Thousands of refugees and asylum seekers head for safe havens daily – a human flood entering Europe, risking life and limb to get there. Why?
Endless US direct and proxy wars force desperate people to seek safety out of harm’s way. Numbers fleeing war and destabilized areas are greater than any time since WWII – increasing exponentially as conflicts and chaos rage in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Donbass, Somalia, South Sudan, and elsewhere.
According to a UNHCR report, 60 million people were forcibly displaced by end of 2014. Globally one in every 122 people are asylum seekers, refugees or internally displaced persons. More than half the world’s refugees are children.
On August 28, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said over 300,000 refugees and asylum seekers crossed the Mediterranean to reach Europe so far this year – greatly exceeding 2014’s 219,000 total, a human flood likely to approach half a million by year end, likely hundreds of thousands more in 2016 and beyond.
Thousands of others die or go missing. On August 27, hundreds were feared dead after two overcrowded vessels capsized off Libya’s coast. Dozens of Syrian refugees were found suffocated to death in a truck parked on an Austrian highway – their bodies in a state of decomposition. Other similar horror stories repeat with disturbing regularity.
PODCAST — The Corbett Report | Interview 870 – Pearse Redmond Breaks Down the Neo-Imperial Agenda in Africa
The Corbett Report
Apr 30, 2014
Pearse Redmond of Porkins Policy Review joins us for the first time to discuss how divide and rule has been used to neo-colonize the continent of Africa. We discuss how America and its allies have sown the seeds of strife, conflict and genocide in many different countries over the years, and the corporate and geopolitical interests that they are serving. We also discuss China’s role in Africa and whether it truly represents a third way.
By Abayomi Azikiwe
Feb 11, 2014
Pan-African News Wire and Global Research
Growing instability in East and Central Africa will be the focus of Washington’s intervention
Over the last two months developments in Central and East Africa has dominated the news coverage of the continent. The split within the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLA), a close ally of Washington, and the deployment of French and African troops in the Central African Republic, has brought the escalation of Pentagon troops in these states.
Recently the Department of Defense announced the formation of an East African Response Force. This new unit is part of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) which has been strengthened and enhanced under the administration of President Barack Obama.
A recent drone attack in southern Somalia is representative of the growing aggression of Washington in Africa. The government of Djibouti, a former French colony where the U.S. has a military base with over 4,000 soldiers at Camp Lemonnier, released a statement saying that such strikes are “vital” in the so-called war on terrorism.
The drone strike was launched from the Pentagon military installations in Djibouti. Prior to the creation of the East African Response Force Washington operated in the region under the framework of the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA).
U.S. Brigadier-General Wayne Grigsby, who is the commander of CJTF-HOA, says that his forces are in East Africa only to assist governments in their military campaigns to defeat the so-called terrorist threat posed by Al-Shabaab, a Somalia-based guerrilla organization which has fought the Washington-backed regime in Mogadishu for the last six years.
“Our mission here is to enable our East African partners to actually neutralize violent extremists throughout eastern Africa,” Grigsby said. Yet if this was the case then why would it be necessary to have such a formidable military force in the Horn of Africa region that conducts periodic bombings and commando raids in Somalia. (Shabelle Media Network, Feb. 7)
However, Brigadier-General Grigsby does say that “It also enables strategic access and freedom of movement. The purpose is to protect the United States and its interests abroad.”
Consequently, even the military leaders themselves must acknowledge that the underlying reasons for the build-up in Africa are clearly related to the economic and class interests of Washington and Wall Street. East and Central Africa is a vast repository of oil, natural gas and strategic minerals.
The U.S. Role in South Sudan and the Central African Republic
The East Africa Response Force has been utilized in the current conflict in the Republic of South Sudan. A contingent of the unit was deployed to the country to evacuate U.S. embassy personnel and to guard their economic interests.
One of the most significant factors in the present outcome of the conflict inside South Sudan has been the intervention of the Ugandan People’s Defense Force (UPDF) which sided with the government of President Salva Kiir. The Ugandan government is a very close ally of the U.S. and its military has benefited for years from Pentagon training programs and direct assistance in the purchase of weapons.
On January 23 with the signing of a cessation of hostilities agreement between the SPLM/A and the SPLM/A in Opposition, the faction represented by ousted Vice-President Riek Machar, this document called for the withdrawal of Ugandan troops from South Sudan. However, according to the dissident SPLM/A in Opposition, the UPDF is carrying out aerial bombings and ground operations in contested areas in Unity, Jonglei and Lakes states.
A helicopter gunner was reportedly shot down by the opposition forces in Lakes state on February 7. In an article published by the Sudan Tribune it states that “The military spokesperson for the rebels, Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang, said on Friday (Feb. 7) that the gunner was shot dead and fell off the helicopter after serious damage was inflicted on one of the three helicopter gunships that carried out the bombings.”
This same article continued noting that “‘Our air defense artillery opened fire on the three warplanes seriously wounding one and killing the gunner,’ Koang said. The collected passport and ID of the dead gunner identified him as Jona Abuduku Alfred, a Ugandan national with military ID No. 21883, passport No. 11180 and a Lance Corporal in military rank. His hometown is Mbale in Uganda and joined the Ugandan Air Force in 1997, the documents obtained show.”
