Sudan - Time to Move

The situation in Sudan is going to get a lot worse before it gets better.  Much as a post-Iraq (well, actaully post-end-of-formal-hostilities-in-Iraq, but you get my drift) world is reluctant to get involved in yet another conflict, at this stage it doesn't have much choice.

The numerous reports from courageous correspondents on the Chad-Sudan border (and this heartbreaking report carried in The Oz from Darfur itself) suggest that the trickle of refugees out of the Darfur region is turning into a flood.  The Janjaweed (not, apparently, a variety of Jamaican dope) militia are acting ruthlessly to expel their African country-folk and reclaim it as an Arab territory.

It is surely only a matter of days before Israel, the United States or capitalism is blamed, and western self-criticism festers.

Strong and decisive action is needed from the rest of the world, and it will cost plenty of blood and dollars.  Hopefully a broad coalition, predominatly African and Arab, but much broader as the mission requires, can be built.  It will need to have two objectives:

Firstly, in the short term, to make sure that those refugees in Chad have access to food, shelter, medication and anything else they need.  This should be absolutely uncontentious, and receive unanimous global support.

Secondly, a more long term objective, is to enter the region and disarm all factions, primarily the Janjaweed, and stabilise the Darfur region.  The Sudanese government may or may not be supporting the Janjaweed, and their response to internation calls for disarming civilians will be a vital test.  If the government is serious, they will support disarmament.  If not, they are part of the problem.  Regardless, a UN mission must be put together, and quickly.


Anonymous said…
It really is a sickening situation.

I doubt any African or Arab nation is going to get involved. And after recent Sudanese government threats, you can count the Phillipines out too.

If it involves doing something useful you can forget about the UN.

Screw them all. It's gonna have to be a USA-lead alliance. Maybe with some help from Micronesia.

Pete said…
Trouble is, old son, there is trouble and heartbreak all over the world. Sad and tragic though it is to see the kind of reports you refer to here, who's going to do the work?

The U.S.? They're bogged down in Iraq, the dopey bunnies. Africa and Arab nations? Are you serious? Perhaps Australia can send in it's spare company of reservists!

Forgive my skepticism, but this thing is not new what's going on in Sudan so why now? Why the sudden rush to judgement.

I know this all probably sounds like I'd have appeased Hitler. While it's all very well to say that "had the international community not gone against the Nazi's... " etc, the fact is the world was not aware of what that regime was doing to the Jews at the time they went in and each nation that went in had their own, decidely non-ultruistic reasons for doing so.

Ultimately, the fate of a nation's government, even the dictatorships, is up to the people of that nation. It doesn't matter who controls the guns, there is simply not enough guns to put down all the people if they really want change. (Think Gandhi in India, think Germans tearing down the wall)

And that, my young friend, is the key problem with international interference in the affairs of a soverign nation. There are simply too many of them... and the heartbreak goes on :(

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