories of
the Dervish days. The
best
place
for
such memories,
it
was
held,
was
the
cold
storage
of
history. During the following decade
or so
of
the Protectorate's history, the
policy of stagnation
or
"care
and maintenance policy"
as
it
was more politely called
-
went
through
serious
challenges and was eventually repudiated.
It
was
incon-
ceivable
that,
with
the Italian
virtual encirclement;
the
steady
deterioration
of relations
between European
powers;
the
collapse of
the Ethiopian
regimeo
the begin-
ning of modern nationalism
in India
and elsewhere
in
colonial
Africa; the increasing
contact
between the
Africans
and
the
outside world;
the
growing number of
Somali
graduates
from Khartoum
and
Aden.,
and
last., but
not
leasto the
growing number of
the
urban populations,
472
the Somaliland Protectorate
could remain untouched
and
stagnant.
CHAPTER VII
47
t'-)'
FROM STAGNATION TO A MODEST PROGRAMME OF DEVELOPMENT:
THE IMPACT OF ITALIAN IMPERIAL EXPANSION
(1932-1939).
Arthur Lawrence
assumed office as
Commissioner
and
Commander-in-Chief
of
the British Somaliland Protec-
torate in February 1932. The decision to
reduce
the
rank
of
the
officer administering
the Protectorate
was meant
to
underline
Britaints diminished
aims
for Somaliland.
The
only project which was not affected
by the
new policy
of stagnation
was
the
water
boring
scheme, whose
inception
during
Kittermasterts, time has
already
been dealt
with.
Happily, it had
already
been
allocated generous
funds by
the Colonial Development Fund
and was,
therefore, deemed
to be
outside
the
range of
the
new policy.
In 1932, for
example, some
Z3,838
was spent on
the
programme;
in 1933
it
came
down to Z2,556
and
then
rose
to Z7,943 in 1937.
By 1940
every
district
was well supplied with artificial
water resources
for human
and animal consumption as well
as
for irrigation.
1
The
axe of stagnation
befell
such of
the few
social services as
had
survived
the turbulent
post-
Dervish
period.
The Veterinary Department
was one of
these. In March 1932, the Colonial Office informed
Lawrence
that the
abolition of
the Department
was under
1. Annual Colonial Report, British Somaliland Protectorate
for 1932 No. 1613; for 1933 No. 1660
and
for 1937 No.
188o.
47, q
serious consideration., and
they
wanted
to know his
opinion.
Lawrence
was rather
depressed by the
prospect
of
having to
witness
"what
must
be
regarded as a retrogressive
step
....
But I
realize and probably
Major
Cocksedge does
not,
that
conditions
have
forced H. M. Goverment to
adopt a change
of policy
in this Protectorate
....
Maj.
Cocksedge has
worked
hard
and
his
efforts
have
met with marked success
to the
great
benefit
of
the Somaliland Camel Corps, to
this
administration,
to the
people and
to
the trade
of
the Protectorate"'.
2
Cocksedge
was stunned
by the
news of
the Government's
intentions; it
was unbelievable
to him that
a
decade's
constructive work should
be dismantled
overnight
by
the
stroke of a pen.
In
view of
the fact that 90%
of
the Protectorate's
revenue came
from the
animal
industryo
it
seemed quite
ironical that Britain
should contemplate
abolishing
the
very
department
which
had
nursed and sus-
tained that industry. The
abolition of
the departmento
far from
effecting
the desired
economy, was
bound to lead
to
a
diminution
of what meagre revenue
the Protectorate
had hitherto
obtained
from the
sale of animals and animal
products.
Cocksedge
pointed out
that in the
absence of a
Veterinary Officer to
ensure
the health
of
the
animals,
the
outside world would
be
reluctant
to buy Somaliland
animal
productso a
factor
which would
have
serious consequences on
the
economy of
the Protectorate. He then
went on
to
argue
that
2. C. O. 535/96/3864 Lawrence to C. O. 21/3/1932.
475
11*ooo
surely
it
seems
hardly the time, in
spite of
the financial
stringency,
to
abolish
the department
essential
to the
animal
industry,
the
one possible
hope
of
the Protectorate; it
would appear
to be
more
in keeping
with progress
to
extend operations quietly
but
steadily,
in
the direction
of
teaching these
people
the
value
of selection
in breeding,
and generally
to
attempt
to help them in finding
markets
for their live-
stock
by
every means available
...
I
would ask
that
you seriously reconsider your
decision to
abolish
the department.
"
3
Lawrence, though
sharing
Cocksedge's
sentiments,
was not prepared
to
go so
far
as
to
recommend a reversal
of policy.
In this
position
he
was supported
by Rowan.
The latter
minuted:
"the
Governor
(sic)
does
not mk
the Secretary
of
State to
reconsider
the decision
and
I don't
think there
can
be
any question of
this
-
our
present policy
does
not
include development
and
that is the
end of
it
*. off
4
Seel,
on
the
other
hand,
was more prepared
than Rowan to
be
swayed
by
reason.
He
suggested
that, in
view of
Cock-
sedge's representations,
the
situation should
be
re-
examined.
He took
upon
himself the duty
of compiling
the
essential
facts
regarding
the
cost and
the
achievements
of
the Veterinary Department. He
established,
for
example,
that the department had
cost
the Treasury
some
ZlP782 in
1930
and
Z21935 the following
year.
The increased
expendi-
ture in the latter
year
had been
a result of
the
establish-
ment of
the
stud
farm. The department's
merits could
be
3- C. O. 535/96/3864 Memorandum by Major Cocksedge
on
the
proposal
to
abolish
the Veterinary Dept.
(Encl.
in
Lawrence
to C. O. 21/3/1932). The
achievements of
the
department are
fully discussed by Peck,
successor
to
Cocksedge
(see
MSS. AER. S. 141).
4.
Minute
by Rowan
on
C. O. 535/96/3864: Memorandum by
Cocksedge
on
the
proposal
to
abolish
the Veterinary
Department.
476
assessed on
the basis
of revenue
from the
customs receipts,
to
which
the
animal
industry
was
the
greatest contributor.
Since the
establishment of
the department in 1924 the
customs receipts
had
shown, and were continuing
to
show,
an upward
trend. A
sample of stat
Ps
(see
Annual Colonial
Reports, British Somaliland Protectorate
for the
years
1921-1930)
will serve
to illustrate
the
point.
YEAR
(9)
TOTAL REVENUE
(Z)
CUSTOMS RECEIPTS REVENUE
1921
80,,
270
51,494
1922
82..
316
51., 740
1923 78.541
57,605
1924
82,607
60,955
1926 90., 569 75*167
1927
88., 879
69,
r(lb
1929 101*541
79.. 577
1930 105,304
730290
Seel
concluded
his
arguments
in defence
of
the
Veterinary Department
with
the
observation
that
in
a country with practically
no other
means of subsistence
but livestock
this
(i.
e.
the Veterinary Department
vote) was
hardly
an
extravagant provision
......
the
abolition of
the department
closes
the door
on any
hope
of
improving the
quality of
hides
and skins
exported
from the Protectorate.
'and
leaves
the
only natural resources of
the
country
hopeless
against any outbreak of
disease
which might come along.
"5
The
matter was
then
referred
to Montgomery2 the
Veterinary
Advisor to the Secretary'of State for the Colonies
Ibid.
Minute by Seels Principal in the C. O.
4711
for
expert advice.
He
came out strongly
in favour
of
retaining
the department
not only
because its
abolition
was
likely to bring
about
the
very economic
liabilities
which
Britain
was
trying to
avoid,
but it
might also
damage Britain's
prestige
in the
eyes of
the Somali.
6
With Montgomery's
advice,
the Colonial Office
was pre-
pared
to
reverse
its
earlier-decision..
but the Treasury
which
had
already
been informed
of
the intended
abolition,
needed
to be
persuaded
to
accept
the
reversal of
the
decision. Accordinglyo the Colonial Office
addressed a
letter to the Treasury
setting out all
the
arguments
in
support of
the
reconsidered position, and pointing out
that the
abolition of
the department, if
persisted
in,
might actually
involve the Treasury in footing
a
bigger
bill than
was
then being incurred. The Treasury
replied
in June 1932,
accepting
the
proposal
to
retain
the
Veterinary Department. Only
one condition
had to be
met
the department
should promise and undertake
to
maintain
such an excellent
level
of
the health
of stock
flas
not
to diminish trade
and revenue
....
(and)
provided
that
other veterinary services
are reduced
to the
minimum, consistent
with
our §etting
full
value
for the total
expendi-
ture
7
But
where-were
these
"other
veterinary services"-
which
the
Treasury
wanted
tosee
"reduced
to the
minimum"?
Grantedo
Cocksedge
had
constructed some
five
or so
dips
as part of
his
campaign against..
ticks
and scab,.,
In
additiono
he, had
Ibid. Minute
by Montgomery.
7. C. O. 535/96/3864 Treasury to C. O.
8/6/1932.
478
set up a number of quarantine centres
to
enable
him
contain
the
spread of epidemics.
Surely,
neither
the
dips
nor
the
quarantine
centres could
be dismantled
without
impairing the health
of
the
stock and
thereby
jeopardizing the
condition stipulated
by the Treasury.
The
only service which could conceivably
be
considered a
dispensable luxury
was
the
stud
farm
which
had been
estab-
lished for the
purpose of
demonstrating
modern methods of
husbandry to the Somali. Regrettably., it
was abolished
in August 1932.8
What
economies could
be
effected
in the
security establishment?
It
was with a view
to
answering
this
question
that the Inspector General
of
the K. A. R.
paid an official visit
to the Protectorate in December
1931. The
only measure which,
if taken,
would
have
brought
about a substantial saving would
have been the
removal of
the Nyasaland troops. This
step,
howevero
was successfully opposed
by the local
administration
with
the familiar
argument
that in the
absence of
foreign
troops, the Somali*soldiers
were unreliable.
9
Rather than
remove
the foreign
soldiers and
thereby
endanger
the
security of
the
countryo
it
was
decided
to introduce
minor reorganizations
intended to
reduce
the
cost of maintenances of
the
security
forces.
One
of
the
recommended
innovations
was
to
purchase
14
trucks
to
replace part of
the
camelry of
the Camel Corps
8.
MSS.
AFR. S. 144. The Veterinary History
of
the British
Somaliland
Protectorate 1924-1960 by E. F. Peck.,
op.
cit.
9. MSS. AFR. S-552
p.
164-166.
47
Oll
and
the
other was
to
retire, and not replace,
those
soldiers and officers who were either
due for
retirement
or
had
completed
their terms
of contract.
10
These
measures could not
have
any
fundamental
effect on
the
military vote and,
indeed, during the
period of stag-
nation
the
expenditure on
the
security
forces
showed
only marginal
difference from the
preceding period.
Britain
was equally reluctant
to
effect radical
changes
in the
civil administration which was already
operating at
the bare
strength of eight
District Ofricers
for the
six
districts
of
the Protectorate. A few
elderly
Akils
were retired
but this too
could not
have
any
meaningful change
in the
expenditure.
The following
statistics will
illustrate the
point
(see
Annual
Colonial Reports, British Somaliland Protectorate for
the
years
1924
-
1935)
10. Ibid.
480
YEAR
1924-'25
1925-126
1926-'27
1927-128
1928-'29
1929-
t
30
1930-'31
1931-'32
1932-'33
1933-'34
1934-'35
1935
-'36
(9)-CIVIL
EXPENDITURE
102051
103,288
100.. 175
135,003
152,614
144,444
135,671
109,382
114,059
126,588
132,980
166., 919
(Z)
MILITARY EXPENDITURE
48,213
64,667
48,950
63., 625
54,453
54s583
50,091
46.,
912
39.. 761
41,,
o68
54,598
4o,
271
While Britain
strove
to diminish her
respon-
sibilities
in the interior, the border
politics remained
a
lively
and stimulating phenomenon.
The Italian
closure
of
the border
of
Italian Somaliland, her
expansion
intoo
and subsequent conquest of,
Ethiopia
were
to have far-
reaching repercussions
both
on
the local
and
international
political situation.
Consequently, British Somaliland,
which came
to
play a
key
role
in the diplomatic
manoeuvrings
of
the late 1930s,
acquired such significance
in the
estimation
of
British
statesmen as was not,
_enjoyed
by
a
majority of
Britain's
other,
dependencies. The former
backwater in Britaints imperial interests became
a
handy,
and
indeed indispensable, tool in the handling
of a situa-
tion
which was
becoming
progressively more complicated
and
delicate.
The
closure of
the
eastern
border
of
the
481
Protectorate had
already
brought
poverty
to the British
tribes
which could no
longer
avail
themselves
of water
and grazing
in the Mijjertein
country.
Representations
to Rome had been to
no avail.
The furthest the Italians
could go
in
acceding
to Britain's
wishes was
to
agree to
the holding
of periodic meetings
between the local
administrations
for the
sole purpose of settling out-
standing
border disputes. It
was
in the best interests
of
both to do
so.
One
such a
dispute
arose out of an
alleged raid
by Italian
subjects on
the karia
of a
certain
Awal Esao
a
British
protected
Dolbahanta
residing
at
Gorrileh. The incident
was said
to have taken
place
in January 1933
and
to have
resulted
in the death
of
Awal
Esa
and
loss
of
his
stock.
A
second
incident
was reported
to have taken
place at
Galnoleh,
almost at
the
same
time;
a
British
subject,
Segulleh Elmi by
name, was
killed by
Italian irregulars
on
British
soil and
his
stock seized.
A third incident
concerned a clash
between the Somaliland
Camel Corps
and a party of
Italian irregulars in
which
two
men of
the Camel Corps
met
their death.
11
In February 1935 Rome
and
London
agreed
to
set
up a mixed commission composed of
the local
administrative
officers
to dispose
of
these disputes. It
sat at
Gerowei
from 15th to 18th February
and,
like
most previous similar
attempts.. ended
in
a
deadlock., Neither
side was
disposed
to
accept
the
allegations
levelled by the
other side.
Lawrence lamented:
11. C. O. 535/100/5863 Intelligence Report for the Quarter
ending
31st March 1933 No. 1
(Encl.
in Lawrence to
C. O. 29/4/1933).
4602
"I
fear
we cannot press
further for
compensa-
tion
....
the Italian Government is
responsible
for the 3 full dias
(Rs.
9,000
or
300
camels)".
12
Rome
was again approached with complaints about
the
rigidity of
the Italian local
officialso and
in January
a
reply came
to the
effect
that the Italians
accepted res-
ponsibility
for two
of
the incidents
and were prepared
to
compensate
the British
with
Rs.
4P500.
This
was
better
than
nothing, and was accepted, albeit with misgivings.
13
On the
more
important
question of opening
the
border for the British tribes, the Italians
were adainant.
Worse
still,
the Italian
sphere of
influence
was expanding
deep into Ethiopian territory. What
was
to happen if the
same policy as
that being
pursued on
the borders
of
Italian Somaliland
was extended
to the Ethiopian-occupied
territory? Indeed,
all evidence
tended to indicate that
this
was
Italyts
ultimate aim:
"The
policy with regard
to the frontier
still
remains
the
same,
the tendency being to tighten
up rather
than
relax
their
orders about crossing
the frontier"
14
The Italian
officers
in the Walwal
and
Wardair region
had
already warned
the British
administration not
to
allow
their tribes to
graze across
the border
without prior
permission
from the Italians. Lawrence
urged
the British
Government
to
protest
to Rome
and
to
make
it,
clear
that
12. C. O. 535/106/46001 Lawrence"to C.
o.
9/3/1935-
13. C-0
535/114/46oO3 British'Embassy
in Rome to F. O.
4/1ý1936
(Encl.,
in F. O. to C. O. 131111936).
14. C. O. 535/95/38622
"Extract
from the Intelligence Report
for the Erigavo District,
for the
quarter ending
31st
March
1932
(Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O. 29/4/1932).
I
48%j
Britain did
not recognize
Italian
claims
to Walwal
and
Wardair. But the Colonial office did
not
feel that
Lawrence's hard-line
approach was
the best
policy
in
the
circumstances.
It
was not
likely to
change
Italy's
attitude.
If
anything.,
it
was
likely to
stiffen
it further.
Accordinglys Lawrence
was
informed that
"H.
M. Government
are aware
that the Italians
have
no grounds
for
establishing
themselves
at
Walwal
and
Wardair, but
would not appear
that
any useful purpose would
be
served
by
making
any such protest unless either
British
pro-
tected tribes
were
denied
water or grazing, or
the Ethiopian Government itself
protested against
Italian
encroachment.
For the
present all
that
can
be done is to
ensure
that
no
language is
used
in
any communication with
the Italians
which would
imply
recognition of
their
claims
to Walwal
and
Wardair
or any specific
territory
in this
region".
15
Thus.,
as
long
as
the Italians
were willing
to
allow
British
tribes
access
to
grazing and water., albeit under strict
conditions,
Britain did
not consider
it her
responsibility
to denounce Italian forward
policy.
The hope that this
tacit
acquiescence
in Italian designs
over
Ethiopian
terri-
tory
would
be'reciprocated by Italy's
change of
her border
policy was shattered at
the
end'of
1933. The British
Goverment
received an official communication
to the
effect
that it
was
"not
possible
for them
(i.
e.
the Italians) to
accede
to the
request of
the Government at
Berbera,
since
they
cannot admit-that'foreign
tribes,
whether armed or un Pd
0
should pass
into
'
Italian territory,
: ýýdre
of opinion
that
such
incursions
can only pxovoke unfortunate
inci-
dents
with
the
adjoining
Italian
populations
the Italian Government therefore
consider
ih*at*,
in
order
to harmonize
with
the
understand-
ings
reached at
the time
of
the
constitution of
the Boundary Commissiono it is
essential
to
arrive at a rectification of
the frontier line
giving, as
far
as possibleo satisfaction
to the
15. C. O. 535/95/38622 C. O. to Lawrence 3/8/1932.
10
484
needs of
the frontier tribes in the
matter of
grazing and watering places.
"
16
The
question of rectifying
the boundary had been
exhaus-
tively discussed
and subsequently rejected
by the British
Government. The Anglo-Italian Boundary Commission had,
as already pointed out, recommended
the
retention of
the
Protocol line,
arguing
that
no
boundary
alteration was
likely to
satisfy
the border tribes,
and
that
such an
alter.., ation might,
in fact, lead to
complications and
arouse
the Somali into
a rebellion.
This
was
the
accepted
view
in London,
and
Cohen
advised
that Italy's
proposal
"should
not
be
reconsidered.
The
only neces-
sary
thing is to
reach an agreement with
the
Italians
on
the
question of
the
grazing and
watering rights".
17
Arrangements to demarcate the Protectorate's
border
with
Ethiopia had
reached an advanced stage
by the
end of
1931. Clifford, the British Senior Commissionero
and
his team
arrived at
Berbera in time to
witness
the
"quite
touching little farewell
ceremony"18
for Sir Harold
and
Lady Kittermaster. The Ethiopian
Commissioners
arrived at
Sheikh
a couple of
days later,
headed by Tassama Bantie
and
including
a number of
European
technicians-and
advisers.
The
exact assignment of
the Boundary Commission
was as
follows
:-
16. C. O.
535/102/25837 Italian Embassy in London to F. O.
29/12/1933
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 23/l/1934).
17. Ibid.
Minute by Cohen.
18. C. O. 535/95/38611 Clifford to C. O. 10/12/1931.
485
(a)
To demarcate the
portion of
the frontier
between Ethiopia
and
the British Somaliland Protectorate
as
laid down in Annex III
of
the Treaty between Great
Britain
and
Ethiopia
of
14th May 1897
which, starting at
Jalelo,
runs along
the
caravan road referred
to in that
Annex to the Hill
of
Somadou,
and
thence by the Saw
Mountains
and
the hills
of
Egu to Moga Medir:
and
from
that
point
to Arran Arreh,
and
t1-Bnce in
a straight
U^t
to the intersection
of
the
47th
meridian east of
Greenwich
and
the
8th
parallel of north
latitude.
(b)
To
allot
the
upkeep of
the boundary
pillars
between the
respective
Governments
of
Ethiopia
and
British
Somaliland in
such
fashion that the
responsibility and
the
cost of upkeep shall
be
shared
in the
most equitable way.
19
In
addition, as already noted,
the Commission
was
to delimit
permanent grazing areas
for the border tribes.
The Commission
started
demarcating from the
intersection
of
longitude
47
0
and
latitude
80
N.
working
in
a westward
direction. The
eastern section was com-
pleted
by October 1932 but
uncertainties and
disagreements
were experienced
in the
course of
demarcating the
western
half. Consequently, delays
were
inevitable
since all
differences had,
according
to
a previous arrangement,
to
be
sorted out
by the British Legation
and
the Ethiopian
authorities
in Addis Ababa.
20
19. S. Touval., Somali Nationalism
op. cit.
Chap.
6.
20. David Hamilton,
"Ethiopia's
Frontiers. The Boundary
Agreements
and
their Demarcation 1896-1956"
(Unpub-
lished Thesis, Oxford), 1974
p.
106.
48
In June 1932 the French
were
invited to
participate
in the delimitation
of
the tri-junction
point, where
the Anglo-Ethiopian border
meets with
that
of
the Jibuti Colony. This
was accomplished
in 1934,
and
thereafter the Commissioners
proceeded
to Addis
Ababa to
write up
the
report of
their
accomplishments.
It
was completed
in October 1934
and
the following
month
the Commission began the
more
difficult task
of
investi-
gating and
delimiting the
grazing and watering areas of
the border tribes.
21
The Commissionts
primary
task
of
demarcating
the Treaty line, though
successfully accomplished
by
the
end of
1934, had
met with
trying
obstacles.
The
most
difficult
of
these
was
the
opposition put up
by the
Italians
and
the Somali
against
the
proceedings of
the
Joint Commission. The Italians,
whose
designs
on
Ethiopian
territory have
already
been
mentioned, we%*-unnerved
by the
apparent warming up of
the
relations
between Britain
and
Ethiopia. This development
was
likely
not only
to
enhance
Ethiopia's image
on
the
arena of
international
politics,
but there
was also
the
possibility
that,
should
Anglo-
Ethiopian
relations acquire a more solid
basis, Britain
might commit
herself
to the defence
of
Ethiopia
against
external attack.
This
would
have dealt
a
blow to Italyfs
ambitions, since
the latter
would,
in those
circumstances,
not attack
Ethiopia
without risking a confrontation with
Britain.
Italy2 therefore,
pursued a policy calculated
to
isolate Ethiopia2
and
it
was
in this
spirit
that
she viewed
21. Ibid.
4,87
with apprehension
the
emergenc-, e of
the Anglo-Ethiopian
Commission.
Italy's fears
seemed
to be
confirmed
by the
fact that Britain
proposed
to 14a47 that the demarcation
of
the boundary
should
be
crowned with
the
signing of a
treaty to
replace
the Rodd-Makonnen Treaty
of
1897.
Ethiopia
welcomed
the
proposal and a
draft
of
the
proposed
treaty
was prepared
in London towards the
end of
Febru-
ary.
22
Italy,
on
learning
of
this development,
sent
strong protests
to London,
saying
that
a new
treaty
between Britain
and
Ethiopia
was
illegal
as
it
would
be
contrary
to the Tripartite Agreement
of
l9o6.23 The
Italian Government
contended
that
any such
treaty
must
"be
subject
to
examination and
discussion
between the
signatory
Governments
of
the
Tripartite Agreement before being
entered
into".
