Sunday, April 20, 2008

The devil on a horse

Sunday Morning coffee in hand I flip to the national geographic channel, the show was called The Devil on Horseback. The show stems from pictures American Capitan attached to the Africa Union Mission in Sudan Peace Keeping force composed of 7,000 troops from various African nations. The pictures this Capitan had managed to get out of Sudan where horrific, children chained together and set on fire their screams frozen in the burnt husks. The Capitan and his people had written hundreds of reports there were never published.
These attacks were conducted by a group funded and supported by the Sudan government called the
Janjaweed. Janjaweed is a militia group recruited from the Arab Baggara tribes nomads who want to move there camels into Darfur for the water there. They view these non Arab agrarian people of the Fur, Zaghawa and Massaleit ethnic groups as slaves. Based on the chant that survivors related to the Capitan “ kill the slaves” just before the charged in and killed nearly the whole village.
The show reported on how the Janjaweed militia used the oil pipeline built by and for the export of oil to China, who pays for it with guns and money. Sudan didn't have the funds or expertise needed to develop their oilfields so turned to China for help I suppose because everyone else couldn't in good conscience support the Sudanese government that support this genocide in Darfur.
Though the Sudan government claims only 9,000 people have been killed, the UN and other non governmental organizations estimate between 200,000 to 400,000 people killed by war and disease. Though the US government has declared the situation in Darfur as genocide, the UN has not. Currently after the seventh resolution passed by the UN they have sent in 9,065 uniformed personnel only 6,880 that are armed troops to join with the Africa Union forces a total of 19,555 military and 3.722 police.
What bothers me is will they be able to do anything to stop these war crimes or will they like the Capitan that brought out this deeply disturbing report be forced to carry just cameras and have no other weapon to stop this crime against humanity? Because the Sudan government has shown that they can't be shamed into doing the right thing in Darfur. Their answer is to jail and kill witnesses and tamper with evidence of mass graves.

These images have been burnt into my mind like they stain the plains of the Sudan
A geas against those that would do this to their fellow man
May they be bound unable to profit or raise their hand
Against those of a different religion, tribe or stand.
May those that look the other way now see it all around
Those that support it in any way be exposed
May we all rise up and say no more!

No comments: