“Silence” has not been the killer in Darfur. Global inaction has. World leaders have competed to denounce the death and displacement of Darfur’s innocent civilians. But they have done very little, certainly not enough to change Khartoum’s calculations materially. The regime’s calculated campaign of killing and destruction continues today. Nothing has changed Khartoum’s expectation of impunity.Let us hope, even if there is scant evidence, that the Paris meeting may have marked the start of a stronger, more unified international diplomacy. Along with France and the United States, China has an extremely important role to play. Many in the advocacy community had urged that these three countries pool their special influence with Sudan by forming a “troika” to bring an end to the Darfur conflict, in the same way that such a leadership team helped end the tragedy of South Sudan. They did not, at least not visibly, but still they must, and can, make a difference following up on the Paris initiative.How can they make a real difference at long last?

Ø Let these three countries, and all those who assembled in Paris, jointly press Khartoum to fulfill its “agreement” to the full UN/AU hybrid force to Darfur. Let them punish Khartoum fast for non-compliance. Let them lead the UN in assembling, funding and deploying the peacekeepers.

UN Secretary-General Ban, so quick to declare personal victory, should be the most vigilant for first signs of al-Bashir’s backsliding. Al-Bashir himself has never publicly stated his acceptance of the 12 June “agreement.” We were told by others, notably Ambassadors Kumalo and Jones Parry, that he had agreed to it. But then in a domestic speech, al-Bashir already has rejected UN command-and-control and an equal role for non-African troops in the hybrid force. The UN spokeswoman said his comments contradicted the “agreement.”

This should be no surprise. It is why we have been so skeptical of this “agreement.” Khartoum is famous for making, then breaking, such deals. Early signs are that al-Bashir is doing it again. Ban, the AU’s Alpha Oumar Konare, and all the Security Council Ambassadors told the world they had a real deal this time. Well, it’s up to Ban and the others to prove us activists wrong. If Ban, Konare, Ambassadors Kumalo and Jones Parry and the rest of them allow al-Bashir to wiggle out yet again, with impunity, the shame will be on them. But Darfurians will pay for their weakness, with their lives….

i have faith that God is in darfur. 

but i am still sickened by the statistics and saddened by the death.  and the really shitty thing is that the un/au coalition can only do so much without the help of people willing to put their hearts where the pain is.  without that and the cooperation of the sudanese government (which it may never get), this is a situation that will never change.

four years is too long.  what if it were you and me?  what if our children were being sought out and raped and murdered?  wouldn’t we want peace?  these crimes are unfounded.  there is no reason except hate that people are being killed and that makes me furious.  we despise what happened to the jews during the holocaust, but now, we are turning a blind eye to the same thing in sudan.

so, i am learning a little more each day… and because i don’t have money to give, i am raising awareness. 

in my opinion, one of the best things we can do is pray, with all our hearts, that the people of darfur will find an end to their suffering.  the question to me is this: are we, as a free society, going to stand by and do nothing?  are we, as a rich nation, going to let others send aid? are we, as mothers and fathers, going to stand by and accept that daughters and sons are being raped and murdered? 

i refuse to stand idle. will you join me?   


~ by Erin on 5 July, 2007.

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