24
Italy's
attitude
took the British Government
by
complete surprise.
It had
not
been imagined that
Italy
might go so
far in twisting the
pol
itical
situation
to
suit
her designs* France, though
a signatory
to the
Tripartite Agreement, did
not
take Italyts
stand
-
at
22. Clifford..
"British
Somaliland
-
Ethiopian Boundary" in
Geographical Journal, 97,1936,
p.
289-307.
23. The Tripartite Agreement
of
1906
was signed
by Italy,
Britain
and
France. It declared their intention
as
being
to
respect
the
status quo
in Ethiopia
so
long
as
it
sur-
vived as a political entity.
The
signatories undertook
to
"maintain
intact the integrity
of
Abyssinia
....
(and
to).
cooperate
in
maintaining
the
political and*territorial
status quo as
determined by the
state of affairs at pre-
existing"
(Parts
of
the Agreement
are, quoted
by
Christopher
Holliss Italy in Africa
(Hamish
Hamilton) 1941,
p.
49.
The full text
can
be found in C. Rossetti, Storia
Di 10matica Dell' Etiopia durante il
regno
di Menelik Il
0)ý1910 P.
319-325.
24. C.
O.
ý35/98/5803 Italian Ambassador in London to F. O.
25/5/1933.
4848
least
she
did
not express
it. It
was,
in fact2
quite
ironical
that Italy
which
had
already encroached
on
Ethiopian
territory
and was
later to invade the
country,
should
have
posed as
the defender
of
Ethiopia's terri-
torial
and political
integrity.
The British Government
contested
Italy's
claim,
arguing
that the
proposed
Anglo-Ethiopian treaty, far
from
upsetting
the
status quo, would confirm and consoli-
date
it. The treaty did
not suggest any surrender of
territory, much
less
of sovereignty;
it
was only
intended
to
put a seal
to the
work of
the Boundary
Commission as well as confirm
the
ancient grazing and
watering
rights of
the Somali tribes.
25
The
projected
treaty was subsequently overtaken
by. the
events of
1935
and waso
thereforeo
not revived until after
the World
War II.
The Somali
opposition
to the
work of
the Anglo-
Ethiopian
Boundary Commission
was another obstacle which
beset
the
work of
demarcation. The
anti-demarcation
movement
was
believed to have
originated among
the Aysa
tribe
living
in the French
colony, at
the instigation
of
the French'authorities.
The latter's
motive,
it
was-
claimed
in British Somaliland,
was
the fear that demar-
cation
would
be
accompanied
by the
construction of roads
parallel
to the Jibuti
railway.
This
would
have dealt
a
blow
to the
commercial
fortunes
of
Jibuti. Thus, the
French are alleged
to have incited
and even
bribed
a
certain
Aysa
elder,
by the
name of
Deria Gonaleh, to
25. C. O. 535/98/5803 F. O. to Vitleti, the Italian Ambassador
in London :
ý1611933-
4&9
mobilize
his kinsmen
with a view
to intimidating the
Boundary Commission. Consequentlyo Gonaleho
rallying
the
Aysa
on
the bandwagon
of
"there
is
no room
for the Government
people
and
the Aysa in this
country".
126
organized a
demonstration
at
Rahale in French Somaliland.
Apparently the demonstration, instead
of. confining
its
hostility to the Boundary Commission
as
the French had,
allegedly..
hoped,
got out of control and
became
generally
anti-European.
The French, however, took
no steps
to
suppress
the
movement, and
this factor
would seem-to
have
encouraged
the idea
of rebellion
to
spread, culminating
in the
murder of
Herr Beitz,
a member of
the Ethiopian
Commission.,
at
Mordale in Ethiopian territory.
27
The
per-
petrators of
the
murder were
believed to be the
same
Aysa
from the French
colony.. and no
British tribes
were
believed
to have
actively participated.
The
events
leading to the
incident
were,
briefly,
as
follows: Herr Beitz,
a
German
engineer attached
to the Boundary Commission
wass
in
addi-
tion, in
charge of
the
construction of a motor road
from
26. C. O. 535/101/25815
"British
Somaliland-Ethiopian
Boundary Commission: Extract from Political Report
No. 16, March 1934".
27. Alex T. Curlets Private Papers. Curle
was
the Political
Officer
attached
to the British
side of
the Anglo-
Ethiopian Boundary Commission. Most
of
the
papers
are
in the
nature of political reports, copies of which
(or
their
substance) can
be found in the C. O. 535
series.
Curlets
papers give an
interesting
and
detailed
account of
the Walwal incident
and of
the
difficulties
faced by the Boundary Commission.
49 Cil
Mordale to Habaswein.,
and
he inspected the
project
frequently. On the 10th May 1934 he left Mordale
at
7: 00
a. m.
0
accompanied
by two
escorts and a
driver, to
do his
routine
inspection
of
the
road.
On
reaching
the
vicinity of
Aramadole,
approximately one mile
inside
the Ethiupian border, the
road
descended
steeply
into
a
dry
river
bed
where a wall of stones was encountered
across
the
road.
Beitz
got out of
the
vehicle
to inves-
tigate the
matter and was
instantly killed
with spears
and
knives.
28
His
companions were not
harmed. Equally
significant was
the fact that the Aysa labourers
working
on
the
road at
the'time
of
the
murder,
had known
of
the
plot
but had
neither reported
it
nor
tried to
stop
it.
29
The
movement,
therefore,
would seem
to have had the tacit
blessing
of a cross section of
the border tribes.
The
motive
behind the
murder of
Herr Beitzwas
political.
The Somali buspected that demarcation
would
lead to the
closure of
the boundary,
as was already
the
case on
the British Somaliland-Italian Somaliland
border.
The Somali,
according
to John Drysdale,
I
"maintained
that their
customary grazing
grounds
had been
ceded
to Ethiopia
without
reference
to them,
and
they feared that
restrictions would
be
placed on
their
trans-
frontier
migrations.
"
30
28. MSS. AFR. S.
605.
29. C. O. 535/101/Z25815 Col. Alex T. Curie to the British
Minister
Addis Ababa,. 14/3/1934
(Encl.
in Lawrence
to C. O.
k/4/1934).
.
30. J Drysdale.
The Somali Dispute
(Pall
Mail Press) 1964
p:
48.
The
murder of
Herr Beitz
caused grave concern
to the four
powers administering
different
parts of
the
Somali
country,
temporarily
overshadowing
their
own
internal differences. The incident
might
be
a
fore-
runner of a general
Somali
uprising against
foreign
rule.
This
prospect made
it imperative for Britain,
France
and
Ethiopia to
close ranks and
deal
a
blow to
the
emerging
Somali
solidarity.
Representatives from
Berbera, Jibuti
and
Addis Ababa
met at
Mordale two days
after
the incident
and agreed on a combined course of
action.
Operations for the
arrest of
the
murderers
commenced
in April 1934,
with
Major Bennett
commanding
two
companies
of
the Camel Corps,
and
the Ethiopians
despatching 400
troops. The French
would not
be drawn
into
any
joint
military operation
but they
promised
to
arrest such of
the
culprits as might cross
into their
territory. The Italians
undertook
to do the
same.
31
On lst April, Bennett
received a
tip to the
effect
that
one of
the-wanted
men was moving with
his
stock
towards the French frontier.
'The Camel Corps
mounted a
hot
pursuito overtook
the
man near
the French
border
and
killed him. The body
was
later identified
as
that
of
Reyaleh Boh Gamal,
one of
the
ringleaders of
the
movement.
Shortly
afterwards,
the French
captured
30
sus-
pects and
1,000
of
their
stock.
By the-end
of
the
month a
total
of
60
men
had been
arrested and
locked
up
in Harar,
31. C. O. 535/lOl/25815 Barton, H. M. Minister, Addis Ababa,
to F. O. 16/4/1934
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 21/4/1934).
-1
Jibuti
and
Berbera
pending a
trial.
32
Thuso
within a
matter of
two
months
the Aysa-inspired
movement against
the demarcation
of
the boundary
was completely crushed.
Nevertheless,
resentment against
the
work of
the
Boundary Commission
remained
deeply
rooted2 manifesting
itself in the destruction
of
boundary
pillars and
in
numerous memoranda
to London.
If it is true,
as
it
appears,
that the Aysa
attitude represented
the feelings
of a cross metion of
the Somali tribes, it is
rather surprising
that the Aysa
uprising
did
not
inspire
widespread armed support., and
their
suppression caused no apparent reaction among
the
other sections of
the Somali
community.
One
possible
explanation
is that the
prompt punitive measures
taken
forestalled
what might
have developed into
a general up-
rising.
A
more plausible explanation,
however,
would
seým
to be that by the 1930s the
use of violence as a
way of solving political problems
had lost its
appeal
to
the
majority of
the Somali. The futility
of v,
ýolence had
not only
been demonstrated in the
past,
but
also
the
belief that
political redress could
be
gained
through
political organization and non-violent means was
becoming
accepted as
the
more civilized method.
Of
more
direct
concern
to the British Somaliland
Protectorate than the-murder
of
Beitz.,
was
the
steady
32. MSS. AFR. S.
605.
1)
advance of
Italy into Ethiopian territory*33
Britain's
dilemma
was
that
whereas
she regarded
Italy
as a
usurper of
Ethiopia's
territorial
and political sovereignty,
and
therefore
could not
discuss
with
her
questions con-
cerning
the Ethiopian territory
occupied
by her, the
salient
fact had to be faced that Italy
was
the de facto
authority
in those
parts of
the Ogaden
she
had
already
occupied.
Refusal
on
the
part of
Britain to
recognize
this fact,, though
consistent with
the
position
taken in
the League
of
Nations,
was
bound to
exacerbate
the border
tensions
and
to leave
unsolved
the
ever-increasing number
of
border disputes between tribes living
on either side of
the border.
This
was
doing
more
harm than
good
to the
British Somaliland Protectorate. Moreover, there
was no
indication that Italy's
occupation of
Ethiopian territory
was either
temporary
or
that it
would weaken.
And,
need-
less to
say,
in those
circumstances neitherýEthiopia nor
the League
of
Nations
was
likely to
offer any solution
to
Britain's difficulties.
Even if Italy
were
to decide to
close
the Ogaden to British tribes, Britain
and
her tribes
would
have borne the brunt
of such a measure without
the
help
of either
Ethiopia
or
the League
of
Natiuns. Britain's
attitude
towards Italian
expansion,
therefore., had to balance
the international diplomatic
considerations against
her
pragmatic obligations
dictated by the local
situation.
The balance
was not easy,
to
strike.
33. A boastful
account of
Italy's forward
policy
is
given
by De Vecchi's
successor
to the Governorship
of
Italian Somaliland, Guido Corni
(ed. )o
Somalia Italiana
(Milan),
1937,
vol.
IIs
P.
34-37.
49/1
This
anomalous
diplomatic
situation was
first
highlighted in 1934
when a gang of
Dolbahanta
outlaws
left the Protectorate
and settled
in the Ogaden,
near
Damot
(Lat. 45
0
201 Long. 70 35'), from
where
they began
to launch
sporadic raids
into the Protectorate. By April
1934 they had looted
stock worth
43,000
dollars from the
British tribes. As far
as
Britain's
official policy was
concerned,
the Ogaden
was part of
Ethiopian territory but
in
practice
Ethiopian
authority
had long
ceased
to
exist
there.
To
whom
then
was
Britain to
protest or
demand
redress
for the
actions of
this
gang?
Lawrence
whose
grasp of
the
sophisticated political situation was
apparently naively simple prescribed what
he believed
to be the
obvious solution:
"I
should
be
grateful
if
you could persuade
the Ethiopian Government to take immediate
steps
to
oblige
these
people
to
return
to
British Somaliland
since
I do
not suppose
they
would arrest
them
and
hand them
over
to
us
....
The Ethiopian Government, though
quite willing
to
render us all assistance
may not at
the
moment
be in
a position
to
do
so.
In this
case would
they
permit me as
a very special-case
to
send over
the border
a company of
150 Camel Corps
with'2 officers
solely
to
effect
the
arrest of
these
men?
";
he
went on
to
suggest
that
tfunless
something
is done
at once
by them to
E revent
the
raids and
to
arrest
these
cattle
hieves, I
may
be forced to
ask
the Italian
authorities, who
have
posts
in
or near
the
country
inhabited by them to
give me all
the
assistance.
"
34
Broadmead
would
have
nothing
to do
with any of
Lawrence's
34. C. O. 535/100/5882 Lawrence to Broadmead, Acting
Minister, Addis Ababa, 21/7/1933
(Encl.
in Broadmead
to F. O. 3/8/1933).
suggestions:
49
,
Pj,
"to
ask
that
a company of
foreign troops
should
be
allowed
to
penetrate
into the
territory
of another sovereign state could
scarcely
be
regarded
by the
state
in
ques-
tion
as other
than derogatory to its
sovereignty and prestige.
Moreover, it
seems
to
me quite useless
to
ask
for
something
which
is
certain
to be
refused, and on which
we cannot
insist";
as
for the idea
of soliciting
Italian helps
"it
amounts
to
nothing more
than to
asking
the Italians
who,
I
understand,
have
already
penetrated well over
the Ethiopian border to
help
us out of our
difficulties. Such
a
course appears
to
me
to be both
undignified
and
dangerous
and might
lead to
all sorts of
complications.
"
35
Undeniably,
the
objections
to
any of
Lawrence's
proposals
could not
have been better
put.
Yet, how
was
the
problem
of
the
Dolbahanta
raiders
to be disposed
of?
Broadmead
offered no alternative suggestions and
he
probably
had
none.
In the Colonial Office, Lawrence's
proposals
found
no
less hostile
reception.
Seel
commented
that
"I
feel
much
doubt
about proceeding as
the
Commissioner
asks.
In the first
place
it
seems
to
me
that he had
no
justification
even
for
suggesting
either
that he
should
be
'
allowed
to
send
troops into Ethiopian terri-
tory,
or
that if the Ethiopian Government did
not agree
to this, they
should
be
given a
hint that
we would
invite the Italian
authorities
to
assist us.
In
either case'I should
have
thought that,
as
the
suggestion would
be likely
to
offend
the Ethiopian
amour-propre.,
he
would-
have
consulted
the Secretary
of
State
even
before
it
making
them tentatively to Addis
Ababa.
36
35. C. O. 535/100/5882 Broadmead to F. O. 3/8/1933
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 10/8/1933).
36. Ibid. Minute by Seel, Principal in the C. O.
496
So there
was
to be
no action
taken
against
the Dolbahanta
dacoits. The
only realistic method
for disposing
of
the
problem would
have been to
ask
the Italians, the de facto
authority
in the
area,
to
evict or arrest
them. To do
so,
however,
would
have implied
-
and
Italy
would
have
wanted
it to be
so
implied
-
that Britain
recognized
Italian
jurisdiction in the
occupied
Ethiopian territory.
The difficulty
encountered with regard
to the
Dolbahanta dacoits
underlined a very
fundamental
politi-
cal-problem, and called
for
an urgent
definition
of
Britaints
policy
in Somaliland. It
was.,
indeed, incon-
ceivable
that Britain
would continue
to turn
a
blind
eye
to
such and
kindred
problems without undermining
her
position
in the British Somaliland Protectorate in
par-
ticular,
and on
the
arena of
international
politics
in
general.
Moreover, Italy's
sphere of
influence
was
steadily extending westwards and might soon embrace
the
whole stretch of
the
southern
border. In
such an even-
tuality
-
and
this
was not
far
off
-
Britain
would
have
no choice, regardless of
her
policy
in the League of
Nations, but to
come
to terms
with
the fact that
Italians held the key to the
peace and welfare of-the
British tribes
who
depended for their livelihood on water
and grazing
in the Ogaden.
An inter-departmental
meeting
between the Foreign
Office, Colonial Office
and
War Office
was convened with a
view
to defining Britaints
policy
in the light
of
the de
facto
situation.
The
meeting made
fundamental
resolutions
which
henceforth were
to
guide
Britain's
policy.
It
was,
in the first
place., acknowledged
that., however
much
Britain
resented
Italian
expansion
into Ethiopia., there
was really
nothing she could
do to
stop
it. A
military confrontation
37
with
Italy
was out of
the
question.
Secondly, Italy's
policy of closing
borders
was appreciated as a real
threat to the British tribes if
ever
Italy
applied
it in
Ethiopia. In the
circumstances,
"what
was essential was
that the
grazing rights
of
the Somali tribes
should
be
accepted and
that.,
once
this
was
done, it did
not really
matter
to H. M. Government
what
happened in the
territorial issue between Ethiopia
and
Italy
the best
course was
to
make a
direct
approach
to Mussolini
and
tell him
quite
frankly that H. M. Government
would propose
to insist
upon
the
rights of
their Somali
tribes,
and
that they therefore felt
confi-
dent that the Italian Government
would
be
prepared not
to
make
difficulties.
"
38
Thus.. Britaints
concern
for the
welfare of
her Somali
subjects was
to take
precedence over whatever moral and
political objections
there
might
have been
against
Italyts
expansionist policy.
What,
on
the
other
hand,
were
the British to
say
to the Ethiopian Emperor
who was constantly seeking
their
sympathy and advice?
37. C-0-535/104/25888 Record
of a meeting
held in the
Foreign Office
on
29/11/1934 to discuss the
position
of
Walwal
and
Wardair (Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 1/12/1934).
38. Ibid.
t. s
"The
line to take
was
to
urge
the Emperor to
propose
to the Italians that the two
countries
should proceed with as
little delay
as possible
to
a
demarcation
on
the
ground.
"
39
Clearly, this
was a
double-edged
policy: she would give
tacit
acquiescence
-
or at any rate neutrality
-
to
Italyts forward
policy and, at
the
same
time,
advise
the
Emperor to bring Italy
round
to
a conference
table,
some-
thing the British knew
was well nigh
impossible
at
the
time. Britaints
policy was
Machiavellian in
spirit.
It
was calculated
to
put
Britain
on
the best
of
terms
with
the two belligerent
countries,
in the hope that
whoever
emerged victorious would continue
to
recognize
the
grazing
and watering rights of
the British Somali tribes. From
the
point of view of
Briti
magnanimous policy,
but it
that Britain's
concern
for
not
the
sole raison
dletat
policy.
It
remained
to be
work
in
practice.
sh
Somaliland, this
was a
must., of course,
be
mentioned
the
welfare of
her tribes
was
behind the
adoption of
this
seen
how the
new policy would
The first test
case
for Britain's
new policy
presented
itself in December 1934,
when
the Ethiopian
Government
sought permission
to import
a consignment of
arms weighing
3,000 tons
purchased
from
various
European
countries,
through the Protectorate. As
a member of
the
League
of
Nationso Ethiopia
was entitled
to import
arms
for her
army, and she-had given a contract
to
a
London-
based firm, the Walford
-
Lines Ltd. to do the delivery.
40
39. Ibid.
40.
C-0-535/106/46004
L. H. G. Walfords Director
of
Walford
Lines Ltd. to the Director
of
Public Works$ Berbera,
16/12/1934
(Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O. 21/12/1934).
I
I
The feeling in London
was
that
491"-,.
"the
matter appears
to
require consideration
from the
political point of view,
having
regard
to the tension
at present existing
between the
Ethiopian
and
Italian Governments.
"41
Itwas
as
difficult for Britain to
permit
the
passage of
the
arms
through the Protectorate, thereby
risking a pro-
test from Italy.,
as
it
was
for her to
antagonize
Ethiopia
with an outright refusal.
Rather than take
either of
the
two
extremes,
Britain,
while agreeing
to Ethiopia's
request
in
principle, stipulated such
difficult
condi-
tions for the delivery
of
the
arms
that the Walford Lines
Ltd. lost interest in the business; Britain thereby
avoided
being held
responsible.
42
The
situation was
further
complicated
by the
rapid
deterioration
in
Italo-Ethiopian
relations,
high-
lighted by the famous Walwal incident,
and culminating
in the downfall
of
the Ethiopian Government. A brief
historical background to these
events
deserves
some
examination.
With
a, view
to investigating the tradi-
tional
grazing and watering rights of
the border tribes,
the Boundary Commission
set out
for the Ogaden in November
1934. The Commissioners first
met at
Daghbur in the
middle of
the
month and
then
proceeded
to Ado
on
the 20th.
Tvio days later they
arrived at
Walwal
and encbuntered
a
hostile Italian force. A, Junior, Italian
officer ordered
41.
C. O. 535/106/46oo4 F. O.
to
C-. O. 9/l/1935-
42.
The
conditions
stipulated were
that
(a)
In
view of
the
volume of
the
cargo,
the Company
would-require a special
licence'from
the Board
of
Trade
(b)
The Protectorate
would neither provide an escort nor
be
responsible
for
the
safe
delivery
of
the
cargo
to Ethiopia.
500
the Commission to
withdraw
but the lattero
considering
withdrawal
to be humiliating,
refused
to
comply and,
instead,
sent protests,
to Ci=aruta,, the
senior
commanding officer.,
then
at
Wardair. Cimmaruta
arrived
on
the
scene a couple of
days later
and advised
the
Commission to
go
back
until
the
question
had been
solved
by the higher
authorities.
The
proposal was
turned down
and on
the 25th the Commission tried in inspect the
wells
but
were
debarred from doing
so
by the Italian
soldiers.
A dispute
erupted and much
hand-to-and jostling
and
vociferous
insults
were exchanged
between the Ethiopians
and
the Italians. Towards
evening
the Ethiopian
and
Italian
soldiers settled
down to trench
warfare, each
man
digging his
own
trench. The line
extended
to
nearly
one mile
long
and,
in
places,
the belligerent forces
were
not more
than twenty
yards apart.
Discussion between Cimmaruta
and
the Commission
resumed
the following day, but
while
these
were
in
pro-
gress,
the Italian
military aircraft arrived
from
Mogadishu
and
began to demonstrateo training their
guns
on'the
Boundary Commission's
camp at
Ado4, in disregard
of
the Union Jack. The British felt insulted
and,
together
with
their Ethiopian
colleagues, withdrew
to Daghbur.
43
43.
A full
account, albe
'
it
with, exaggerated
biass is
given
by
Sylivia Pankhurst, Ex-Italian Somaliland
op. cit. chap.
10.
A
more reliable account
is
given
by Alex. T. Curle in his
Private Paperso
op. cit.
Although the Commission
could
not visit
the
areas occupied
by the Italians, it had
already collected sufficient
information to
enable
it to
form
a general picture of
the traditional
grazing and
watering
rights of
the border tribes. A
report on
this
was
drawn
up
in Addis Ababa
and was
intended to form
part
of
the
projected
Anglo-Ethiopian Treaty. The
Italian version of
the Walwal incident is
given
by
R. Cimmaruta.. Ual-Ual
(Milan)
1936.
50
all.
The
ensuing quarrel
between Rome
and
London is
outside
the
scope of
this
study.
The Walwal incident
marked
the beginning
of
the disintegration,
of
the Ethiopian Empire. Following
the
withdrawal of
the Commission the Ethiopians
and
the
Italians brought in troop
reinforcements.
The former
appealed,
as
they had done in the
past,
to the League
of
Nations for intervention but
nothing came out of
it.
