U.S. Sudan Strategy: The facts are AWOL. Consequences are AWOL.

Some important facts have been glossed over by the Obama Administration in its approach to Sudan. Without these facts, many American citizens may have been lulled into thinking that the crisis in Sudan is over. The facts prove otherwise.

TOP TEN AWOL FACTS:

10) The official U.S. Sudan policy was never implemented. The official policy announced by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in October 2009 included policy based on benchmarks and decisive action, including pressures and consequences on those obstructing peace and justice. The policy also promised a quarterly review process by National Security Council Deputies.

9) The NCP (the ruling party in Sudan) rigged the April national elections while the international community stood by. U.S. Special Envoy Scott Gration declared them “as fair as possible.” There were no consequences from the U.S. administration. (The NCP waged a genocidal campaign against the people of Darfur resulting over 400K dead and nearly 3M displaced; and was involved in the north-south war from 1983 to 2003 resulting in 2M dead and 5M displaced.)

8) Desperately needed humanitarian aid continues to be blocked and interfered with by the Government of Sudan. Millions living in IDP camps are at the mercy of the NCP’s brutal control strategy, resulting in increased suffering and death in already dismal camps. There are no consequences from the Obama administration.

7) The NCP is obstructing necessary progress on North-South issues in preparation for the referendum, and the area is becoming heavily militarized. A resumption of all-out war could result in the bloodiest conflict of the decade. There are no consequences from the U.S.

6) The génocidaires are allowed to control communication about the victims of genocide. The UN and most humanitarian NGOs are powerless to speak out regarding the ongoing suffering and destruction for fear of being expelled by the NCP. There are no consequences for the NCP’s behavior.

5) The NCP has a terrible track record of never keeping its commitments. Based on empirical evidence from the 21 years that this regime has been in power, it is only when robust and multilateral carrots and sticks are combined that the international community has leverage to influence the NCP to make any progress toward peace.

4) The NCP recently introduced an ominous “New Strategy For Darfur,” which largely abandons diplomatic efforts to end conflict in Darfur and shift the emphasis to “development.” This is code for sending the 2.5 million people who live in refugee camps, under the protection of U.N. forces, back home to their villages, where they are to be “protected” by the very Sudanese forces that have been slaughtering them for the last seven years.

3) Envoy Gration convinced Secretary Clinton to support an incentives only engagement strategy with the NCP, and focus U.S. attention on the north-south elections set for January, effectively sacrificing the needs of Darfur.

2) Violence in Darfur is growing worse. Emboldened by international neglect, the NCP is largely responsible for thousands of additional deaths due to increased fighting, village attacks, and malnutrition in the camps where most Darfurians now live. There have been no consequences from the Obama administration.

1) NCP Leaders will soon arrive at the UN to promote their agenda, which includes the normalization of relations with the U.S., the lifting of sanctions and the “domestication” of the Darfur peace process among other travesties of justice. Key architects of the Darfur genocide will head the National Congress Party delegation to New York, including Vice President Ali Osman Mohammed Taha. What will be the Obama administration’s response?

Download the Top Ten AWOL Facts.

Katie-Jay keeps i-ACT running on several levels. Much of her work entails coordinating partnerships with other grassroots organizations and implementing the campaigns developed by Gabriel and seeing through the details. She graduated from Portland State University with a BA in Sociology and a focus on Community Development. She has previously worked as a community organizer in Thailand, Guatemala, and with grassroots organizations across the United States.

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