Al-Bashir Is Accused

… but who cares?  Only the West it seems.  The International Criminal Court was set up by Europe and the US, and our current administration doesn’t intend on joining it.  If it did, then Bush would be accused in 2 seconds. So, if the US doesn’t adhere to the rules, why should the rest of the world?  Good question.

Anyway, the International Criminal Court has accused al-Bashir of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur.  However,”Sudan has not ratified membership of the ICC … it is not a member of the ICC and [the court] has no jurisdiction over Sudan.”  Chinese (of course, because they violated a UN arms embargo), Arab, and African leaders have expressed concern over any attempt to detain al-Bashir for any of the alleged war crimes. The reason, they say, is that if al-Bashir is taken away, then the country will be even more distraught.  

There are many similarities between the violence in Iraq and Darfur from the estimate of the number of civilians killed to paramilitaries operating closely linked to the government forces, to victims who are targeted for membership of an ethnic group.  However international media coverage generally reports one as a civil war or cycle of insurgency and the other as a genocide.

Okay, true… But the reason for the insurgency in Iraq, many say, is because the US is there and insurgents are trying to get us out of there – jihad – if you will. The popularly held idea is that once we are out, the violence will cease. What’s more is that there is no racial distinction in Iraq. The difference is between those who are helping the Americans and who aren’t. Darfur seems plain and simple to me – Arabs attacking Blacks. But who is an Arab? Someone who speaks Arabic, right? But look at a photo of al-Bashir.  He isn’t black, at least not as black as the people being killed and raped. Oh – and Interesting note: according to Al Jazeera, Arab media rarely reports on Darfur.  

… a journalist and Arab media expert, says the problem with Darfur when it comes to the Arab media is that it does not fit the template of Arabs being the victims and other people the aggressors… People say ‘the Arabs or Muslims – cannot do this – it did not happen’ – but they did do this and it did happen – and they have to reconcile themselves to the fact.

What kind of pisses me off, is that Arabs in general are afraid that the West is demonizing them, yet again. Maybe I am wrong, but I highly disagree.  An atrocity is an atrocity, period. Just as I agree with the ICC about al-Bashir, I would agree with them condemning Bush (but of course, he pardoned himself and his administration… asshole). 

I think it is about linking Darfur with the larger war on terror by portraying and framing the perpetrators of violence in Darfur as Arabs.

Yeah – because they are Arabs.  Sorry Arab world and media… but you are in denial. The ICC has rightfully accused al-Bashir and his regime of genocide.  They should also accuse Bush (everyone would love that).  And the AU needs to help out because this is an African crisis, and the AL (Arab League) needs to help out because it’s also and Arab crisis.  But until they step up, everything that the West says will be disregarded and viewed as an attempt to invade a country.

… lots of helpful links that I encourage click-age of.  I know a lot of people know a lot about Darfur, but many don’t know the politics of it.  It’s sickening.



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i'm from helena, montana. i now go to school at the university of montana and i study russian language as well as arabic language and southwest (middle east) and central asia.


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  • ps – this post seems really condemning of arabs. i do realize that there are a bajillion problems in the arab world (just like everywhere else)… for example, there is a civil war going on in yemen, so why should they even care about darfur…? but i’m just saying…

  • Hi,
    “Sorry Arab world and media…” sounds not like a very differentiate opinion on the Arab world.

    Anyway, I guess I might agree with you on several of your points.

    But I’ve still got some question, and I think I’ve got them answered before having an opinion:

    >>”The ICC has rightfully accused al-Bashir and his regime of genocide. ”
    Is that so?
    Sudan didn’t ratify. What’s the reason? Is Al Bashir accused for crimes committed in the Chad?

    >>”Darfur seems plain and simple to me – Arabs attacking Blacks. But who is an Arab? Someone who speaks Arabic, right? But look at a photo of al-Bashir. He isn’t black, at least not as black as the people being killed and raped. ”
    <>”What’s more is that there is no racial distinction in Iraq. The difference is between those who are helping the Americans and who aren’t.”
    There is a racial difference between Kurds and Arabs, isn’t there? And there is a harsh religious difference splitting Shiites and Sunnis. How is this any better, so you can make a point out of it?

    >>”The difference is between those who are helping the Americans and who aren’t. ”
    I don’t think so. But this additional difference might be there too.

    Oh, and one more thing:
    Why are you saying, who you are quoting I had to follow a link near the second quote to find the source for the first quote.