With respect to events in the Central African Republic (CAR), the U.S. has been assisting with the transport of French and African troops into the country where the recent forced resignation of interim President Michel Djotodia and the Seleka Coalition and his replacement by Catherine Samba-Panza has not stabilized the political and security situation. At present anti-Muslim mobs both within the CAR military and among Christian militias known as the Anti-Balaka, have engaged in attacks on Islamic communities where numerous people have been seriously injured and killed.
A spokesman for U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel was quoted by a military publication as saying “Minister Le Drian requested … airlift support to enable African forces to deploy promptly to prevent the further spread of sectarian violence in the Central African Republic,” Pentagon Assistant Press Secretary Carl Woog announced Dec. 9.
“The United States is joining the international community in this effort because of our belief that immediate action is required to avert a humanitarian and human rights catastrophe in the Central African Republic, and because of our interest in peace and security in the region.” (Stars and Stripes, Jan. 22)
Yet the intervention of both France and the U.S. has only worsened the conditions for people in the CAR. With the dislocation of tens of thousands of Muslims who are fleeing out of the country to neighboring Chad, divisions are becoming more pronounced based upon religious differences and perceptions of political power.
The only solution being advocated as a next step in the process is the deployment of more troops from the European Union (EU). The United Nations Security Council has authorized the deployment of EU troops but there is no evidence to suggest that this will stabilize the situation.
Military Build-up Designed to Secure Influence and Resources
The growing French, U.S. and EU military involvement in Africa is designed to secure western imperialist dominance over the oil, diamonds, gold and uranium that exist in abundance in both the CAR and South Sudan. These western states are creating the conditions for the deterioration of the societies involved, and consequently through their false propaganda about humanitarian assistance, will only provide a further rationale for an even heavier military occupation.
By framing the discussion about their intervention as being “humanitarian”, the imperialists are attempting as well to remove these issues from public debate and scrutiny. During the State of the Union address in January, President Obama only spoke about the impact of military policy from the standpoint of supposedly honoring the sacrifices made by seriously injured and disabled veterans.
No discussion or analysis of the impact and effectiveness of U.S. interventions in Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia is conducted. Nonetheless, these military invasions and occupations are not only destroying the lives of people on the ground in these various geo-political regions but are killing and maiming its own soldiers which the Veterans Administration is incapable of adequately addressing.
Anti-War and anti-imperialist organizations in the U.S. must oppose these so-called “humanitarian interventions” because they are acts of war and military occupation. Resources utilized for these imperialist operations would be better served in putting people in the U.S. back to work with jobs that pay a decent wage and make significant contributions to the society.
U.S. admits that military advisers are functioning in Somalia Fierce battles have taken place in two states in South Sudan. Unity state, an oil-producing area, was retaken by the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A). Other gains in Jonglei state by…
The 2009 World Population Data Sheet published by the Washington, DC-based Population Reference Bureau states that the population of the African continent has surpassed one billion. Africans now account for over a seventh of the human race. Africa’s 53 nations…
One of the underreported stories from last week, noted here previously, was that quietly, on the day in which French unemployment soared to a new 16 year high, French president Hollande did what every true Keynesian in his position would…
The hidden agenda in Uganda, Central Africa and the Horn of Africa is the conquest of oil and strategic mineral resources. Going after Joseph Kony and protecting Ugandan children is a cynical smokescreen…
Dec 24, 2013
The former vice-president of South Sudan – who’s now leading an armed rebellion – has said he may negotiate with the government. That’s according to the U.S. special envoy there, who is working frantically to prevent the country from falling apart, a situation that would harm Washington’s interests. Chaos and bloodletting have spiraled over the past two weeks with inter-ethnic killings, and intense battles for control over oil-rich areas. Paula Slier reports. READ MORE http://on.rt.com/ttsdi4
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by Eric Draitser
July 18, 2012
The protests that have broken out in Sudan are, on the surface, the manifestation of legitimate grievances. Portrayed in the Western media as a direct response to austerity measures implemented by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, these protests indicate a strong current of dissatisfaction among the people of the country. However, seen from a broader, more critical perspective, the demonstrations are the tangible fruits of a carefully constructed destabilization campaign incorporating opposition political parties, civil society groups, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), Hollywood celebrities and Western financiers. These powerful forces have aligned against the government in Khartoum in order to execute the geopolitical agenda of the imperialist ruling class in the West.
The Development of the Protests
The immediate impetus for the protests, which broke out in recent weeks in and around the capital of Khartoum, was the announcement of the removal of fuel subsidies. This troubling development, coupled with other austerity measures such as the reduction of government jobs and the devaluation of the currency, were designed to mitigate the effects of soaring inflation in Sudan. However, because of the integral role of fuel prices in the Sudanese economy, the move seemed to spark mass indignation. In a country already dogged by high unemployment and rampant poverty, these difficult decisions inflamed already high tensions throughout the country.
Reports from inside Sudan suggest that a small group of female demonstrators gathered outside dormitories at the University of Khartoum and began protesting the fuel subsidy cuts, among other issues. This was the first in what became a series of daily demonstrations against a whole host of grievances. Central among these was the feeling, widespread among particularly young people, that the government in Khartoum was punishing the people while continuing to spend “lavishly” on defense. Many groups directly involved in the protest movement, groups such as Sudan Change Now and the popularized twitter moniker #SudanRevolts, have used the demonstrations as a springboard for a much broader and, it could be argued, more opportunistic agenda, one that is directly in line with the geopolitical interests of the United States and the Western imperialist ruling class: regime change.
