Ilwad (Elle) Elman runs the Elman Peace and Human Rights Center in Mogadishu with her mom, Fartun. Her father was an ardent peace activist in the 1990s, spreading the mantra “Put down the gun, pick up the pen” around Somalia, but was assassinated in 1996.
I checked, after dsquared questioned on twitter whether tomorrow's TED speakers event in Mogadishu might in fact be a hoax. It’s listed on the main TED site and so is apparently a thing that exists, despite a slightly parodic emphasis on the Camel and Camel products business. The theme is ‘rebirth’, but the proceedings end with enough time for the participants to get to a place of safety before dark.
I feel a bit guilty about taking the piss . If you’ve hung on in Mogadishu trying to do something constructive – or even just placed a bet on the place when the odds were looking pretty bad – maybe you’re due a bit of hoo-ha and backslapping. I just wish the folks involved would tell us how they actually did it rather than get involved in something that looks, in context, a bit like gourmet survivalism.