On October 14 Mogadishu was rocked by the deadliest explosion in its history, killing more than 400 people and injuring hundreds of others. Reliable figures are hard to come by, but the blast, which flattened the buildings around the clogged Zoppe Junction in the Hodan district, has caused mayhem and material destruction estimated to be in the millions of dollars.
What is becoming crystal clear, however, is that the tragedy could be translated into an opportunity to unite the nation and galvanize the public into collective action against al-Shabaab, which is widely believed to be behind the attack even if it shied away from claiming its ghastly outcome. In fact, the nation has expressed mass outrage at the impunity with which al-Shabaab continues to massacre citizens and wreak havoc. Somalis all around the world have responded by collecting hundreds of thousands of dollars in support of the victims of the attack.