This is, of course, not to diminish the genuine grievances of many of the demonstrators. Instead, it is important to maintain a critical understanding of the way in which these sort of movements are hijacked or otherwise cynically manipulated through a variety of means by those in the West for whom power and hegemony are the goals above all else.
The Wizards Behind the Curtain
In order to understand the way in which the protests in Sudan, and movements like them all over the world, are manipulated, influenced, or otherwise controlled by Western powers, we must first examine the major players and the often deliberately obscured connections between them, western intelligence networks, and international financiers.
In Sudan, we’ve seen an extraordinary proliferation of western-financed NGOs that have entrenched themselves in the civil society of the country, particularly in an urban center such as Khartoum. Organizations such as Sudan Now and the Enough Project (the latter of which is directly connected to George Clooney, the US State Department and George Soros) indicate the degree to which humanitarian concerns and NGOs are utilized by the US imperialists as cover for their geopolitical agenda. In fact, in the case of Clooney and the Enough Project, we see the presence of John Prendergast, head of the organization and former Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council. His participation, not to mention his close relationship to UN Ambassador Susan Rice, Samantha Power, and the International Crisis Group of George Soros, should illustrate the degree to which this and other organizations working inside Sudan are either directly or tangentially part of the US intelligence establishment.
The Enough Project is also significant because of its ability to sell a Western-constructed narrative of Sudan to an unsuspecting and generally ill-informed public. George Clooney who, along with Council on Foreign Relations member Angelina Jolie, has cultivated an image as a politically progressive humanitarian, is able to construct a particular discourse in the American public’s imagination: Bashir is a monster and the United States must act decisively including possibly using force, to remove him from power. Such a dominant narrative, once entrenched in the public discourse, becomes difficult, if not impossible, to deconstruct.
The Enough Project and other humanitarian organizations alone are not the whole story, however. Important players inside the country are also playing an integral role in the attempt at regime change in Sudan. One such important individual is Dr. Hassan al-Turabi, head of the opposition Popular Congress Party (PCP), one of the leading factions within the often-fragmented political opposition. Turabi, a longtime “progressive Islamist”, is not merely a major player in Sudanese politics. In fact, he’s one of the leading “experts” on Sudan with long-standing connections to the US State Department-funded National Endowment for Democracy (NED). In fact, as recently as 2008, Turabi was one of the keynote speakers at the NED in Washington DC where he presented on, among other things, how to bring about regime change in Sudan. Though the usual covers of “democracy promotion”, “transparency”, and other such high-minded abstractions are utilized by Turabi and the NED, these are merely the rhetorical devices used to obscure the obvious goal of such a conference.
Turabi’s association with the NED and the US intelligence community is not only significant in demonstrating the role that those institutions are playing in destabilizing Sudan. It also demonstrates the way in which the US imperialists have long-standing ties with so-called “Islamists”, a conclusion made ever more apparent by the ascension of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and the deployment of Al Qaeda and other religious militants in Libya, Syria, and elsewhere. In this way, a clearer understanding develops of just how the Western imperialists are able to utilize a variety of means, many of which are “Islamist” in nature, to destabilize regimes they deem to be unfriendly.
Aside from having to deal with powerful forces engaged in the internal struggles in Sudan, Bashir’s government has also been faced with extraordinary international pressure. Not only has Bashir himself been accused by the ICC (itself an arm of US-NATO power projection) of being a war criminal for his purported role in the conflict in Darfur, he has also watched as the United States and other Western powers fomented a brutal civil war, only to then partition the country, carving out South Sudan, and create the conditions for the current situation. Essentially, Bashir has had to try to maintain his grip on the country in the face of a multi-pronged effort to destroy his regime and the Sudanese state.
The conflict with South Sudan has taken a heavy toll on the Sudanese economy. Because of the loss of an estimated 75% of total oil reserves located in the South, inflation has dramatically increased and Khartoum’s revenue from trade with China and other major oil importers has decreased sharply. Additionally, the skirmishes and other armed conflicts between North and South have focused Bashir’s attention to the Abyei Province and other border areas and, consequently, away from other pressing concerns inside the country. This was precisely what the Western powers intended when they began pushing for the partition of the country a few years ago.
The imperialist aggression against Libya was an indication to many keen observers that the imperialist ruling class had every intention of completely consolidating control over all of North Africa by removing any vestiges of nationalism and any leaders who might pose a challenge to AFRICOM and the neo-colonial agenda. Gaddafi met his barbaric end at the hands of a vicious lynch-mob or, as they’re called in the West, “freedom fighters”. They and their NTC masters such as Mahmoud Jibril, now the head of the so-called Libyan government, were merely puppets of the West, supported for purposes of economic exploitation of natural resources and to create a safe haven for terrorists to then menace the rest of the region. Likewise, Bashir is on the target list and, without taking precautions, could meet the same fate.
What Do They Want?
