My Newz 'n Ideas

It is my intent to express my opinion and to discuss current events. Feel free to make suggestions to fields you would like to see covered, and I will consider them. Please leave your name with comments. Thank you. Arabic: عربي.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Darfur, Sudan this week, 3/23/2005

I have read about this article in the Opinion Journal earlier last week. It is very pursuasive.
Brian Steidle: In Darfur, My Camera Was Not Nearly Enough
March 20, 2005
Brian Steidle, a former Marine, arrived in Sudan's Darfur region in September 2004 as one of three U.S. military observers for the African Union, armed only with a pen, pad and camera. In this powerful article, he describes the atrocities he witnessed and calls for a more effective international response.
Read the article in the Washington Post here.
I believe these numbers to be higher than reported, but it is still noteworthy.
U.N.'s Darfur Death Estimate Soars
March 14, 2005
At least 180,000 people may have died in Sudan's Darfur region over the past 18 months, according to the United Nations' top emergency relief official. Jan Egeland said the figure refers to victims of illness and malnutrition and excludes those who have been killed by violence. The UN previously gave an estimate of 70,000 non-conflict deaths. "It could be just as well more than 200,000 [over 18 months] but I think 10,000 a month... is a reasonable figure," Mr. Egeland told AFP news agency.
Read the BBC News article here.
I am inclined to believe this would be a good compromise for the UN, EU, AU, and USA to achieve. These are African people. While they come from different areas, they all know the misery each of them has endured. They have handled the Rwanda Criminal Tribunal well, therefore I believe they can also handle the Darfur genocide.
Nigeria Urges African Darfur Crimes Court
March 17, 2005
Nigeria has proposed an African-run tribunal to hear cases of alleged war crimes in Sudan's Darfur region. The proposal was put forward in an apparent attempt to end deadlock in the United Nations Security Council over a new resolution on Sudan. Read the BBC News article here.
I will be supporting this effort. I hope you will join me. Please go to Save for more information.
Relief Alliance Urges Bush to Appoint Envoy to Sudan
March 12, 2005
InterAction, an alliance of relief and development nongovernmental organizations working overseas, urged U.S. President George W. Bush to appoint a special envoy to Sudan to lead U.S. efforts to help resolve issues leading to violence in the Darfur region. A senior administration official, on condition of anonymity, said no decision has been made to appoint a new envoy for Sudan to replace Danforth. He noted Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and other officials placed a high emphasis on Sudan.
Read the Reuters article here.
This is a very good way to get people to listen. I will still not buy nor wear diamonds. Why, you ask? I will not benefit from the suffering of children who have been enslaved in labor camps to mine diamonds. To benefit from someone else's misery is abhorant. I will not participate. Call me a prude. I call it practicing what I preach.
State Pension Funds Urged to Pressure Sudan
March 17, 2005
California's giant retirement funds for public employees and teachers would be urged to avoid investing in global companies doing business with Sudan under a resolution that cleared a key state Assembly committee Wednesday. The New Jersey Assembly has already approved such a resolution, while similar legislation has been introduced in Arizona, Texas and Illinois. The moves are part of a campaign to pressure public pension funds to divest Sudan holdings.
Read the article in the LA Times here.
Right now I believe they have 900 "peacekeepers" who watch as the atrocities occur. It is good to have more, more this is not enough. The 10,000 troops that are going to Sudan are going to South. They are NOT going to Darfur. Why not?
African Union to Double Troops Protecting Darfur Civilians
March 22, 2005
The African Union is drafting plans to double the number of peacekeeping troops in Sudan's Darfur region to 6,000, an official said yesterday, responding to United Nations' calls for more security in the region.
Read the article in The Scotsman here.
Gee, could you have guessed it?!
UN Agencies Withdraw Under Threats in Sudan
March 16, 2005
The United Nations has withdrawn all international staff in part of western Sudan to the state capital after Janjaweed militias said they would target foreigners and U.N. convoys in the area, the top U.N. envoy in Sudan said on Wednesday. Jan Pronk also told Reuters in an interview, "The Janjaweed militia have said that they will now target all foreigners and all U.N. humanitarian convoys," he said.
Read the Reuters article here.
World must pressure the Arabs in charge of the planes and helicopters that are spraying the people of Darfur with chemicals. World must pressure the Sudanese government to stop terrorizing the people of Darfur by stopping the sanctioning of government led rape, slavery, brutality, and murder.
Sudan Leader: World Must Pressure Darfur Rebels
March 22, 2005

In a two-hour interview with The Washington Post, Sudan's first vice president said foreign nations must put more political pressure on Sudanese rebel groups to lay down their guns before lasting peace can be achieved in the war-shattered western region of Darfur.
Read the article in the Washington Post here.