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Darfur: The Genocide the World Got Tired Of

By Eric Reeves

August 16, 2014 (SSNA) -- On August 5, 2014 the displaced persons of El Salam camp in South Darfur were brutally assaulted by military and security forces of the National Islamic Front/National Congress Party regime in Khartoum. Tens of thousands of civilians, mainly women and children, were terrorized during this ferocious operation; a great many were beaten, humiliated, and robbed. Dozens were arrested, only to be released when no evidence could be adduced to justify the arrests. Lack of evidence, however, is not always sufficient to guarantee release, and a number of those arrested remain in custody and subject to torture.

The force that assaulted El Salam camp was large in number—they came in a reported 140 vehicles—and heavily armed. Photographs that have come to me from a confidential source at the location bear out what had been earlier reported by Radio Dabanga, virtually our only news source about violence in Darfur, once the a cause célèbre among American and European civil society. If not for the Radio Dabanga dispatch, El Salam would have been another in a long list of unreported assaults on unarmed civilians in camps for displaced persons—displaced by the very militia and military elements that are now attacking them.

UN/African Union "hybrid" mission in Darfur (UNAMID) was nowhere to be seen on the occasion of the attack on El Salam, despite the fact that the camp is only a few miles from Nyala, capital of South Darfur and the largest town in all of Darfur. For despite its large size and cost, UNAMID is rarely able to protect civilians, either in camps, towns, or rural areas, even though civilian protection is the primary mandate of the mission. It is hardly surprising that such deficiencies are only very rarely reported by UNAMID itself, since it is routinely denied access to the scenes of atrocity crimes. We learn of the failures of this vast and immensely expensive mission only from Darfuris themselves, and chiefly by means of Radio Dabanga. The Khartoum regime permits no human rights or news reporting presence in Darfur, and the UN and international nongovernmental humanitarian organizations operating there live in constant, all too well justified fear of expulsion; they are silent about what they see.

In turn, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon—in his mandated quarterly reports on Darfur and UNMAID—relies on the UN/AU mission itself for reports about sexual violence, murders, assaults, land appropriation, extortion sites on major highways, robbery, kidnapping, and wholesale military and militia assaults on towns. But very little of what occurs is actually reported by UNAMID, both because of access limitations as well as lack of land and air transport capacity, and a relationship with Khartoum that has become increasingly cozy over the years. This is partly a response to Khartoum's primary responsibility for the killing, by means of its Arab militia forces, more than 50 UN peacekeepers during the time of deployment.

Throughout its six-year history, UNAMID has been badly led by the likes of Rodolphe Adada (Congo) and the wholly incompetent Ibrahim Gambari (Nigeria). It has been hampered by a lack of trained personnel (a great many units operate significantly below minimum UN peacekeeping standards), and a lack of required equipment, especially helicopters; here militarily capable Western nations have been unforgivably stingy, compromising a mission they nominally supported but refused to supply when there were key shortages. Morale is disastrously low within UNAMID, and recent investigative reporting makes clear that reports on Darfur are too often exercises in expediency and mendacity.

The mission as it stands has failed in its primary purpose, and that failure has been growing steadily for more than two years. And yet there are no voices calling for a response to this failure: not the UN, where the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations simply wants to get rid of this embarrassing and resource-consuming failure; not the AU, many members states of which benefit financially from UN stipends and payments (which are often generous by country states), or the U.S. Indeed, the Obama administration several years ago "de-coupled" Darfur from the primary issues in its Sudan policy, and has had almost nothing to say about what was once characterized by candidate and President Obama's repeated characterizations of Darfur as the site of genocide. In 2007, invoking Rwanda and Bosnia as justification for humanitarian intervention in Darfur, Obama declared:

The United States has a moral obligation anytime you see humanitarian catastrophes... When you see a genocide in Rwanda, Bosnia or in Darfur, that is a stain on all of us, a stain on our souls .... We can't say "never again" and then allow it to happen again, and as a president of the United States I don't intend to abandon people or turn a blind eye to slaughter.