The United States and its western partners have a number of goals in seeking regime change in Sudan. As is the case in so many other conflicts around the world, the main objective is to block Chinese economic development. The Chinese have, for years, been the biggest importer of Sudanese oil and, other than Angola, Sudan was its main supplier on the continent. Aside from oil however, Sudan had become one of the main markets for Chinese economic investment. In fact, by 2002, Sudan was China’s fifth biggest source of revenue and had become a major player in the power generation and other markets. For these reasons, China began to pose a threat to US hegemony in East Africa and, from the perspective of the imperialists, had to be checked.
Aside from China, the United States has other geopolitical and economic reasons for destabilizing Sudan. Washington seeks to consolidate control over East and Central Africa and, in order to do so, must eliminate one of their biggest obstacles, Sudan. The US has gone to painstaking lengths to maintain compliant puppet governments in Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, and elsewhere. In so doing, the US is able to keep Central and East Africa under their thumb, at least to some degree. By destroying the Bashir regime, these imperialists believe they will be able to project US hegemony forward for the foreseeable future and, as a result, secure unfettered access to the wealth of raw materials in the region.
There is also an element of opportunism to this plan. The West looks to capitalize on the still viable discursive construct of the Arab Spring as a means to their end. So long as this idea can inspire masses of disaffected youth to take to the streets, the United States and its partners can continue to impose their will in the region. However, as the conflict in Syria has unequivocally shown, without such mythological pretexts, it becomes impossible for the imperialists to achieve their goals.
In examining the situation in Sudan, it is important to keep in mind that a critical, anti-imperialist perspective does not mean that one absolves Bashir of any wrongdoing. In fact, it should illustrate the ways in which Bashir and his government have contributed to creating the climate that breeds such protests. However, by analyzing this uprising and investigating simultaneously the positive and insidious forces at work within it, we can begin to apply a broad understanding to the issue and, in so doing, work to prevent the Western imperialist ruling class from destroying yet another sovereign state.
[hat tip: Land Destroyer]
by Nile Bowie
June 21, 2012
Nile Bowie is a frequent contributor to Global Research. Global Research Articles by Nile Bowie
by Susanne Posel, Contributor
May 21, 2012
In a report from the World Bank, Africa’s economic development was outlined as a “golden opportunity for a green future”.
At the 4th Africa Carbon Forum (ACF) “The vast potential represented by African countries in the fight against climate change cannot be underestimated,” said Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
“The Africa Carbon Forum is where potential projects and developers and funders can meet, exchange ideas, and – it is hoped – take the concrete steps toward greening Africa’s future.”
The ACF held a conference where policymakers, project developers, and private investors discussed climate-smart agriculture, public and private partnerships and funding for projects. However, it is clear that Africa holds more promise than just the inception of carbon emission reduction and carbon finance.
The attraction of Africa is its rich wealth of natural resources. This continent contains enormous deposits of diamonds, cobalt, copper, uranium, magnesium and tin. Over $1 billion in gold is mined each year.
The UK’s Department of International Development, along with researchers from the British Geological Survey and the University of London found underground aquifers of clean and untouched water in Africa that are 100 times the amount found on the surface of the continent.
Through the convergence of multi-national corporations onto Africa, there has been an obvious initiative to corporatize the continent’s resources.
An $11 million dollar project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Coca-Cola Corporation are employing 50,000 Kenyan and Ugandan smallholders to produce fruit for Minute Maid, a subsidiary for Coca-Cola.
The UN has announced plans to allow corporations and foreign governments to land grab in African nations like Ethiopia, South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo and Sierra Leone.
Africa has “voluntarily” signed agreements with multi-national corporations and foreign investors, allowing them to control agricultural land. The nation’s leaders believe that giving access to their resources will benefit their people; however this is just another manipulative ploy to coercively acquire control over land, food production and securitization.
The document entitled “The UN Global Compact and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises” outlines through “voluntary” means how the UN will implement their international guidelines with respect to corporate conduct, standards and abilities.
President Obama will soon publicly announce his $3 billion plan to securitize Africa’s food supply and agricultural farms.
The UK, multi-national corporations, some African countries and other G-8 nations will be joined together as the New Alliance for Food and Nutrition Security (NAFNS).
The CEOs of 40 US privately owned corporations have pledged $3.5 billion in food and nutritional assistance alongside the government.
The New Alliance for Food and Nutrition Security will be established to carry out collaborative efforts with private investors and corporations, under the oversight of Obama. The initiative will implement model farms and training centers.
Yet, it is not just the securitization of agriculture, natural resources and water that is attracting corporations, the UN and Obama to Africa.
Africa is to be transitioned into a technological hub, focusing on technology research. Under the promise of employment opportunities and improving educational institutions, the actual agenda is the diversification of strategies with foreign partners that will facilitate manufacturing industrialization and technological development through the corporate takeover of Africa.
Under careful control, the UN has planned to create an Africa that will become not only the food center of the world, but also the single processor of the world’s communications.
The ICT Sector Unit, a department of the World Bank, has plans to turn Africa into a centralized internet epicenter where the flow of information and communications are under UN governance.
The ICT is a specialized department controlling “policy and regulatory matters, in eGovernment, information technology, innovation and the enabling environment. This Unit promotes access to information and communication technologies in developing countries.”
