Ambassador job opening soon! (In Somalia)


A car bomb exploded on May 31 near Mogadishu’s City Palace Hotel. At least one person was killed. (Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP/Getty Images)

It’s been 23 years since the United States has had an embassy in perennially war-torn Somalia — best known for warring militias, chaos and pirates. (Remember the great Tom Hanks movie “Captain Phillips” last year?)

But in the hope that things might begin improving, we’re told, the administration is planning to name an ambassador to Mogadishu (scene of the 1993 “Black Hawk Down” tragedy), Under Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said Tuesday in a talk at the U.S. Institute of Peace.

For the time being, she said,  that envoy will be based in Nairobi, Kenya, which is where a diplomatic team, headed by a special representative, travels back and forth to Somalia. But, as conditions and relations improve — although car bombs and other attacks by al-Qaeda-linked Shebab rebels continue, the idea is to have an actual embassy once again in Somalia.

No nominee to announce yet, State officials told us, but bundlers are unlikely to fight over this one. We’re betting that the lucky person will be a career Foreign Service Officer. If that’s the case, there’s probably no reason to rush. That nominee will just, as we’ve written, join the 20 other career ambassadorial nominees, many of whom have been held hostage for up to a year on the Senate floor as a result of the “nuclear option” fallout.

Al Kamen, an award-winning columnist on the national staff of The Washington Post, created the “In the Loop” column in 1993.
Comments
Show Comments

politics

in-the-loop

Most Read Politics
Next Story
Al Kamen · June 3, 2014

politics

in-the-loop