  • Jack – My minor is Central and Southwest Asian Studies. That’s the new politically correct term for the Middle East. And I have many Muslim and Southwest Asian friends.’ I have had some pretty in-depth discussions about this stuff. It’s quite fascinating really. If you have something to add, please do. I am always open to absorbing new knowledge.

    Firstly, I apologize for the hassles with the link to quotes.

    The problem with the Kurds is interesting. Kurdish is an Iranian language, not related to Turkish nor Arabic. Turkish is Altaic while Arabic is Semitic, Iranian is in the European group of languages. Usually, language is overlooked as a root of problems; the EU seem to get along fine. But after the fall of the Ottoman Empire, and after the occupation of the British and the French in the Levant, the Kurdish territory (which before was not a problem) became an issue. They all lived in the same area, but the countries became Turkey, Iraq, Syria and Iran. One group of people living in 4 different countries? And that has always been their territory. It is true that their race is different (Caucasian, near the Caucasus Mountains), but that’s not what they are fighting for. They want their own country. They are Sunni Muslim, so if they are fighting in the so-called ‘sectarian clashes’ they would be fighting with the Sunnis.

    Believe it or not, the Sunni-Shia issue isn’t actually a big issue. Most Muslims are Sunni, and only after Iran became, basically, a theocracy did the country become predominantly Shia. The difference between the two are small – the Shia believe that the leaders of the religion should be a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad, and Sunnis think it can be anyone. That’s not a very big difference at all. American and European media tend to blow it up, fueling fear at home that we can’t leave Iraq because of sectarian violence. My Muslim friends here are both Shia and Sunni, and they go to the same Mosque, and some of them are from the same country. They say that the problem is being blown way out of proportion by media. They actually DO live in peace. Both sects are called to Jihad, and in this case the US is invading both of their homelands, and is killing both of their people. So, they are defending themselves. I guess Jihad is really hard to explain. But it would be good for you to look at Iraq prior to Anglo-American invasion – there was never open warfare between the two sects. Hello, propaganda for us. I have a friend from Iraq who is Christian (which is a HUGE minority). Many Christians are targeted because besides Lebanon (which was created by Europe) Christianity is seen primarily as a western religion. If the US leaves, do you believe that sectarian violence will increase? And if so, why?

    “The ICC has rightfully accused al-Bashir and his regime of genocide.” This is my opinion. There you go. You don’t have to agree with me, but this is what I think. As for my apology to the Arab world and media – I don’t want to incriminate the Arab world (because they are always bashed) and bash the Arab media (because Al Jazeera, for example, is amazing). And I don’t want my Arab friends to think differently of me for, for once, declaring something wrong with them.

  • During this unfolding drama we need to be clear on two fronts .Firstly the legal technicality by which bush hopes to avoid facing ‘Justice'(IE that the ICC has no jurisdiction since the USA did not ratify) Bashir is in exactly in the same position Sudan did not ‘Ratify’!!! It follows therefore, that, if the ICC feels sufficiently embolden as to indict and issue an Arrest Warrant for Bashir then it must be as we speak drawing up the Indictment and dusting the ink on the arrest warrant, anything less and the ICC is merely posing……..
    As Always’The Zima’W3

  • You want to really sole this problem? Sanctions against Russia and China until they stop funding and arming the genocide. That’s the most we, as Americans, can hope to do and be successful. I don’t see that happening – so, soft pressure is the only alternative.
    Arresting one man is symbolic (which is cute, I guess), but I think it’s rather insulting to the conflict. One arrest is essentially lip service – more must be done.

  • I mean, I hate to say this but…we’ve killed or overthrown a lot of world leaders in the last fifty years. Many of them did not have it coming nearly as much as al-Bashir. The real problem is that no one is willing to firmly say, Black Sudanese have a right to defend themselves if the world won’t defend them. So we keep trying to come to a peace agreement that to which al-Bashir will agree, which in negotiating terms is ridiculous. The longer Sudan stalls, the more Black Sudanese die or leave, and the stronger Khartoum’s position is. We can’t expect the killing to stop while Sudan has China, Russia and Libya all actively or passively supporting genocide, and the best the rebels (the only people willing to do what it takes to defend their people) can count on is nominal support from Chad. We need to be firm like we were about Kosovo (and unlike how we were in Bosnia) and say “look, we will come down on whatever side of this fight won’t stop killing civilians.” And back it up.

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