They will provide governments and private organizations with the directives and capital to infiltrate Africa through corporatism. The creation of infrastructure and eGovernment projects will be handled solely through the ICT.
The funding will come from donors, international organizations and non-government organizations (NGOs). Telecommunications think-tanks with regional telecommunication associations will work with private sector “experts” and the UN’s International Telecommunications Union (ITU) to construct a technological industry that will yield not only profit, but power.
The ITU is the UN’s information and communication technologies agency. They “allocate global radio spectrum and satellite orbits, develop the technical standards that ensure networks and technologies seamlessly interconnect, and strive to improve access to ICTs to underserved communities worldwide.”
By whatever means necessary, their goal is to facilitate the flow of communication; which is completely under their dominion.
One initiative already in progress is the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope project; a $2 billion investment that is meant to be the biggest research instillation in the world.
The enormous computing power this installation is capable of will “take the current global daily Internet traffic and multiply it by two, and you start to approach the stupendous scales of data the Square Kilometre Array will churn out daily — about an exabyte per day. This vastly outpaces the state of the art in computing,” notes Ton Engbersen of IBM Research in Zurich. “The area you would need for PCs is larger than the SKA.”
Billions are being poured into the development of this project by foreign investors. On April 4th, the SKA Organization held a two-day meeting in The Netherlands, concluding with a press statement that they want to take an “inclusive approach” to the location of the project.
That location has become the continent of Africa.
The project would be a joint venture between the governments of South Africa and other participating nations, but the majority of costs would come from the privately funded SKA Organization.
The SKA project is part of the ICT’s plan to create a broadband universal portal that will be the access point by which online resources and information are disbursed throughout the world.
Under the Broadband Commission for Digital Development , the UN’s Millennium Development Goals will be met as their universal portal will become the centralized broadband Internet provider to the world.
The ITU will be in conference at the end of this year, with major telecommunication and information corporations to devise a treaty that will regulate important aspects of the Internet, as well as create jurisdiction over telecoms and ICT industries. This international treaty will effectively control all communication as we know it.
• Cell phones
• Governmental intelligence networks
• All other digital communications
The treaty will give the UN unilateral governance over the Internet, as well as telecommunication issues such as accounting rates and termination charges for next-generation networks, data privacy, cyber security, international mobile roaming, and equipment specifications.
Africa is going to be the centralized network of global controls that force all other nations and countries to become dependent upon the UN.
This is how the UN ultimately plans to achieve global governance.
You can help support this information by voting on Reddit HERE.
Susanne Posel is the Chief Editor of Occupy Corporatism. Our alternative news site is dedicated to reporting the news as it actually happens; not as it is spun by the corporately funded mainstream media. You can find us on our Facebook page.
[hat tip: Zen Gardner]
May 18, 2012
The Imperialist plans to change the borders of Arab countries is playing out. Sectarian divide is a tool.
Hawazen informs us of many details on the fighting in Northern Lebanon. It is in fact a spill over from Syria.
by Nile Bowie
May 8, 2102
Following the United Nations’ recent approval of Resolution 2046 threatening the nations of Sudan and South Sudan with sanctions , the success of international attempts at conflict aversion in the region appear to be in question.
Hostilities between the two nations have climaxed since South Sudanese forces captured the region of Heglig, an oil-producing site 70 kilometers into Sudanese territory . South Sudanese forces have also maintained a presence in the long disputed border region of Abyei in Southern Kordofan, where Juba has recently vowed to withdraw its personnel from .
Although Khartoum has agreed to comply with the United Nations resolution, it has vowed to continue military operations against South Sudan’s troops as long as they remain within the territory of Sudan, “Sudan has declared its commitment to a United Nations resolution calling for an end to military operations, but the other side’s troops still remain on our territory; they have occupied two districts and have not stopped their hostile actions” .
Juba denies Khartoum’s claims of occupying Sudanese territory, South Sudan’s newly released official map includes the Heglig region and six areas that are “contested and occupied” by Khartoum .
Amid the escalating regional tension, China has recently offered South Sudan an $8 billion development package set to allocate funds for road construction, hydropower, infrastructure and agricultural projects following South Sudanese President Salva Kiir’s visit to Beijing . China has traditionally been a key partner to the government in Khartoum, but has steadily increased its influence in South Sudan since its independence in 2011, primarily through investments via state-owned Chinese oil companies China National Petroleum and Sinopec.
As inflation rates in Sudan reportedly rise to 21% following increased military expenditure since clashes erupted with Juba in late March 2012 , China’s extensive economic engagement in the region offers the leverage needed to potentially play the role of a mediator in the Sudanese conflict.
The emergence of South Sudan as an independent state came at a heavy price for Khartoum, as an estimated 85% of the country’s oil production came under Juba’s control.
Although South Sudan holds a majority of oil reserves, Juba has relied on the Greater Nile Oil Pipeline for its oil exports, a pipeline operated by the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) extending to Port Sudan on the Red Sea via Khartoum .
Under a barrage of economic sanctions, Khartoum sought to implement oil transit fees for the use of theGreater Nile Oil Pipeline, by charging Juba around $36 per barrel; Juba holds over $11 billion in oil transit debt and has refused the figures proposed by Khartoum, prompting Juba to suspend its oil production . Juba has accused its northern neighbor of launching air strikes on its territories, while both sides also accuse each other of backing rebel militia, claims that Khartoum has denied .
