Monday, September 25, 2006

How to Save Darfur


Genocide comes at inconvenient times. In 1994, the Clinton Administration was reeling from Somalia--a country it had fled after the deaths of 18 U.S. troops. So America watched as Rwanda's genocidaires murdered nearly 1 million people in 100 days. And then everyone began feeling bad. Bill Clinton flew to Rwanda to apologize. After reading an article about the genocide, George W. Bush reportedly scribbled, "Not on my watch!"

In hindsight, stopping genocide is easy. But in Darfur, where it is happening now, stopping genocide is brutally hard. A contingent of 7,000 African Union peacekeepers currently patrol the Texas-size chunk of western Sudan where government-backed militias are busy exterminating the non-Arab population. The African soldiers are decent and brave, but they are engaged in a sham. The militias menace villagers in front of the peacekeepers' eyes; Sudan's government steals the fuel they need to fly their planes. In the words of U.N. envoy Jan Pronk, "The people on the ground are just laughing."

In spite of a Security Council resolution approving a larger, tougher U.N. peacekeeping force, the government of Sudan refuses to allow Blue Helmets on its soil. Read more >>>

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