Somalia has written our State Department asking for help since al Shabaab, in concert with al Qaeda, has seized and is operating some of Somalia’s surface uranium mines, with a view to sending the output to Iran.
This issue can be summed up in a single word: uranium. Al-Shabaab forces have captured critical surface exposed uranium deposits in the Galmudug region and are strip mining triuranium octoxide for transport to Iran.
That customer is somewhat speculative on Somalia’s part, but neither terrorist organization has much use for yellowcake except as a money-raising item for sale. Beyond that, there aren’t many customers in the pool, either, and only Iran and northern Korea have much interest in illicitly obtaining the ore.
I speculate that Iran, at the least, influenced al Qaeda or al Shabaab in target selection, and may even have funded some portion of the operations that led to capture of the mines.
If Somalia is right, or if I’m right, it’s just one more indication of the uselessness of the Obama-Iran nuclear “deal” and one more indication of the usefulness of tossing it, even if we must do so unilaterally.