Italy
would not agree
to
sit on a round
table
with
the
Ethiopians
whom she
despised. Britain too did
not
encourage
the idea
of
having the Italo-Ethiopian dispute
debated by the General Assembly
of
the League
of
Nations,
for
she
believed that
such a step might only
bring the
League
of
Nations into disrepute;
she advocated
the
expedient
of
having
an arbitrationcommission
to look into
the
quarrel and report
its findings to the League
of
Nations.
The
arbitration commission was eventually
appointed
in May 1935
and charged with
the duty
of
inves-
tigating the
causes of
the Walwal incident
without
touching
the
question of
the legal interpretation
of
the
agreements
and
the treaties
concerning
the d isputed
areas.
Without
the
mandate
to
establish
the legality
or otherwise of
Italyts
claims
to the Ogaden, the
arbitration commission
could not properly settle
the
question of who was guilty
in the Walwal incident. Not
surprisingly,
it
came
to the
conclusion
that the Walwal incident
was an accident
for
which neither
the Italians
nor
the Ethiopians
could
be
502
114)
blamed. Ethiopials fate
was,
thus,
sealed.
r
While the Italo-Ethiopian dispute
engaged
the
minds of statesmen
in Geneva, the
military situation
in
Ethiopia
was changing rapidly.
On the
4th
December 1934,
Cimmaruta
ordered
the Ethiopians to
withdraw
their troops,
in
vain.
The following dayo the Italians,
with
fresh
reinforcements,
bombsj
aeroplanes and
tanks
attacked
the
Ethiopian forces
and routed
them. Fierce fighting
ensued as
the Italians
made
for Addis Ababa
and attacked
from different directions. By October 1935, Ethiopian
resistance
had
collapsed and
by the
middle of
1936 the
Italians had
already
installed themselves in Addis
Ababa.
45
The Italo-Ethiopian
conflict
had far-reaching
repercussions
in the British Somaliland Protectorate.
As the Italians began to
replace
the Ethiopian Govern-
ment,
there
was growing concern
in the British Somali-
land Protectorate for the
safety of
the British Somali
tribes then
grazing
their
stoc
k
across
the bordero and
for the long-term future
position with regard
to their
grazing and watering rights
in these
areas:
"Governor
Lawrence
realized
that the trans
frontier
grazing of
the Protectorate
tribes
was
threatened
not merely
by the incon-
veniences of
his
not
having full
administra-
tive
control of
the British tribes
when
they
were grazing
in Ethiopia, but by the
much
more possibility
that Italy
might simply
close
the frontier,
as she
had
already
done
along
the Protectoratets
eastern
border
*t'46
44. J. Drysdale, The Somali Dispute
op. cit. chap.
4.
45.
Ibid.
46.
David Hamilton,
"Ethiopiats
Frontiers
****"
(unpublished
Thesis)
op. cit. p.
110.
51 0i
The immediate
effect of
the Italo-Ethiopian
confrontation was
to force the British tribes then
grazing
in the
areas of
tension
either
to
return
to the
Protectorate
or get
involved in the
conflict.
In
January 1935 it
was reported
that the
majority of
the
tribes had
opted
to
return and
that
Itnearly
all
the Burao tribes
are now either
within our
borders
or about
to
enter, and
the
movement
involves the bulk
of
the Hargeisa
tribes
who were
living in Ethiopia.
"47
There
was a substantial part of
the British tribes, how-
ever, who chose
to
remain
in the
areas of conflict.
Some
of
these
were
forced to this decision by their
recognition
of
the hardship they
would
face in the
overcrowded condi-
tions
of
the Protectorate
while others refused
to
return
for fear
of punishment on account of
their
previous mis-
chief
in the Protectorate. There
was,
for
example,
the
case of
the Rer Ismail Aman
section of
the Habr Yunis
tribe
who
had fled to Ethiopia in 1928
so as
to
avoid
payment of
fines imposed by the
administration.
Faced
with
the
choice of getting caught up
in the Italo-
Ethiopian
conflict or returning
to face the
prosecution
they
opted
for the latter.
48
Some
sections of
the
Dolbahanta..
particularly
those
who
had become
notorious
by their
constant raids across
the border, decided to
stay on and participate
in the,.
conflict.
Some
enlisted
in the Ethiopian forces
and others
threw in their lot
with
the Italians. Those
who refused
to be drawn into
the
conflict on either side were subjected
to
rough
47.
C. O. 535/106/46011 Lawrence to C. O. 18/1/1935.
48.
Ibid.
5014
treatment by the belligerent forces. One
condition
stipulated
by the Italians
was
that the British tribes
who
joined their
service shouldo
in
addition
to taking
up arms and
fighting,
also
declare themselves Italian
subjects.
49
The
need
for
prompt action on
the
part of
Britain
was self-evident.
Not
only
did the
recruitment
of
her
subjects
into-foreign forces
call
for
a
definite
policy on
the issuet but
also
the
return of so many
British tribes to the Protectorate
created
tension
over
the limited
water and grazing.
The Foreign Office,
on
being
requested
to
offer an opinion over
the
question of
recruiting
British
subjects
into foreign forces,
more
particularly
Italian forces,
was
inclined to turn
a
blind
eye
to the issue
since no objection
had hitherto
been
raised against
Italian
recruitment of
Arabs in
Aden. But Barton
and
Lawrence held
a
different
view;
they
were opposed
to having British
subjects serving
in
foreign forces
as
this
was
bound, in the long
run,
to
implicate Britain in the
quarrels.
Moreovero it
was not
doing
much good
to Britaints
prestige.
50
The Colonial
office
was of
the
same mind, and
the Foreign Office
allowed
itself to be
persuaded
to this
point of view.
In March 1935, therefore, Lawrence
was
instructed
to do
everything possible
to dissuade British
subjects
from
enlisting
in the Italian
or
Ethiopian forces. He failed.
49.
Ibid.
,
50. C. O. 535/108/46011 Barton to Lawrence 18/1/1935
(Encl.
in 13arton to F. O. 18/l/1935).
rn
. flht-
Lawrencefs
efforts were
ignored by the belligerent
countries as well as
by those Somali
who were
interested
in joining
either side.
51
The Italians
were,
in
any case,
not worried
by Britain's
attempt
to
prevent
her
subjects
from
serving
in Italian forces:
ff
the
point was not vital
to them. If they
cýu
*id
not recruit enough native4 on
the
spot
they
would send out more
troops from Italy.
"
52
Another immediate
result of
the
escalated
Italo-
Ethiopian
conflict was
in the form
of
lawlessness
and chaos
on
the border. Lawrence
advised
the Colonial Office to
consider
taking
such measures as were necessary
to
prevent
the
repercussions
of waVfrom spilling
into British terri-
tory. He
wrote:
it
..
any
incursion
on a
large
scale would
be
liLiy to
create a very
difficult
situation
locally. Even
more
important is, the
question
of whether
difficulty
might not
be
experienced
in keeping the British-protected tribes them-
selves quiet.
They
are armed and might
be
attracted
by the
prospects of
loot in
a
dis-
ordered area"
53
The Overseas Defence Committee
met on
22nd
February 1935 to discuss the
security position of
Somali-ý-
land in the light
of
the
new
developments. It
was
decided
that Lawrence
should
be
asked
to
propose
the
necessary
preventive measures since
he
was
the
man on
the
spot.
The
latter
submitted a
long
report assessing
the
gravity of
the
situation and recommending urgent security precautions
51. C. O. 535/108/46011 Barton to F. O. 7/3/1935
(Encl.
in
F. O. to C. O. 12/3/1935).
52. C. O. 535/108/A6011 Drummond, H. M. Ambassador in Rome,
to F. O. 15/5/1935
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 20/3/1935).
53. C. O. 535/108/46011 Memorandum by the C. O.
on
the
situation
in Ethiopia
n.
d. February 1935.
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507
to be taken. On his
own
initiative, he had
already
cancelled
leave
of all
the
military and civil officers.
Among his
recommendations
was one
that the R. A. F.
detachment then
stationed
in the Protectorate
should
be
reinforced
by two
aircraft
from Aden. In
addition,
he
would call up
the Camel Corps
reserves and would
increase
the Police
and
the illaloes by
not
less than 100
men
each.
Lawrence then(xplained the
objective of
these
measures as
being to
prevent
the troops
of
the belli-
gerent
forces from fighting
on
British territory, keeping
law
and order among
the border tribes
who might
be
so
excited as
to
wish
to help themselves to their
neighbours'
property and
to
control
the
refugees
from the
war zone.
He did
not share
the Colonial Office's
apprehensions
about
the loyalty
of
the British
subjects.
They
werep
so
he believed,
completely
loyal.
54
In June Lawrence
submitted a
detailed
plan of
how he
proposed
to deploy the Camel Corps
and
the
air
force during the time
of emergency
(see
map).
The
"B"
sector would
have to be
patrolled
to
prevent
the Ogaden
tribes
raiding across
the border. Basing himself
on
the
assumption
that the
scene of
the
conflict would move
westwards,
it
would
be
possible
to
reduce
the troops in
the
"C"
sector once
the fighting had
reached
Harar
or
thereabout. He
proposed
to divide the frontier into three
sectors as
follows
1.
"All
sector
from Borama to Aran Arreh
(go
miles) alloted
to
"A"
Company
of
the Camel Corps.,
with one
54. C. O. 535/108/46011 Lawrence to C. O. 15/6/1935.
508
post at
Borama
and a second one at
Aran Arreh. 2.
"B"
sector
from Aran Arreh to the tri-junction'point
(225
miles), alloted
to
"B"
company, with posts at
Dabbagob
and
Bohotleh. 3.
"C"
sector
from the tri-junction
point
to Galnoleh
(135
miles) alloted
to
"C"
Company
with posts
at
the tri-junction
point and at
Bihen. The R. A. F.
would
have its base
at
Burao
and
be
responsible
for
patrolling
the
whole
border
and maintaining communication
between
the
posts.
55
The
plan was studied
in London
and approved
in August.
Towards the
end of
1935
relations
between Italy
and
Britain had deteriorated
owing
to the latter's
con-
demnation
of
the Italian invasion
of
Ethiopia
and
her
subsequent support of
the
economic sanctions against
Italy
recommended
by the League
of
Nations. It became
necessaryi
therefore, to
consider
the
security of
British Somaliland
from the international
point of view.
The
possibility
of
a military confrontation
between Italy
and
Britain
was no
longer
remote and,
in the
event of such a confrontationp
it
was more
than likely that the Italians
would consider
the British Protectorate
as
their
most vulnerable
target.
The overseas Defence Committee
met again
to.
make
the,
necessary contingent, plans
to
supplement
those
already
passed
in
connection with
the local
situation.
It
was
estimated
thatp in the
event of
-Italians
attacking
the
Protectoratep
the Camel Corps
would require reinforcement
of afull
battalion from
outside
-
possibly
Tanganyika
or
Nigeria.
With thatp British Somaliland
55. C. O. 535/108/46011 Lawrence to C. O. 15/6/1935.
5"
"should
be
able
t6 hold
up advance
....
or
at any rate
defend the
environs of
Berbera"
56
The
situation came up
for
another review
in December
following further deterioration in the Anglo-Italian
relations.
As
a result of
thiss British forces in Egypt
and
Aden had
already
been
reinforced.
Although
some
members of
the Committee thought it desirable to
put
the
earlier contingency plan
into
effect..
the
majority
thought that
"the
menace
to Somaliland from Italian
forces to the
south
is
not regarded as
very serious
from
a military point of
view.
Having
regard
to the
strength of
the Abyssinian forces, their
relatively
high
morale
in the Ogaden,
and
lack
of
substantial
Italian
success
in that
regions
it is
unlikely
that the Italians
would risk
an attack on
British Somaliland. Moreovero
even
if the Italians
should
decide to launch
a considerable attack..
itwould take
several
weeks
to
carry out
....
Ifs
nevertheless,
such a
threat
should
become
more
imminent
than
at
the
present
time,
a
battalion
should
be brought from Tanganyika to Somaliland.
A further battalion
and
battery
could
be
brought from India
...
"
57
The Committeets
resolution amounted
to
saying
that
although
an
Italian invasion
of
British Somaliland
could not
be
ruled out,
the Protectorate
was, nevertheless,
in
no
immediate danger. Hence, the
only security arrangements
that
needed
to be taken
were
those for dealing
with
the
Italo-Ethiopian
conflict.
Finding
a
formula by
which
Britain
could secure
56. C. O. 535/111/46011 Minutes
of
the overseas Defence
Committee
held
on
19/9/1935.
57. C. O. 535/111/46011 Minutes
of
the overseas Defence
Committee held
on
20/12/1935.
'ju
for her tribes their
ancient grazing and watering
rights
in the Ogaden
was
by far the
most
difficult task.
The
eviction and
harassment by the Italians
of
British tribes
was already a
bad
omen portending
the
ultimate closure of
the border.
In January 1935 the Italians
clarified
their
position:
they
would not permit
British tribes to
use
water and grazing
in Wardair
and
Walwal
as
long
as
the
Italo-Ethiopian tension lasted.
58
But
after representa-
tions from London
-
sweetened with
further intimations
that Britain had
no
intention
of
interfering in the
dispute
-
the Italians
were prepared
to
modify
their
attitude.
59
Accordingly, the Italian
authorities
in
Somaliland
were
instructed by Rome to
respect
"existing
de facto
situation regarding access
of
British7-tribes
at
Walwal
and
Wardair
....
in
accordance with
local
regulations.
It is
added,
however, that
at
the
present moment
access must
be
regulated so as not
to
permit
of
infiltration
of
foreign
elements
(sic).,,
Armed
natives will
in
no case
be
admittedo
60
These instructions left
much
to be desiredo
and
the local
Italian
officials
lost
no opportunity
in
exploiting
its
loopholes,
with a view
to
continue
harassing
and evicting
týe BritLsh tribes. For
example,
the
provision
that
"local
regulations" should
be
applied was manipulated
to the
extent
that impossible
conditions were often
laid down for the
58. C. O. 535/109/46011 Drummond to F. O. 3/l/1935
(Encl.
in
F. O. to C. O.
6/l/1935).
59. C. O. 535/109/46011 Drummond to F. O. 25/l/1935
(Encl.
in
F. O. to C. O. 27/l/1935).
60.
Ibid.
5L1
British tribes
wishing
to
cross
the border. Similarly,
the
provision about
"foreign
elements" could
be
construed
in
any way
the local
officials wished.
The
arrangement
was.,
therefore,
unsatisfactory
from the
point of view of
British Somaliland.
Lawrence informed London
of
the difficulties
experienced
by the British tribes,
and emphasized
the
need
for
working out a more
definite
and
binding
arrangement.
It
was, of course,
inconceivable that Britain
would agree
to
a
formal
conference with
Italy for the
purpose of
dis-
cussing questions affecting
Ethiopian territory. In
order
to
circumvent
this
problem.,
Lawrence
advocated a purely
local
approach.
He
would communicate with
the Italian
administration and
impress
upon
them the
need
for
devising
a system whereby
the British tribeswould
be
guaranteed
their
ancient grazing and watering rights.
He
would, at
the
same
time,
make
it
abundantly
clear
that the discussion
and
the
ultimate agreement
would
be
without prejudice
to the
wider question of
the legality
or otherwise of
Italy's
occupation of
Ethiopia.
The
motive would
be
explained as
being to
alleviate
the
plight of
the Somali tribes
who,
in
any caseo
had
nothing
to do
and some were not even conversant
with
the Italo-
61
Ethiopian
quarrels.
Lawrence's idea
was, a marvellous
one
-
or so
it
was regarded
in London. A few
questions,
however.,
remained unanswered.
One
was, whether or not
Ethiopia should
be informed
of what was under contempla-
tion.
Yet, it
was more
than likely that Ethiopia
would,
61.
C. O. 535/109/46oll Lawrence to C. O. 9/2/1935.
if told,
protest and accuse
Britain
of a sell-out.
More-
overo
informing Ethiopia
would
have implied Britain's
continued recognition of
Ethiopian
sovereignty over
the
areas effectively
held by Italy,
and yet
this is
precisely
what
Italy
was
disputing
and
this
was,
indeedo the
very
controversy over which
Britain had
pledged neutrality
to
Italy. Admittedly, these
were
the
sort of questions
for
which one could not
find
easy answers.
In the
circum-
stances,
Britain's
concern
for her tribes
was considered
the
most crucial problem
to
which
the local
administra-
tion
ought
to
address
itself,
regardless of other conse-
quences.
Before Rome
could
be
approached with
Lawrence's
local
approach proposalso
there
was
the
crucial
issue
of
considering what
Britain
was prepared
to
offer
the
Italians
as a quid pro quo.
There
was not much point
in
going empty
handed,
expecting
to
receive
but
not give.
Britain's
offer,
however, had to be
of a
local
natures
just
as
the discussions
were
to take
place on a
local
level. Otherwise, it
might prove
difficult
if Britain
were asked
to
give way on such
important international
questions as would
have
substantially compromised
her
position over
the
question of
Italian
expansion,
in the
League
of
Nations. It
was. not possible;
-for
examples
for Britain to
condone
Italy's
policy
in Spain
and
the
Middle East
or
to
retreat over
the
economic sanctions
issue,
as a recipr cal concession
for Italy's flexibility
over
the
question
f the Somali
grazing and watering rights.
There
we e, nevertheless, a
few local
attractions
which might
be dangled before Italy. One
of
these
was
f
or
59 1
ts
Britain to
give way over
the
controversy as
to
whether
her
projected
treaty
with
Ethiopia did
or
did
not violate
the Tripartite Agreement. As
already mentioned,
Italy
contended
that it did but Britain,
not only maintained
the
contrary view,
but
plans were underway
to have the
treaty
signed, regardless of
Italyfs
protests.
Now
that the Ethiopian Government
was clearly
losing
control
of
her Empire
and
Italy
was
insisting that the
projected
treaty
should not
be
signed,
Britain
would
be best
advised
not
to
press
for the
conclusion of
the treaty
until
the
situation
had become
more clear.
62
Britain
would
thereby
kill two birds
with one stone: she would avoid signing a
treaty
with a regime which might collapse soon and, at
the
same
time, Italy
might
be
appeased and made
to
adopt
a more accommodating attitude on
the
question of grazing
rightsý'
Not
surprisingly..
Britain began to drag her feet
on
the treaty issue
and
by the time
of
Italian
conquest
it had
not-been signed.
The
other concession
Britain
considered making
was
to
suspend negotiations,
then in
progresso
with
Ethiopia
over
the latter's
application
for the
acquisi-
tion
ofýZeila
in
exchange
for
concessions over
the Lake
63
Tana
scheme.
This
expedien&X commended
itself in
62.
Ibid.
63.
Ethiopia
was anxious
to
get an outlet
to the
sea
in
order
to
avoid
the high
customs
duties
and
bureaucratic
obstacles at
Jibuti: Italy had failed to honour the Treaty
of
Friendship
of
1928 by
which
Ethiopia
should
have
acquired a
free
zone
at
Assab
(see
David Hamiltono
"Ethiopia's
Frontiers
op. cit. p.
424).
Ethiopian
acquisition
of
Zeila
would
have
alleviated
her
problem, and
Ethiopia
was prepared
to
give
Britain
a concession
for
constructing
a water
barrage
on
Lake Tana
(a
summary of
the Lake Tana
scheme
is found in F. O.
/10872).
514
London,
and consequently,
Ethiopia's
aspirations
for
Zeila
were
discouraged
and
the
whole package
deal
was
overtaken
by the Italian
conquest of
Ethiopia.
Lawrence's
proposed
line
of action was put
to
Rome
and accepted almost at once.
Yet
no specific
instructions
were
issued to the local Italian
authorities
to
enter
into
negotiations with
the British
administration.
Rome
was reminded of
the
unfulfilled promise
in August
and
the Italian
reply came at
the beginning
of
September to
the
effect
that they
"did
not
think that
authorities
in Italian
Somaliland
were yet
in
a position
to
appoint
commissioners"
964
This delay in
making a
definite
arrangement
for the tribes
seeking
to
graze across
the border
was,
in the
mean
1ýime,
having disastrous
consequences on
the
border
political situation.
In February 1935, for
example,
the
overcrowded conditions
in Burao District
stimulated
internal
skirmishes and encouraged raids
from
the Ogaden tribes. Nearly 3,000
camels and
700
sheep
and goats were
looted. In
order
to
prevent
the
situa-
tion from becoming
more explosive,
Lawrence
recruited
and
despatched 30
extra
illaloes to Burao; the Treasury
incurred
an extra
L40
as a result.
By the
end of
Decembero
Lawrence
estimated
the debt
owed
to the Protectorate
tribes
by the Ogaden tribes to be in the
region of
5,000 dollars.
65
64.
C. O. 535/109/46011 Drummond to F. O. 1/9/1935
(Encl:.
,
in F. O. to C. O. 3/9/1935).
65.
C. O. 535/112/46035 Lawrence to C. O. 23/2/1935.
515
Then in June 1935 two British Somali
subjects,
Yusuf Koreyeh
and
Ismail Nur,
reported
to Lawrence that
they had found difficulty in
watering
their
animals at
Walwal,
owing
to Cimmaruta's
stubbornness.
A few
weeks
after
this incident, two British
mail runners were
seized
by Cimmaruta
at
Walwal
and roughly
handled.
These
events
led Lawrence to
observe
that:
"I
believe Captain Cimmaruta, to be
excitable and
bombastic
and an officer more
likely to
endanger
friendly
relations on
the frontier than to
estab-
lish
or cement
them
"66
The British
administration was
firm in the
belief that
unless a more satisfactory modus vivendi
could
be
arranged with
the Italians
without
delay,
"there
seems
to be little doubt but that the
averred policy of
the Italian
authorities
is
to
close
the frontier
"67
The
collapse of
the Ethiopian
regime
during the first half
of
1936
clarified
the
power situation
in Ethiopia
and
thereby
simplified matters
for the British Somaliland
Protectorate. It
could not
be
argued, as
hitherto,
that
negotiations with
the Italians
ought
to be
undertaken
with
the
greatest caution and must
be limited to the local
level, in
order not
to
offend
the Ethiopian
Government.
It is
not suggested,
however, that the British
adminis-
tration
condoned
Italian invasion
of
Ethiopia
-
for
such
a position
would
have
contradicted
Britaints
official
policy
-
but,
undoubtedly, so
far
as
the interests
of
66.
C. O. 535/109/46011 Lawrence to C. O. 7/6/1935.
67.
C. O. 535/114/46011
Weekly Intelligence Report
on
the
Affairs
in Ethiopia, 30/1/1936
(Encl.
in Lawrence to
C. O. 1/2/1936).
£
British Somaliland
were concerned,
it
was
better
to have
a single and effective administration across
the border
than to have two
authorities,
one recognized
but ineffec-
tive, the
other effective
but
unrecognized.
By the beginning
of
1936, the
most pressing
problem
facing the
administration was not so much
to
enter
into hasty
negotiations with
the Italians
as
to
combat
the
state of
lawlessness
and violence arising out of
the
rapid
collapse of
Ethiopia
at
the hands
of
Italian invaders. As
already noted,
this had been
expected and
the
contingent
plans
had been
made
the
previous year.