Following the fiery rhetoric espoused by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir describing Juba’s ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement as “insects,” Bashir now concedes, “We look with wisdom and foresight to well-established relations between us and the people of South Sudan” .
As a climate of uncertainty persists beneath irresponsibly bellicose exchanges, the implementation of a campaign to unseat Omar al-Bashir and bring down the government in Khartoum has long been underway.
A recent Op-Ed published in The New York Times by Dr. Gérard Prunier entitled “In Sudan, Give War a Chance” reflects a predominately Western political school of thought which favors the prospect of full scale war to bring about regime change in Sudan. Prunier laments, “The international community has called for a cease-fire and peace talks, but the return of violence is not necessarily a bad thing,” before concluding “an all-out civil war in Sudan may be the best way to permanently oust Mr. Bashir and minimize casualties” .
Sudan’s Omar al-Bashir is the first sitting head of state to be charged with genocide by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity conducted in Sudan’s western Darfur region; ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo accuses Bashir of keeping millions of refugees in an environment resembling a “gigantic Auschwitz” .
Violence and infighting in Sudan has traditionally been a product of tension along ethnic lines, more so than religious differences. Although the modern Sudanese state has been divided along ethno-religious lines with the religiously Islamic and ethnically Arab government in Khartoum split from the ethnically African and religiously Christian government in Juba, tribal minorities such as the ethnically African and religiously Islamic Fur and Zaghawa groups in Sudan’s western Darfur region have long demanded reparations for the marginalization they’ve experienced from Khartoum .
In a recent report issued by Amnesty International entitled “Sudan: No End to Violence in Darfur,” the organization attributes China, former Soviet Union countries and Belarus for selling arms to the Government of Sudan. Amnesty International’s report omits any mention of Israel, who has reportedly provided heavy military logistical support to the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), Darfur’s most powerful armed rebel group .
Although the United Nations does not recognize the conduct of the Sudanese government in Darfur as “genocide” , mass media campaigns publicizing the alleged violence in Sudan have been embraced by celebrity personalities such as George Clooney.
TIME magazine warns of the increased prospects for genocide in South Kordofan’s Nuba Mountains region, as rebels affiliated with South Sudan’s ex-rebel militia, the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) take up arms against Khartoum once again . Clooney has recently partnered with John Prendergast of The Enough Project to produce a promotional video depicting ethnic Nuba villagers displaying English language placards calling for the establishment of a “No-Fly Zone” and the prosecution of Omar al-Bashir by the International Criminal Court .
The Enough Project was co-founded by US State Department Distinguished Service Award recipient John Prendergast and launched in 2007 under the Center for American Progress , an organization sponsored by billionaire investor George Soros and Peter Lewis of Progressive, a Fortune 500 insurance company, among others . John Podesta, who heads the Podesta Group, a Washington lobbying firm representing the interests of weapon-manufacturers Lockheed Martin and oil conglomerates such as British Petroleum , also chairs the Center for American Progress .
In 2006, the Sudanese government barred 20,000 UN troops from running peacekeeping operations in Darfur, as then-Presidential Advisor Mustafa Osman Ismail argued that the UN mandate’s goal was the implementation of “regime change” in Khartoum .
The sources of weaponry and covert assistance received by rebel groups in Sudan are rarely a subject of speculation among religious and political organizations who have long supported the international campaign to pressure Sudan. In 2007, the American Jewish World Service and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum launched a “Save Darfur” coalition, which gained the support of adherents to intervention in Iraq, such as right-wing evangelical Christian groups and major organizational affiliates of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) .
According to The Jerusalem Post, the Save Darfur coalition launched a high-profile advertising campaign that included full-page newspaper ads, television spots and billboards calling for the imposition of a no-fly zone over Darfur with financial assistance the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan, United Jewish Communities, UJA-Federation of New York and the Jewish Council for Public Affairs .
While the blame for violence in Sudan is laid squarely on Khartoum’s shoulders, Israeli-led foreign elements have contributed to the training, financing, and arming of rebel militias and forces opposed to the Sudanese government within Sudan.
Since 1969, Israel has reportedly trained recruits, shipped weapons, and offered support to South Sudanese SPLA rebels . Prior to South Sudan’s independence, Israel relied primarily on a flight route to Entebbe, Uganda to supply SPLA with weapons , however Tel Aviv nowtransfers missiles, military equipment, and even mercenaries to Juba quite openly .
As Israel covertly operates in East Africa immune from international criticism following their bombing of Sudanese convoys in 2009 , the influence of Israeli think tanks such as The Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies (IASPS) toward the creation of AFRICOM, the US Africa Command, remains a significant indication of the foreign policy directives being taken by Tel Aviv and Washington in Africa .
The Sudan exists as sub-Saharan Africa’s third largest oil producer with over 6.6 billion barrels of proven oil reserves ; an estimated 85% of those reserves have been ordained to Juba, in the Republic of South Sudan .
