Shabaab commander Omar Hammami reported killed in Somalia


Omar Hammami, who is also known as Abu Mansoor al Amriki.

An American citizen who holds a senior military leadership position in Shabaab, al Qaeda’s affiliate in Somalia, is thought to have been killed during the recent fighting in the warn-torn country.

Omar Hammami, the American citizen who is a commander in Shabaab and who is better known as Abu Mansour al Amriki, may have been killed during the heavy fighting in Mogadishu and the surrounding areas, Somalia’s defense minister told The Associated Press.

The defense minister said the report is unconfirmed but intelligence reports indicate he was killed.

Shabaab has not released a statement announcing his death. US intelligence officials contacted by The Long War Journal said they were aware of the reports but could not confirm Hammami’s status.

Hammami is a US citizen from Alabama who converted to Islam and then traveled to Somalia in 2006. Once in Somalia, he quickly rose through the ranks, and now serves as a military commander. He is one of the many foreign commanders who hold senior leadership positions in Shabaab, which is al Qaeda’s affiliate in East Africa. Hammami is one of 14 people indicted by the US Justice Department in August 2010 for providing material support to Shabaab.

Hammami also began appearing in Shabaab propaganda tapes. In one tape, released in May 2010, Hammami stressed that Shabaab’s war is not confined to Somalia but is global in nature. “From Somalia and Shiishaan (Chechnya), from Iraq and Afghanistan, gonna meet up in the Holy Lands, establishing Allah’s Law on the land,” Hammami says in a chorus repeated throughout the song. Hammami and others identify their enemy as the “salib,” or crusaders.

Two weeks ago, the Somali government, backed by Ugandan and Burundian forces in the African Union, as well as Ethiopia, launched an offensive against Shabaab. Somalia’s President, Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, claimed yesterday that Shabaab “is on the verge of collapse” after the terror group has been driven out of several strongholds in the capital of Mogadishu as well as in the Gedo region on the Kenyan border.

The government claimed that Shabaab has lost more than 500 fighters during the offensive. But the African Union has suppressed information about heavy casualties to its own forces. Last week, it was reported that 53 African Union troops were killed during the fighting. No estimates on the number of Somali troops killed have been released.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • akw says:

    May it be true, and may he burn in hell.

  • Omar says:

    This is a good news to hear. Kill the rest of gangs and the enemy of the Somalia as well.
    Well done.

  • Matt says:

    Oh man, if this gets confirmed that would be awesome news. Thanks for the heads up.

  • Raven says:

    Hoping this is true.
    And thanks for those African Union soldiers. They have done a great job..

  • g says:

    Hopefully, this is verified. What a waste! How does someone grow up in the US, regardless of where (not dissing AL) , and be so disenfranchised that this is an option? I’m not sorry and hope he is dead, but is there anything we can do to prevent others from thinking this is an option? (and trust me, I am not trying to save them if they take this option – just a waste).
    With all that is happening in the middle east and North Africa, it’s clear to me that al Qaeda is impotent. There is nothing they can do anymore to enlarge their ranks. It is just a matter of time before they and their supporters are cast aside by history. They tried in vain to be relevant but were and are not. They thought they could shock the world into paying attention. They proved that a life cast away in support of their mission was wasted. (There are no virgins waiting for any martyrs and, well, dead is DEAD) ..nothing gained.
    Freedom is the answer. Enlightened self interest. Make that happen and everyone wins (or at least anyone willing to work for themselves and not some figurehead or fundamentalist (Taliban)

  • Paul says:

    Made my day!

  • huda says:

    That is a good news to hear me. kill him, he is enemy.

  • Hasanein says:

    I’m 101% these are actually CIA agents, placed in countries like Somalia, simply to attract ‘geniune’ jihadist around the globe, to one place, so it’s easier for America or their agents to kill them, as opposed if they are disperesed.
    They did this first in Afghanistan, and it worked 100%, many got detained in Gitmo or killed. They repeated it in Iraq, many got detained in Iraq (Abu Ghuraib) since it’s cheaper than shipping the goats to Gitmo and the rest got killed like insects. And now we’re seeing it repeated in Somalia. and the it will keep on repeating because Muslims have become blinded by emotions instead of using their intelect.
    Anyway I really care less about the, I’m a Somali living in Europe and all I care is to see my country grow stronger and better inshallah the signs of that are very visible.
    As for the foriegn fighters, really and truly they should go back and restablish the Deen in their country first, there’s prostituion in Mekka and Madina today, and also Saudi citizen’s get away with theft and do not get their hands cut off but they apply the law on poor people living there like Asians or Africans.
    Allahu Akbar, may Allah make TFG pious and sincere leadership for our Ummah in Somalia.

  • nolan says:

    why are squad leaders “senior leaders” and “commanders” according to our reporting criteria. is this to hype an article or do we really consider some guy with a few ak’s and a jug of HME crouched in a hut with 4 other morons a “commander”.
    small cells are led by cell leaders-not commanders.

  • Marc says:

    If he is dead, then good. If not, oh well. I say this as an East African focused analyst jaded by too many years of watching these fools fight. No matter who dies or how spectacularly they go, there will always be lines of fools wanting to take that open slot. The following Somali proverb made the entire mess painfully clear to me years ago.
    Me and my country against the world
    Me and my clan against my country
    Me and my family against my clan
    Me and my brother against my family

  • Keep us posted, Bill, when you know more

  • Mark says:

    So terrible, I hope it’s not true.


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