Ogaden war

In Ethiopia and Somalia engaged in a brief territory conflict over the Ogaden region situated between and claimed by both nations. This conflict however held significance greater than most territorial disputes because Ethiopia was backed by the Soviet Union and Somalia was supported by the United States, thus bringing the Cold War to eastern Africa.

Long before the conflict, the Ogaden had been subject to dispute. When British Somaliland became part of the newly independent nation of Somalia inthat government took control over the region. Meanwhile in Ethiopia, long-time Emperor Haile Selassie was overthrown in September of by the military council known as the Derg. The nation was in disarray as a result, and numerous separatist movements opposed to the Derg emerged out of the political uncertainty. By Mengistu Haile Mariam had become the leader of the Derg which now controlled all of Ethiopia.

The Cold War: Ethiopian Civil War and the Ogaden War 1977 - Episode 50

By this point, they had declared Ethiopia a Marxist state and allied it with the Soviet Union. The Somali government, which had previously received considerable amounts of Soviet Aid, now provided weapons and supplies to the WSLF. The Somalian Army was greatly outnumbered by the Ethiopian military, but they had superior artillery and air force because of earlier Soviet military aid.

The Soviets were also supplying their new ally, Ethiopia. In response, the Somalis requested and received support from the United States. When the conflict began in JulyEthiopia controlled approximately 10 percent of the Ogaden region.

ogaden war

In October, the Somalis attempted their most significant offensive to capture the Ethiopian city of Harar. Here they faced forty thousand Ethiopian troops and eleven thousand Cuban troops, backed by Soviet artillery and air power. The Ethiopians prevailed at Harar and began to push the Somalis out of the Ogaden systematically.

By Marchthe Ethiopians had captured almost all of the Ogaden, prompting the defeated Somalis to give up their claim to the region. Africana: The encyclopedia of the African and African American experience.

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These included the Ogaden, a Nebraska-sized desert region of Ethiopia that would flow with blood twice in the coming decades. Somalia lost a war with neighboring Ethiopia over the area inbut favorable circumstances encouraged a s rematch. Russian arms equipped each of them. Field artillery relied upon towed and mm guns.

Ethiopian-Somali War Over the Ogaden Region (1977–1978)

The Somalis combined two to four Battalions into maneuver brigades de for the campaign. The Somali command, logistics, and maintenance also coalesced on the town as the capital city Mogadishu lay too far from the upcoming war. Somalia kicked off the Ogaden War with an early insurgency. Somalis of the Ogaden welcomed the 2nd and 5th Divisions about 6, men each of the WSLF, which occupied the countryside in short order.

Somalia — Ethiopia region. CIA map. Click to enlarge. Somalia defined the Ogaden region liberally, taking in parts of the Ethiopian plateau in the north of the Ogaden, which included two of its largest cities, Harrar and Dire Dawa. In the far south, the towns of Delo and Filtu fell by August 8th.

A platoon from the counter-insurgency Nebelbal Flame Bde served as reinforcement. With the strength of its regular army wanting, the Ethiopians organized peasants into militia units.

ogaden war

The SNA seized the town on July 25th, inflicting heavy casualties in the process. Only about 20 percent of the militiamen retreated to Harrar on the plateau. The Ethiopians simply abandoned huge warehouses stocked with American arms and ammunition.

The 9th Inf Bde lost Kebridehar and also fled to Harrar in disarray, but the 11th Inf Bde conducted a more orderly retreat to the town of Jijiga.

The Ethiopians lost the towns of the lower Ogaden in just a few weeks, and the rapid advance of the SNA impressed American military observers. Harrar was west of the pass on the highway. Beyond it was Dire Dawa, sitting astride the rail line and home to a key air base.

The SNA planned to take Dire Dawa, thereby cutting off the other two towns and making them untenable. They repulsed an SNA attack three days later. The 2nd Militia Div, a unit with poor discipline, reinforced Dire Dawa. The SNA attacked again on August 17th with 2, men. The 32 Ts of the 16th Armored Bn led the attack. Elements of the 15th Motorized Bde made up the infantry.