As China exists as Sudan’s largest trading partner by purchasing 40% of Sudan’s oil with the excess majority largely designated to Asian markets , reordering and monopolizing Sudan’s vast oil fields and mineral wealth is the capital incentive behind the unwavering support for the secession of South Sudan shown by US, EU, and Israeli officials.
Members of the Sudanese opposition and various rebel separatist groups often visit Tel Aviv, Sudan’s main SPLA opposition even opened an office in Israel to promote its “policies and vision” in the region . In reflection of Israel’s active support for the Southern opposition, South Sudanese citizens were seen waving Israeli flags during their Independence celebrations in July 2011 . For the likely guarantee of support, the South Sudanese government in Juba applied for IMF membership in April 2011 before it had even officially gained independence from Sudan .
As Israel and Washington offer their support to the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) in Darfur and various rebel militias opposed to the Sudanese government, China’s interests in the region come under direct attack from these very rebel groups, most prominently in JEM’s October 2007 attack on the Greater Nile Petroleum Company in Defra, Kordofan .
The World Bank has recently warned that South Sudan may collapse by its two-year anniversary, due to the ramifications of halting production of at least 75% of the regional oil in frustration with Khartoum’s claims on oil-transit debt and revenue . Apparently, authorities in Juba are either unprepared politically for independence or lacking the appropriate guidance to effectively manage its internal affairs.
In a recent meeting between Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping and Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali Ahmed Karti, China urged the warring neighbors to settle their differences and negotiate .
As China would prefer to align with its traditional approach of non-interventionist diplomacy, Beijing has an opportunity to exploit its influence in the region to not only further its own interests, but to defer criticism from parties loyal to Washington who credit China with sponsoring bloodshed through its business interests  and political positions .
By pursuing the role of a mediator, China can preserve its interests by overseeing negotiations on trade regulations, citizens rights, demarcation and territory status between the neighboring Sudans’.
As Juba depends on oil exports for 98% of its income , it must negotiate with Khartoum to settle its debts and agree on a mutual per-barrel fee for its use of the Greater Nile Oil Pipeline, as construction of a new pipeline from oil fields in South Sudan to a theoretical end point at the Kenyan port of Mombasa would take years to construct.
While the current US Vice President Joseph Biden once called on the US to exert military force against Sudan , it remains crucial for the leaders of both Sudanese nation states to come to an agreement regarding the status of the Heglig region and other disputed areas claimed by both sides, lest peacekeeping forces internationally administer these contested zones.
Any attempts at imposing an arms embargo throughout the Sudan would be entirely disregarded by both sides, which are already adequately armed.
While attempts to rally public support behind Western intervention in Sudan rely on emphasizing the human rights violations of Khartoum, claims of 6,000 people being slaughtered by Gaddafi used to justify NATO intervention in Libya remain unverified . Given the distinct ethno-religious differences of South Sudanese society and long history of striving for autonomy, their existence as a nation state is warranted.
It is irresponsible to deny both Khartoum’s unwarranted and brutal treatment of civilians within its territory and the US-Israeli policy of inflaming national and regional antagonisms in Sudan by arming rebel militias, to the benefit of corporations seeking to control and develop oil fields and mineral deposits.
While the allied powers in Washington and Tel Aviv would prefer to advocate aggressive policy to ensure against the survival of the regime in Khartoum, the institutional influence of Russia and China in the UNSC provides an opportunity for emerging powers to exert an alternative model of non-aggressive crisis aversion.
China may thinly support future economic sanctions on the Sudans in hesitation to involve itself in the domestic issues of other nations, however Beijing could best exercise its influence by urging Khartoum to meet with tribal leaders to guarantee a ceasefire and develop a true federal system that would allow for local autonomy. As the Sudanese leadership in Khartoum projects itself as an Islamic nation, it should recall the final great address of the Islamic Prophet at Mount Arafat, who called for the rejection of social distinctions based on ethnicity and color.