One feature
of
the
confusion came
in the form
of undisciplined
Italian
soldiers
ho
were reported
to have
ran amok with excitement and,
in n
ýýthe
process,
to have
committed scandalous crimes on womens
looted
property and
killed
civilians at random.
68
The
Camel Corps detachments, being
well prepared$ effected a
number of arrests and
tried to keep the
scene of war at
arms
length.
Another disturbing
phenomenon was
the influx
of
arms and ammunition
in the border
areas.
It
was
learnt
that
a good number of
Somali
recruits
into the belligerent
forces.. being
uncommitted
to the
causes of
the
war, made
68.
C. O. 535/114/46011 Weekly Intelligence Report
on
the
Affairs in Ethiopia 16/1/1936- Between January
and
October 1936 the War Office
assumed responsibility
for
the
secur
'
ity
of
the Protectorate
owing
to the
grave
situation created
by the Italo-Ethiopian
clashes.
Col.
Hornby took
command of
the Camel Corps,
replacing
Major
Bennetto
and
Hornby
was
to
report
directly to the War
Office. In November the Colonial Office
resumed all
responsibility
in the Protectorate; the
situation was
considered
to have
returned
to
normal.
51?
lucrative business
out of
the
sale of arms supplied
to
them by their
employers.
This
was, needless
to
say, a
development
which needed
to be
carefully watched;
the
role of
firearms in transfrontier
raids,
internal feuds
and
in
anti-colonial uprisings
is too
well
known to
require elaboration.
A further
stimulus
to the
sale of
arms was
the fact that in June 1936 Italy
announced
her
decision to disarm the tribes
on
her
side of
the border.
Since Britain had declared
no such
intention
with respect
to her
own side of
the border, the British Somali
subjects
became
an eager market
for the Ogaden firearms. This,
however,
raised
the
question of whether
Britain
ought not
to followý'Italyls example
in the
matter of
disarmament
but., in
view'of shortage of manpower.,
disarmament in the
British Somaliland rrotectorate
was not undertaken until
1939.
Another
repercussion, not unexpected, was
the
arrival of refugees
from the
war zone.
These
were mainly
Ethiopian.
In May 1936 there
were
48
soldiers,
10
civil
officials,
55
civilians,
70
women and
93
children.
69
By
April
1937 the
number
had
swollen
to 1,347,
of whom
297
were children.
70
Two
camps were established at
Borama
and
Berbera at
the
cost of
Z10,000. The
cost of maintenance
was
borne
by the Treasury
and- various charity organizations
in Britain.
In 1937
and
1938, for
example,
the Treasury
contributed
Z25,000
and
Z14,000 towards the-maintenance
69. C. O.
535/116/46011 Plowman to C. O. 25/5/1936.
70.
C. O.
535/121/46011 L
awrence
to C. O. 18/3/1937.
51
cost of
the
camps.
71
In June 1936, Plowman,
acting
for Lawrence,
sent
the following telegram to London:
it
military occupation of
Ethiopia is
rapidly
becoming
effective up
to Somaliland frontier
and
I
propose, subject
to
your approval
to
try to
arrange a meeting
between
one or
two
of our
frontier
officials
and
their
opposite
numbers
in the
occupied
territory to
ascertain
what
latter
propose regarding crossing of
the
frontier by British tribes, disarmament
and
kindred
subjects, and
to
point out
to them
exactly where
the boundary
runs.
"
71
The latter
point
is interesting; it
was
like introducing
and
familiarizing
new
tenants to their
premises.
Plowman's
proposal as accepted
by the Colonial Officeo but Lee
thought t
necessary
to
explain
that
"it
will
be
understood
that
our officers
it
would only recognize
the Italians
as
being
in de facto
occupation of
those
parts of
Abyssln-LTa--Uordering
on
British Somaliland
-
the fact that they have
entered
into'dis-
cussions with
them
will not, of course,
imply
recognition of
Italian
sovereignty
over
Abyssinia.
"
73
Following
an exchange of notes
between London
and
Rome, the first
meeting
between the two local
admini-
strations
took
place at
Borama
on
the 19th August 1936.
The British
were represented
by Captain Long, District
Officer, Borama
and
the Italians by Gualdi..
commanding
74
officer of
the frontier-section
of
the Ogaden.
Gualdi
outlined
Italy's border
policy as
being
(a)
to
prevent
71. C. O. 535/127/46011 Treasury to C. O. 14/1/1938.
72. C. O. 535/115/46011 Plowman to C. O.
4/6/1936.
73- Ibid. Minute by Lee, Principal in the C. O.
74. For the
sake of simplifying matters,
the term
"Italian
territory"
and all
that
goes with
it,
will
be
used
to
apply,
in
addition
to the Italian Somaliland Colony, to
the Ogaden,
with effect
from 1936.
514P 9
armed
tribes from
crossing
into Italian territory (b)
British tribes
crossing
the border for the
purpose of
grazing andwatering
their
animals must
leave their
arms
behind
or
deposit them
at
the
nearest
Italian
post
(c)
Tribes
entering
Italian territory
must proceed along
prescribed
tracks
and must graze
in
prescribed areas.
(d)
Certain
areas, such as
the Gukti-Medir
zone, were
to
be
preserved
for tribes
residing
in the Ogaden
and closed
to British
subjects.
(e)
All British
subjects entering
75
Italian territory
must obtain permits.
Long tried to
protest against some of
these
condi-
tions but
was
informed that this
was
the
policy
dictated
er u
by hi
e uthorities and could only
be
altered
by the
same.
7N--
evertheless,
Long's
reservations, particularly on
the idea
of prescribing
tracks
and grazing areaso would
be
communicated
to Mogadishu.
76
A
second meeting was
held.,
at
Britain's
request, eight
days later, but Gualdi
had
received no authorization
to
offer anything new.
The
meeting ended
in
a stalemate.
77
The failure
of
the Italians
and
the British to
reach an acceptable
formula
meant
that there
could
be
no
remedy
to the desperate
plight of
the British tribes.
75. Annual Colonial Report, British Somaliland Protectorate,
for 1936 No. 1815. It
must
be
explained
that the
negotia-
tions
related
to the Ogaden
and not
the Italian Somaliland
Colony. Italian
policy
in the latter territory
remained
one of closing
the border.
76. Before the Italians had firmly
established
their
authority
in Addis Ababa, the Ogaden
was administered
from Mogadishu.
77. C. O. 535/116/46oll Minutes
of a meeting
held
at
Borama
on
27/8/1936 between
representatives of
the Italian
and
British Governments
(Encl.
in Plowman to C. O. 12/9/1936).
520
Their
problems were aggravated
by
a severe
drought
which
hit the Protectorate in the latter
part of
1936. Starva-
tion., inter tribal fighting
and
looting
were
the
order of
the day. The desperate
situation was underlined
in
a
letter from
a number of
Dolbalianta
elders
to the
adminis-
tration:
"We
have to describe to
you
that the
present
Dair
(hot
season) appears
to be bad
as no
much rainfall within our
territory. However,
the Dair is
much
better beyond the British
boundary, therefore
we are
forcibly departed
from
our
territory, for the
sole purpose of
grazing outside of
it. With
regard
to
such
grazing we
have been told by His Excellency
the Governor that there
will
be
no prohibition
of any of
the Governments to the
natives
for
grazing purposes
...
Relating to this
encourage-
ment given
to
us
by
our
kind Government
we
have
proceeded and
live boldly
outside
the Protectorateo
at
Armale, in
which
the Italian Bandas have
arounded us
(sic),
by
which
they
worried us
and
frightened
us.
We believe
we are correct
if
we say
that H. M. Government
are quite aware
of
the lies
of
the Italian Bandas,
of
how they
used
to do
after
they trouble
us, especially
that the
mischief
is
always made
by the
British
subjects
...
Italian Banda did
not
respect
the immunity
granted
to the British
tribes. As
your
Lordship
are aware we are
British
subjects,
therefore
we are under
the
impression that
we entitled
to
get protection
from
our
kind Government,
so we
beg to know how
this
will
be
obtained.
"
78
The
situation was serious enough
to deserve
an
inter-departmental discussion. A
meeting
between the
Colonial Office
and
Foreign Office
was
thus
convened
in
November 1936,
and
Capt-. Long, then
on
leave,,
was
invited
to take
part.
It
was at
this
meeting
that the
essential
78. C. O. 535/116/46011 Dolbahanta
elders
to the British
Government,
8/10/1936 (Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O.
24/lo/1936).
521.
differences between Britaints dual interests
-
local
and
international
-
came
to the
surface.
It
appears
that,
with
the
passage of
time, the Colonial Office
and
the
Somaliland
administration,
having had to deal
with
the
Italians in
matters affecting
Ethiopian territory,
were
becoming
more accommodating
towards the Italians than
Britaints
policy
in the League
of
Nations
seemed
to
permit.
There
was a growing
tendency for the Colonial Office,
and
especially
the local
administration,
to treat the Italian
authorities
in Ethiopia
as
if it
were
the legitimate
Government
of
that
country,
forgetting that this
was
by
no means
Britaints
position on
the
arena of
international
politics.
In February 1936, for
example,
Lawrence
was
advocating
formal
negotiations with
the Italians
with a
view
to
rectifying
the
southern
border
of
the Protectorate
on
the lines
of
the Somali
grazing and watering rights.
He,
wrote,
"It
is
obvious
that territorial
rectification
is the
only effective remedy
for the impossible
situation
-
it
can
hardly be described
other-
wise
-
created
by the Anglo-Ethiopian frontier
which passes
through the
recognized and
indis-
pensable grazing
and watering areas of several
of our nomadic
tribes. The
existing arrangement
whereby
these tribes have treaty
rights
to
graze
and water
their
stock
in Ethiopian territory is
a palliative which
has
worked
fairly
satisfactorily
up
to the
present.
....
Circumstances have thus
combined
to force
our
hands,
and
I
would urge
with
the
utmost seriousness,
that
we must at
the
earliest suitable opportunity and
before it is
too late,
make every effort, not only
in the
interest
of our
tribes, but
also
in those
of
future
neighbourly relations on
the frontier, to
secure
for these tribes
a sufficiency of
terri-
tory to
enable
them to
remain constantly under
our exclusive
jurisdiction
...
"
79
79. F. O. 371/20168o 188-191 Lawrence to Thomas 12/2/1936
-
Quoted by David Hamilton,
"Ethiopia's
Frontiers
op. cit. P.
110).
r LI
4
During the inter-departmental
meeting,
Long
reiterated
this
view.
He
showed no sign of appreciating
the fact that Britain's
attitude
in the Leage
of
Nations
made
it imperative for her to favour
and
insist
on a
local
and
informal
approach.
The Foreign Office,, found
it
necessary
to
remind
the
meeting
that the Somaliland
problems must
be
considered
in the
context of
the Anglo-
Italian
relations
in
general:
"it
was conceivable
that
ultimately
it
would
prove
feasible to
negotiate a
territorial
adjustment with
Italy
whereby
British Somali-
land
would acquire
the
grazing areas,
but
clearly no such arran
at
the
present
time
,
gement was practicable
*
80
It is
worth mentioning
that,
actually,
Anglo-
Italian
relations
in Addis Ababa, let
alone
in Europe,
were
far from
smooth.
As
a
demonstration
of
dis-
pleasure with
Italyts
conquest of
Ethiopia, Britain
had, for
example, reduced
her Legation in Addis Ababa
to the
status of
Consul-General,
with
the
express
duty
of protecting
British
personnel and material
interestsy
while
ignoring,
as
far
as practicable,
the Italian
regime
there. Then in September 1936
another row erupted over a
request
-
made
informally,
of course
-
by Britain
for the
extradition
from Harar to Berbera
of a
British
Somali
subject who was wanted
for legal
prosecution.
The Italians
I
had
no objection
to
obliging
the British in the
matter
provided
the latter-made
a_formal application
in
accordance
80.
C. O. 535/116/46011 Minutes
of an
inter-departmental
meeting
held
on
20/11/1936 in the Colonial office, to,
discuss the
situation
in Ethiopia
and
Somaliland.
523
with
the Anglo-Italian Treaty
of
1873. As
complicity
with
Italy's
condition would
have implied British
recog-
nition of
Italyts
claims
to
sovereignty
in Ethiopia,
London
sent
instructions that
no
formal
request should
be
made.
The
criminal, remained at
large
and
the
matter
was
laid to
rest.
81
At the beginning
of
1937 Anglo-Italian
relations
underwent
further
strain when
Italy decided to
expel one
of
the
oldest and most prosperous
Indian-British firms in
Ethiopia, the Mohammedally Trading Company, for
reasons
un1mown and,
indeed,,
unexplained
to the British Consul-
General.
82
An inter-departmental
meeting was
held in
London to
consider analogous retaliatory measures against
Italy, but,
after
thorough deliberations, it
was resolved
to
shelve
the
matter altogether.
It
must not
be
presumed
that the Foreign Office,
by issuing the
warning
it did
at
the inter-departmental
meeting, was not alive or sympathetic
to the difficulties
faced by the Somali
nomads and
the local
administration.
But the
problem was one of reconciling
Britain's
general
policy with what was required of
her
on
the local
scene
-
smiling at
Italy in Somaliland,
while snarling at
her
elsewhere.
Britain's
attempt
to do both
-
or rather
her
success
in doing
neither
-
had
already won
the Government
81.
C. O. 535/117/46oll Plowman to C. O. 26/9/1936.
82.
C. O. 535/122/46011 The British Consul in Harar to
H. M. Consul-General
in Addis Ababa, 13/3/1937
(Encl.
in H. M. Consul-General to F. O. 16/3/1937)
52A,
censure
in Parliament. In December 1935, for
example,
Clement Attlee
observed, with
biting truth, that
"the
trouble
with
the Governmentts foreign
policy
is its duality; the fact that
you
have
not a single
line
of policy
but the
constant
interweaving
of
the imperialist
and
the
League
of
Nations
policies.
"83
Be that
as
it
may,
the
primary concern of
the
inter-departmental
meeting of
November 1936
was
to find
a solution
to the
problems caused
by Italyfs
negative
attitude on
the
question of
the Somali
grazing and
watering rights, a
factor
which
had
already
led to
a
deadlock in the local discussions. Long,
speaking with
a more
informed knowledge
of
the local Italian
officials
than
any one else at
the
meeting,
intimated that the
only
way
Britain
could persuade
Italy to
adopt a more accommo-
dating
attitude was
to
offer
them
a substantial, quid pro
quo.
The Colonial Office
and
Long
suggested
that dis-
cussions with
Italy
should
take
place
in Rome between
representatives of
both
countries.
This
was
justified
by the
argument
that
a
local
approach
had
proved
inade-
quate.
The Foreign Office, however,
was uneasy about
the
prospect of conducting
discussions
with
Italy
at such
84
a
high level. Could the
whole matter not
be finalized
between the Italian
authorities
in Addis Ababa
and
the
British Consul-General? Roberts, the Consul-General,
on
being
asked whether
this
was
feasible,
was pessimistic
about
the
proposal.
It
would end
the
same way
the Borama
83.
The Parliamentary Debates
(authorized
Edition)
volume
VXII 19th December 1935
(Wyman
and
Sons Ltd)
columns
128-136.
84.
C-0-535/116/46011 Minutes
of an
inter-departmental
meeting
held in the C. O.
on
20/11/1936
to discuss
the
situation
in Ethiopia
and
Somaliland.
523-
discussions had
ended.
85
He
preferred
the Rome-alter-
native.
While Rome
was
being
approached with a request
to have the discussions
conducted
in Rome, developments
on
the local
scene
took
a
turn for the better. Italian
officials
from Harar
visited
Berbera
and, at an
informal
meeting with
the Treasurer,
expressed
Italy's
wish
to
resume normal
trade
relations
between Ethiopia
and
the
British Somaliland Protectorate. In
return
they
were
quite prepared
to
soften
their
attitude on
the
question
of grazing rights.
Lawrence
reported:
"prospect
of reaching an agreement
locally
appears
to be fairly
promising and you may
decide therefore to
It
hold in
a6eyance proposal
to
meeting
in Rome.
86
It
was already
too late, for the Italian Government had
already accepted
the
proposal
for
a meeting
in Rome.
Besides, if the local Italian
officials' views represented
the feeling in Rome there
was no reason
for
not nego-
tiating
a package
deal
with
the highest
authorities.
Britain had,
of course,
to inform the Italians that the
impending discussions
would
be informal
and would
have
nothing
to do
with
the
controversy over
Italian
conquest
of
Ethiopia.
Plowman
and
Lee
were appointed
to
represent
the
85.
C. O. 535/116/46011 Roberts, H. M. Consul-General in
.
Addis Ababa to F. O.
(Encl.
in F. O. to C. O. 28/12/1936).
86.
C. O. 535/116/46011 Lawrence to C. O. 2/2/1936.
British
Government
and
they
arrived
in Rome
on
the
8th,,
January 1937. Discussions
commenced on
the llth
and were concluded at
the
end of
the
month.
Early in
February the two
sides signed what came
to be known
as
the Transit Trade
and
Grazing Rights Agreement, by
which
British Somali tribes
were
to
continue
to
enjoy
their
ancient grazing and watering rights
in the Ogaden,
in
return
for
which
the Italians
were
to
acquire
trading
rights and
facilities in the British Somaliland Protec-
torate. A few
conditions were attached
to the deal:
(a)
Walwal
was outside
the
permitted area of grazing
(b)
The British
tribes
would., as
long
as
they
stayed
in Ethiopia., be
subject
to Italian laws
(c)
No
armed
tribesmen
were
to
enter
Ethiopia
under any circumstances
(d)
Details
of numbers of people and stock were
to be
supplied
to the Italians in
advance of
the
crossing of
the border.
Conditions
attached
to the Transit Trade
part
of
the deal
were as
follows
:-
(a)
Berbera Port
was
to be
modernizeds
the
expenses
being footed by the Italians
and,
in
a
lesser
proportion,
the British
(b)
The trade
was
to
go
by
the Berbera-Hargeisa-Jigjiga; Zeila-Borama-Jigjiga and
Zeila-Aisha roads.
(c)
The Italians
were
to
Pay customs
duties
not much
in
excess of
th6
cost of maintaining
the
facilities.
(d)
The
cost of constructing wharves and
warehouses
was
to be footed by both
countries.
(e)
The Italians
were
to bear the
cost of modernizing
the
roads or constructing new ones
to facilitate trans-
portation of
their trade
goods.
The Agreement
was
to
5 2'7
last two
years
before
coming up
for
review
and possible
renewal.
87
The
conclusion of
this Agreement
completed,
so
far
as
British Somaliland
was concerned,
the Italian
con-
quest of
Ethiopia. The
persisting controversy on
the
international
scene as
to the legitimacy
or otherwise of
Italian
occupation of
Ethiopia
was
thenceforth
of rela-
tively little importance to the Protectorate. For
once,
the British
administration could, without
hesitation,
demand
redress
for the
wrong
doings
of
the Somali tribes
across
the border. Having
given
the Italians trading,
facilities in the Protectorate
and obtained reciprocal
concessions on
the
question of grazing rights,
there
was no point
in
refusing
to discuss
other problems'
immediately
affecting
the
peace and welfare of
the
tribes living
on
both
sides of
the border.
The Italo-Ethiopian
dispute
and
the
eventual
collapse of
the Ethiopian
regime,
had their
gloomy as
well as
interesting
aspects
in British Somaliland.
The
former have
already
been discussed in the
preceding
pages.
The
most
interesting
aspect of
the Italo-Ethiopian
conflict was
the-Somali
reaction
to the
quarrel and
the
eventual confrontation.
The
majority of
the British
Somali tribes
remained
indifferent;
a good number
took
up arms on
the,,
side of either of,
the belligerent forces,
87.
C. O. 535/125/46115
"Negotiations
in Rome
concerning
Grazing Rights
and
Transit Trade in Somaliland".
No. 1159., Africa
(East)
January 1937.
528
depending
on who was offering
the
most attractive
remun-eration. The
attitude of
the Somali
was summed
up as
follows:
"they
hate both Italians
and
Ethiopians.
The Somali looks
with
dismay
on
this
advance.
They
are
fully
certain
that they
would
be
disarmed
and
their
women
dishonoured
and
that
the Italian tribes
would
be
given preference,
and
their traditional
grazing, and more espe-
cially wells,, would
be
encroached on.
The
British tribes
were watching and saying
little
The
attitude
both
of
the tribes
who are
Lbitually
domiciled in the Protectorate
and
those
who make season migrations
in the
grazing
areas
in Abyssinian territory, is
one of almost
complete
indifference,
except where
their
personal
interests,
and
the
security and
maintenance of
their
stock are
threatened
Compare this
with
the
reaction
in South Africa:
"the
war
in Ethiopia had
a remarkable effect
in
South Africa. It
was
the
only political event
that had
roused
the Africans for
many years.
Many
realized
for the first time that there
existed still
in Africa,
an
independent
country
where
the black
man was master and
had his
own
king.
They
were
inspired by the idea
of
black
men
defending their
own country against white
aggressors
89
It is
quite evident
that the
romantic
ideas
cherished
by distant African
communities about
Ethiopia
were not shared
by the Somali. And this is
not surprising.
To the Somali, Ethiopia
was
indistinguishable from the
other
imperial
powers
the Somali had hitherto
encountered.
The
acquisition
by Ethiopia
of
the Ogaden in 1897
and
the
subsequent activities
of
the AnglO-Ethiopian Boundary
88.
C. O. 535/109/46011
Intelligence Minute
of
June 1935 by
Smith, District Officer, Burao,
(Encl.
in Lawrence to
C-o- 13/7/1935).
t
89.
Edward Roux, Time Longer Than Rope
(Madison)
1964,
p.
302.
II
'1
.
529
Commission; the Ethiopian
collaboration with
Italy
and
Britain in
suppressing
the Dervish
movement;
the
apparent
Ethiopian
contempt
for the
culture and religion
of
the Somali,
were
but the tip
of
the long
story of
Ethiopian injustice to the Somali. The
mere
fact that
the Ethiopians, like the Somali,
were
black
people was
not strong enough
to transcend the deeply
rooted
differences
and antagonism
between the two
peoples;
Pan-
Africanism
was still
in its
rudimentary stages
in the
Horn
of
Africa. It is
worth
the
effort
to
recall
that
when
Lij Yasu tried to bridge the
gap
by fraternizing
with
Islam,
and attempted
to
rally
the Dervishes
on
the
bandwagon
of
Pan-Africanism., he
was
toppled from
power
by
an
internal
coup.
Moreover, the
attributes
for
which
Ethiopia
was admired
in the distant
parts of
Africa
could
hardly
impress the Somali. For
example,
the fact that Ethiopia
had
a pompous monarch and one of
the
oldest
Christian
traditions in the
world..
if
advanced as reasons
for
expecting
Somali
support, could only produce revulsion.
Equally, it
could not
be
accepted
by the Somali
that
Ethiopia had
a
distinguished
record of resistance
against
European imperialism.
Their
role
in the
anti-Dervish
campaigns
has
already
been
cited.
Besidesp
their
victory
against
the Italians
at
Adowa in 1896
-a
factor
which
still stirred
the imagination
of
distant African
communi-
ties
-
and
their
resistance
in the 1930s
could
find
parallel
-
and even more
heroic
examples
in the little
publicized
Dervish history.