Sadly, "turning a blind eye" to Darfur is now a central feature of the administration's bilateral relationship with the genocidal regime in Khartoum. To be sure, the Arab League has been useless for the entire course of the Darfur catastrophe; and Russia and China—primary weapons suppliers to Khartoum (and thus to the regime's regular and militia forces in Darfur)—have been relentless obstructionists within the UN Security Council. The European Union has no coherent policy or plan to relieve the suffering or end assaults on displaced persons in Darfur. Two days after the attack on El Salam displaced persons camp, Dereig camp was similarly attacked. Radio Dabanga today reports that another displaced persons camp, in North Darfur near Shangil Tobaya, has been surrounded and assaulted; women were raped and at least one man was murdered. Displaced persons camps have been attacked since 2005, but there has been a clear and extremely dangerous increase in such attacks for more than two years; and as has always been true, those responsible enjoy complete impunity.

Despite the vague inertia of previous efforts to bring security to the region, despite the contrived and unworkable "Doha Document for Peace in Darfur"—virtually unanimously rejected by Darfuri civil society and the consequential rebel groups—Darfur has been abandoned by the international community. But attacks on unarmed and innocent civilians continue to be a daily reality, without any end in sight. Humanitarians may soon be compelled by growing insecurity to withdraw.

It's difficult to escape the conclusion that Darfur is the genocide that people got tired of. A terrible epitaph in the wake of so many impassioned declarations of "never again."

Eric Reeves' new book-length study of greater Sudan (Compromising With Evil: An archival history of greater Sudan, 2007 - 2012; www.CompromisingWithEvil.org; review commentary at: http://wp.me/p45rOG-15S).

UNSC Should Impose Targeted Sanctions on South Sudanese Leaders...Now!

By Kuir ë Garang

August 16, 2014 (SSNA) -- The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) knows by now that South Sudanese warring parties are not going to sign any peace agreement soon unless severe sanctions are imposed on prominent figures on both sides.

On January 23, the two parties signed Cessation of Hostilities agreement. This was violated within hours of its signing and soon after the parties started to trade accusations as to who violated it. Bizarrely, it’s always the other side that violates the agreement.

Then on May 9, the two leaders signed a Ceasefire Agreement and expressed commitment to end this war, calling it ‘senseless’. This agreement too was violated. And then in June the two leaders committed themselves to form a transitional government within 60 days. The deadline, which was August 10, passed without any hope of peace agreement in sight.

This is a clear indication that the warring parties neither care about the people of South Sudan nor do they have any respect for all the Nations and organizations mediating in Addis Ababa. Dr. Riek Machar and President Kiir are clearly taking IGAD and the whole world for fools!

As long as these leaders continue to break their promises as the people of South Sudan suffer without any consequences, they’ll never sign any peace agreement.

Besides, the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, sent to South Sudan United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay and Special Advisor on Genocide Prevention, Mr. Adama Dieng, in May of this year.

After coming back from South Sudan, Mr. Dieng presented before the United Nations Security Council the gruesomeness of the situation, the suffering of the people and how the world can’t afford to wait.

Ms. Pillay expressed how little compassion and care both leaders showed towards the suffering of South Sudanese citizens.

And on August 12, 2014, the UNSC sent Mr. Mark Grant, the current president of the 15-member UNSC. Mr. Grant’s entourage included US ambassador to the UN, Ms. Samantha Power and Rwandan Ambassador to the UN, Mr. Eugene-Richard Gasana.

After talking to the two leaders, the delegation said that they were ‘disappointed’ by the two leaders as they showed little interest in signing the peace agreement and ending the suffering of South Sudanese people. It was very clear to the UN delegation that these two leaders are not interested in peace and their own people! It’s all about power and top jobs!