 U.N. Resolution Threatens Sanctions Against Sudan and South Sudan, The New York Times, May 3, 2012
 Sudan mobilises army over seizure of oilfield by South Sudan, The Guardian, April 11, 2012
 South Sudan police to withdraw from Abyei, Sudan Tribune, April 29, 2012
 Sudan refuses to stop fighting with South Sudan, Russia Today, May 5, 2012
 New official S. Sudan map to include disputed border region, Russia Today, May 5, 2012
 China ‘offers South Sudan $8bn for projects’, Al Jazeera, April 29, 2012
 Sudan inflation up by 21% in Q1 2012, Sudan Tribune, May 4, 2012
 Focus on diplomacy and Sudan, APS Diplomat News Service, August 15, 2008
 Sudan inflation up by 21% in Q1 2012, Sudan Tribune, May 4, 2012
 Bashir says wants warm relations with South Sudanese, Chicago Tribune, May 6, 2012
 In Sudan, Give War a Chance, The New York Times, May 4, 2012
 Omar al-Bashir charged with Darfur genocide, The Guardian, July 10, 2010
 The Peoples of Darfur, Cultural Survival, 2010
 Sudan: Israel arming Darfur rebels, PressTV, February 2, 2009
 U.N. report: Darfur not genocide, CNN, February 1, 2005
 Darfur Redux: Is ‘Ethnic Cleansing’ Occurring in Sudan’s Nuba Mountains? TIME, June 14, 2011
 George Clooney Witnesses War Crimes in Sudan’s Nuba Mountains, Enough Project, March 14, 2012
 About Us, Enough Project, 2012
 John Podesta, Shepherd of a Government in Exile, The New York Times, November 6, 2008
 Hired Guns: The City’s 50 Top Lobbyists, Washingtonian, June 1, 2007
 John Podesta, Center for American Progress, 2012
 Sudan says AU can stay in Darfur but not under UN, Sudan Tribune, September 4, 2006
 Darfur Advocacy Group Undergoes a Shake-Up, The New York Times, June 2, 2007
 US Jews leading Darfur rally planning, The Jerusalem Post, April 27, 2006
 Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), Global Security, 2012
 Israeli weapons ‘bound for rebels’ in southern Sudan: Arms may be destined for SPLA fight against Khartoum, The Independent, March 19, 1994
 Report: Israelis arming South Sudan with missiles, YNet News, April 5, 2012
 U.S. Officials say Israel Struck Sudan, The New York Times, March 26, 2009
 AFRICOM: Control of Africa, VoltaireNet, 2012
 BP Statistical Review of World Energy, British Petroleum, June, 2008
 The secession of South Sudan, Tehran Times, July 11, 2011
 Oil for China, Guns for Darfur, BusinessWeek, March 14, 2008
 Sudan’s SPLM reportedly opens an office in Israel – statement, Sudan Tribune, March 5, 2008
 Israeli Flags at South Sudan Independence Celebrations, Al Jazeera, July 9, 2011
 South Sudan formally applies for IMF membership, Sudan Tribune, April 21, 2011
 Darfur rebels spurn Chinese force, BBC, November 2007
 South Sudan Experiment Headed Toward Failure, OilPrice, May 08, 2012
 China / Politics Xi pushes for Sudanese talks, China Daily, February 29, 2012
 China defends arms sales to Sudan, BBC, February 22, 2008
 Hillary Clinton lambastes ‘travesty’ of UN veto on Syria, MSNBC, February 5, 2012
 Juba could face blackout in days – minister, Sudan Tribune, March 29, 2012
 Biden calls for military force in Darfur, MSNBC, April 11, 2007
 Israel and Libya: Preparing Africa for the “Clash of Civilizations,” Centre for Research on Globalization, October 11, 2011
Nile Bowie is an independent writer and photojournalist based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; he regularly contributes to Tony Cartalucci’s Land Destroyer Report and Professor Michel Chossudovsky’s Global Research Twitter: @NileBowie
Youth Movement Promotes US Military Presence in Central Africa.
March 8, 2012
Invisible Children has partnered with two other organizations, Resolve and Digitaria, to create the LRA Crisis Tracker, a digital crisis-mapping platform that broadcasts attacks allegedly committed by the LRA. On its list of corporate sponsors, Resolve lists Human Rights Watch and the International Rescue Committee. Digitaria’s website boasts commercial clients such as CBS, FOX, MTV, ESPN, Adidas, NFL, Qualcomm, NBC, National Geographic, Hasbro and Warner Brothers. While KONY 2012 attempts to portray itself as an indigenous activist movement bent on bringing justice to African children, its parent organization is affiliated with the upper echelon of the US corporate media and a network of foundation-funded pro-war civil society groups with a long history of fomenting pro-US regime change under the banner of democratic institution building.
Through AFRICOM, the United States is seeking a foothold in the incredibly resource rich central African block in a further maneuver to aggregate regional hegemony over China. DRC is one of the world’s largest regions without an effectively functioning government. It contains vast deposits of diamonds, cobalt, copper, uranium, magnesium, and tin while producing over $1 billion in gold each year. It is entirely feasible that the US can considerably increase its presence in DRC under the pretext of capturing Joseph Kony. The US may further mobilize group forces, in addition to the use of predator drones and targeted missile strikes, inevitably killing civilians. In a press conference at the House Armed Services Committee on March 13, 2008, AFRICOM Commander, General William Ward stated that AFRICOM will further its regional presence by “operating under the principle theatre-goal of combating terrorism”. During an AFRICOM Conference held at Fort McNair on February 18, 2008, Vice Admiral Robert T. Moeller openly declared AFRICOM’s guiding principle as protecting “the free flow of natural resources from Africa to the global market”, before citing China’s increasing presence in the region as challenging to American interests.The crimes of the Lord’s Resistance Army have been documented in the past and they are truly despicable actions. Presently, the operations of the LRA have nearly dissolved and their presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is difficult to verify. While the pro-war filmmakers behind KONY 2012 naively call for the US military to assert its place in the conflict, an independent fact finding mission would be far more effective in assessing the seriousness of the LRA threat in the present day.
Editor’s Note: Please also read about verified Western atrocities carried out in Uganda on behalf of the same corporate neo-imperial profiteering dressed up as “feel-good” activism.
Press For Truth
March 8, 2012
Today we discuss the Kony 2012 viral marketing campaign which was launched by an organization called “Invisible Children” which calls for military intervention in Africa in order to arrest the leader of the LRA (Lord’s Resistance Army) Joseph Kony. Millions of people all over the world are jumping on the Kony 2012 bandwagon and so today we ask the question Cui bono (who benefits?). Children in Africa? Or the military industrial complex?
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