The Somali
reaction
to the Italian invasion
of
53
C
Ethiopia
was,
thus, limited to
anxiety about
the
physical
discomfort it
would
bring
or
to
optimistic
expectation of
the
material
benefits that
were
likely
to
accurW-.
And the latter
reaction was not mere
idle
sentimentality.
The trade boom
which
followed the
con-
clusion of
the Transit Trade
and
Grazing Rights Agreement
was such as
the Protectorate had
not experienced
before.
The Somali lost
no
time in
exploiting
the
new oppor-
tunities
provided
by the increased demand for their
raw
materials,
the
new market opportunities
in Ethiopia,
the improved
roads and
the high demand for their
man-
power.
In
addition,
the
effective administration which
the Italians
established on
the border
removed
the
earlier
hazards
which
had discouraged
enterprising
businessmen
from
venturing
into the
unadministered and
armed
tribes
of
the Ogaden. Drysdale
writes
that
"In
succeeding years mutual confidence
between
Italian
and
British
administrators grew as
practical experience of common problems
was
gained.
For their
part,
the British
welcomed
an'administration which could act promptly
in
the interests
of
the
nomads concernedo
and
this
continued until
the
outbreak of
the
war.
"
90
In the
once
"almost
total
absence of
Ethiopian
administra-
tionfl,,.,
the Italians
established a strong administrationo
built
roads and
disarmed the tribes. The
positive effects of
the Italian
occupation of
Ethiopia
were seen
in the
steady
90. J. Drysdale2 Somali Dispute
op. cit- P-
57.
91. Ibid.
P.
56.
increase
of
the Protectorate's
revenues and
the
corres-
ponding
decrease
of
the imperial Grants-in-aid.
For the
first time in the Protectorate's history,
no
Grant-in-
aid was needed
in 1938.
(see
graph).
The Grants-in-aid
were resumed
in 1939 because
of
the
economic
decline
caused
by the
outbreak of
World War II.
As for the Somali
response
to the
new oppor-
tunities, it is
reported
that
f1manywho
never
thought
of
trading
previously,
are
taking
caravans over
the border
and
doing
very well.
A
sign of prosperity
is
a
brisk
demand for building
plots
in Hargeisa toim.
t'
92
The improvement in the Protectorate's financial
standing
led to
serious
doubts
as
to
whether
there
was any
justification
for Britain to
persist
in
pursuing
the
policY
of stagnation.
Another
consideration was whether,
in
view
of
Italyts
radical economic and social policies across
the
border, Britain
could, without
damaging her
own reputa-
tion.,
remain static on
their
side of
the border.
93
A
breakthrough from
stagnation was
first
attempted
in 1933
when
Lawrence
protested against
the
reduction of
the
rank
of
the
officer administering
the Protectorate from
Governor to Commissioner. The
change
had
coincided with
Lawrence's
appointment
to the latter
post.
Rumours then
began to
circulate among
the Somali
and
the Italian
92. Annual Colonial Report, British Somaliland Protectorate,
for 1936 No. 1815.
93.1. M. Lewis, A Modern History
of
Somaliland
op. cit.
P.
90-101. This
gives a general picture of
the
vigorous
policies pursued
by the Fascist Govt. in the Italian
overseas colonies.
See
also
Robert Hess, Italian
Colonialism in Somalia
op. cit.
Chap. VII.
ilso
000
flog
000
117
Ae
I
%VI
sal cc 0
w,
1 113+ 1135 Iq3ý
1917
11.38 IJ39
/
I.
5 '3
officials across
the border that Lawrence
occupied
an
inferior
position
than that
of
Governor
and so
did
not
command or
indeed
deserve
as much respect as used
to be
accorded
his
predecessor,
Kittermaster.
One
of
the
people reported
to have been baffled
by the
change of
title
was
Cimmaruta, the Italian
officer
in the Mijjertein. He
could not understand
how the
whole
Protectorate
could
be
administered
by
a
"Commissioner"
whereas
the
northern parts of
Italian Somaliland
were
about
to be
placed under a
"High
Commissioner". On being
told that Lawrence
possessed
the
powers of a
Governor
and
deserved the latter's
respect,
Commaruta
apparently
became
even more confused.
Later
on.,
he
went
to
spy on
Lawrencets
uniform with a view
to
ascertaining whether
it
resembled
that
of
Kittermaster.
94
Seel
sympathized with
Lavirence
and appreciated
his
embarrassment.
At
a private
interview
with
Lawrenceo
the latter informed him that he did
not wish
to
raise
the
matter officially as
this
would
have
resulted
in his
being
accused of acting
for
personal motives.
He
waso
however.,
"much
concerned and said
he is
quite prepared
to
resign
if that
would
facilitate the
appoint-
ment of a successor with
Governor's
status
it
0 0.95
The
matter was not
taken
seriously
in the Colonial Office
at
that time. But the Italian
occupation of
the Ogaden
94. C-0-535/100/5889 Edward Barryo District Officero Burao,
to Lawrence 28/7/1933
(Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O.
3/8/1933).
95. Ibid. Minute by Seel, Principal
in the C. O.
.
534
led to
a reconsideration
of
the
status of
the
officer
administering
the Protectorate.
The Italians had just
appointed
General De Bono
as
High Commissioner in East
Africa,
and whispers
began to
circulate
that, by
compari-
son,
Lawrence
must
be
a
"Low"
Commissioner. It
was also
learnt that Italy intended to
appoint more
high
ranking
military officers
for the Ogaden.
Q6
These
would
have
dwarfed Lawrence in the
estimation of
the Somali
and
the Italians,
and
Britain's
prestige would
have
suffered
in the
process.
After further
representations
by Seelo
the title
of
Governor
was restored
in 1935. Although
its
abolition
in 1931 had been
connected with
the
policy
of stagnation,
its
restoration was not accompanied
by
a
formal
renunciation of
the
policy.
Nevertheless, the
forces
which
had
combined
to force Britain into
revert-
ing to the title
of
Governor
were soon
to force her to
revert
to the
policy of
development
as well.
A bold
move
in this direction
was made
in 1936
when
the
administration submitted
its
estimates of revenue
and expenditure
for 1937,
and provided
for
a number of
social services.
Some
of
these
were
(a)
The introduction
of a
Government
elementary school at
Berbera
-
Z1,585-
(b)
Veterinary
and
Agriculture: increase in field
staff.,
purchase of more
drugs
and equipment,
improvement
of
trans-
port
facilities
etc.
-
from Z2,532
(in
1936) to Z3o784
(1937) (c)
Public Works: the
recurrent expenditure
hitherto
stood at
Z6,777; it
was proposed
to increase it to Z7o332
96. C-01535/100/5889
minute by Seel,
18111193S.
(mainly
to
provide
for better
maintenance of water
supplies).
The
overall estimated expenditure
for 1937
showed an
increaseZ14,330
over
that
of
the
previous year.
Nevertheless
revenue
had
also
increased
from Z118,976 in
1935 to z164,356 in 1936.97 These
proposals were clearly
at variance with
the
avowed policy of stagnation,
but the
reaction
to them in the Colonial Office
was one of
bene-
volent sympathy rather
than
outright
hostility. Calder
lamented:
it
the
policy of running
Somaliland
on a
caý;
'and
maintenance
basis is difficult
...
our military advisors
insist
on a
high
stan-
dard
of efficiency
in the Camel Corps
and
the
maintenance of a
foreign
contingent; our
education advisors want something
done for
education; our agricultural advisors want
something
done for
agriculture and stock
....
I feel that
many of our problems will
be
solved once
the Italians
are
firmly
established
over
the border. The transfrontier tribes
will
be disarmed
and
the disarmament
of our
tribes
will
follow. It is then
agreed
that
the
sole purpose
for
which we need
troops
and
police
in Somaliland is to
maintain
law
and
order among our
disarmed tribes
...
drastic
reductions
in the
expenditure on
the Camel
Corps
should
be
possible
....
With
some of
the
money saved we might make a modest
,
beginning
with social services such as educa-
tion. Hence I
suggest we should carry on with
the
minimum change
for, the
next year or
two
till
we see
how things
work out
eea"98-
Following this
minute,
the
estimates were
trimmed down to
the
previous year's
figures,
and
the
projected social
97. C. O. 535/119/46075 Draft
Expenditure f
or-1937.
98. Ibid. Minute by Calder,
estimates-of
Revenue
and
Assistant Secretary, C. O.
536
services were scrapped
in the
process.
It
must
be
appreciated
that Calder's
minute
was written
in 1936
when
the
material advantages
accruing
from the Italian
conquest of
Ethiopia had
not
been fully felt. There
was a marked change of attitude
in the Colonial Office the following
year
-
thanks to
the
prosperity
brought
about
by the Transit Trade
and
Grazing Rights Agreement. Indeed., 1937
was
the turning
point
in the history
of stagnation.
In June
of
that
year,
the Colonial Office
approved
the
appointment of
an additional
European Agricultural Officer.,
99
and
two
months earlier
Dr. Buchanan., the Senior Medical Officer,
had
submitted a scheme
for the improvement
of medical
services.
The
scheme
involved
an
initial
outlay of
L519
and
9410
recurrent.
He intended to
recruit more
junior
staff,
introduce
a
training
course
for the
technicians
and
dispensers,
start a number of
field
dispensaries
and mobile medidal units.
He
explained
that
flat
present
the department
does
not reach
the
bulk
of
the
population
living
at a
distance
from the hospitals
except on rare occasions
when a medical officer
is
able
to tour the
countryside.
"
100
99. C. O. 535/124/46o94 c. o. to Mr. MacKinnono Assistant
livestock Officer, Tanganyika, 11/6/1937. Mr.
MacKinnon
was
the
officer appointed
to the Agri-
cultural
Departmento Somaliland.
100. C. O. 535/126/46126 Dr. Buchanan., to the Secretary to
the Goverment,
4/4/1937 (Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O.
10/5/1937).
537
The
proposals were appreciated
by Stanton, the Chairman,
Colonial Advisory Medical
Committee,
who recommended
their
adoption.
Defending the
proposals,
Stanton
wrote:
"I
am sure
that the items
are necessary
if
we
are
to have
even
the
outlines of a medical
department in Somaliland
...
I
understand
that the Italians
will make a
first
class
show of
their
medical services
in Abyssinia.
We
must
have
at
least the
rudiments of a
medical service
in SomalilandOf'
101
The
scheme was
incorporated in the Protectoratefs
estimates
for 1938
and endorsed
by the Treasury.
In the field
of civil administration,
the
end
of stagnation was
followed by
a series of proposals as
to how the
administration could
be
made more vigorous
and viable
than hitherto. One
of
the ideas
which made
an unexpected re-appearance on
the,
scene was one
for
amalgamating
Aden
and
British Somaliland. It
was
revived
by Lee, Principal in the Colonial Office,
saying
that the
earlier
impediments to
amalgamation
had been
solved.
In
particular,
the difficulty in the
past
had
been
caused-by
the fact that Aden
was administered
by
India
while
British Somaliland
was under
the Colonial
Office. Aden had
since
been transferred to the Colonial
Office,
air communication
between the two dependencies
had improved,
and
the Protectorate's financial
position
was
healthy. Lee then
went on
to
argue
that
101. Ibid. Minute by Stanton.
5)
"contacts
between Aden
and
Somaliland
are
very close.
Somaliland
used
to be
regarded
as an annexe of
Aden,
and our administration
there
was
largely began
so as
to
ensure a
meat supply
(and
good shooting)
for the Aden
garrison.
Aden is full
of
Somalis,
and
is
indeed
regarded
by the inhabitants
of
Somali-
land
as
their
metropolis
....
Somaliland
would,
in
effect,
be treated
as a province
of
Aden
under a
Provincial Commissioner.
"
102
Amalgamation,
according
to Lee,
would
be followed by the
pooling
together
of resources and manpower, give
the two
territories
a more efficient administration and
improve.
the trade. The inescapable
presence of
the Italians
across
the border
once more came
into the
picture:
"it
is
relevant
to
point out
that the
qualities required
in the Governor
of
Somaliland
are changing.
The
old primitive
days,
when
the Governor
was a semi-military
figure in
charge of a skeleton organization
holding down fanatic tribesmen by the force
of character., are rapidly passing, especially
with
the
advent of
Italian
administration
across
the frontier. More
and more compli-
cated problems are arising
-
again particu-
larly
as a resultof contact with
the Italians.
This demands
a more efficient
Government
machine
than there is in Somaliland
at
present.
"
10.3
The
need
for
more efficient administration
could not
be disputed, but it
was questionable whether
amalgamation was
the
answer, or
indeed
whether
it
was
economical.
Seelo
also
Principal in the Colonial Office,
was sceptical about
Lee's
proposals.
The Italian
occupa-
tion
of
Ethiopia, far from
emphasizing
the
need
for Lee's
scheme,
had
made
it
more
difficult. It
was contended
102. C. O. 535/126/46137 Memorandum,
on
the future
adminis-
tration
of
Somaliland by Lee, Principal in the C. O.,
n.
d. October 1937.
103. Ibid.
539
that., in the
circumstances created
by the Italian
con-
quest of
Ethiopia,
"Somaliland
is
now
less than
ever
before
connected with
British East Africa,
and
central
African territories
...... lo4
Cowell,,
an
Assistant Secretary, had
no
kind
words
either
for
amalgamation.
The Protectorqte
might again
lapse into its
old
financial
ailments and
thereby
saddle
Aden
with
its
problems;
"furthermore
it is
well
known that the
opposition of
the Indians in Aden
and
in the
Indian Legislature to the transfer
of
Aden
to the Colonial Office
was
largely based
on
a
belief that Somaliland had
not prospered
under
Colonial Office
administration.
After
some years experience of colonial administra-
tion in Aden
vie might venture
to
consider
some
tentative
proposals
for
an amalgamation
but I
should
be
reluctant
to
move so
far
within
the first few
years
...
"
105
This
put
the last
nail
into the
coffin of amalgamation.
Nearly two
years
later the Colonial Office
came up with
its
own plan
for improving the
administra-
tion. In
order
to devise
an administrative machinery
which suited
the Somali
social organization and customso
the Colonial Office intended to
send a qualified anthro-
pologist
to investigate the traditions
and
institutions
of
the Somali. The
study would yield
information
upon
which a new administrative system would
be based.
lo6
.
t
104. Ibid. Minute by Seel, Principal in the C. O.
105. Ibid. Minute by Cowello Assistant Sec. in the C. O.
lo6.535/134/46168 c. o. to Glenday 27/4/1939.
'01
540
Vincent Glenday, the
new
Governoro however,
on
being
asked
to
offer
his
opinion on
this
particular
idea,
expressed
doubts
as
to
whether
the
study would reveal
anything
that
was not already
known.
-Glenday
had his
own solution:
disarm the Somali. He
attributed
the
weakness of
the
administration
to the fact that the
Somali, being
well armed, were
inclined to defy the
Akils
and
the European
officers,
trusting in the
power
of
their
rifles.
107
In
point of
fact, the Idea
of
disarming the
Somali had been
engaging
the
attention of
the Colonial
Office
since
1937. In December
of
that
year,
the
Inspector General
of
the K. A. R., had
visited
the Pro-
tectorate
and
been
shocked
by the fact that the Somali
were allowed
to
possess arms;
this
was
107. C. O. 535/134/46168 Glenday to C. O. 11/5/1939-
Glenday had just been transferred from Kenya
where
he had
enraged
the'Somali by implementing
a policy
of
disarmament in the N. F. D.
and
by
advocating
that
the Somali in the
soufthern parts of
Kenya
should
be
be
classified as
"natives"
and
be
made
to
pay
the
same
taxes
as
the
rest. of
the Africans. When he
was
trans-
ferred to Somaliland the Somali
community
in Moshi
became
apprehensive
that he
would
try to force the
Somali to
write
their language in Roman
orthography.
They, therefore,
wrote
to their kinsmen in Burao
warn-
ing them
about
the
new
Governor:
"You
must not
think
that he
came
to Somaliland to
administer
justice
-
No!
NO! NO! but he
came
to
make you slaves as
those in
this
part of
Africa
....
This information
must
be kept
secret"
(Ahmed
Ali
and other
Ishaaq
elders
in Moshi
to Nadi, Burao, PC/NFD/4/7/2
-
Quoted by Romilly Turton
in
t'Ishaaq
Somali Diaspora
and
Poll-tax
agitation
in
Ken
a
1936-41". African Affairs
Vol-73
No. 292, July
197ý
P.
329)., His disarmament
policy
in Somaliland
angered
the-Somali;
one elder
talked
of
him
as
the
"worst
an
,d
most useless
Governor"
(interview
with
Ahmed Hassan Ibrahim
and
Mahmud Ahmed Ali
at
Hargeisa.,
5/9/1974).
541
"a
state of affairs which exists no where
else
in the British Empire,
except
in the
North-West frontier
of
India,
and
in
certain
outlying
districts
of
the Sudan
....
the
possession of
this large
number of rifles
must
be
a potential source of
danger to the
internal
security
""'1108
The disarmament
of
the Ogaden tribes had
emphasized
the
need
for Britain to follow
suit.
The desirability
of
disaTament
was accepted
by the Colonial Office in August
1938,
and
the
administration was
instructed to draw
up
log
plans.
The Arms
and
Ammunition Ordinancep 1939,
was sub-
sequently promulgated
in August 1939, declaring, inter
alia..
that
"no
native shall after six months
from the
commencement of
their
ordinance
be in
posses-
sion of any arms of war or ammunition
for the
same.
11110
The
response
to the disarmament law
was slow and clearly
hostile but,
with
the
exception of
"one
half-mad
wadad who
has been trying to
excite
the
young men of one of
the
sections
who
have
a
lot
of riflest',
ill
there
was nothing
like
an armed resistance
to disarama-
ment.
Stagnation in the field
of education ended, as
already pointed out,
in 1937
when
the Treasury
endorsed
108. C. O. 535/131/46133. Inspector General
of
the West
African Frontier Force
and
the Kingts African Rifles:
Report
on
his tour
of
the British Somaliland Protec-
torate, 15/12/1937.
109. MSS. AFR.
'
S.
605.
110. C. O. 535/129/46062: The Arms
and
Ammunition
Ordinance
1939.
111. C. O. 535/134/ý6i3j Glenday to C. o. 25/8/1939.
511
1

an edUtational programme
involving the
establishment
of
112
an elementary school at
Berbera. The background to
this breakthrough
was
briefly
as
follows: in 1935
SaMOU
Lawrence together
with some
ga-lri
graduates
from Khartoum
conferred and came
to the
agreement
that the
educational
backwardness
of
the Protectorate
was
deplorable.
Lawrence
then
wrote
to the Colonial Office
as
follows:
"time
has
came when
the Government
of
this
Protectorate
must provide educational
facilities
above
that
of
the Koranic
schools already
in
existence and my very earnest wish
is to
estab-
lish
a station school at
Hargeisa, Burao,
Erigavo, the Nogal, Borama, Zeila
and
Berbera.
"
113
He
applied
for Z7,350 to
cover
the first four
years.
114
After the
proposals
had been
studied
by the Advisory
Committee
on
Native Education,
"the
view was expressed
that it
would
be
preferable
to
start not with
7
schools
but
with a single station school at
Berbera
and
to follow this
up, as soon as practicable,
by the
establishment of
further
schools on
the
same
lines
....
The
experience gained
in
the
running of
the first
station school wouldo
it is thought, be
of
the
greatest value
in
connection with
the
establishment of other
schoolsil.
115
112. Mahmud Ahmed Ali, Hargeisa,
5/9/1974.
i13-
C. O. 535/113/46062
Lawrence
to C. O. 5/6/1935.
114. C. O.
830/3
Education Department
Report for 1938.
This
was
the Department's
first-report.
115. C. O. 535/118/46062
C. O. to Lawrence
26/11/1935.
1)
54
ej
In 1936, Lawrence
submitted a new scheme providing
for
the
establishment of
the first Government
elementary
school at
Berbera but,
as already
indicated, it
was
turned down by the Treasury.
With the improvement
of
the financial
situation
the
scheme was submitted again
the following
year and
approved as an
item in the
estimates
for 1938.
Lawrence's
objective was
ttto
devise
a system of primary education aimed
at
fitting the Somalis to
make
the best
use of
the
new conditions which
Western
civilization
is thrusting
upon
them,
and
to helping them to
control
the
course which
these
conditions are
likely to take
without at
the
same
time
alienating
them from the life, traditions,
and
environment
that
are
their
natural
heritage
-&a
116
Lawrence believed that the
goal
he had
set
him-
self would
be
achieved
by
ft
giving
the Somalis
and others a capacity and
taste for
employment
in
stock raising and agri-
culture,
industry
and commerce
...
to
enable
them to
appreciate realities and
become
more
useful members of
the
society
into
which
they
have been born
...
It
117
The
school would
be headed by
a
European
teacher
who
would,
in
addition,
be the Director
of
Education
in the
Protectorate,
with
the
special responsibility
of
laying
plans
for
more schools
in the interior. The
curriculum,
was
to include
writing., reading., arithmetic.,
hygiene.,
Islamic
studies,
Arabic,
geography,
historyo
stock raising,
agricultural'science
and
handiwork.
118
During these
early
116. c. o.
830/_3
Education Department Report
op. cit.
117. Ibid.
118. Ibid. The
construction of
the Berbera
school commenced
in October 1937,
and
Mr. Ellison
was appointed
its first
headmaster in
addition
to his bein the Director
of
Education. He
arrived
in April 1939.
stages of planning,
the
question of
the language
of
instruction did
not appear all
that important.
It
was
taken for
granted
that the Somali
would welcome
the
use
of
their language
-
which was at, any rate, up
to then
unwritten
-
as
the
primary
language
of
instruction,
with
Arabic
as a supplement.
Towards the
end of
March the District Officer
of
Burao
reported
the following
rather alarming news:
"On
or about
13th instant Ibrahim Egal
....
arrived
from Berbera; he brought
a
letter
with
him from the
religious
leaders
of
the
Qadiriyya
sect
in Berbera
addressed
to the
Saleheya
sect
in Burao
....
The
gist of
the
letter
was an appeal
for
opposition
to the
proposal
to teach Somali language in Roman
characters
in the Government
schools, as
this
would
tend to bring the boys
up as
infidels
and would
be harmful to the
Mohammedan
religion.
It
was suggested
in
the letter that the
education officer was
a missionary
in disguise. The Sheikh did
not obtain
the
support of all and a number
wished
to do
nothing
to impede the Govern-
ment educational policies
The
messenger
did
not stop
there; he delivered
an anti-
British-sermon in the
mosque and
forced
a certain
Elli
Saed,
a
headteacher in the local Koranic
school at
Burao, to
swear on
the Koran that he
would not allow
written
Somali to be taught in his
school.
120
That
some
three
months elapsed
before the
matter was reported
to London
underlined
the
administra-
tion's
under estimation of
the
strength and popularity of
119. C. O. 535/129/46o62 Smith,
bistrict
officers Burao,
to the Secretary to the Government 23/3/1938
-(Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O.
4/7/1936).
120. Ibid.
545
the
movement.
This delay in taking
any strong action
against
the
agitators apparently
increased the
popularity
of
the
resistance, and made
it
appear
that the
allega-
tions
made
by the
agitators were
true. In July,
Hargeisa
was reported
to have been
affected.
