Safirka: An American Envoy
Kent State University Press, 2000 - 241 pages
Peter S. Bridges's service as an American ambassador to Somalia capped his three decades as a career officer in the American Foreign Service. Safirka, a frank description of his experiences in Somalia and elsewhere, offers pointed assessments of American foreign policy and policymakers. Bridges recounts his service in Panama during a time of turmoil over the Canal; in Moscow during the Cuban missile crisis; in Prague for bleak years after the Soviet invasion; in Rome when Italian terrorists first began to target Americans; and in key positions in three Washington agencies.
In Somalia Bridges managed the largest American aid program in sub-Sahara Africa. He dealt with a postcolonial regime, hobbled both by traditional clan rivalries and by a leader who cared far less about Somalia's people and progress than about maintaining his control over that poverty-stricken, strategic - which soon erupted in civil war.
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Two of my best non - Somali friends in Mogadishu were Andrew and Judi
Macpherson , an Australian couple . Macpherson was a dry - country
agriculturalist who had learned his business by farming with his father in
Australia . He and Judi ...
There had been no choice ; Somali had first become a written language only in
1972 , when Siad Barre decreed the use of the Latin alphabet - after long debate
as to whether to use the Latin alphabet , the Arabic , or the ' Osmaniya script ...
For some years , half of the large tract of land that the Somali authorities had
given us in the 1960s for a new embassy compound had been used for an
American - managed , but international , golf and tennis club . There were a
number of ...
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