03 October 2006
UN inaction can lead to another genocide in Darfur!!
Sudan, the latest tragedy that the world has just woken up too, stems from long-standing tensions between nomadic Arab tribes and their African neighbours over water and farmland. There are genuinely long standing famine-based tensions between the largely African settled farmers and nomadic Arab herders, and it is this ethnic divide that has mobilized the armed struggle. The ethnic African farmers (extracted from the Fur, Masalit, and Zaghawa peoples), formed the Sudanese Liberation Army or SLA in Darfur, which launched an attack on positions of the central government, including the city of El Fasher in the early months of 2003. Khartoum's responded by organizing the Arab tribes among the Baggara people, of Arab ethnicity, in Darfur who were called the Janjaweed, to fight the insurgents.
It is a conflict between Muslims but the manner of its conduct has brought ignominy to the Islamic world. One is flabbergasted to see how the words of the Prophet have been forgotten. We are silent spectators of a demise of a vision that of true egalitarianism and fraternity enjoined within the Prophet's last sermon. "Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab!" The Prophet's wisdom and teaching, binding for all times, has been apathetically ignored for by the Islamic world:
"O People, just as you regard this month, this day, this city as Sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust. All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor does a black have any superiority over white except by piety and good action."
Dotted alongside the charred Sudanese locations are unharmed, populated and functioning Arab settlements. It is definitely a classic Malthusian tragedy, the land not being able to sustain the burden of a burgeoning population. The strongest takes it all; in this case they are the Sudanese supported Janjaweed.
In some locations, the distance between a destroyed Fur (black Muslims) village and an Arab village is less than 500 meters. The killers and rapists in Darfur are Muslims, and so are the victims -- Black African farmers. The Arab street has displayed a striking indecisiveness when ever it has come to the fate of non Arab Muslims and considered the fate of non-Arab Muslims as peripheral to the integral cause of Arab nationalism. Most of the Sudanese consider this war to be a misinformation launched by the west to deny Sudan the management and control of the 'lawful' fresh rich finding of oil in the 'Zurgas' region.
The stabilisation 'African Union forces numbering 7,000 are no match for the callous Janjaweed militia. What is required is a full division of UN blue helmets to take over Darfur. The United Nations has been toothless, so far in letting Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir block a UN presence. The Janjaweed militia is attempting to "cleanse" the population of black Africans. So far, government-armed militants have killed more than 200,000 people and banished more than 2 million from their homes, who are now living perilously in camps, and wholly reliant for survival on humanitarian aid. In addition, there are 208,000 refugees from Darfur living across the border in Chad, and almost half of the overall population of 6 million in Darfur is malnourished, and at imminent risk of famine due to disrupted food supplies.
The indifference of Muslims to the plight of other Muslims is a well-established contemporary fact. In Bosnia, the Serbian minority rapidly gained the upper hand against the Muslims with arms supplied mainly by the government of neighbouring Serbia. Despite significant humanitarian and military support to the Bosnians from non-governmental organizations and individuals in the Arab world, Arab politicians like Saddam and Asad maintained their comfortable ties with Serbia.They viewed Milosevic not as the mastermind behind the cold-blooded massacre of 7000 Muslim men in Saberenca but the savoir of the crumbling Yugoslav republic. The steady flow of Yugoslav arms to the Arab world was of greater importance than the fate of distant Muslims in the far-away Balkan region.
Now whilst the Islamic press is hysterical over civilian casualties in Iraq it flagrantly ignores the genocide of 200,000 Muslim in Sudan. In this case it is Arabic northerners who are systematically wiping out the black Muslims in the Darfur region. It is hard to think of a more blasphemous act for a Muslim than to consciously defy the edict of the Prophet. But in Sudan this has been going on for the more than a decade.
Whilst the Arab street affirms its Arab nationalism and hatred for America, with headlines such as "America will pay the price sooner that it thinks. There are no limits to American injustice and highhandedness. Despite its power and tyranny America will not win because it has no humanitarian values." What springs to mind, is where were these condemnations when Saddam slaughtered 5000 in the chemical attack on Halabja in a single day, or when Assad shelled to death 30,000 persons in Hama, or when other autocratic Arab rulers committed injustices and murder?
Some Arab governments led by despots -- and their press and public -- should first practice moral judgment on themselves and each other, before turning their outrage on other and before they grumble about a new-fangled intimidating colonialism, they should first show they are competent to govern themselves by some means other than torment and carnage. Look at the irony, who are the main players accomplishing the job of highlighting the predicament of the Darfur.
Islamic leaders are immobile and lifeless, OIC is hushed and the Arab league is proactively supporting Sudan. It is Actor George Clooney who is using the power of his superstardom to keep Darfur in the news. Clooney's publications, his pictures and his presence at the United Nations last week along with Holocaust survivor Elie Weisel, that is drawing the media's attention. It is the student movement in California that was victorious as Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill 2941 into law pushing for public pensions to divest in companies funding Sudan The bill will force the country's largest public pension funds, the California State Teacher's Retirement System (CalSTRS) and the California Public Employees' Retirement System, worth $360 million in combined assets, to divest in foreign companies that deal in arms or conduct business with the Sudanese government.