Some two
vradads, namely
Sheikh Abdillahi Aw Adan.,
and
Sheikh
Abdillahi Gaileh, delivered
emotional sermons
in the
Hargeisa Mosque
against
the
proposed
teaching
of
the
Somali language. So far
as
these Sheikhs
were concerned
it
was not only
Islam,
which was at stake
but
also
the
whole status of
the Somali
race.
They
saw
their
struggle
against
the teaching
of written
Somali
as
being
part and
parcel of
the
struggle
launched by the Ishaak
communities
in Kenya. The latter
were resisting
the Government's
attempt
to
classify
them
as
"natives";
they
claimed
Asiatic
status
It
partly on
the basis that Arabic
was
their
written
language
and
they feared that this
claim would
be
undermined
if
an alphabet
were
invented for the Somali language
....
They therefore
wrote
to British Somaliland
expressing
their keen
apprehension
that if
Somali
were
to be
written
in Roman
script,
as were many
Bantu languages, the Somali
everywhere would
be
reduced
to the
same
status of
the Bantu they despised.
"
121
By August the
movement
had
assumed
dangerous
propoxtions
and gained a substantial number of supporters.
A
meeting
had
earlier on
been held in the Colonial Office
to discuss
the
problem, and particularly
to decide
whether
or not
Lawrencets
suggestion
that if the Somali did
not
I
121. R. Turton
"Ishaak
Somali Diaspora
and
Poll-Tax
Agitation in Kenya 1936-4111, African Affairs Vol. 73P
No. 292 July 1974,
P.
329.
5i
want
the Somali language in the
school,
then the
whole
programme should
be
scrapped.
The Colonial Office had
decided to
overrule
Lawrence
and
instruct him to
omit
the teaching
of written
Somali from the
curriculum and
carry on with
the
rest of
the
project.
122
Ellison, the
newly appointed
Director
of
Education,
who was
described
as
"a
truly
educated men",
123
thought he
could persuade
the Somali to
change
their
attitude
by
going
to them
and re-assuring
them that the
teaching
of
Somali had
nothing
to do
with
Christianity
or race categorization.
He, instead,
made matters worse.
He
was
by then
popularly
knovin
as
"padre",
and
his denial
that he
was a
Catholic Father failed to
alter
the belief,
already
firmly
established,
that he
was.
Even by the
end of
his tour,
and
in
sPite of
what
he had
witnessed,
Ellison
was not convinced
that
the
administration should give way,
He
wrote:
"I
agree with'hislExcellency
that it
would
be
a sign of weakness
to
surrender
to the
Berbera leaders
over
the language
question
**
If
at
this
stage
Somali
were not
to be
ýegarded
as a compulsory subject,
the
Berbera leaders
would realize at once, and
doubtless take
advantage of
the fact that
they had
won
the day,
and
I think this
would weaken our position.
"
124
122. C. O.
830/3
Education Department Report 1938
op. cit.
123. Interview
with
Mahmud Ahmed Ali,
at
Hargeisa,
26/8/1974.
124. C. O. 535/129/46o62 Ellison to the Secretary to the
Government 31/8/1938
(Encl.
in Lawrence to
C. O.
2/g/1938).
I
.1t
In October the Colonial Office
reiterated
its
position:
Ellison
must proceed with
the
opening of
the
school and
125
forget
all about
the Somali language. It
was pointed
out
that the
good will of
the Somali
and
the
overall
advantages of opening
the
school outweighed whatever
concession
in
pride
the British
might
have to
make
by
giving way
to the Somali. On lst December 1938 the
Berbera Station
school was opened with
45
PuPilss
increasing to
60
within
the first two
weeks.
126
Ellison's
prediction about
the Somali inter-
pretation of any concession over
the language issue
was
soon vindicated.
The
opposition
to the Berbera
school,
far from diminishing, intensified. Plowman
received a
petition a
few days
after
the
opening of
the
school,
the
gist of which was
that.,
ff
as
long
as
the Somali teaching
and
the
padre
are
in the
school we will not at all accept
any
teaching in it,
as
this
gravely changes
our religion and pollutes our
land.
1'127
This
was considered absurd
by the
administration,
and
there
was no question of giving
in to'more irrational
demands. Moreover, by this time
a majority of
Somali
125. C-0-535/129/46062 C. O. to Lawrence, 2/10/1938.
126. C-0-535/129/46062 Plowman to C. O.
8/12/1938.
127. Ibid. Plowman
quoting parts of
the
petition.
548
elders
had began to dissociate themselves from the
move-
ment.
128
By the beginning
of
1939 the
administration
was
busy laying
plans
for
opening up more schools
in
the interior. In May Ellison
went on another extensive
tour to discuss
concreteýplans with elders., assess
the
cost and prepare
the
parents
for the
proposed educational
programme.
Part
of
his itinerary
was
Burao
where
he
arrived on
20th May
and proceeded
to inspect
a
local
Koranic
school which
he intended to
up-grade.
While the
inspection
was
in
progress.. an angry mob numbering nearly
200,
collected and
began to
stone
Ellison
and
his
com-
panions.
The latter
and
three
of
his junior
staff were
injured
and
buildings badly damaged. The District
Officer, Burao,
arrived with a
handful
of police and
ordered
the
crowd
to disperse, but in
vain.
He then
gave orders
to the
police
to
open
fire
on
the
mob and
three
people were
killed.
129
128. The
movement against
the Berbera
school
was not supported
by the
educated
Somali, the
employees of
the
administra-
tion
and a-substantial nuniber of
the
urban merchant class.
These
stood
to
gain
by the
programme,
and could not
be
easily
taken in by the
propaganda of
the Wadads. The
latter, it is
q uite conceivable, regarded
the
advent of
European
education as a
threat to their
spiritual and
mystical authority over
the hitherto
uneducated and un-
sophisticated people.
The
wadads
depended for their
livelihood
on charity,
"Siyaro"
from the
ordinary people.
SomQ
wadads used
to
exploit
the
people
by'demanding high
fees.,
and others often
turned
out
to be
part
time
crooks.
Early in 1976 the Somali Government
executed some
ten
wadads who were alleged
to have tried to frustrate
the
Governmentts
famine
relief measures, saying
that
some
of
the
measures were contrary
to Islamic law.
129. C. O. 535/132/46036 Smith.. District Officer, Burao to
the Secretary to the Government, 22/5/1939
(Encl.
in
Plovmzian to C. O. 22/5/1939).
F- I
5,19
A
commission which was
later
set up
to inquire
into the incident
confirmed
that the
movement
was engineered
by the
wadads who alleged
that Ellison had
gone
to Burao
to
proselytize and preach
Christianity.
The
ring
leaders
of
the
riot were
Sheikh Isman Nur
and
Haji Farah Omar.
The latterts
name will appear again
in
connection with
the
political agitation of
the 1930s. Ironically, the Burao
rising,
far from discrediting
and
discouraging the
educa-
tional
programme, strengthened
it. The
use of violence
was condemned
by the leading Sheikhs
and a majority of
the
elders.
Similarly, the Britishwere
encouraged
by
the
renewed support
to
go ahead with
the
plans.
Unfor-
tunately, these
were
interrupted by the
outbreak of
World War II
and
it
was not until
1942 that the British
were able
to
revert
to them.
130
It is interesting to
note some contrasts
between the
anti-education movement of
the 1930s
and
the
earlier anti-colonial movements such as
that
of
Sayyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan. The
most remarkable
difference
was
that the former
originated
from the
Qadiriyya
sect
based
at
Berbera,
whereas
the Sayyid's
movement was rurally
based
and
derived its,
support mainly
from the Saliheya
sect.
Another interesting difference
is that
whereas
the Qadiriyya
remained essentially
hostile
to the Sayyid, the
movement of
the 1930s
succeeded
in
,
130- Interview
with
Mahmud Ahmed Ali
at
Hargeisa
26/8/1974.
This
elder was with
Ellison
at
the time
of
the
Burao
rising, and was
injured by
stones
thrown by the
mob.
550
rallying
both
sects
behind the
same cause.
That the
move-
ment of
the 1930s transcended
the Saliheya-Qadiriyya
tra-
ditional
rivalry was an
indication
of
the
emerging spirit
of
Somali
nationalism.
The fact that the
new movement
was
urban-based rather
than
rurally-based underlined
the
growing
importance
of urban areas as
the
centres of
cultural, material and
intellectual
advancement, and
the
corresponding
decline
of
the importance
of
the
village.
With
urbanization, new
forms
of protest and
organization
began to
replace
the
violent methods of
protest;
it
was,
therefore,
not surprising
that the
violence at
Burao
was not only widely condemned
but it
also undermined
the
cause of
the
movement.
New forms
of
communication and new sources of
inspiration
were another
marked
feature
of
the later
movement.
The
contact
between the Somali in the Protectorate
and
those in
diaspora
was
becoming
more sophisticated and more
efficient.
Although the Sayyid had
also corresponded
with
his kinsmen in diaspora, it had been
more
in the
nature of rhetoric, propaganda and patronization
than
consultation and
brotherly
advice.
Whereas, therefore,
the Sayyid's
overtures
to the distant Somali
communities
were
from
an assumed position of superiority,
the later
communication
between the Somali in Kenya
and
those in
British Somaliland
were
between
equals sharing common
interests
and
fighting for the
same cause.
In the long
run,
the latter
was more effective
than
what obtained
in
the Dervish days.
The
rising at
Burao
was, actually,
the
climax
of a
long background
of political protest and attempts
at
political organization.
The
spearhead of
this'movement
was a certain
Haji Farah Omar
and
his
second-in-command
was
Jama Telephone. The latter
now
lives in America
as
an
American
citizen.
Haji Farah Omar had been deported
from the Protectorate in 1905
on account of
his
supposed
conspiracy with
the Dervishes. He
was Permitted
to
return
in 1909 but
was soon arrested and charged with
spying
for the Dervishes. He was
released after a
couple of years
but
was
later discovered to be
a secret
agent of
the Ethiopian Goverment. He
actually went
to
Addis Ababa in 1928, hoping to
meet
the Emperor but
was,
much
to his disappointment,
unable
to do
so.
Between 1933
and
1938 Farah
addressed over
thirty
petitions
to the Colonial Office,
complaining
about virtually every aspect of
the British
administra-
tion. In September 1933, for instance, he
wrote a
memorandum, signed
by 217
people, protesting about such
things
as
the
"burden
of customs
duties"; lack
of educa-
tional facilities; lack
of employment opportunities;
neglect of agriculture; unfair administration of
justice;
introduction
of capital punishment and
brutality
of
police.
131
The Colonial Office
naturally sent
the
petition
back to Lawrence for his
comment
but the latter dismissed
131. C. O. 535/190/5886 Memorial by 217
petitioners
to the
Secretary
of
State for the Colonies
61911933.
Jama
Telephone's
real name
is Ismail Mohamed Siad.
all
the
allegations offhand.
"I
can say with safety",
he
wrote,
"that
the
petitioners
have
no right
to
speak as rep-
resentatives
of
the
natives of
this Protec-
torate".
132
Lawrence
was authorized
to inform Farah
and
Telephone
that future
petitions should
be
channelled
through the
administration rather
than
sent
directly to London.
The two
men paid no attention.
In November Haji Farah
Omar
wrote again:
"it
is
straightforward
fact to
express
the
deep
and unsupportable grievances of
the
British Somaliland loyal
subjects
before
Your Lordshipst
consideration
for
remedy
from the
unobtainable
heavy tribal fines,
vihich your
loyal
subjects
have
no means
of whatever
to
comply with,
the
suppres-
sive and
frightful
rulings of
the
present
Commissioner.
"
133
Lawrence
advised
the Colonial Office to ignore this
and
indeed
all subsequent petitions of
this kind.
Farahts
petitions,
however,
continued
to
arrive
in the Colonial Office. Between 1933
and
January
of
the following
year, some
fifteen
petitions
had been
received
in London. Cohen had to
admit
that
"Haji
Farah's bombastic
and metaphoric style
is
not without effect,
but the
subject matter
of
his
petitions cannot
be
so commended
....
the bulk
of
his
representations are misrep-
resentations, sometimes
frivolous
and often
malicious
...
We do
not
know
when
Haji Farah
Omar
will choose
to desist from, his dis-
gruntled outpourings".
134
132. C. O. 535/100/5886 Lawrence to C. O. 11/11/1933.
133. C. O. 535/100/5886 Haji Farah Omar to Secretary
of
State for the Colonies 20/11/1933.
134. Ibid. Minute by Cohen.
P.
Seel too felt that Farah Omar's
complaints
t1are
founded,
where not on pure unsupported
hearsa
T,
,
on malicious perversions of
the
facts.
135
Henceforth the Colonial Office
was
to ignore
every peti-
tion that
came
from Haji Farah Omar
and
his friend Jamar
Telephone.
On being informed
of
the Colonial Office's
decision Farah
sent a
bitter
protest:
"I
very much regret
that, being
a
known
elder
of
British Somaliland
who
invariably
under-
stand
the
past and
the
present situation of
his
motherland,
I
cannot
in
any circumstances
exaggerate what
is
substantially
true
and
known to
all
the
community of
British Somali-
land. Therefore
owing
to
my age of
63
1
am
not
in
position
to
address
to
your
Lordship
comments of unreal variety"
(s'c)136
Plowman, then
acting
for Lawrence.,
on
being
asked
to
say
what
he thought
of
Farah,
wrote:
"It
is
now
ten
years since
I
myself
had
dealings
with
this
person, and
to judge from
his
recent memorials
....
he is
suffering
from
advancing senile
decay.
11
137,
Farah's
attention was
temporarily diverted by
the Italo-Ethiopian
war.
In 1935 he left for Harar
and
enlisted
in the Ethiopian
army as
their
recruiting agent.
In 1938 he
re-appeared on
the Somaliland
scene with
renewed vigour.
His first
act was
to
send a
telegram to
London:
135. Ibid. Minute by Seel.
136. C. O. 535/102/25836 Haji Farah Omar to the Secretary
of
State for the Colonies, 2o/6/1934.
137. C. O. 535/102/25836 Plowman to C. O. 28/6/1934.
5,15
4-
"British
Somaliland loyal
subjects
lost
confidence with
this Government. They
suffer
suppressive raids
(sic)
unbearable
fines,
other
intolerable torture. Appeal for
immediate
protection
...
"
138
By this time,, the
controversy over
the language
question
was
becoming
a
hot issue,
and
he joined hands
with
the
wadads
in
opposing
the
educational programme.
The Burao
rising and
Farah's
subsequent arrest ended
his
political
career.
Earlier
on,
he had been denounced by
a number of
elders at
Burao
who regarded
Farah
as an
imposter.
139
Besides Farah's
movement, a number of political
clubs appeared on
the
scene
in the late 1930s
with
the
declared
purpose of pressing
the
administration.,
through
non-violent means,
to
provide more social services,
better
conditions of service, and
higher
prices
for their
produce.
In 1937, for
example,
the Somali Officials'
,
Union
was
founded by the Somali
employees of
the
adminis-
tration
with
the
aim of pressing
for higher
wages,
better
old age pensions, more opportunities
in the
administration
14o
etc.
The
merchants and
the farmers too formed
clubs
through
which
they
sought
to defend their interests
and
approach common problems
from
a united stand point.
141
The first
political party,
the Somali Youth Club,
was
formed in 1943.
138. C. O. 535/129/46036 Haii Farah Omar
"spokesman",
5/8/1938.
139. C. O. 535/129/46036 Elders
of
the Habr Toljaala
and
Habr Yunis, Burao, to the Secretary to the Government
(Encl.
in Lawrence to C. O. 3/9/1938).
140. S. Touval, Somali Nationalism
op. cit- P.
56-66.
141. Ibid. Chapt.
6.
555
Haji Farah's
political agitation was of small
significance compared
to Britain's
concern about
the
grow-
ing
strain
in her
relations with
Italy,
and
the
possible
repercussions of
this to the British Somaliland Protec-
torate. The Transit Trade
and
Grazing Rights Agreement
was
due to
expire
in February 1939,
and
Italy had
already
expressed
dissatisfaction
with
the Transit Trade
part of
the Agreement. Britain had benefitted from the Agreement
more
than Italy had,
not only
by having the British tribes
allowed
to
graze across
the border, but
also
by boosting
the
economy of
the Protectorate. For Italy, the
results
had largely been
a
disappointment. Her
work and contri-
bution towards the
modernization of
the
roads, construction
of warehouses and modernization of
the
ports,
had
cost
the
Italian Government
more
than
she
had
originally anticipated;
moreover,
the Italian hopes
of
finding big
and eager
markets
in Ethiopia
were
later discovered to have been
exaggerated.
142
Italy's
misplaced confidence
in the Transit
Trade
arrangements and
her
exaggerated-optimism
in the
commercialýpotentials of
Ethiopia
came
to light during
the first two
years of
the Transit Trade
and
Grazing
Rights Agreement. One
major
disappointment had been the
failure
of
Britain
and
Italy to form
a consortium
to
handle the
commercial
traffic
at
the
ports, as
had been
stipulated
in the Agreement. Efforts to
persuade private
firms to take
on
the
contract were a
failure. Most
of
the firms
were unwilling
to
plunge
themselves into
an
142. David Hamilton.,
"Ethiopia's
Frontiers
(unpublished
Thesis)
op. cit. p.
114.
enterprise which might come
to
an end within
two
years,
this being the first duration
of
the Agreement.
Others
were
doubtful
of
Italyts
ability
to
govern
Ethiopia for
an appreciable
length
of
time. In the
circumstances,
the Italians
sent
two
young officers
to liase
with
the
Berbera
administration
in handling the
goods.
This
arrange-
ment
left
a
lot to be desired. Difficulty
was also
experienced with
labour. There
were not many
Somali
willing
to
work
in the
uncomfortable weather of
Berbera
port, and
the few
who came up
for
enrolment often proved
difficult to discipline
and regulate.
During the hot
season
(July
to October) business
nearly always came
to
standstill.
143
Besides the
manpower and economic problems,
Italy
was
becoming increasingly disenchanted
with
Britain's double
standards
-
waving an olive
branch in Somaliland
while
continuing
to
condemn
her in London
and elsewhere.
One
such
an
incident
which
did
not go
down
well with
the Italians
was
a comment
in the House
of
Commons by Clement Attlee, M. P.:
"the
condemnation
by the League
of
Nations
of
the Italian invasion
of
Ethiopia
still stands.
H. M. Government have declared that they have
no
intention
of condoning
it,
yet
they
allow
the
Italians to develop
our
harbours
of
Berbera
and
Zeila
and
to build
roads
through British Somali-
land
which enable
them to
supply
the troops
which are
trying to beat down the heroic
resis-
tance
of
the Abyssinians.
"144
143. C-0.535/125/46115 Transit Trade Report for the
quarter
ending
30/9/1937.
144. Parliamentary Debateso House Of Commons
(Official
Report) Vol. 338 No. 156,26th July 1938
column
2956.
'J
g
There
was,
therefore,
a real
danger that,
on
the
expiration of
the Transit Trade
and
Grazing Rights
Agreement in February 1939, the Italians
would want
to
abrogate
it. This
was,
it
was
feared, likely to be
followed by the
closure of
the border to British tribes.
The Colonial Office feared
precisely
this,
and was
deter-
mined
to do
everything possible
to
safeguard
the
grazing
and watering rights of
the British Somali tribes. The
consensus of opinion
in the Colonial Office
was
that the
method of making periodic arrangements with
the Italians
was unsatisfactory and risky.
The Italians
might at some
point refuse
to
reach any arrangement.
Worse
still,
they
might use
their-power
over
the livelihood
of
the British
tribes
as a weapon
for blackmailing Britain
and
demanding
fundamental
concessions
by
way of a quid pro quol.
It
was
thus felt that the
permanent
transfer
of
the
grazing areas
used
by the British tribes to the British Somaliland Pro-
tectorate
was
the
only reasonable solution.
Thus,
Lawrence's
policy advocated several years
back
was vindi-
cated.
katurally,
Lawrence
was
delighted to
receive
this
suggestion, and
he
urged
the Colonial Office to lose
no
more
time in
seeing
to it that
negotiations with
Italy for
the
rectifi
.
cation of
the border
were opened.
145
In November 1938 the Foreign Office
was won over
to the Colonial Office's
views.
A joint
memorandum was
then
prepared
for the Cabinet:
f
145. David Hamilton,
"Ethiopiats
Frontiers
(unpublished
Thesis)
OP- Cit- P.
115.
5
"1)-
8,
"the
frontier line between the British
Somali-
land Protectorate
and
Ethiopia
as
defined
in
the Anglo-Ethiopian
Treaty
of
1897 had the dis-
astrous effect of
bisecting the traditional
grazing areas of
British Somaliland tribes.
Moreover,, it left
within
British territory
areas
of poor grazing, while at
the frontier there
begins
an area of superior grazing.
One
of
the
provisions of
1897 Treaty
was
that tribes
on
either side of
the frontier
were
to be free to
make use of
their traditional
grazing grounds
on either side
....
The Somaliland Government
found
an embarrassing problem
in the
administra-
tion
of
tribes
which were accustomed
to
spend
part of each year
in territory to
which a
British
officer
had
no right of access.
In the
early years
this did
not matter as
British
officers were accustomed
to
cross
the
undemer-
cated
frontier,
and,
in
effect,
to
administer
tribes in
what was really
Ethiopian territory.
The demarcation
of
the frontier in 1933-'34
put an end
to that
state of affairs"
146
It
was
then
suggested,
in the
same memorandum,
that Britain
could consider giving
the Italians, by
way
of a quid pro quoA
territorial
concessions
in the
eastern
parts of
the Protectorate, in the Bunder Mad
region, and
the Northern Frontier District. In
additiono
Britain
might modify
the Transit Trade
part of
the Agreement
with
aI view
to
reducing
Italy's financial losses.
ý,
The Cabinet
met at
the,
ýend
of
November to discuss the
proposals.
With the
exception of
the Colonial Office
and
the Foreign
Office, the
proposals were opposed
by
all'the other
ministries.
The Prime Minister, for
example,
hated the
prospect of seeing
British
subjects
being
"handed
over
like
chattels
to
a
totalitarian
state.
"
147
146.1C. O. 371/23373: Memorandum by F. O.
and
C. O.
on
Ethiopia
and
the
proposal.
to
rectify
the
southern
boundary
of
the
British'Somaliland Protectorate, November 1938,
p.
12.
147. C. O. 535/130/46115 Extract from the
conclusions
of
the
Cabinet
meeting
held
on
WednesdaY
30/11/1938.
(
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0
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560
He
also
feared that
any exchange of
territory
with
the
Italians
would cause an uproar
in Parliament, the Press
and public.
The War Office
was also opposed
to the
pro-
posals, especially
that
of ceding certain parts of
the
Northern Frontier District. The latter transfer
would
have been
resisted
by the tribes
affected and would also
have
meant giving
the Italians
a strategic
base for
threatening Kenya
and
Uganda.
148
It
was resolved,
in
view of
the
seriousness of
the
subject,
that the
question should
be
referred
to the
Chiefs
of
Staff
and
then to the Foreign Policy Committee
for
a more
detailed
scrutiny.
In the
meantime,
Italy
was
to be
requested
to
agree
to the
renewal of
the Transit
Trade
and
Grazing Rights Agreement for
six months
from
the date
of
its
expiry
in February 1939, but
no mention
of
the
proposed exchange of
territory
and rectification
of
the boundary
was
to be
made.
