Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Dafur and the horror of peace

There are things far worse than war and Hitchens writes of our disgrace in Dafur.

I think Dafur will be the blot History finds on Bush's record.

Strange so few write of it.

Tell me I'm wrong.

It looks as if the realists have won the day in the matter of Darfur. Or, to phrase it in another way, it looks as if the ethnic cleansers of that province have made good use of the "negotiation" and "mediation" period to complete their self-appointed task. As my friend Johann Hari put it recently in the London Independent: "At last, some good news from Darfur: the genocide in western Sudan is nearly over. There's only one problem—it's drawing to an end only because there are no black people left to cleanse or kill."

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Nonintervention does not mean that nothing happens. It means that something else happens. Our policy in Darfur has not just failed to rescue a stricken black African population: It has actually assisted the Sudanese Islamists in completing their policy of racist murder. Thank heaven that we are tough enough to bear the shame of this, and strong enough to forgive ourselves.

2 comments:

LaReinaCobre said...

I agree that silence in Sudan on the part of the American public is a disgrace.

I do not understand this increasing use of the word "Islamists." What exactly does this word mean?

Bill Baar said...

Good question.

We should e-mail Hitch.

I would have said Salifis which is what I think the rulers are in Sudan.

Or Bin Ladenists except in this case they've turned on Bin Laden to some degree or another because of our pressure.

Follow the above link and you'll see Salifis call ...themselves Muwahhidun ("Unitarians", or "unifiers of Islamic practice").

Stehpen Schwartz wrote an article on the Salifis in the Weekly Standard last year, Murderous Monotheists: What Zarqawi believes Schwartz writes,

There is a grotesque footnote to this nightmare. As the historian J.B. Kelly has pointed out, Western academic and political apologists for the Saudi state and Wahhabism have often translated the Arabic term "muwahid'dun"--or "believers in tawhid," the Wahhabis' preferred term for themselves--as "unitarians." If certain powerful figures in the Middle East Studies departments at universities in the United States and elsewhere had their way, current headlines would read "Unitarians Behead Another American."

When Unitarians call Bin Laden and fundamentalist, I point out he calls himself a Unitarian. This isn't entirely a grotesque footnote either.

One reason the world was stuck with the Sunni minority rulers in Iraq was because the British were more comfortable with that type of religion than they were with the majority Shia; who have a far more emotional style and practice.

So besides being the traditional people calling the shots in Iraq for the Turks they just seemed more like us i.e. to the Brits at least.

Toby Dode wrote of this in Inventing Iraq : The Failure of Nation Building and a History Denied

My Senator, Barak Obama, hired Samantha Power, the author of A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide, to serve as staff for him on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee precisely to call attention to what was happening in the Sudan. I'll e-mail him a copy of the Hitchen's artcile and ask him to comment on it.