Artillery included a company with BM rocket launchers. They briefly captured the airport, but the Ethiopians threw them back. The SNA shifted its focus to Jijiga. Israel admitted to aiding Ethiopia, perhaps with spare parts and technicians for its F-5s. The 10th Mech Bde garrisoned the town. The Ethiopians flew in militia reinforcements. Jijiga changed hands a few times before finally falling on September 12th.Somali withdrawal [2]. The war ended when the Somali Armed Forces retreated back across the border and a truce was declared.

Inunder pressure from their World War II allies and to the dismay of the Somalis, [18] the British returned the Haud an important Somali grazing area that was presumably 'protected' by British treaties with the Somalis in and and the Ogaden to Ethiopia, based on a treaty they signed in in which the British, French and Italians agreed upon the territorial boundaries of Ethiopia with the Ethiopian Emperor Menelik in exchange for his help against raids by hostile clans.

A referendum was held in neighboring Djibouti then known as French Somaliland inon the eve of Somalia's independence into decide whether or not to join the Somali Republic or to remain with France.

Ogaden War, 1977 - 1978.

The referendum turned out in favour of a continued association with France, largely due to a combined yes vote by the sizable Afar ethnic group and resident Europeans. Harbi was killed in a plane crash two years later. British Somaliland became independent on 26 June as the State of Somalilandand the Trust Territory of Somalia the former Italian Somaliland followed suit five days later.

On 20 July and through a popular referendumthe people of Somalia ratified a new constitutionwhich was first drafted in On 15 Octoberwhile paying a visit to the northern town of Las AnodSomalia's then President Shermarke was shot dead by one of his own bodyguards.

Kediye officially held the title of "Father of the Revolution," and Barre shortly afterwards became the head of the SRC. In addition to previous Soviet funding and arms support to Somalia, Egypt sent millions of dollars in arms to Somalia, established military training and sent experts to Somalia in support of Egypt's longstanding policy of securing the Nile River flow by destabilising Ethiopia.

Even as Somalia gained military strength, Ethiopia grew weaker. In SeptemberEmperor Haile Selassie had been overthrown by the Derg the military councilmarking a period of turmoil.

The Derg quickly fell into internal conflict to determine who would have primacy. Meanwhile, various anti-Derg as well as separatist movements began throughout the country.

The regional balance of power now favoured Somalia. One of the separatist groups seeking to take advantage of the chaos was the pro-Somalia Western Somali Liberation Front WSLF operating in the Somali-inhabited Ogaden areawhich by late had struck numerous government outposts.

ogaden war

A sign that order had been restored among the Derg was the announcement of Mengistu Haile Mariam as head of state on 11 February However, the country remained in chaos as the military attempted to suppress its civilian opponents.

Despite the violence, the Soviet Union, which had been closely observing developments, came to believe that Ethiopia was developing into a genuine Marxist—Leninist state and that it was in Soviet interests to aid the new regime. They thus secretly approached Mengistu with offers of aid that he accepted.

Ethiopia closed the U. The Somali National Army committed to invade the Ogaden at on July 13, 5 Hamle,according to Ethiopian documents some other sources state 23 July. The attacking forces did suffer some early setbacks; Ethiopian defenders at Dire Dawa and Jijiga inflicted heavy casualties on assaulting forces. However, Somalia was easily overpowering Ethiopian military hardware and technology capability. The 3rd and 4th Ethiopian Infantry Divisions that suffered the brunt of the Somali invasion had practically ceased to exist.

The USSR, finding itself supplying both sides of a war, attempted to mediate a ceasefire. When their efforts failed, the Soviets abandoned Somalia. All aid to Siad Barre's regime was halted, while arms shipments to Ethiopia were increased. Soviet military aid second in magnitude only to the October gigantic resupplying of Syrian forces during the Yom Kippur War and advisors flooded into the country along with around 15, Cuban combat troops. Other communist countries offered assistance: the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen offered military assistance and North Korea helped train a "People's Militia"; East Germany likewise offered training, engineering and support troops.