To Britain's
surprisep
Italy
agreed
to the
renewal of
the
agreement without
demanding
more concessions.
149
By the
middle of
1939
no
decision had
yet
been
reached
in London
with regard
to the
proposed rectifica-
tion
of
the border
and cession of
territory to Italy. It
was, moreover,
becoming
progressively more
difficult for
Italy
and
Britain to
see eye-to-eye on many
international
questions;
Italyts
entry
into the World War II
on
the
side
of
Germany
was now a question of
time. In the
circumstances,
148. Ibid.
149. C. O. 535/130/46115 Earl
of
Perth,, H. M. Ambassador
in
Rome, to F. O. 13/l/1939.
5 F) I
Britain tried to
persuade
Italy to
renew
the Agreement
for
a second
time
after
its
expiry
in August 1939,
without success.
Britain's
offer
to
modify
the Transit
Trade
and
Grazing Rights Agreement
was
ignored. Yet,
significantly,
Italy did
not close
the Ethiopian border
as
had been feared in London. In June 1940 Italy
entered
the
war on
the
side of
Germany,
and
invaded British
Somaliland two
months
later. The
earlier plans
between
France
and
Britain to
resist
the Italians from Jibuti
had had to be
cancelled after
the French Governor
of
Jibuti had defected to the Vichy Regime. The Protec-
torate
was,
therefore., to be
abandoned:
"From
a small eminence where
the Rest House
stands
I
watched
them
come, with my
handful
of police
......
We had
apparently
been
spotted and were greeted with a
burst
of
fire
....
but there
was nothing we couldcbs
so we crept silently away
down the hill
merging
into the bush beyond the
aerodrome
-*-*
The Italians did
not pursue us
for I
sat on a
hill top in the
vicinity and
watched with
bitter thoughts
more alien
troops
pouring
into
my station.
"
150
150. MSS. AFR. S.
605:
account
by Walsh, the District
Officer, Borama, September 1940.
EPILOGUE
5 F)
Looking back
at
the history
of
the Horn
of
Africa during the first half
of
the twentieth
century,
the
most striking phenomen
is that
of
the division
of
the Horn
of
Africa
and
its
parcelling out
between
various
imperial
powers.
Connected
with
this
process,
and as a result of
it,
was a growing sense of
Somali
consciousness.
The
most outstanding articulator of
this
consciousness was
Sayyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan;
it
was
he
who
first
made a serious and nearly successful
attempt
to
rally
the Somali
on
the bandwagon
of
Pan-
Somalism. Indeed, Touval describes him
as
the founder
of modern
Somali
nationalism; and although
he
was so
regarded
by the Somali
a
decade
or so ago,
their
atti-
tude has
of
late become
rather ambivalent.
He is,
needless
to
say, praised
for his
struggle against alien
rule and respected
for his
aevotion
to Islamo but he is
also partly
held
responsible
for the
relative
backward-
ness of
Somalia today. For twenty
yearso
the British
did
nothing
but fight him. And
when
he
was eventually
,,
defeated his
conservative
ideas lingered
on and continued
to frustrate Britaints
attempt
to bring the Protectorate
in line
with
her
other colonial
territories. Italian
Somaliland had
made considerable progress
during the
Fascist
period,
but
even
here the
colony
lagged behind
British
colonies elsewhere
in Africa. When the British
military administration replaced
Italian
rule
in 1941,
there
was only one
Government School in the British Pro-
tectorate
and
thirteen in the former Italian Somaliland
56
31
Colony
(I.
M. Lewis, The Modern HistojZ
of
Somaliland,
op. cit., P.
119.
The Somali
of
to-day
are, above all, embarrassed
by the Sayyidts
views on
tribalism. While
manifestly
denouncing tribal divisions in his Dervish
movement
he,
at
the
same
time, took
every opportunity
to
exploit
tribal
rivalry.
Thus, the
means
he
used
in
gaining
support were
the
antithesis of
the
nationalist aims
he had
set
himself to
achieve.
The bulk
of
his
poems
are
devoted to
scorning and
insulting those tribal
sec-
tions he despised
either on account of
their
geneological
inferiority
or
their
negative response
to his doctrines.
In
view of
the tremendous
effort
being
made
today to
eliminate, or at
least
minimize,
tribal
rivalry,
the Sayyid's ideas
and style are
thoughtto be
archaic and
divisive. Not
surprisingly,
his
works were
recently
banned by the Government
of
the Somali Demo-
cratic
Republic. Similarly, the
reputation
the Sayyid
enjoyed
during the, first
years of
independence is
also
being
played
down.
In the 1930's Somali
nationalism,
began to
adopt
new strategies and receive new sources of
inspiration.
one
of
these
was
the demarcation.,
on
the
ground, of
the
boundaries
as stipulated
in the treaties
of
the
nine-
teenth Century. For the first time, the
real meaning of
the
partition of
their
country
dawned
on
them; their
attempt
to
reverse
this historical factor,
either
tnrougn
violence or petitions, was already
too late. Nevertheless,
the
unification of
the Somali
country
has
since remained
the
most persistent rallying
point of
the Somali
national
56
.
11
consciousness
(the
five-point
star
fixed in the
middle
of
the Somali Republic
national
flag
symbolizes
the five
territories
constituting
the Greater Somalia,
namely
British Somaliland, Italian
Somaliland, French Somaliland,
the Ogaden,
and
the N. F. D.
of
Kenya).
The Somali drive for
a
Greater Somalia
was
given
fresh
momentum
during
and after
the Second World
War. The dramatic
occupation of
the Horn
of
Africa by
Italy in 1940
was only exceeded
by the drama
of
her
capitulation.
Within
eight months,
Italy had lost
not
only
British Somaliland, but
also
her
own
Somaliland
Colony
and
Ethiopia. The French Colony
alone
held
out
under a
Vichy Governor
until
December 1942. The
Emperor
of
Ethiopia
made a
triumphant
return
to Addis
Ababa in May 1941, but the Ogaden
and
the Haud
remained,
for
a
time,
outside
his jurisdiction. The British
declared them
a
"Reserved
Area",
and placed
it
under a
military administrative
Officer based
at
Jigjiga.
Italian Somaliland
and
the British Protectorate
were
placed under
two
military administrations.
Thus,,
with
the
exception of
French Somali-
land,, the Horn
of
Africa
came under one colonial master
at
the
end of
the
war.
In turn., this intensified their
inter-territorial
contacts,
leading to
a greater exchange
of political
ideas; the iron
curtain which
had hitherto
isolated Italian-ruled territories
was
lifted. To
under-
stand
the
atmosphere
in Somaliland
at
this time,
one
must remember
that the British
were anxious
to
emphasize
their
role as
liberators
of
Somaliland from the totali-
tarian
rule of
Italy. Thus,
great pains were
taken to
565
avoid unpopular
and restrictive
policies which might
blur the difference between the Italian
rule and
that
of
the liberators.
This
sort of atmosphere was condu-
cive
to
an upsurge of
Somali
nationalism;
the Somali
aspirations
for
a
Greater Somalia,
which
had began to
seek an outlet
just before
war., was given a new
lease
of
life.
The
existence of one colonial master encouraged
political organization
totranscend the
colonial
borders.
The first
political party,
the Somali Youth Club,
emerged
in Mogadishu in 1943
and at once opened offices
in Berbera
and
Jigjiga. However, in the British Somali-
land Protectorate, there
was more enthusiasm
for develop-
ment
than for
political agitation.
After the
war,
the
relative
baclz-tardness
of
the Protectorate
was embarras-
sing
to the
northern
Somali; by 1942 the Somali
were
literally begging the
administration of
the British
Somaliland Protectorate to
open more schools and
intro-
duce
other social services.
The
earlier conservatism
of
the
wadads was
discredited. In fact.. the
reception
accorded
to the British
was propitious:
On its
own
initiative, the Camel Corps
reported
for duty
armed
with
Italian
weapons and proceeded
to disarm the
rest
of
the
civilians; a majority of
the
wadads announced
their
acceptance of
the teaching
of
the Somali language,
and
the
administration was successfully persuaded
to
implement its long deferred
educational
programme.
By
the
end of
the
year
three
more schools were opened
in
the interior. In 1945 the British Goverment
authorized
a new survey of
the Protectorate's
resources,
r.,
366
At the
end of
the
war,
the
question
of what was
to be done to the
"Reserved
Area"
and
the former
Italian
Somaliland became
a
burning issue in the U. N.
and
in the
Horn
of
Africa. Already,
Ethiopia
was pressing
for the
return of
the
"Reserved
Area".
refusing
to
consider all
the
other alternatives
Britain tried to dangle before
her. Ethiopiats demands
provoked counter-protests
among
the Somali throughout the Horn
of
Africa. Then in 1946
the Somali
aspirations
for
a
Greater Somali
were given
fresh hopes by
what came
to be known
as
the Bevin PlanBtviA
believed
and advocated
that the interests
of
the
Somali
people would
be best
served
if the Somali terri-
tories
were united, preferrably under a
British trustee-
ship.
The
plan was welcomed
by the Somali but denounced
by Ethiopia. Russia too
opposed
it,
accusing
Britain
of
harbouring
imperial
motives.
The Plan
came
to
nothing..
and
Ethiopia
resumed control of
the
"Reserved
Area" in
1948.
A Four Power Commission
was,
in the
meantime,
formed
consisting of
France, Britain, Russia
and
the
U. S. A., to
visit
Somalia
and ascertain
the
wishes of
the
Somali
People.
While
arrangements were underway
for the
Commission to
proceed
to Mogadishu, the Italian
community
in Somalia had
organized a pro-Italian consortium which
advocated
the
return of
the former Italian Somaliland to
its former
master as a
trust territory. This
measure was
opposed
by the
majority of
the Somali but
on
the
evelof
the
arrival of
the Commission, the Italians had
managed
to
mobilize a considerable
following.
Consequently, the
Commission
was greeted
by demonstrators
and counter-
567
demonstrators;
a riot eventually
broke
out and resulted
in the loss
of several
lives.
The Four Power Co=ission
reported
its findings
to the Council
of
Foreign Ministers. Notwithstanding the
manifest opposition
to
a return of
Italian
authority,
the
Four Power Commissibn decided in favour
of
trusteeship
under
Italy. This
was endorsed
by the U. N.
at
the
end
of
1949. At the beginning
of
1950 Italy
resumed
her
administration of
her former
colony, under
U. N. tutelage,
with a
target
of
independence
after
ten
years.
Of
all
the Somali territories,
only
French
Somaliland
remained, as ever
before,
outside
the
stream
of general political events.
The French
policy of
assimilation and
the
multi-racial composition of
Jibuti
were responsible
for the different
path
the
politics of
the
area
took. Unlike Britain, France did
not encourage
political organization
in Jibuti
after
World War II.
Nevertheless.,
a
territorial Representative
Assembly
was established
in 1945,
composed of
Frenchmen, Africans
and
Arabs. The Assembly
appointed a representative
to
the'Council
of
the French Republic. Thus,
political
developments in Jibuti
remained
insulated from
what
obtained
in the
other parts of
Somaliland.
The Trusteeship
period saw an
intensification
of political organization
in the
south.
The
country
had
to be
prepared
for independence
within
the
prescribed
space of
time. The British Protectorate
on
the
other
hand, had
not
been
put on
the
same
time table. Hence.,
the
political atmosphere was more relaxed.
In 1948, the
Protectorate
was returned
to its
pre-war status, under a
56
civilian
Governor. With the
resumption
of
Italian
rule
in the
south,
the two territories
once more
tended to
go
their different
ways.
As
already noted,
the Protectoratefs
immediate
concern after
the
war, was
to
catch up with
the
south
and other
British territories in development. The
Protectorate displayed little interest in the
political
upheavals of
the
south.
However the
return of
the
"Reserved
Area" it-ou EL; 'aiupia
had an unsettling effect
on
the Protectorate,
and aroused great political
excitement.
Contact
and collaboration with
the
political
parties
in the
south accelerated, and
the Somali Youth
League
which
had been formed in Mogadishu in 1946,
gained a strong
base in the Protectorate. The
return
of
the
"Reserved
Arealt thus became
a rallying point of
political activity
for the
northern and southern parts.
Britain became
a common enemy, and strength
to fight
her
was sought
in the
ultimate unity of
the
north and
the
south.
Several
other parties sprang up
in the 1950's
but their differences lay in their
ethnic compositions
rather
than in their
goals.
These
parties combined
into
one single party,
the National Union Front, in 1955,
with
the
express aim of campaigning
for the
union of
the
south and
the
north, and of recovering
the Ogaden
and
the Haud. The
political awakening
following the'return
of
the
"Reserved
Area" to Ethiopia
encouraged
Britain
to introduce institutions in
which
the Somali
were
to
take
a measure of responsibility. This
was
to
prepare
them for
self-Government.
In 1957
a
Legislative
Council
569
was
formed,
and
the following
year a new constitution
was
inaugurated. In June 1960 the Assembly
voted
unanimously
for the
union of
the Protectorate
and
the trust territory. In July the two territories
were merged
to form
an
independent Somali Republic.
From the
point of view of
the Somali, however, this
was a
battle
only
half
won;
the
mood on
the
eve of
independence
was articulated
in
a speech
by the first
Prime Minister
of
the
country,
Abdirashid Ali
Sharmakay:
"our
misfortunes
do
not stem
from
the
unproductiveness of
the
soil, nor
from
a
lack
of mineral wealth.
These limitations
on our material well-being viere accepted
and compensated
for by
our
forefathers from
whom we
inheriteds
among other
things,
a
spiritual and cultural prosperity of
inestimable
value:
the teaching
of
Islam
on
the
one
hand
and
lyric
poetry on
the
other
....
No! Our
misfortune
is that
our neighbouring countriess with whom,
like the
rest of
Africa,
vie seek
to
promote constructive and
harmonious
relations are not our neighbours.
Our
neighbours are our
Somali kinsmen
whose
citizenship
has been falsified by indis-
criminate
boundary
arrangements.
They
have to
move across artificial
frontiers
to theirpasturelands. They
occupy
the
same
terraine,
and pursue
the
same pastoral
economy as ourselves.
We
speak
the
same
lan-
guage.
We
share
the
same creed,
the
same
culture and
the
same
traditions
(quoted
by Drysdale,
op. cit. p.
8).
The
union of
the Protectorate
and
ihe
trust
territory, though
a positive step
in the direction
of
Greater Somalia,
emphasized
the
more
difficult task.
of
achieving
the
ultimate unity of all
the Somali terri-
tories. The formation
of
the Somali Republic left
many
Somali
(in
the Ogaden, Jibuti
and
the Northern frontier
570
District)
outside
the fold. Thus, the Republic
was
regarded"as
incomplete,
and
the
post-independence
Government in Mogadishu
came under pressure
to
support
the
secessionist movements
which were
then
operating
in the
"unclaimed"
Somali territories.
The
new
Government
preferred a cautious
approach,
believing that Britain, having
shattered
the
Somali hopes in the Ogaden,
would not
disappoint them
over
the N. F. D. It
was
hoped that Britain
would not
grant
Kenya independence
without
first
uniting
the
N. F. D.
with
the Somali Republic. The
cautious policy
of
the Government
was criticized
by the
militant
ebments
in the
country;
their
clamour
for
a
tougher
line
of action
intensified
and
led to
a motion of no-
confidence
being tabled in the National Assembly
against
the Government in March 1962. However, the Government
survived and continued
to
re-assure
the
people
that
Britain
was
taking
a sympathetic view of
the Somali
aspirations'.
Indeed during Kenya's
pre-independence
London Conference, the British Government
promised
to
send a commission
to Kenya to
ascertain
the
wishes of
the Somali
people.
In the
meantime,
however, Ethiopia, being
worried
that the
union of
the N. F. D. to Somalia
would
aggravate
her
problems
in the Ogaden,
protested
to
Britain
against
the
projected alteration of
the
status
quo
in the Horn
of
Africa. Moreover,
were
the IT. F. D. to
be
united with
Somalia, the
same
logic leading to this
development
would
have
applied equally,
if
not more
strongly,
for the Ogaden. The Kenya
political parties
571-
(K.
A. N. U.
and
K. A. D. U.
),
despite their internal diffe-
rences,
took
a common stand against
the
union of
the
N. F. D.
and
Somalia.
The
promised commission
investigated the
problem
early
in 1963'.
and reported
that the Somali in the N. F. D.
were overwhelmingly
in favour
of
joining the Somali
Republic. The
problem was at
this time becoming
embarrassing
to the British Government; Britain's
relations with
Ethiopia
were
becoming
progressively
strained, and
Kenya
politicians were
threatening to
pull an
independent Kenya
out of
the Commonwealth. In
March 1963 the Colonial Secretary
announced
that the
N. F. D.
was
to
remain an
integral
part of
Kenya; the
dispute
over
the
area was
to be
solved
between
an
independent Kenya
and
the Somali Republic.
Diplomatic
relations
between Britain
and
the
Somali Republic
were
broken
off, and
the Republic began
to
establish closer
ties
with
Russia
and
China. Pan-
Somalism in the Somali Republic became increasingly
militant.
Thus,
no sooner
had Kenya
attained
indepen-
dence than
she
found herself
confronting armed
Somali
nationalists
in the
north.
Towards the
end of
1964, the
attention of
the
Somali Republic
shifted
towards the Ogaden,
where
the
Somali
were actively rebelling against
the Ethiopian
Government. Hereo
chances of
further
extension of
Somali
unification were even more remote.
The Emperor
was uncompromising.
Force
seemed
the
only solution.
In January 1965
a contingent of
troops from the Somali
Republic
crossed
into the Ogaden
and,
helped by the
572
local
people,
hoisted the
national
flag
of
the Somali
Republic. Ethiopian troops
were sent
to drive them
out.
One Somali
soldiero
Harani by
name, refused
to
flee
and
died
clutching
the flag. He is
now a national
hero in Somalia; the Military Academy
of
the Somali
Democratic Republic
was named after
him.
The failure
of
these
adventures created a
political crisis
in the Somali Republic. The
old
tribal
and regional rivalries which
had been
over-
shadowed
during the
period of maximum nationalist
fervour,
re-appeared on
the
scene.
Disillusionment
and
frustration led to internal
recriminations and
the
finding
of scapegoats.
In 1966 the Goverment
was
forced to
resign, and
fresh
elections were
held the
following
year.
The
new
President, Ibrahim Egal,
promised
to
pursue
the
policy of
detente
with
the Republic's
neigh-
bouring
countries.
This
caused
discontent
and
further
fragmentation
of
the
political parties.
In the
elec-
tions
of
1969 there
were
65
parties contesting
the
elections.
This
underlined
the
countryts political
instability. Decadence
was also rampant;
Ministers
were accused of corruption and
tribalism
was evident
in the distribution
of
jobs
and
in
gaining
favours.
In October 1969
the
civilian
Government.
coup
the President
of
the
Siad Barre, declared that
governed according
to the
Socialism.
".
the Army intervened
and
toppled
On the first
anniversary of
the
Supreme Revolutionary Council,
Somalia
would
henceforth be
principles of
"Scientific
7
In 1974 Siad Barre became the Chairman
of
the
O. A. U. In this
position,
the
great responsibility
of
promoting
Pan-African ideals
was
thrust
upon
him. It
was
difficult for him,
as
Chairman, to
spearhead a
vigorous campaign,
for the
unification of
the Somali
territorieso for the Somali dispute
was, and still
is,
one of
the
most controversial
issues
which
has
threatened the
very existence of
the O. A. U.
Of late,
emphasis
has tended to
shift
to
jibuti,
still under
French
rule.
When the Somali
Republic
was vigorously supporting secessionist'groups
in the Ogaden
and
the N. F. D. in the
early
1960's. there
was
little
enthusiasm
in Jibuti for Pan-Somalism. In
the
referendum of
1958 Jibuti had
voted
in favour
of
remaining with
France. The
party which agitated
for
independence
and ultimate union with
Somalia
was
hope-
lessly
outnumbered.
Ethiopia
complicated matters
further by
preferring continued
French
colonialism
to
independence
and unity with
Somalia. She
would,
howý-
ever,
be happy to have
an
independent Jibuti
united
with
Ethiopia. Ethiopiats
main worry was, and still
is,
that
once
Jibuti is
united with
Somalia, Ethiopia's
interests
in the Jibuti-Ethiopia
railway
(recently
extended
to Sidama)
would
be in jeopardy. In the
early
1970's the independence
movements
in Jibuti
grew stronger
and
more militant.
The O. A. U. has
constantly urged
France
to
grant
the
area
independence, but
as
to
when
this
will
be done,
and what
form it
will
take,
remain
to be
seen.
The
union of
the Somali territories is
still
the
cardinal aim of
the Somali Democratic Republic.
It
57 4ý
is, however,
generally recognized
-
and
Siad Barre
must
have
appreciated
during his
chairmanship of
the O. A. U.
that, however
strong
Somalia's
case might
be, the
prob-
lem'of
colonial
boundaries does
not affect
the Somali
alone.
If
every ethnic group were
to
repudiate
the
colonial
boundaries dividing it from its kinsmen,
Africa
would
face
a problem
the
gravity of which can
not
be
over-emphasized.
I
BIBLIOGRAPIff
.
575
The
sources upon which
this thesis is based
area, as already explained, mainly archival.
It is
not
thought
necessary
to follow the traditional
practice
of
listing them individually,
since wherever
they
are
quoted
in the text, full
particulars are given.
The
sources given
here
are
those
which were consulted and
found to be
useful
during the
preparation of
the thesis;
a
full bibliography for the Horn
of
Africa has
yet
to be
compiled.
A. PRIMARY SOURCES
(DIANUSCRIPT)
1. C. O. 535
(Somaliland)
Series:
volumes
1-138
were
consulted.
This
was-the most
important
source.
2. F. O. 2
(Africa)
Series
cover
the
period
1900-1905.
3. C-O-, 534 Series: Correspondence
concerning
the
King
s
African Rifles.
4.
C. O. 537 Series: Only
volume
44 (Report
on
Wingate's
Mission to Somaliland)
was relevant.
5. C. O. 713 Register
of
Correspondence 1905-1926.,
6.
C. O. 769 Register
of out
letters 1905-1926.
7. African Manuscripts in Rhodes Houseo Oxford. The
following documents
were consulted:
(1)
MSS. AFR 552:
"A
History
of
Somaliland Camel
corps".
i9'3i
(anonymous).
A
very useful and
detailed
account of
the-history
of
the Camel
Corps.
(2)
MSS. AFR. S. 553: Private Journal
of
H. G. C.
Swayne.. 1893.
(3)
DISS. Brit. Emp. S. 279: Private
papers of
E. J. E.
Swayne.
(4)
M8S. AFR.
891-907 "Political
Affairs in the Somali-
land Protectoratet'.
-
an excerpt
from
private
papers
of
Sir G. Summers
(1924)
and
Sir A. Lawrence
(1925).
-
576
(5)
I-ISS. AFR. S.
846-855
A. A. McKinnon
(Assistant
Agricultural Officer) 1938,,
"Notes
of
Safari.
(6)
MSS. AFR. S. 141 E. Peck
"The
Veterinary
History
of
the Somaliland Protectorate
1924-196o"
(7)
mss. AFR. s.
