The pitiful state of much of the Horn of Africa is indeed a stark reminder that protracted civil war tends to destroy the livelihoods of entire peoples. But not only have the famines been recurring, they are also inevitable as long as much of Southern Somalia remains a war zone. Virtually every BBC news article on Somalia ends with a sentence informing the daring reader that Somalia is in chaos since the government of Siad Barre was toppled in 1991. This leads to the generally ill-informed assumption that the current violence started about two decades ago and that ever since Somalia is a so-called failed state. In itself correct, the seeds of the country's failure can be traced back to 1975 and two years ago I've done a larger study on land and war in Somalia. The issue of land and war in Somalia does not get much media attention these days, but it is in fact crucial, so for a moment of sheer vanity, I shall recommend my own paper. Having said that, there is another issue that the international community needs to deal with: the recognition of Somaliland as an independent state.