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Al-Shabaab Attack to Villa Rose Hotel is Beyond My Thinking
By Mohamed Muse
Wednesday November 30, 2022

 Xuquuqda Sawirka Dalsan Tv

The area is considered a large greenfield (a bit safer from the other part of the district or in the town), however, potential questions evolving as to how planned, and supported by inner circle elements could have facilitated the attack which is just around 35 meters away from main wall of Villa Somalia, the presidential accommodation, and from the national theatre completely secured by a circle of sand barriers and stones in addition to multilayer of security checkpoints.  The attack demonstrates that the security development cannot resource all the necessary security infrastructure both physical and psychological aspects, given the fact how the area have been cordoned off or restricted access from civilians and private vehicles.

So, who can access into that area shall be either a government official, security official, and may fellow others with recognized identifications, and henceforth, the attack is beyond the imagination to be accepted by the public. The cost attached to this attack seems a huge and that a means to found exactly how it has been facilitated which somehow like the one on 20 August 20222, after Al-Shabaab attacked Hayat hotel which is located a very secured place of KM4, many security checkpoints are all around, and 29 October 2022 at Zoobe junction. Both incidents claim a lot of lives, and so far, seems no accountability within the security sector nor within the ministry and other institutions held responsibility of the security.

More on the target location, there are a lot of security ordnance depot in the area, from weaponry warehouses of the presidential guards to NISA HQs including intelligence, and as result, the local population compacts only with small strip that shows along the main street with very limited trade service use, so if you have not been identified, it’s no way you can access to reach these security checkpoints, otherwise you may face gunpoint. The area including targeted hotel houses offices and accommodation of certain government and security officials where all the road that connects to the area have been blocked with either sand barrier or a security guard where sometimes the local population feel the area is cut from other part of the town, and yet the circumstance sounding to this attack seems to many impossible.

While the terrorists can employ many different forms of tactics to reach their target and even, they continually develop their methodologies to identify new opportunities to carry out attacks which can include by a single attack to the location, like the one they carried out against Villa Rose hotel which could have been very hard to reach, but security shouldn’t fail to predict these kinds of changes. Some reports suggested that in the last 10 days, at least 4 times security officers manning leading to presidential palace checkpoints have been replaced which of course affects checkpoints around hotel which militants attacked as its adjacent to the presidential palace. Therefore, how these changes connect to the attack can bring additional questions. 

Other aspect which follows with great concern was the attackers have used IEDs and other weapons which without adequate transport could have not been possible to reach the point of attack and that is where the security officials need to provide answer to the public. The current government security policy from the battlefield to Mogadishu lack effective engagement and communication with communities who are indeed a positive force to drive out successful security management and doing so they are part of everyday policing. Furthermore, failing to engage with Al-Shabaab by the government forces in Mogadishu is all about community alienation from the process of security highlighted by the disturbance of large physical barriers that sounding every conner in the town.

In my personal view, this can contribute to the intelligence avoid where the high-profile incidents like the attack in Villa Rose cannot be predicted nor anticipated through risk analysis. I think no need further evidence on such intelligence avoid should huge disorder exist within security branches, because not reporting about the possible or a critical incident can affect community confidence which sometimes leads lost of legitimacy in the eyes of the public to the government itself. The Villa Rose attack demonstrates local security forces are unable to predict changes in the community profile, needs, and their security priorities. Any further disorientation would also increase vulnerabilities around the threat, risks and could cause more harm because of lack of rapid assessment of threat engagement, lack of immediate recognition about the method of the attack due to new changes and evaluation the use of technology by the terrorists, adequate details of attackers if they already in attack could prolong the insecurity to Mogadishu. Having such information would make the respond more ease and reduce cost and time to the incident, and possibly could also safe more lives, and properties.

Mohamed Muse
[email protected]


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