June 30, 2004


The US and other international actors have called on Sudan to rein in the Arab “Janjaweed” militias responsible and to provide security for the displaced. This is the political equivalent of imploring the fox to guard the henhouse. The Sudanese government has been directly involved in the killings. And it has a long history of sponsoring local militias to destabilize regions of the country and, for that matter, neighboring African countries, with which it is at odds. This “outsourcing” of military operations provides the government a low-cost and plausibly deniable device for advancing its political aims. Counting on the government to ensure the security of a population it wants to exterminate is reminiscent of recent government-sponsored pogroms in Kosovo, Kurdish northern Iraq after the Gulf War, and East Timor.

The upshot: by the predatory and abusive violation of its citizens, the dictatorial government of Omar Hassan al-Bashir, like those of Slobodan Milosevic and Saddam Hussein, has relinquished its claims of sovereignty in Darfur.

Read the whole thing. (Via Passion of the Present).

UPDATE: Then there’s this report:

Arab militiamen in Sudan use rape as weapon
‘We want to make a light baby,’ woman says fighter told her

“They grabbed my donkey and my straw and said, ‘Black girl, you are too dark. You are like a dog. We want to make a light baby,’ ” said Sawela Suliman, 22, showing slashes from a where a whip struck her thighs as her father held up a police and health report with details of the attack. “They said, ‘You get out of this area and leave the child when it’s made.’ ” . . .

In Sudan, as in many Arab cultures, a child’s ethnicity is attached to the ethnicity of the father.

Strange that Kofi Annan is unwilling to call this genocide.

ANOTHER UPDATE: James Moore has satellite images “consistent with ‘ethnic cleansing’ and genocide.”

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