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The difficulties regarding the Sudan - Baldar - 07-02-2004

There is the potential for hundreds of thousands of deaths in the Sudan as Arabs persecute non Arab muslims and Christians and even Animists with death, rape, looting, and driving farmers from their lands. This is to racially consolidate control of the entire Sudanese nation, the largest nation in Africa with potentially vast oil reserves in the south.

Should or can the US save the Sudanese people?

An invasion into the Sudan would bring howls and jeers from Arabs who would point to the invastion as proof that the "crusaders" seek to retake the Middle East one country at a time. They would use it to seek more unity in the Arab world because this time it is not the US helping some Arabs against other Arabs, this time it is the US helping Christians and non Arabs against Arabs. These points are possibly the most difficult areas to overcome diplomatically. Right now the US is sitting on a cusp with Iraq. The Iraqi people are viewing the US with a jaundiced eye. They don't necessarily want us in Iraq, but they also know they need us in Iraq. We have the Iraqi people, a people who are simultaneously secular and religious, ready to give us a chance, but just a chance.

If we go into the Sudan and begin killing Arabs, especially without UN help, the Iraqi people will begin to reject us, and any cooperation in fighting the terrorists inside Iraq will evaporate, leaving us in a much more difficult quagmire. Both Shia Arab and Sunni will view us as more the invader than the helper. Iran and Syria both will take advantage of this.

Oil will be seen as the issue.

An alternative would be to convince the Arab league to intervene if possible. The problem here is that there is, I believe, a clause against Arab nations attacking each other. And frankly Arab nations could care less about non Arabs.

The UN is useless too. Kofi Anan won't speak out against the Sudan since a number of votes for his office come from nations tied to the Sudan in Africa. These would be withdrawn in the next election and he would find himself without a job. In the past Kofi Anan was able to punt to the security council thus relieving himself of the responsibility of direct action. However, the Chinese who directly benefit from Sudanese contracts would veto any such action. The French, ever ready to displace the US, would side with the Chinese declaring Sudan an "internal matter". Of course US and UN inconsistency will negate moral agruments (why no on Rwanda and Yes on Serbia?). These inconsistencies will allow any UN sponsored action to spiral into endless debate guarranteeing no real action beyond token food shipments that will enrich the Arabic Sudanese. If the UN follows its normal operating proceedure it will bribe local warlords in order to pass the food through, this will help ensure the Arabic Sudanese remain in power and even grow stronger, increasing their power over the local region.

It is a difficult position for the US. The potential risks are enormous.

- mv - 07-02-2004

I doubt that we are looking at our own intervention in any form.

The discussion is about *peacekeepers*, and these would not come from the US. It appears that the bulk of the troops are to be supplied by our new ally, Col. Qaddafi, and our role would be a few observers, at most.

Now, I'm not so sure we should trust Mr. Qaddafi too much yet; despite being a new friend, some funny stuff happens all the time. First the reports about a joint plan with AQ to kill the Saudi his daughter talks about joining the Saddam's legal team....

- Baldar - 07-02-2004

Libya is about 97% Sunni Muslim. Libya would not necessarily be the first choice. Egypt could very well be the better option. Having a strong Eastern Hammitic ethnic group it would be in a better position to protect and seperate Muslims of differing ethnic groups. The Egyptian army is also extremely loyal to Mubarik. Finally the international "pay" Egypt would recieve for these miltary groups would help the Egyptian government with its own financial situation.

Libyan involvement would raise too many alarms for Chad which has an ongoing border dispute with Libya and would see itself being flanked.

Of course both points would be moot regarding Arabic promises to not attack other Arabic nations. This may be weaker with the Egyptians than it would be with the Libyans.

- mv - 07-02-2004


I'm not inventing Libya myself.

Quoting Stratfor today:

Quote:U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has announced the possibility of deploying international peacekeepers to Sudan's restive Darfur region. After more than a year of conflict -- which has created hundreds of thousands of refugees -- Darfur finally is garnering serious international attention. The next step will be persuading U.N. members to provide troops, which might prove difficult because of the reluctance of U.N. member states to provide ground troops. The onus will probably fall on the African Union. The situation offers the United States an opportunity to give its newest African ally -- Libya -- a test drive.

- Baldar - 07-02-2004

I didn't assume it came from you directly. I agree with you that Libya is not well known as a proven ally and the speculation does not take into consideration some other African needs. I believe that Egypt would be a better choice.

- mv - 07-02-2004

Probably, an impossible choice: Egypt and Sudan are not too friendly. (But I really don't know what I'm saying here: it is not a region I followed closely).

- Baldar - 07-02-2004

Oh, I agree Egypt and the Arabic Sudanese are not on friendly terms. That is what makes it a good choice.

Re: The difficulties regarding the Sudan - mr_yak - 07-03-2004

Baldar Wrote:It is a difficult position for the US. The potential risks are enormous.

At this point, I'd see this as more of a difficult position and risk for the U.N.. Another Rwanda will sweep the "EUN" much closer to the dustbin of history. And Annan seems to be wielding the broom. U.S. forces are already stretched dangerously thin. The only thing thinner would be the argument that, while the U.S. is a vicious bully that should not be allowed to invade other nations (without permission!) .... it should go and invade this one for good measure (presumably with permission?).

The 'real' difficult position lies in accepting the fact that, given the current world order, the fate of hundreds of thousands of lives rests on the shoulders of world powers like France. In other words, the grisley realization of a mass death sentence.

(And Sudan isn't exactly the only African nation on the brink of catastrophe while the (e)U.N. plays nudge, nudge, wink, wink.)

Quote:"They have a plan here to starve people to death for political ends - to get everyone aligned to their party at all costs, which is absolutely diabolical and vicious..."
There is evidence the ruling party has been using food aid as a political weapon.
The fear is that political manipulation of food aid will be used on a much bigger scale.