Title: Is the Sudanese regime laughing at the international community? Salah Shuaib
Author: صلاح شعيب
Date: 11-01-2014, 06:39 AM
The most recent news pointed out that a number of international and regional powers are trying so hard to convince all Sudanese rivals to find, through negotiation, a peaceful solution to Sudan’s deepening crisis.
So far, war, as a dominant factor in the crisis has claimed the lives of more than two millions, and displaced more than four million Sudanese citizens over the world. Moreover, it is estimated that there are hundreds of thousands of those who were wounded throughout more than three major wars, during the period between the independence, 1956, and now.
This let alone other aspects of the crisis that has brought so many miserable impacts on the life of millions of those whose destiny is whether to die or live in Sudan. We found even some neighboring citizens have paid a price for what Sudanese rulers did while intervening in their states affairs.
In short, the people of Sudan now face a "to-be-or-not-be" challenge to overcome this existential mess that wasted their energy, money, time, resources and opportunities of tolerance, co-existence and development.
It was highly expected that the deepening crisis could have been gradually resolved after the current regime and the Sudan People Liberation Movement (SPLM) signed the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in Nairobi, 2005.
But Sudan’s Islamists skillfully invested in the CPA in a way not to create stability in the country but to underpin their political, ideological and economic gains. Instead of focusing on seeking serious approaches to deal with such a penetratively valuable agreement, the ruling group was intending through logistical obstacles to impede the implementation of the CPA, since the beginning of the process.
The death of Dr. Grang in the month following his return to the country, unfortunately, came to be as an opportunity for the regime to exploit the charismatic vacuum the late great leader had left. As a result, Bashir’s security agents clandestinely supported many streams from within the SPLM to undermine its ability to share real power, reach out to all Sudanese in the capital and the boundaries and have a chance in the public domain to explain the thoughts of change. More than that the governing Islamists were practicing the policy of blackmail at every moment in which the SPLM and central parties tried to initiate positive roles to advance change for a better future.
In such a political atmosphere - lacking vitality, assumed to be then witnessed thanks to this qualitative transformation - the Islamists were the only winners versus those losers from all national and ideological parties in both the North and South.
As a result, the agreement failed to make any essential changes on the grounds. Instead, it was as an arena for political skirmish between the two parties, and also between them and other forces participating in the process. Consequently, the opposition parties and civil society organizations were unable to survive organizationally, through connecting with their social grounds. And because of its ability to possess financial mechanisms and media instruments, the Sudanese Islamists have succeeded in defeating all reform activities of oppositional parties.
Enhancing dominance over the political spectrum and national fields of work, the National Congress Party (NCP) got advantage from the climate of international support to the implementation of the agreement.
So, too, the NCP used oil revenue, then, to advance faked parties and help its ideological members through trade deals linked to private sectors.
As for reforming the government’s apparatuses in order to be national and effective, nothing had been changed, given that the Islamists were totally dominating all senior positions after the period following their military coup, which took place in 1989.
Due to the structure of the state the Islamists built and controlled in ideological manner, the public sector was not prepared enough to adopt the spirit of the peace agreement.
As a result, the governing Islamists alone were having the supreme decision over all of the stakeholders of the agreement to address the Darfur dilemma. The regime’s prominent men in their unilateral method made it harder for the SPLM and other central forces to contribute in finding solutions for the dilemma that have preoccupied the whole world.
While they supposed that there were different roles to play to achieve such solutions, the stakeholders thus found themselves helpless.
At that time the Islamist leaders, somehow, were characteristically substituting moments of "political naturalization normalization?" with the world to wage wars against the armed forces, which led to the genocide that was committed by the Janjaweed in Darfur.
On the other hand, the regime, after the cessation of the South, returned to the policy of crushing the forces of change in the center, escalating the wars in conflict areas, and aiding a number of militias in South Sudan to disrupt the stability of the newly independent state. Most of the heavy weapons used in the outbreak of the violence in South Sudan came from the governing Islamists, Moreover, the regime failed to implement the Doha Peace Document (DPD) and this was what has led to the complication of the situation in Darfur, South Kurdofan and Blue Nile.
As it worked to exploit the logistical weakness of the African Union - United Nation Mission in Darfur, UNAMID, the Bashir regime succeeded in putting hurdles in front of the mission’s forces moves while attacking its troops.
When the regime assured that it had deceived the international community in appearing willing to solve the crisis, it found plenty of room to create the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in order to be an alternative to the Janjaweed militia that had committed war crimes at a time the CPA was under implementation.
Such new, highly equipped, and organized forces have replaced traditional roles of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) in fighting rebellion throughout the history of the country’s armed resistance to the central governments.
Unlike the Janjaweed, the RSF has a clear support by President Bashir who personally founded these forces to protect his regime. And that is what happened practically during the September, 2013 protest, in which hundreds had been killed by the RSF’s snipers in Khartoum and elsewhere.
However, the regime didn’t indict any person after promising that it would investigate and prosecute those who killed the protesters. Despite pressures from the UN, world human rights organizations and Central opposition, there is still no answer from the country’s judicial system.
In the capital, the regime’s security forces put hundreds of prominent opposition politicians in jails for months - among them former Sudan’s prime minister Elsadiq Al-Mehdi and his daughter, Mariam. In addition, the security forces closed cultural centers, newspapers and put journalists in jails without a single charge, beside that they censor articles and news before printing.
Now, given all these facts, it is high time for international and regional powers to recognize that the Bashir regime is the most dangerous one for Sudan’s present and future, as well for South Sudan, and the region.
And so it should be restricted - if not eliminated - for the sake of peace in the country, for stopping genocide and war crimes in Darfur, beside aerial bombardments and ground attacks against civilians in both the center and the peripheries; and also a better future in the region, which has been - for decades - suffering from instability, due to Islamist propaganda and terrorism.
In fact, the international community had tried more and more in the past to participate with logistic aids, platforms and ideas in all peace talks between the regime and its rivals, but Sudan’s ruling Islamists just have been using these efforts as room to continue their controlling power. Actually, they have been laughing, for decades, at the world and some of opposition leaders who agreed with the government to try a peaceful solution.
Despite all these atrocities Sudan’s Islamists want to continue in dictatorial governance, no matter if that results in the fragmentation of the country, beating women in thousands, committing genocide and forcing millions of Sudanese citizens to be eternally displaced, immigrants and refugees.
It is a moral and humane duty for the international community to help save Sudan before it is destroyed by the Sudanese Islamists who came to power just to stay in for ever - as God’s Khalifs in the earth.
The writer is a Sudanese journalist and author living in U.S. He can be reached at mailto:mailto:[email protected]@hotmail.commailto:[email protected]@hotmail.com