Thursday, April 19, 2007

Keeping the pressure

Bush vows unilateral and tougher sanctions on Sudan.

15 comments:

Aaron in South Sudan said...

It's good to see this kind of rhetoric but given the lack of investment by my government in the economy of the North it's a pretty empty threat if you ask me. Now if the president of China were to say something along the same lines... that would be something. :)

Black Kush said...

Exactly, Khartoum knows unilateral American sanctions will not affect it. Sudan is still under previous American sanctions that were never lifted.

America needs to find a better way.

CommonSense said...

After the sanctions that were imposed on Iraq in the 90s and zimbabwe at the moment is it not clear that sanctions are a useless tool for making political change?

The same will happen in Sudan if the sanctions were to become more widespread.
The only place where sanctions would work are places where the government can be accounted for its actions.

I am against the sanctioning of sudan by the way, im just speaking about sanctions in general.

Anonymous said...

The sanctions of the 80s and 90s may not be the sanctions of today, in the much more globalized world.

In the case of North Korea cutting them largely off from the international banking system made them feel some real pain, especially the elites.

The US may heave little direct business contacts with Sudan, but if it tells banks worldwide that they might be restricted in their from US transactions if they continue to work with Sudan, many won't find that a hard choice to make.

Sudan may still be un-integrated enough on a global scale, but sufficiently integrated ME-wide to not be extremely harshly affected. However, over the medium term they might feel some real pain even so.

Moreover, the political signal sent by Dubya is to an extent valuable and effective in and of itself. Al-Jazeera is already wailing all the time how Sudan is being "targeted" (mustahdaf).

Michael (Germany)

Daana Lost in Translation said...

So what are these sanctions supposed to accomplish exactly??? and they're going to help Darfur how??? didn't the government already agree to deploy UN troupes. Anyway, Sudan's terrible government is bringing wrath onto its people and American and British governments are proving that they just want to target Sudan. Neither party is concerned about the people of Darfur, even Mr. Bush's threats will not convince me that there is a true or genuine concern about Darfurians. Basically no one will care if they do not have an interest in the area. And I still doubt the perpetrated image presented by the media that what is happening in Darfur is a genocide or ethnic cleansing.

Anonymous said...

Dana,

maybe the Arabs of Sudan will be more concerned about Darfuri suffering if they begin to suffer more themselves on account of it. If their suffering becomes even mildly proportionate to that of the Darfuris, the Arab Sudanese might begin to reconsider their wholesale support for the murderous Bashir policies.

Imagine: Two million Arab Sudanese driven over the border into Egypt by violence, many of the women among them after having been raped; 200,000 Arab Sudanese killed. Now THAT (which is not going to happen) might finally be an experience teaching Arab Sudanese, who have done exactly that to the Darfuris, that's it not something to enjoy very much.

But don't get me wrong, I'm not for Arab Sudanese suffering on pedagogical grounds alone, object lesson etc.

No, I'd already be entirely for it even if it served no practical or educational purpose, on moral grounds alone. The Arabs of Sudan deserve to suffer simply as punishment for their countless crimes.

You are aware that roughly two million Southerners died as a result of Arab Sudanese Islamic fascism and imperialism, aren't you? Add to that the enslaved ones, the mutilated ones, the raped ones, those with otherwise ruined lives.

Now Darfur. Oh, and I forgot the Nuba Mountains.

Do you really want to tell me that the Arabs of Sudan, on whose consciences those unimaginable crimes would be if they had such an organ as a conscience, don't deserve to suffer long and hard and bad?

Michael

Daana Lost in Translation said...

Michael,
what makes u think that arab sudanese if we may call them that did not suffer???? what makes you think that arab sudanese are ok with al bashir's government??? what makes u think that all the arab sudanese do not care about Darfur or southern sudan or any other part of Sudan. Northern sudanese have suffered just as much as the rest of the sudanese ppl. Their sons were taken into war and died against their wills, men and women were tortured by numerous sudanese governments in what is called ghost houses. So many families were forced to leave sudan and live outside of sudan for decades so that their families back home could survive. Why are you blaming one group for the misfortune of a whole country. The problem of Sudan lies completely in governments and rebels that constantly want power to themselves, who do not care about the good of the country or its ppl. U can't blame the ppl that u call arabs of Sudan for the crimes of individuals both rebels and government.