424,
ff. 37-41 J. L. P. L. Llewellin
(District
Officer, N. F. D.
) "An
account of
the
sack of
Serrenleh
obtained
from
a
Magabul
who
took
part
in the
attack".
(8)
MSS. AFR.
670:
Major OtNeillts
private papers.
8.
Mahmud Ahmed Alits
private papers concerning
his
role
in the
campaign
for European
education
in the Somali-
land Protectorate.
T. A. Curle's
private papers concerning
the
work of
the Anglo-Ethiopian
Boundary Commission
and
the
Walwal incident.
B. PRIMARY SOURCES
(PRINTED)
1. F. O.
40.3
Series: Foreign Office Confidential Prints.
2. C. O.
830
Series: These
contain
departmental
reports.
3. CABINET PAPERS: Cab. 37
series were consulted.
They
contain photo-copies of prints circulated among
Cabinet
members
(e.
g. memoranda, reports and
des-
patches).
4.
c. o.
879
Series: Colonial Office Confidential Prints.
5. C. O.
673
Series: Acts
and
Ordinances, 1900-1936.
6.
F. O. 386 Series
contain a variety of statistics
for
the
period
1906-1920.
7. F. O. 371 Series:
(1)
Vol. 10872. Foreign Office Memorandum
on
the
History
of
the Lake Tana Project, 1925.
(2)
Vol. 23373. Foreign Office
and
Colonial Office
joint Memorandum
on
Somaliland
and
the Ogaden.
IT
190
8.
E. Hertstlet
-P
The Map
of
Africa bz Treaty
Ord
edition)
(London
1909,3
volumes).
9. Annual Colonial Reports: these
contain useful summaries
of
the important
eventso statistics and other
types
of
information.
.5
10. Newspapers:
(1)
The Pall Mall Gazette
(2)
The Times
(3)
The Daily Telegraph
11. Parliamentary Papers
(1)
Statistical
reports
(2)
Appropriation
accounts
I
(3)
Papers
on special
topics
12. Journal
of
the Principal Events
connected with
Somaliland: This is
a
War Office journal
concerning
the
anti-Dervish operations,
1902-1904.
C. PRINTED BOOKS
Allen, N. G., Guerrilla War in Abyssinia
(London)
1943-
2. Archer, G., Personal
and
Historical Memoirs
of an
East
African AdministKator (Edinburgh) 1963.
3- Beshir, M. O.., Educational Developments in the Sudano
1898-1956_
_(Oxf
c-rd-T-19bg
4.
Betram, A., The Colonial Service
(Cambridge)
1930.
5. Bottego, V., Via
gi
de Scoptera
nel
Cuore dell'Africa
-
Il Giuba Esplorato kRome) lb95.
1
6.
Budge, E. A. W., A History
of
Ethiopia
(London)
1928,
2
vols.
I
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21. Gaibi, A., Manuale di Storia Politico-Militare delle
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34. Jardine, D. J., The Mad Mullah
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579
36. Jones, A. H. M.,
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1960.
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39. Laurence., M., The Prophetts Camel Bell
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41.
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46.
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47.
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49.
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50. Mungeam, G. H., British Rule in Kenya 1895-191: 2
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51. Murdock, G. P., Africa Its Peoples
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52. Official History
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53. Olivers R.., Sir Harry Johnston
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54. Oliver, R
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(Cambridg;
ý
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55. Pankhursts E. S., Ex-Italian Somaliland
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1951.
56. Pankhursts R.
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I
58G
57. Pearce, F. B., Rambles in Lion Land
(London)
1898.
58. Pease, A. E., Travel
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60.
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61.
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jLondon)
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62.
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63.
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dell' Italia Contem-
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64.
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and
Somalia
(London)
1926.
65.
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and
the Italian Colonies,
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and
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92-2.
67.
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1894-1961 EgvDt
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68.
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of
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(New
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69.
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19 5.,
,
70. Sheikh, Jaamac Cumar Ciise, Wasaaradda Hiddiya Tacliinta
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-
I
71. Sheik, Jaamac Cumar Ciise, Tarikh
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19
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? Mogadishu) 1962.
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-4
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C.
0
Seventeen Trips ThrouGh Somaliland
(London 895.
581
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1963.
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1952.
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Lt. Barker
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eaft er-J-.
-R-. -G-.
STT, XVIII tlbb4)
p.
130-13b.
I
2. Beachey, R. W.
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of
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(here-
after
J. A. H.
).
111
(1962),
p.
451-467.
XX
(,
G. W. Suleiman Harigall Sudan Notes
and
Records
3. Bell
1937)p
p.
296-299.
4.
Cerulli, E.,
"La
Somalia
nelle
Chronache Etiopiche"
Africa Italiana, ii
(1929)
p.
28-49.
I
5. Fearon,
D.,
"Notes
on
the History
of
Berbera"
I
The
Somaliland
Journal., i.
part
3
(1956),
p.
147-16-7--
6.
Giglio, C.,
"Article
17
of
The Treaty
of
Ucciallill
J. A. H., VI
(1965)
221-231.
Itso"
7. Hardy, R. A.,
maliland"
Scottish Geographical
Magazine,
xx
(1904)
p.
225---22-37-.
8.
Hess,, R..,
"The
Mad Mullah
and
Northern Somalia"., J. A. H.,
v
(1964).
p.
415-433.
9. Heszr, R..,
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and
Africa: Colonial Ambitions in
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V'
J. A. H., iv
(1963)
P.
105-126.
58
10. Kittermaster, H. B.,
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Development
of
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Journal
of
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(1932).
31p
p.
234-244.,
11. Latham-Brown, D. J..,
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and
Comparative Law Quarterly,
v
(1956)
p.
245-264.
12. Lewis, H. S
,
"The
Origins
of
the Galla
and
the Somali"..
J. A. H.,
vii
(1966).
27-46.
13. Lewis., I. M.
"The
Somali Conquest
of
the Horn
of
Africa"
J. A. H.., 1
(1960).,
p.
213-230.
14. Mariam., M. W..,
"Background
to the Ethiop-Somalia Boundary
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of
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(1964)
p.
189-219.
15. Miles, S. B.
o
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"
Proceedings
of
the
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571---1777-2-7
P-
149-157*
16. Nurse, C. G..,
"A
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of
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and
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9
XXX
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18. Pease, A. E.,
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Account
of
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notes on
journeys through the Gadabursi
and
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xiv
(1898)
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19. Ramm, A..
""Great
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and
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(1944)
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in Africa". iv
(1
9
894)o
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21. Sanderson,
G. N.,
"Contributions
from African Sources to
the History
ft
of
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of
the Nile J. A. H.
(1962)
p.
69-90.
22. Smith, A. D.,
"Ex
edition
in Somaliland" Geographical
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MR)
P.
528-531.
E. UNPUBLISHED THESES
ABIR
(I
Mep
"Trade
and
Politics in Ethio ian Region 1830-
1855
(University
of
London M. D., 19N).
2. Aregay., M. W..,
"Southern
Ethiopia
and
the Christian
Kingdom 1508-1708"
(University
of
London Ph. D... 1971).
583
3. Brockett, A. M.,
"British
Somaliland Protectorate to
1905"
(Oxford
Ph. D.., 1969).
4.
Caplan, AS.
"British Policy
towards Ethiopia,
1909-1919
ýUniversity
of
London Ph. D., 1971).
5. Hamilton, D.,
"Ethiopiats
Frontiers: The Boundary
Agreements
and.
their Demarcation., 1896-1956't
(Oxford
D. Phil., 1974).
6.
Turton, E. R
.9
"The
Pastoral Tribes
of
Northern Kenya
1800-1916"
jUniversity
of
London Ph. D., 1970).
DIAPS
1. Fage., J. D., An Atlas
of
African History
(London)
1965.
2. There is
also a useful map at
the back
of
the
biennial
reports
Somaliland Protectorate Report for
the
years
1956
and
1957 kH. M. S. O., London) 1959
and
Somaliland Report for the Years 1958
and
1952
(H.
M. S. O.,
London 19bo.
N. B. Most
of
the
placename spellings are
taken from The
Oxford Atlas
(Oxford)
1963.
G. ORAL INFOPMANTS. THE FOLLOWING
ELDERS GAVE ME VALUABLE INFORMATION:
1. Dahir Afqarsheo Mogadishu, 3rd August 1974.
2. Mohamed Haji Hussein
("Sheeko
Hariir"), Mogadishuo
4th
August 1974.
3- Musa Galaal Ali, Mogadishu, 7th August 1974.
4.
Haji Adan Ahmed, Mogadishu, 12th August 1974. This
elder who
is
popularly
known
as
Afqaloola
(i.
e.
twisted
mouth) claims
to have been born
at
the
same
time
as
Sayiid Muhammad Abdille Hassan,.
L,
and
to have
spent
his
days
of childhood with
him
at
Erigavo.
r
5. Sheikh Jama Umar Esa, Mogadishu, 20th August 1974.
This informant
works at
the Somali Academy, Mogadishu
and was
busy
collecting oral
traditions
and
the Sayyid's
poems.
6.
Ahmed Hassan Ibrahim, Hargeisa, 26th August 1974.
584
7. Mahamud Ahmed Ali,, Hargeisa, 26th
and
27th August
1974. This
elder was one of
the first Somali
graduates of
Gordon College. He led
a campaign
for
European
education
in the 1930's.
8.
Sheikh Ali Ibrahim, Hargeisa, 5th September 1974.
This
elder
is the
advisor
to the Department
of
Justice
on
Islamic Law. He founded the first
modern primary
school
in Hargeisa in 1942.
9. Sheikh Ali Hersi, Hargeisa,
6th
September 1974.
10. Haaji Aadan Hassan Buluke, Berbera, gth September
1974.
11. Olujood Ahmed Faarah, Berbera, gth September 1974.
12. Ali Muhammad Kavidan, Berbera, 10th September. This
elder served
in the
6th
Battalion, K. A. R. in the
1930's.
13. Abdurahaman Haji Jama Muhammad., Sheikh, 14th September
1974.
14. Sheikh Mahamud Umar, Sheikh., 15th September 1974.
_
15. Haaji Hassan Ibrahim, Sheikh, 15th September 1974.
APPENDIX 1
535
"THE
NEWS BROUGHT FROM ACROSS THE SEAS"
(composed
by the Sayyid
after
the Jidbale
confrontation)
I have been told by the
5eople
of our,
7
encampment
the
news
brought from
across
the
seas
2. And
which came
from the low-born Habar Yoonis
and
from the West.
3. It
reached me
here in the East
and
I
am much
distressed.
The
man whom
his kinsmen
support
is fortunate
and
he
prospers
While he
who
does
not
descend from
a mighty
lineage
will
be killed by
want.
6.
The
cause of my
desolation is fainthearedness
La-mong
my
kin7
7. Naive
and simple
is the
man who
has
put
his trust in
the
pluck. of
the Dervishes.
8.1
lost those
who were LTike7
kings
and was
left
with mere. weaklings.,
---
9. One
cannot
discern
any mettle among
the
young men
who
Zs-wagger7,
swinging
their
arms.
10. A
wife with good connections
through the ties
of
kinshipj,
-favoured
in
all respects,,
11. A beautiful house,
equipped with gourds and. plates,
12. Choice dateso
rice and a
dish
of meal seasoned with
spices..
13.
-, -
Moon-hued
silkj, cotton, cloth with
large-spots
patterned
in
colours,
536
14. A
stout stallion,
its
rump caparisoned,
tassels
dangling,
15. A harness
charged with shining studs on
top
of
the
saddle-clotho
16. Numerous
sheep and goatsj,
hundreds
of camels,
with a stallion and some gelded ones,
17. Cattle lowing
contentedly
in the
spring rainy
season, comfort and solace.
18. They have
mistaken
for
a
true blessing the
prosperity
of
this
world.
19. They have left behind the ChapterE7
of
God,
6rs
Boog
and
His Law.
20. The
man who
in the
past would
be
at your call now
goes
to Laaran
at
Burco
21. Everyone has left
us and stayes
in the
open plains
like
stray-camels
22. Those
whom
I
called
dear friends have broken their
promise
23. The
oath which
they tookp drawing lines
on
the
ground,
had
no validity
24. They have turned into
a
lie the
solemn oath
before
God.
25. When the loud
call was proclaimed publicly on
the
conch
trumpet
26. - People
used
to
rally
togetherj,
and now
they
stay
away.
27. They
refuse
to
answer
the
call
because they
are
weakminded.
28. A
male
lion
reconnoitres
before he
makes
his leap
537
29. But they,
guiding
their
mounts.,
do
not seek out
those
who
killed the
strong and mature among
them.
30. These
men play and
frolic
and
this is the
cause
of
their
somnolent sloth even
in
mid-morning..
32. When the terrors
of war come and
fire
sends
forth
smoke
33. They
will not
face those
who
have fired their
rifles at
them.
34. Like
sheep stricken
by
pestilence,
they lay
on
their bellies
35. While the
eagle was eating
their
men and plucked
their flesh.
36. Their faces do
not even show
displeasure
about
yesterday's
killings
with spears
37. They have
given up
their bragging
and
the
manly
styling of-their
hair
38. Their boasts
concerning
horsemanship have become,..
Zi-ike7
stolen property
to them.
39. When they faced
an open attack,.
they
quickly
fled.
40.
Even I keep'lookingaroundo
and slothful
idleness
has
come
fu-pon
me,,
.
7.
41.
The
men who
have been
settled on
the
sides of
Buura
are
fugitives
42.
The defeat
at
Jidbaale has turned them into
sluts
f7ith
breasts7 full
of milk.
43.0
men, my soul
is
aflame with great sorrow
44.
My heart is
pounding as
if I had
eaten
the fat
meat
of a sheep's rump
4
38
45.
It is
weeping and
helpless
ra%ge
that have
reduced
my
body to this
state
46.
It
was
the long-foreskinned infidels
who
threw
me
into the dust.
47.
My liver
quakes
because
of
the
men who
have been
deliverately
massacred
48.
And
here is the hyena, delighted
with
their flesh.
49.
The
men who would not rally
to
my side are
in
.,
7
the
other world
their
graves and
Zb-elong
to
50.0 God,
only weaklings are
left,
who are of no use
at all.
51. A
simpleton and
Buqul the Short
will
take
up my
cause
,
y7
iron
Zw-eapon7
like
a
52.0 God, I
shall sharpen
Zm-
hunter
53.0 God, in
a short
time,
when
the day
after
tomorrow
has
passed
54.1
shall move on swiftly.,
in the lightning-flashes
of
the Dayr'rain
55. O'God.,
we
have
set out on a
long journey, I
and
Boodays.,
Zm_y
hors,
67
56.0 God, Burco
and
Looyo
are-Ze-nemy
territory-to
me
lik2e
a
town
of
the Amharas',
---
57.0 God, I
can pass
through Beerato
and
Siig in-the
mid
hours
of one morning
58.1 God,, I
shall seek my rights which
have been lost
to
me
59.0 God# I
am not seeking
injustice,
evil and vainglory
6o.
0 God,
confront me
first
with
the Iidoor, those
slaveso
those
mules!
0
APPENDIX 2
(After
Dul Madoba)
The
poem was composed
by Sheikh Mahammed
shortly
after
the
news of
the battle
was reported
to him.
You have died., Corfieldj,
and are no
longer in
this
world,
2. A
merciless
journey
was your portion.
3. When, Hell-destineds
you set out
for the Other
World
4.
Those
who
have
gone
to Heaven
will question you,
if God is
willing;
5. When
you see
the
companions of
the faithful
and
the
jewels
of
Heaven,
6.
Answer-them how God tried
you.
7- Sayýto them:.
'From
that'day to this the Dervishes
never ceased
their
assaults upon us.
80
The British
were
brokeno, the-noise
of
battle
engulfed us;
9. With fervour
and
faith the Dervishes
attacked us.
'
10. Say:
'They
attacked us at mid-morning.
1
11. Say:
'Yesterday
in the holy
war a,
bullet from
one
of
their
old rifles struck me.
'
12. And the bullet
struck me
in the
arm.
'
13. Say:
.
'In
fury they fell
upon us.
'
14. Report, how
savagely
their
swords
tore
you,
15. Show these-past
generations
in how
many places
the
daggers
were plunged.
16. Say:
"Fr:
me!
17. Say:
'As
heart
was
18. Say:
tMY
590
iend,,
"
I
called,
"have
compassion
and spare
I looked fearfully from
side
to
side my
plucked
from its
sheath.
'
eyes stiffened as
I
watched with
horror;
19. The
mercy
I implored
was not granted-t
20. Say:
tStriking
with spear-butts at my mouth
they
silenced my soft words;
21. My
ears, straining
for deliverance, found
nothing;
22. The
risks
I took, the
mistake
I
made, cost my
life.
',
23. Say:
'Like
the
war
leaders
of old,
I
cherished
great plans
for
victory.
'
24. Say:
'The
schemes
the djinns
planted
in
me
brought
my ruin.
t
25. Say:
'When
pain racked me everywhere
26. Men lay
sleepless, at my-shrieks.
t
27. Say:
-"Great
shouts acclaimed
the departing
of
my soul.,
28. Say:
'Beasts
of prey
have
eaten my
flesh
and
torn-it
apart
for,
meat.
1
29. Say:
'The
sound of, swallowing
the flesh
and
the
fat-comes from thebyena.
t
30. Say:
'The
crows plucked out my veins and,
tendons.
1
31. Say:
'If
stubborn'denials are
to be
abandonedp",
then
my clansmen were
defeated.
'
32. In the last
standlof, resistance"there'is'always,
great
slaughter.
33. Say:
'The
Dervishes
are
like the
advancing
thunder-
bolts
of a storm, rumbling and roaring.
'
APPENDIX
5.91
BRITISH MINISTERS CONCERNED WITH SOMALI AFFAIRS 1870-1939
Foreign Secretary 1868-1870 Earl
of
Clarendon
1870-1874 Earl Granville
Secretary for India 1868-1874 Duke
of
Argyll
Foreign
secretary
1874-1@78 Earl
of
Derby
1878-1880 Marquess
of
Salisbury
Secretary for India 1874-1@78 Marquess
of
Salisbury
1878-1880 Viscount Cranbrook
Foreign
secretary
188o-1885 Earl Granville
Secretary for Inida 1880-1882 Marquess
of
Hartington
1882-1885 Earl
of
Kimberley
Foreign
secretary
1885-1886 Marquess
of
Salisbury
Secretary for India 1885-1886 Lord Randolph Churchill
Foreign
secretary
1886 Earl
of
Rosebery
Secretary for India 1886 Earl
of
Kimberley
Foreign
secretary
1886-1887 Earl Iddesleigh
1887-1892 Marquess
of
Salisbury
Secretary for India 1886-1892 Viscount Cross
Foreign
secretary,
-
-1892-1894
Earl
of
Rosebery
Secretary for India 1892-1894 Earl
of
Kimberley
Foreign
secretary
1894-1895 Earl
of
Kimberley
Secretary
for India 1894-1895 H. H. Fowler
Foreign
secretary
1895-1900 Marquess
of
Salisbury
1900-1902 Marquess
of
Lansdowne
Secretary
for India 1895-1902 Lord George Hamilton
Foreign
secretary
1902-1905 Marquess
of
Lansdowne
Secretary
for India 1902-1903 Lord George Hamilton
1903-1905 Hon. St. J. Brodrick
SECRETARIES OF STATE FOR TM COLONIM, 1905-1940
1905-1908 The Earl
of
Elgin
and
Kincardine
1908-1910 The Earl
(later
Marquess)
of
Crewe
1910-1915 Rt. Hon. Lewis Harcourt
(later
Viscount Harcourt)
1915-1916 Rt. Hon. A. Bonar Law
1916-1919 R. Eon. W. H. Long
1919-1921 Viscount Milner
1921-1922 Rt. Hon. Winston Churchill
1922-1924 Rt. Hon. J. H. Thomas
1924-1929 Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S. Amery
1929-1931 Rt. Hon. Lord Passfield
1931-1935 Rt. Hon. Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister
1935-1936 Rt. Hon. J. H. Thomas
1936-1938 Rt. Hon. W. G. A. Ormsby-Gore
1938-1940 Rt. Hon. Malcolm MacDonald
PERMANENT UNDER-SECRETARIES OF STATE FOR THE
coLoNiEs igoo-194o
1900-1907
Sir Montague F. Ommanney
1907-1911
Sir Francis Hopwood
1911-1916
Sir John Anderson
1916-1921
Sir George Fiddes
1921-1925
Sir James Masterton Smith
1925-1933
Sir Samuel Wilson
1933-1937
Sir John Loader Maffey
1937-1939
Sir Cosmo Parkinson
1939-1940
Sir George Gater
PARLIAMENTARY UNDER-SECPMARIM OF STATE FOR THE
coLoNiEs, igoo-194o
1900-1903 Earl
of
Onslow
1903-1905 Duke
of
Marlborough
1905-1908 Wins ton Churchill
1908-1911 Col. J. E. B. Seely
1911-1914 Rt. Hon. Lord Emmott
1914-1915 Lord Islington
1915-1917 Sir Arthur Steel-Maitland
1917-1919 W. A
.
S. Hewins
1919-1921 Lt. Col. L. Amery
1921-1922 Hon. E. F. L. Wood
1922-1929 Hon. W. G. A. Ormsby-Gore
1929-1931 Dr. T. Drummond Shiels
1931-1932 Sir Robert Hamilton
1932-1936 The Earl
of
Plymouth
1936-1937 Rt. Hon. The Earl De La Warr
1937-1940 The Marques
of
Dufferin
APPENDIX
4
OFFICERS ADMINISTERING THE BRITISH PROTECTORATE
IN SOMALILAND 1884-1939
Lieut.
-Col.
F. M. Hunter 1881-1885
consul
for the Somali
Coast
1885-1887
consul and political
agent
Lieut.
-Col.
E. V. Stace
1887-1893
consul and political
agent
Lieut.
-Col.
c. W. H. Sealy 1893-1895
consul and political
agent
Lieut.
-Col.
W. B. Perris 1895-1897
consul and political
agent
Lieut.
-Col.
J. H. Sadler 1897-1898
consul and political
agent
1898-1901
consu-general
Capt. H. E. S. Cordeaux 1901
acting consul-general
Lieut.
-Col.
E. J. E. Swayne 1902-1go4
commissioner
and consul-
general
1904-1906
commissioner
Capt. H. E. S. Cordeaux
1906-1909 Commissioner
Brig. Gen. Sir William
1910 Jan. Commissioner
Manning
to.
1910 June
Sir Horace A. Byatt
1911-1914 Commissioner
Sir Geoffrey Archer
1914-1919 Commissioner;
1919-1922 Governor
Sir Gerald Siimmers
1922-1926 Governor
Sir Harold Kittermaster
1926-1931 Governor
Sir Arthur LawInce
1931-1935 Commissioner;
1936-1938 Governor
Sir Vincent Glendy 1939-1940 Governor
APPENDIX 5
VICEROYS AND GOVERNORS-GENERAL OF INDIA 1870-1898
Earl
of
Mayo 1869-1872
Lord Northbrook 1872-1876
Lord Lytton 1876-188o
Marquess
of
Ripon 1880-1884
Earl-of Dufferin 1884-1888
Marquess
of
Lansdowne 1888-1894
Earl
of
Elgin
ý1894-1899

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