Posted by Kuku on 9:17 AM

Marhaba! The Palestinian refugees have arrived. Read this and this (an earlier post of mine).
Best quote in the world:

 "While the Sudanese presidential advisor Mustafa Osman Ismail told the press that Sudan was ready to receive and host two thousand Palestinian refugees in the area of Soba in Khartoum State. He said all services including water, electricity and transportation have been provided in the area. He stressed that the Palestinian refugees would be treated on equal footing as the Sudanese subjects in all service domains."
 
I am seriously insulted! I dare him to go and say that out in Soba itself, or Mayo or Jebel Awliya where tens of thousands of Sudanese "citizens" are living in conditions not fit for animals. This is utterly despicable and should be stopped. But I know that the Sudanese cabal will find someway of spinning this and making the people accept it. 

When did they even manage to connect the area with electricity and water? The people in the IDPs camps have been there for more than 20 years and the government doesn't even give a crap. Too bad they're just too black or kuffar for the government to give a crap (I know that seems too simple, but ask any of the people living in these camps, and that is what they'll tell you the reasons for their living standards are).

What's next? Free (higher) education and satellite dishes for all?

Posted by Kuku on 10:30 PM
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Steven Spielberg, Academy Award-winning director and 'artistic consultant' for the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in China has withdrawn from the games.

In a statement, he accused China of not doing enough to pressure its ally Sudan to end the "continuing human suffering" in the troubled western Darfur region. "I find that my conscience will not allow me to continue business as usual," said Mr Spielberg.

In a statement, Mr Spielberg said: "At this point, my time and energy must be spent not on Olympic ceremonies, but on doing all I can to help bring an end to the unspeakable crimes against humanity that continue to be committed in Darfur." He said: "Sudan's government bears the bulk of the responsibility for these on-going crimes but the international community, and particularly China, should be doing more."

Someone is going to get mad and I think it's going to be China! I've heard speculations about this for months now, and Spielberg has been under a lot of pressure from various groups (Save Darfur, et. al.) to take this move. Obviously Beijing is going to try to play this down, but they will be furious. This will be a major blow to their "Coming out to the World" party. It is important to keep in mind that the Chinese have been waiting for this event for a while now.
Obviously, Speilberg himself is replaceable, but is this a sign of something bigger to come? Will we see entire nations, like the US (where most of these anti-Beijing Olympics groups are from) withdraw or boycott the Games? I doubt it. Back in September of last year, Bush was invited personally by Chinese President Hu during the APEC summit to attend the Games (read about it here). I doubt Bush will personally boycott them , but he will definetely use the Games as a platform to pressure China further. But will we be seeing athletes wearing armbands, t-shirts, and other things that will 'show support' for the people of Darfur? I think so!
I don't even know about this pressuring China business. I understand that they are the main supplier of arms to Khartoum, but will this pressure, from seemingly unimportant groups really make any tangible difference? The fact of the matter is that pressure, such as this, only works against democratic governments, which are susceptible to criticism and public opinion. Obviously China is not a democracy and, although the times have changed, is still not susceptible to any sort of pressure (Tiananmen Square, anyone?)

I can't wait to here the smart things Khartoum will have to say about this.

Posted by Kuku on 1:39 AM

Posted by Kuku on 11:59 AM
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Chadian rebels (allegedly, and most probably) supported by Khartoum have attacked and seized the country's capital Ndjamena. This is a disturbing development as it is important to note that most of the previous military-lead coups in Chad have been launched from Darfur, similar to this one.

This got me thinking. Why can't this happen in Sudan? Can't the rebels just drive across Kordofan and enter Khartoum, inciting some of the thousands of IDPs (read previous post) in and around Khartoum?

I am not very knowledgeable about the capabalities of the rebel groups in Darfur, but this is not impossible. The Khartoum cabal is watching what is happening to their counterparts in Ndjamena very closely (maybe because they are the masterminds behind it?) to see what the outcome will be. Deby is not very liked in Chad and has been attacked on several different occasions (in one case by some of his own family members) most notably the attack on April, 2006.

It is still unclear if the regime in Chad is able to repel this attack or will the rebels completely takeover the country. Time will tell.

"Allah-Yistoor" is all I can say right now.

Posted by Kuku on 3:33 PM

A great essay written on Alex de Waal's SSRC blog by Munzoul Assal, an anthropologist from Khartoum University, details the current situation with regards to Khartoum's urbanization.

Assal's analysis of the situation is spot on. The tens of thousands of IDPs in and around Khartoum have been almost literally ignored by the regime. Mostly southerners and Darfurians, these people literally live on the less than $1 / day everyone talks about. These large IDP camps, some of which I have visited during my work last summer with SUDO, were the most devastated areas during the rainy season.

Khartoum’s urbanization is pathological. It is the aggregation of people without their integration into a social and political system that enfranchises them and provides for democratic transformation.

The regime has been completely unwilling to provide the most basic amenities to the residents of these camps. Only when it comes time for elections, it starts to give lip service to their plight, and in some cases even allotting some people plots of land so they can remember which box to fill on the ballot. These people are so marginalized that they feel as though they have no future. It is only a matter of time before a serious violent outbreak to occur on a bigger scale, than that after Garang's death.

The failure of integration in Khartoum was brutally manifested in the events that followed the announcement of Garang’s death at the end of July 2005. While many analysts and local media commentators tried to link the rampage in Khartoum to angry southerners, it was found later that those who engaged in burning, killing and looting were not only southerners, but also marginalized people from different parts of the country.

The lack of reintegration on the part of the government will end up hurting it the most. It is imperative to find a way to provide for these people, and most importantly to give these people a reason to return to their homes all around the country. This will not happen until the focus of the government on modernizing Khartoum ends, while all the regions of Sudan (including some of the north) continue to lay in anguish.