Black Kush said...

what makes u think that arab sudanese if we may call them that did not suffer???? what makes you think that arab sudanese are ok with al bashir's government???

Good question!? The easy answer is that the Eastern, Western and Southern parts of the Sudan has rebeld againts Khartoum except the Northern part!? :)

Ok, seriously, I don't think that is a valid reason. I have travelled in the north and had seen some parts worse than Darfur. It was the late Dr John Garang who famously said that it there were forests in the north, they would have started a rebelion! (speaking tongue in cheek)

When the oppressed rose against oppressors, for the oppressors they are rebels, but to their people freedom fighters. True, lots of northerners suffered at the hands of the government, but does it equal the millions from other parts of the country? Maybe the closest are 27 officers hanged for an attempted coup during the early years of Bashir. Still, I don't believe it is comparable.

Anonymous said...

Dana,

I was in a bad mood when I wrote my original posting and later somewhat regretted the tone -- though not the substance -- of my message to you. After all, I'm pretty sure you personally are a kind and well-intentioned person.

However, I stand by the substance of what I said, and I believe your comparison between Arab Sudanese and Southern Sudanese or Darfuri suffering is wildly inappropriate, indeed almost morally obscene.

Again, I don't wish you personally any ill. However, I see you as representative of a very typical Arab Sudanese mentality that is in deep denial about the crimes committed by its people and driven by Islam and Arab supremacism.

Yes, some Arabs suffered, and continue to suffer, under the al-Bashir regime, too. But their number is minuscule when compared to the number of victims the Arabs have very deliberately created among so many other sudanese peoples.

Have the Southerners ever enslaved Arabs in sizeable numbers? How many Arab teenage girls where abducted by, say, Dinka to the South, made into sex slaves, forcibly converted to traditional Dinka religion or Christianity, and thereafter, when they had outlived their usefulness and were thoroughly scarred for life, sent back North, with the deliberate intention to disrupt the social fabric of Northern Arab society?

Just look at the UN-sacntioned numbers of dead and displaced etc. among non-Arabs again that I mentioned in my previous post. They are several orders of magnitude beyond ANYTHING Arabs in Sudan have suffered. Moreover, Sudanese Arabs act against other Sudanese Arabs only on political grounds; they never intended to crush their own people AS A PEOPLE, which would obviously be absurd. However, they have been and are genocidal against other peoples.

The Arabs of Sudan (but also of some other countries) are guilty on a horrible scale. And though you personally, I'm sure, are a very sweet and kind person, the shadow of Arab guilt falls on you as an Arab, too, whether you like it or not.

Arabs need to actively atone for their crimes. When you relativize or even defend them, you become, to a small extent, complicit in them.

If the Arab Sudanese in their majority didn't like the thrust of what al-Bashir does, they could and would revolt. No, by and large the Arab supremacist policy of al-Bashir executes the collective will of the Arab Sudanese. Therefore they collectively will have to pay for it.

Sad, but entirely self-inflicted.

Regards,
Michael

Aaron in South Sudan said...

I'm going to have to agree with Michael on that one. Well said.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Aaron.

Can you tell were exactly you are based in South Sudan?

Best wishes,
Michael

Black Kush said...

I think the whole problem of the Sudan lies in what we call and identify ourselves with. It is an identity crisis. Once one group "think" they are the rightful owners of the country, no one else matters. Because the power was handed to the Arabs of Sudan at independence, they consider themselves the true rulers of the country. It doesn't matter what the small minority of them think. Ask those in the South, East and West.

It is a hard truth for some to accept. When it comes to race, the Arabs in Sudan are a minority. Everybody knows that. With so vast differences, it is hard to see how they can be brought together.

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