Pure Evil in Sudan; United Nations Deliberates as Slaughter Continues

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), August 2, 2004 | Go to article overview

Pure Evil in Sudan; United Nations Deliberates as Slaughter Continues


Byline: Nat Hentoff, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The is the first of two columns on the genocide in Darfur, in the west of Sudan:

The news media can no longer be blamed for not bringing light to the world about the more than 30,000 black African Muslims murdered by the Arab Muslim Janjaweed in Darfur, Sudan. The world has also been told of nearly 2 million of the survivors having been removed from their homes, many huddled in remote camps where epidemic diseases add to the corpses. And there is no doubt that the government of Sudan arms and supports the Janjaweed.

The appalling culpability of the Sudanese government has been documented by Human Rights Watch's release of confidential reports from Darfur's civilian administration that reveal the direct involvement of high government officials in supporting the Janjaweed.

And Amnesty International, in its new report "Rape as a Weapon of War," reveals that "girls as young as 8 are being raped and used as sex slaves in Western Sudan." That report includes interviews with victims and makes the incontrovertible point that these "mass rapes ... are war crimes against humanity that the international community is doing little to stop."

In Congress, both the House and Senate are trying to avoid repeating America's utterly shameful silence during the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. On July 22, by overwhelming bipartisan votes, the House and Senate passed resolutions stating explicitly that the horrors in Darfur are indeed genocide.

Weeks ago, President Bush strongly told Gen. Omar Hassan Ahmed al-Bashir, Sudan's chronically duplicitous head of state, to rein in the Janjaweed. But since then, Mr. Bush has not focused nearly as hard on these atrocities. And Secretary of State Colin Powell, whose language has been much more forceful in the past, is now just calling for more diplomatic pressure on the Sudanese government rather than specific, stinging punitive measures. Meanwhile, the killing of civilians and raping of women and children continue.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who has said he had learned from his own silent culpability in the Rwanda genocide, now claims that Mr. Bashir can end what other U.N. officials in the field call "this human rights catastrophe." However, Benny Avni reported in the July 22 New York Sun (a daily paper that has been invaluably present in Darfur) that the Khartoum government is sending a police force to Darfur to "protect" surviving black Africans - and among these police protectors are recently recruited actual members of the murderous Janjaweed. …

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Pure Evil in Sudan; United Nations Deliberates as Slaughter Continues
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