All Speaking Out Case Studies > Somalia 1991-1993: Civil War, Famine Alert and a UN “Military-Humanitarian” Intervention
The ‘Somalia 1991-1993: Civil War, Famine Alert and a UN “Military-Humanitarian” Intervention‘ case study describes the constraints, questions and dilemmas faced by MSF during the first year of its intervention to assist the populations of Somalia, after the civil war started in 1991.
Questions and dilemmas:
- Should armed guards be employed or not?
- As the quasi-only source of information in the field, how far could MSF go in releasing information without taking sides?
- How to draw attention on the famine in Somalia, when all cameras were focused on the Gulf War?
- What position should MSF take about an armed intervention aiming to protect humanitarian aid convoys, with widespread support of the population, but which could worsen the insecurity?
- How should MSF react when this military intervention drift in this direction?