(Watch my video commentary on www.youtube.com/kuirthiytv)

So the two leaders are not to be trusted as they’ve broken their promises time and again; they’ve shown to the world and the UNSC that they don’t care about the people; and they have no interest in ending the war.

It just makes me wonder what other proofs UNSC needs to impose real, affecting sanctions on the two parties.

Should half the population of South Sudan die for UNSC to impose sanctions on the leaders? Is there something of a trust left between South Sudanese leaders and UNSC?

Unless UNSC imposes severe, effective sanctions now, the people of South Sudan will continue to suffer and die. The May sanctions USA imposed on Peter Gatdet Yak and Marial Chanuoong were a mere joke. They were a clear mockery of South Sudanese people. In addition, EU Sanctions, in July, on Peter Gatdet and Santino Deng were the same: pure mockery. I believe they are pure mockery of the suffering South Sudanese civilians because they can never, ever change the dynamic of the war.

I hope the UNSC imposes effective sanctions unlike USA and EU. This is the time for UNSC to show practical care for the people of South Sudan. SANCTIONS NOW! SANCTIONS THAT ACTUALLY WORK!

Kuir ë Garang is a South Sudanese author and poet. His latest book is “South Sudan Ideologically.” For contact, visit www.kuirthiy.info

What is the difference between Democracy and Dictatorship?

By: Sirir Gabriel Yiei Rut

August 15, 2014 (SSNA) -- Democracy and dictatorship stand in sharp contrast to each other. One is the antithesis of the other.

The following points clearly bring out the differences between the two:

1. Democracy emphasizes rights whereas Dictatorship emphasizes duties:

Democracy lays emphasis on the rights of the individual, whereas dictatorship emphasized duties. The concept of democracy is based on individual liberty. The greater the individual liberty in a country, the more democratic it will be. The dictators consider individual liberty to be something out of place.

They lay stress on the obedience of laws and faithful performance of duties. The democratic slogan of liberty, equality and fraternity is replaced by them in the form of duty, discipline and sacrifice.

2. Democracy believes in equality where as Dictatorship believes in hierarchy:

Democracy believes in equality between man and man. Dictators, on the other hand believe in hierarchy.

3. Democracy glorifies the man where as Dictatorship glorifies the State:

Democrats emphasize the individual, whereas dictators emphasize the state. Democracy is based on the notion that the individual is the end, whereas the state is only a means to the end.

Dictators regard the state to be an end and the individual as a means to that end. They glorify the state and call it the march of God on earth. The individual is completely subordinated to the state and is expected to sacrifice himself for the preservation of the whole, i.e., the state.

4. Democracy encourages free thought whereas Dictatorship suppresses free thought and action:

Democracy believes that freedoms of speech, press and association are the basic postulates of good government. Dictators, on the contrary, categorically deny these free­doms. No opposition to the dictator's party is tolerated. All political organizations arc banned.

The press is completely subordinated to the government. Democracy, on the other hand, is based on the principles of free growth of political parties and free press.

Dictators believe in one political party, one national programme and one leader. The leader is to be regarded as the sole representative of people's will.

5. Democracy believes in pacifism while Dictatorship believes in application of force:

Democracy favors pacifism and opposes appli­cation of force in the settlement of political affairs within or outside the country. It urges the settlement of all disputes by patient discussion and agreement. Dictatorship, on the other hand, believes in the argument of force and all disputes are solved by resort to arms.

As a patriotic citizen of south Sudan, do you think our country is on the safe hand? Do you think with Salva Kiir being our president, peace will prevail in our country? With those President Salva Kiir butchered in cold blood, will there be a national healing and reconciliation in the young nation? Is He going to be responsible for those He had killed and except the accountability?

World must come to their very senses and rooted out this dictator once and for all. So that south Sudan may experiences new narratives and new leadership.

Hopefully one fine day peace will prevail in the young nation.

Sirir Gabriel Yiei Rut is a student of political science living in Egypt he can be reach through his Email address: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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