Not all communist states sided with Ethiopia. Because of the Sino-Soviet rivalryChina supported Somalia diplomatically and with token military aid.He was the 1st Prime Minister of Somalia during the trusteeship period, serving from February 29,to July 1, Air supremacy is a position in war where a side holds complete control of air warfare and air power over opposing forces.

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The Ethiopian—Somali conflict is a territorial and political dispute between the territories of present-day Ethiopia and Somalia. A referendum on the new constitution of France was held in French Somaliland on 28 September as part of a wider referendum held across the French Union. A general officer is an officer of high rank in the army, and in some nations' air forces or marines. The International Journal of African Historical Studies publishes peer reviewed articles on all aspects of African history.

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Jijiga Jigjiga is a city in eastern Ethiopia and the capital of the Somali Region of the country. The Journal of Eastern African Studies is a quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal covering research on the Eastern African region.

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Ogaden War

War memorials Online memorials Articles and news. The Ogaden War was a conventional conflict between Somalia and Ethiopia in and over the Ogaden region of Ethiopia. Fighting erupted as Somalia sought to exploit a temporary shift in the regional balance of power in their favor to occupy the Ogaden region, claimed to be part of Greater Somalia. In a notable illustration of the nature of Cold War alliances, the Soviet Union switched from supplying aid to Somalia to supporting Ethiopia, which had previously been backed by the United States, prompting the U.

The war ended when Somali forces retreated back across the border and a truce was declared. Origins of the war While the cause of the conflict was the desire of the Somali government of Siad Barre to incorporate the Somali-inhabited region of Ethiopia into a Greater Somalia, it is unlikely Barre would have ordered the invasion if circumstances had not turned in his favor. Ethiopia had historically dominated the region. By the beginning of the war, the Somali National Army SNA was only 35,men strong and was vastly outnumbered by the Ethiopian forces.

However, throughout the s, Somalia was the recipient of large amounts of Soviet military aid. The SNA had three times the tank force of Ethiopia, as well as a larger air force. Even as Somalia gained military strength, Ethiopia grew weaker. In SeptemberEmperor Haile Selassie had been overthrown by the Derg the military councilmarking a period of turmoil. The Derg quickly fell into internal conflict to determine who would have primacy.

Meanwhile, various separatist movements began throughout the country. The regional balance of power now favored Somalia. One of the separatist groups seeking to take advantage of the chaos was the pro-Somalia Western Somali Liberation Front WSLF operating in the Ogaden, which by late had struck numerous government outposts.

A sign that order had been restored among the Derg was the announcement of Mengistu Haile Mariam as head of state on 11 February However, the country remained in chaos as the military attempted to suppress its civilian opponents. Despite the violence, the Soviet Union, which had been closely observing developments, came to believe that Ethiopia was developing into a genuine Marxist-Leninist state and that it was in Soviet interests to aid the new regime.

They thus secretly approached Mengistu with offers of aid that he accepted. Ethiopia closed the U. Despite considerable evidence to the contrary, Barre insisted that no such thing was occurring, but that SNA "volunteers" were being allowed to help the WSLF. Course of the war Somalia decided to make a decisive move and invaded the Ogaden on 23 July Ethiopian Victory [4] [5].

By Marchthe Ethiopians had captured almost all of the Ogaden, prompting the defeated Somalis to give up their claim to the region. All of these conditions led to a revolt in the army which eventually spiraled into a civil war. Inunder pressure from their World War II allies and to the dismay of the Somalis, [30] the British returned the Haud an important Somali grazing area that was presumably 'protected' by British treaties with the Somalis in and and the Ogaden to Ethiopia, based on a treaty they signed in in which the British, French and Italians agreed upon the territorial boundaries of Ethiopia with the Ethiopian Emperor Menelik in exchange for his help against raids by hostile clans.

A referendum was held in neighboring Djibouti then known as French Somaliland inon the eve of Somalia's independence into decide whether or not to join the Somali Republic or to remain with France. The referendum turned out in favour of a continued association with France, largely due to a combined yes vote by the sizable Afar ethnic group and resident Europeans.

