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Darfur

Sudan: Interviews with Sudanese Communist Party's new leader, Mohammed al-Khatib; student protests continue

June 18, 2012 -- Police fire tear gas at protesters. Sudan's capital has become the scene for growing protests against austerity measures of the government of President Omar al Bashir. The protests were started June 16 by students from the University of Khartoum. The protests gained momentum and attracted more participants. On June 18, Bashir tried to explain in the parliament the need for a reduction of fuel consumption and an increase in food prices. But instead of calming the public uproar, civilians joined the demonstrations, shouting slogans against lifting subsidies on fuel and the increase in food prices. Amid the demonstrators some student activists also called for toppling the regime. Police have intervened by using tear gas. The riot police fired bullets into the air to disperse protesters. Some protesters were fainting and vomiting. Radio Dabanga reported how students of the ruling National Congress Party armed with iron bars accompanied the police and security forces. They assaulted several female students inside the university.

By Jaafar al-Sirr

Challenges for independent South Sudan; Behind the clashes in Blue Nile, South Kordofan and Darfur

South Sudan celebrates independence. Photo by babasteve.

By Explo Nani-Kofi

September 6, 2011 -- Pambazuka News, posted at Links international Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author's permission -- I have decided not to separate Sudan and South Sudan in my articles because developments in both places, even after the secession of South Sudan as an independent country, are linked to how Sudan, Africa’s biggest country, was shaped historically and how it functioned as a country. The crisis in Sudan is a crisis of capitalism in post-colonial Africa but manifests itself through the way capitalism specifically functions in Sudan.

Rwanda/Darfur: Documents reveal how Washington politically manipulates 'genocide' charges

Characterisation of Darfur violence as "genocide" had no "legal consequences" for US, according to 2004 State Department memo

August 17, 2011 -- Article by National Security Archive fellow Rebecca Hamilton contrasts Darfur memo with 1994 finding that application of term to Rwanda would force US "to actually 'do something'"

For more information contact:
www.fightingfordarfur.com
hamilton [at] newamerica.net

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A secret June 25, 2004, Department of State memo entitled “Genocide and Darfur” written by William Taft IV, the legal advisor to Secretary of State Colin Powell, stated that “a determination that genocide has occurred in Darfur would have no immediate legal -- as opposed to moral, political or policy -- consequences for the United States.”

Sudanese Communist Party leader: Solutions ignored, crisis deepens in Darfur

Salih Mahmoud is close to the leadership of the armed movements in Darfur.

By Osman Shinger

May 9, 2011 -- Sudan Votes, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with permission -- Continued armed conflict, a failure to implement UN decisions, and a lack of security despite the presence of international troops are just a few of the factors contributing to the Darfur crisis. Saleh Mahmoud, a lawyer and member of the central committee of the Communist Party of Sudan, discussed these complex issues.

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Iranian and Sudanese communists on Iran protests: `A deeply genuine struggle for democracy'

Joint statement by the Sudanese Communist Party and the Tudeh Party of Iran

Recently, representatives of the central committees of the Tudeh Party of Iran and the Sudanese Communist Party exchanged views and consulted on the political situation unfolding in Iran, in light of the rigged elections of June 12 and the mass protests that quickly took place and began to gain momentum shortly thereafter. The two parties discussed the political situation in their respective countries and the conditions in which the struggle for peace, human rights, democracy and social justice is taking place. Based on their discussion and deliberations the leaderships of the two fraternal parties hereby issue the following statement:

The existing electoral process in Iran is a mockery of democracy, designed to disenfranchise the Iranian electorate. Its entire se- up is not related to the pursuit and furthering of democracy or any concept of progress within Iranian society but to keep the reins of power firmly in the hands of the despotic theocratic regime regardless of the wishes and aspirations of the Iranian people. Despite using every method to orientate the electoral process in their favour, the ruling guard of the theocracy still sought fit to directly rig the outcome of the ballots cast on the day of the election.

Sudan: ICC indictment of Omar al-Bashir -- justice or a poisoned chalice?

Remains of medicines destroyed in the US attack on the al-Shifa pharmaceutical plant is Khartoum in 1998. Photo by Steven Fake and Kevin Funk (more HERE.)

By Steven Fake and Kevin Funk

March 21, 2009 -- After an hour and a half of walking under the intense Sudanese sun, armed with crude maps printed from the internet, we paused before a field of rubble in an industrial area of North Khartoum.

Two teenagers sat on the porch in front of the still-partially standing building, conversing and watching the world go by in this gritty, dusty area of the Sudanese capital.

“Al-Shifa?”, we mustered as a question, the name of the massive pharmaceutical plant that stood on this site until just over a decade ago.

They nodded.

“Bill Clinton”, we responded, pointing to the ruins of the facility that his administration bombed in 1998. The two boys chuckled.

Just over a decade after the US bombing of al-Shifa, on March 4 of this year, a different leader — Sudanese head of state Omar al-Bashir — was indicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

That Bashir is a war criminal whose policies are responsible for widespread death and destruction in the western Sudanese region of Darfur is well documented.

Yet, after stepping over rolls of decaying labels for life-saving malaria medication at al-Shifa — and watching mounds of dark brown medicine bottles, some still full, baking in the afternoon heat — it seemed an appropriate point to pose what should be an obvious question: why is the ICC not seeking to indict Clinton as well?

Let Darfurian and Sudanese voices be heard

By Kevin Funk and Steven Fake

March 9, 2009 -- When the Save Darfur Coalition held a rally on April 30, 2006, drawing thousands to Washington DC, it was a watershed for Darfur activism in the US. Save Darfur's advocacy efforts enjoyed a moment in the sun, the culmination of an aggressive and well-funded media campaign.

