Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Is Their Blood On Our Hands?

The blood soaked sands sizzled underneath the burning African sun. A stench comparable to a slaughterhouse in the Mid-West rose high and surrounded the refugee camp, which along with the screams and the wails shrieking into the night, would be cause for even the most jaded witness to burst into an angry and tearful outrage. There was laughter amongst the carnage though, the type of evil laughter done by men with no souls, the ones who were doing the killing, the maiming.

As the village's straw and mud huts burned all around her, a young mother darted in and out of the shadows, carrying her infant son tightly to her bosom, gingerly trying to avoid the patches of gore spread across the landscape, for she knew that should she slip and falter, there would be no chance at survival. Creeping along the edges of the dancing and flickering flames, she had almost made it to the edge of the camp when the militia men stepped out in front of her. Pleading with them was completely useless as the men grabbed her, ripping her infant from her arms. Brutally throwing the child to the ground the horrified mother could only flail helplessly as Satan's minions hacked her child into pieces with long bladed and sharpened machetes. They could not chance that after twenty years or so in the future, that this infant boy might grow up to join the resistance.

But they were not done yet. Slapping the widowed, now childless mother to the blood soaked terrain, they ripped off her clothes and raped her in packs, like animals, using her like a rag doll or a toy for their amusement, as her mind set off into the direction of madness at the hell on earth she was enduring. Husband murdered going out to look for firewood, she had been left defenseless against these wolves, and now suffered unbearably at their hands. Finally, after hours of vicious assault, the men tired of their fun, deciding to entertain themselves another way. Standing the battered woman up, they doused her with petrol, teasing her her flickering lighters as she begged them not to kill her. The obvious leader stepped in after a time and threw a lit match upon the woman, the blaze almost instantaneous, engulfing her young life in a searing, unimaginable agony, a torture beyond compare, until lungs blackened and burned from the flames, she crumbled to the ground one last time, joining the bodies of the others of her village in the eternal rest of the tortured and murdered, just another in a long line of victims of the cruelest man to grace the African continent since Idi Amin.

Did the above shock you, or make you feel queasy? Good. I intended it to. Because this type of activity is an every day occurrence in the land that the world has paid lip service to, but then forgotten. While Al-Bashir laughs in the faces of the outraged, he sends his troops to fire on U.N. Peacekeepers in the hope that they will do what they always do when threatened with violence, they leave. After his own ministers called the firefight a mistake, Al-Bashir has the gall to start denying it ever happened, or if it did, it must have been those who oppose his monstrous regime, namely the rebels in Sudan's south.

We here in the U.S. live in uncertain times ourselves. The same can be said for most of Europe. But as civilized people, or as a people who speak about morality being the major influence in our decision making when we choose a President, do we not then have a moral obligation to do more to stop this evil?

Al-Bashir is not going to stop what he is doing, and the above is only one small portion of the suffering of the people trapped in Darfur. But their suffering doesn't end there. Even the ones who escape to countries like Egypt are abused by the repressive security forces in that country, as evidenced by an incident wherein Egyptian security forces killed almost 300 refugees from Sudan protesting their treatment at the hands of the Egyptian government. (Jan. 13th, 2006 edition of Salon)

So the problem of the Dafur massacre is no where near a resolution, because we all have seen the U.N. cut and run from the region before when the Janjaweed or the Sudanese military attacks. (Nov.4th 2004 edition of the Washington Post) Yes, Al-Bashir knows how to defy U.N. resolutions, stall for time, agree to allow in peacekeepers, back out of the agreement at the last second, all the while having the people, the unarmed civilians slaughtered, then go back and start the negotiating process all over again.

This diplomatic solution is not working. Saddam Hussein was brought to the gallows for his crimes against humanity. We bombed Iraq back into the Stone Age on little more than a President's dreams of imperial glory. We have an Air Force capable of stopping this slaughter without ever laying one boot on the ground. We can and should enforce a no-fly zone in Sudan, Darfur and near the Chadian border, and bomb the camps of the Janjaweed militias or the Sudanese military should they move on the camps again.

During the 1990's, we sat and watched the massacre occur in Rwanda. Now, once more, on our watch, we sit and watch another people being wiped off the face of the earth with a shrug and a sigh, wishing it would just go away, because it's so distasteful to sensitive proclivities. Yes, we have problems here at home. Yes, we're stuck in Iraq and Afghanistan. But we still have a military capable of enforcing the U.N. resolutions, as do the Europeans. And the time has come to back up our rhetoric with action, and stop the murder, the carnage, the rape, the inhuman crimes against children, and the Saddam Hussein of Africa from laughing in the face of the entire world.

This will not go away until either there are no more left to be killed, or the world community puts an end to it. Because Al-Bashir isn't going to stop his game playing, nor the genocide unless he is given no other choice.

Call your Congressman, your Senator, your state Governor's office, the White House, the State Department, call the local dog catcher, but call someone, right now, today, and demand that something more be done. Not a half measure, but a full cup of righteous outrage from a people who will not countenance this evil being perpetrated while we sit and drink Starbucks, and the people of Darfur have run out of food completely as of today according to Save Darfur. President Bush, Stop the genocide. Now. Batmanchester

No comments: