quinta-feira, maio 11, 2006

Kalma, Darfur

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* NB * A site to bookmark and consult for informed and thoughtful discussion: Eric Reeves - Sudan Research, Analysis, and Advocacy.

In Português, 'Calma' means calm, tranquil, peaceful - no idea what it means in Arabic. A half-assed treaty has been signed between the SLA and the government of Sudan, I say half-assed because several factions did not sign, and there is doubt about the sincerity of the government of Sudan.

Click to Enlarge / Click para AumentarClick to Enlarge / Click para AumentarJan Egeland goes to Kalma, is met by people vociferously wanting the UN to take over, he is the UN big-gun, seems like a win-win ... and the next thing there is violence and someone is killed.

I read conflicting reports for a few days about it, he got roughed up, he was killed at the police station, blah, blah, blah - who knows?

In the second photo, she is asking for Human Rights not specifically Women's Rights; I don't mean to be petty but there it is - reality trumps ideology. Nicholas Kristof says the biggest challenge in Africa is to establish women's rights - I simply can't see it as the 'biggest' - and I am speaking as someone who has watched the movie Moolaadé by Ousmane Sembene.

People pick up phrases and re-use them without context, thinking they have their hands on an idea. The AU - African Union peacekeeping force is now seen by Margaret Wente as useless AND pretentious, she says, "They're insulted that people think their own 7,000-man security force can't do the job - even though it has been totally ineffectual." I read some comments a while ago by the African Union force commander in Darfur, Collins Ihekire, which made me think he was doing his best in a difficult situation - he wasn't making any pretences. Kristof was also talking about this in the New York Times and suggests helping the AU peacekeepers rather than taking over from them - the notion makes sense to me, UN forces come and go and are mostly strangled up by the head-office bureaucracy and dithering, but the African Union belongs there.

Click to Enlarge / Click para AumentarAnother remarkable photograph by Claire Soares.

May 12, IRIN: Chadians sheltering in Darfur forced to move again.
May 11, Globe: Margaret Wente - Never again? Who are we kidding?.
May 10, IRIN: Kofi Annan urges expeditious deployment of a UN force in Darfur.
May 10, New Republic: Eric Reeves - Why Abuja Won't Save Darfur.
May 10, IRIN: Jan Egeland warns UN operations massively underfunded.
May 9, NYT: Lydia Polgreen - Angry Darfur Refugees Riot, Demand UN Troops.
May 6, Reuters: Claire Soares - Darfur refugees wary of peace deal.

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