While the Muslim world has suffered, they have blamed everyone but themselves. This state of denial and extreme "hypocrisy" means Muslims are ill-equipped to deal with problems of endemic terrorism. In the Islamic terminology, the word "Hypocrisy" is a substitute for "Nifaq". This word Nifaq has been mentioned in the Qur'an thirty-one (31) times in different forms.
"The hypocrites will be in the lowest depths of the fire-no helper will thou find for them;-" (4:145)
This "gross hypocrisy" resident within mainstream mores of the Islamic polity has led the nation of Islam into a collective rage of vanity and and a feeling of powerlessness. The enemy within is rarely ever found to be the culprit, the deviation from injunctions so explicitly enjoined is leading us to decay. There is no moral equivalence of crimes against humanity.
To rub salt on the wounds the Arab League issued a statement "reaffirming the 'Arab states' solidarity with the sisterly Republic of Sudan and their keenness to preserve its territorial integrity and sovereignty and reinforce all peace initiatives started by the Sudanese government with the international and regional parties."
To express support for a rogue government that has been the instigator in this unfortunate tragedy is not only disappointing but also true to form for these Islamic regimes. While we loudly condemn Israel, we are hushed when Islamic regimes slaughter thousands of Muslims and eradicate their presence from the face of the planet? Does any "League" care about rights of the black Muslims being slaughtered! It is persons like Elie Weisel who care for the injustice being carried out in Darfur and George Sorros who helped the Muslims of Sarajevo to survive by contributing to the pipeline that delivered them drinking water from the river, whilst they were under Serbian siege. Saddam and Asad at that time continued to trade arms with Milosivic.
The present cycle of horror and devastation in Sudan continues to prompt more concern in Western countries than in the Arab world. Sudan was elected in 2003 to serve a three-year term on the U.N. Human Rights Commission. What a reward indeed! for the Sudanese governments active support of the Arab Janjaweed militia's ferocious intent to make Darfur, in the west of Sudan, "Zurga-free".
The U.N. under an African so far has shown no disposition to stop this campaign of eradication of black Muslims from Darfur. The UN Security Council on August 31, 2006 adopted Resolution 1706, which called for a transition from an African peacekeeping force of 7,000 to a UN force of 20,000 to be on the ground in Darfur by January 2007. 12 members of the Security Council, with China, Russia, and Yemen abstaining, supported this initiative. These abstentions are signs of trouble, especially when coupled with the refusal of the Sudan government to give its consent to a UN peacekeeping presence within its borders.
The situation seems deadlocked with time running out. The UN must overcome the reluctance of China and Russia, which have oil interests in Sudan, to persuade the government in Khartoum to let in the troops and humanitarian groups that can stop the exodus and genocide of its own citizens. The President of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, has gone so far as to say that his country would respond to any UN effort to establish a presence in Darfur "as Hezbollah beat Israel." Going by their past record one cannot overlook the similarities in plans of genocide in places such as Rwanda and Srebrenica. A U.N. commander on the ground in Rawanda, Gen. Romeo Dallaire, was informed of a plan to slaughter Tutsis. His appeal to Kofi Annan, then chief of the U.N.'s Department of Peacekeeping Operations, for permission to seize a known hoard of armaments belonging to the Hutus was repetitively overlooked. The genocide of the Tutsis went ahead as premeditated. It is assumed this genocide would not have occurred had Dallaire been able to intrude the weapons supply. The U.N. did eventually send peacekeeping troops to Rwanda but when the genocide was over. Dithering with the lives of innocents is at stake is no great diplomacy. The U.N.'s malfunction to undertake a timely strike resulted in the deaths of approximately 800,000 Tutsis.
They have been largely successful and to compound their sin the Janjaweed milita have been massacring the fleeing populace, sparing no men, woman or children. The Arabic militants' quest to rid Darfur of the darker-skinned Black population is in every respect, nothing but systematic ethnic cleansing.
None of the Muslim parliaments have articulated a single utterance of denunciation.Though sorrowfully a recent OIC mission thinks that 'the situation in the Darfur region is being erroneously and negatively depicted by some international organizations and the international media. The situation has been blown out of proportions and being projected on the basis of unfounded and baseless allegations and reports. The sincere as well as sustained efforts of the Government of the Sudan have either been neglected or have not been positively depicted.' The credit goes to the United States Congress who declared the killings of tens of thousands of black civilians by Arab militias in Sudan's Darfur region to amount to genocide and urged the president, George Bush, to call the situation in Sudan "by its rightful name". Americans willingness to stand up to the injustice in Bosnia, Kosovo Albania and now Darfur is in sharp contrast to the reluctance of the Arab world to stand up and show solidarity for their fellow non-Arab Muslims.