Yet the rally also symbolised another, less-reported aspect of Darfur activism in the US: the tendency to marginalise Darfurian and Sudanese voices.

As reported, “the original list of speakers [for the April 30 rally] included eight Western Christians, seven Jews, four politicians and assorted celebrities -- but no Muslims and no one from Darfur”; organisers had to hurry “to invite two Darfurians to address the rally after Sudanese immigrants objected” to their previous exclusion from the line-up.

Can Washington `save Darfur’?

By Kevin Funk and Steven Fake

Few humanitarian crises have occasioned as much media and activist attention in the US as the conflict in the Darfur region of western Sudan.

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Click HERE for an exclusive free excerpt from Kevin Funk and Steven Fake's latest book, Scramble for Africa.

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Major politicians routinely pay homage to suffering Darfurians in their speeches, well-heeled Darfur advocacy groups take out full-page ads in the New York Times, and commentators regularly fill op-ed ledgers around the country with righteous, indignant calls for the West to act to end the suffering. Yet for all the rhetorical attention and concern afforded to Darfur in the US, what is actually understood about the US role in addressing the conflict? Further, what do we know about the historical and current nature of Washington’s relations with Sudan, and how does this relate to our understanding of the Darfur crisis, and what we can do to address it?

Exclusive book excerpt: A manifesto for principled Darfur activism -- and beyond

Below Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal publishes -- with the authors' permission -- an exclusive excerpt from Kevin Funk and Steven Fake's just published book, Scramble for Africa: Darfur Intervention and the USA (Black Rose Books).

In Scramble for Africa Kevin Funk and Steven Fake provide a forensic and astute examination of the Bush administration's politically cynical and opportunist exploitation of the people of Darfur's terrible plight, using them as pawns to regain access to Sudan's oil riches and to promote the self-serving imperialist concept of ``humanitarian intervention''. Funk and Fake reveal the hypocrisy of Washington, which can in the same breathe declare the Sudan regime's slaughter of hundreds of thousands of Darfuris ``genocide'' while -- out of the general public's earshot -- praise and collaborate with the very same butchers as allies in its ``war on terror''. The mainstream ``Save Darfur'' movement's leadership also comes in for a similar investigation for its willingness to allow the interests of the people of Darfur to play second fiddle to Washington's foreign policy double standards.

SUDAN: US rolls out red carpet for Darfur's executioner

11 May 2005

Norm Dixon

Revelations of a covert rendezvous in Washington between top CIA officials and the head of Sudan’s secret police have starkly exposed just how hollow and hypocritical are the US administration’s expressions of concern for the plight of millions of Darfuri peasants, who have been systematically targeted by Sudan’s rulers in a vicious 26-month-long campaign of ethnic cleansing and mass murder.

Ken Silverstein, writing in the April 29 Los Angeles Times, reported that US government officials revealed to him that, in the previous week, “the CIA sent an executive jet ... to ferry the chief of Sudan’s intelligence agency [General Salah Abdallah Gosh] to Washington for secret meetings sealing Khartoum’s sensitive and previously veiled partnership with the administration”.

Sudanese Communist Party on ICC's request to indict Sudan President Omar Hassan al-Bashir

Statement of the Sudanese Communist Party

Khartoum, July 20, 2008 -- The inclusion of the name of the President of the Republic of the Sudan among those wanted for justice by the International Criminal Court increases the complications engulfing the crisis prevailing in the Sudan. Despite the fact that such procedures were already in place and expected since the establishment of the Court, and this last step of naming the President of the Sudan was preceded by a similar step indicting two prominent figures in the government in February 2007, the Government of the Sudan was ill-prepared both legally and politically to react to either attempts.

Sudanese Communist Party on the crisis and tragedy of Darfur

By the Sudanese Communist Party

June 19, 2007 -- In the ancient history of Darfur, the existing region had been characterized by waves of migrations due to the movements of Arab and African tribes. These waves of migrations had significantly influenced the shaping of Darfur history as well as its norms, traditions and customs. Clearly, migrants had brought with them cultural, social, economic and religious currents, some of which had made radical changes in Darfur. Due to Darfur’s natural and climatic diversity, a number of tribes had settled in different parts of the area. Each tribe had its own chief assuming the management of its affairs independent of any other authority. The tribal customs were the term of reference that had governed the relations between different tribes in Darfur. Indeed, Darfur had been known to the world since the ancient history. It has been mentioned that some pharos had once visited the area, while the Romans had made attempts to subjugate Darfur in order to exploit its resources. Admittedly, the 40 Days Road linked Darfur to the Egyptian Governorate of Asute. Moreover, a number

Sudan and Darfur: The Problem Is Political

By Fathi M. El Fadl People's Weekly World

June 10, 2006

The following is a response to questions posed by the People’s Weekly World editorial board to Fathi M. El Fadl, a leader of the Sudanese Communist Party, about the current situation in Sudan and in particular Darfur.

Founded in 1946, the Sudanese Communist Party has been a political force in the country for 60 years, despite harsh repression against it. Although relatively small, it was considered the best organized political party when Sudan won its independence from Britain in 1956. Sudan’s current president, Omar al-Bashir, took power in a 1989 coup. Since then, “the SCP has emerged as one of the Bashir government’s most effective internal opponents, largely through fairly regular publication and circulation of its underground newspaper, Al Midan,” according to sudan.net.

Taking issue with many western media reports, El Fadl says the crisis in Sudan is not one of race or ethnicity (Arab vs. African), but a political and economic one that requires political and economic solutions.

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