Sunday, November 21, 2004

On Darfur and the U.S. Administration

Darfur is undergoing genocide right now. The government of Sudan is participating in it. The U.S. government has accepted the term "genocide" for the Darfur events, but this is how it interprets what should be done:

THE BUSH administration shrugged its shoulders last week at the genocide in Sudan's western province of Darfur. At an extraordinary meeting of the U.N. Security Council in Kenya, it sponsored a resolution that not only failed to advance those that passed in July and September but actually stepped back. The veiled threat of sanctions on Sudan's government was dropped. So was the demand that Sudan's government disarm and prosecute its allies in the Janjaweed death squads, which have burned villages, raped and murdered their inhabitants, and left nearly 2 million people homeless and at risk of starvation.
The Bush administration presents this abdication as a triumph. It argues that, by tolerating a weak U.N. resolution on Darfur, it was able to secure a unanimous 15-0 Security Council vote and that this may bring about peace in the separate conflict between Sudan's Muslim-led northern government and the Christian and animist southern rebels.

The people of Darfur can't wait. They're dying and seeing their children hacked to death before their own deaths. The U.S. is not the only guilty party in this lukewarm condemnation of the horrors, of course. It seems there is something in the air right now that makes all sorts of people show their very worst aspects. But remember, the hottest place in hell is reserved for those who were lukewarm in their help of those who suffer.