Harbi was killed in a plane crash two years later. British Somaliland became independent on 26 June as the State of Somalilandand the Trust Territory of Somalia the former Italian Somaliland followed suit five days later. On 20 Julythrough a popular referendumthe people of Somalia ratified a new constitution that had been first drafted the previous year.

On 15 Octoberwhile paying a visit to the northern town of Las AnodSomalia's then President Shermarke was shot dead by one of his own bodyguards. Kediye officially held the title of "Father of the Revolution", and Barre shortly afterwards became the head of the SRC. In addition to previous Soviet funding and arms support to Somalia, Egypt sent millions of dollars in arms to Somalia, established military training and sent experts to Somalia in support of Egypt's long standing policy of securing the Nile River flow by destabilising Ethiopia.

Under the leadership of General Mohamed Ali SamatarIrro and other senior Somali military officials were mandated in with formulating a national strategy in preparation for the Ogaden campaign in Ethiopia. A distinguished graduate of FrunzeSamantar oversaw Somalia's military strategy. Najicapturing the area on August 30, Later became Minister of Tourism. Salhan was eventually expelt from the Somali Socialist Party in Eventually joined the SNM late Became a civilian administrator and Governor of Sanaag, later killed in Hargheisa as the new appointed Governor of Hargheisa in one day before he took over the Governorship.

General Mohamed Nur Galaal assisted by Col.

ogaden war

Mohamud Sh. Abdullahi Geelqaad commanded Dirir-Dewa. Abdulrahman Aare led the Degeh-Bur Front. Later chosen to reinforce the Harar campaign; eventually became a military attache and retired as a private citizen after the collapse of SNA in Later became a General and a military attache to France.The Reader View of Wikipedia.

Ethiopian Victory [4] [5]. By Marchthe Ethiopians had captured almost all of the Ogaden, prompting the defeated Somalis to give up their claim to the region. All of these conditions led to a revolt in the army which eventually spiraled into a civil war. Inunder pressure from their World War II allies and to the dismay of the Somalis, [30] the British returned the Haud an important Somali grazing area that was presumably 'protected' by British treaties with the Somalis in and and the Ogaden to Ethiopia, based on a treaty they signed in in which the British, French and Italians agreed upon the territorial boundaries of Ethiopia with the Ethiopian Emperor Menelik in exchange for his help against raids by hostile clans.

A referendum was held in neighboring Djibouti then known as French Somaliland inon the eve of Somalia's independence into decide whether or not to join the Somali Republic or to remain with France.

The referendum turned out in favour of a continued association with France, largely due to a combined yes vote by the sizable Afar ethnic group and resident Europeans. Harbi was killed in a plane crash two years later. British Somaliland became independent on 26 June as the State of Somalilandand the Trust Territory of Somalia the former Italian Somaliland followed suit five days later.

On 20 Julythrough a popular referendumthe people of Somalia ratified a new constitution that had been first drafted the previous year.

The Ogaden War

On 15 Octoberwhile paying a visit to the northern town of Las AnodSomalia's then President Shermarke was shot dead by one of his own bodyguards. Kediye officially held the title of "Father of the Revolution", and Barre shortly afterwards became the head of the SRC. In addition to previous Soviet funding and arms support to Somalia, Egypt sent millions of dollars in arms to Somalia, established military training and sent experts to Somalia in support of Egypt's long standing policy of securing the Nile River flow by destabilising Ethiopia.

Under the leadership of General Mohamed Ali SamatarIrro and other senior Somali military officials were mandated in with formulating a national strategy in preparation for the Ogaden campaign in Ethiopia. A distinguished graduate of FrunzeSamantar oversaw Somalia's military strategy.

Najicapturing the area on August 30, Later became Minister of Tourism. Salhan was eventually expelt from the Somali Socialist Party in Eventually joined the SNM late Became a civilian administrator and Governor of Sanaag, later killed in Hargheisa as the new appointed Governor of Hargheisa in one day before he took over the Governorship.

General Mohamed Nur Galaal assisted by Col. Mohamud Sh. Abdullahi Geelqaad commanded Dirir-Dewa.


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