Another day, another day slightly stuck. Frustrating has become the word of the week, so I’ll try to refrain from using it here. And today, like basically everyday since we’ve been here, was up and down. We woke up pleasantly surprised that we were booked on a flight out to Goz Beida to finally get to a refugee camp. Hours later, we were back in our fitness center, which has doubled nicely as our home. It’s actually quite nice to work out on the bike, and then be able to lie in bed minutes later ;)
The reality is, however, that we’re in the midst of a situation that carries great ramifications for the entire region. Undoubtedly, the rebels currently ransacking the region and heading for the capital of N’djamena are, in part, armed by the same Sudanese government carrying out the genocide in Darfur and threatening to engage in another war in the South. As a BBC article pointed out, this is a war being waged between Khartoum and N’djamena, and fought by proxies. It’s scary, not for us, but for the innocent people being exposed to this sort of violence through no fault of their own.
The coming days will demonstrate the extent of damage these atrocities will cause throughout the region. If the rebels are fought back, then Sudan and Chad will continue their hostile behavior towards each other, which has led to a cessation of all diplomatic relations. And if the rebels somehow take over the country, there will be deep ramifications for the Sudanese refugees harbored inside of Chad. I wish I could say it was exciting to be in the middle of this important situation, but we’re basically getting our news from the same place that you all are.
The saddest part about the whole mess is the individuals it affects. Every Chadian we talk to is saddened by the situation, and claims to want peace. The conflict is being perpetrated by a few power-hungry individuals that will stop at nothing, including killing and harming individual civilians, in order to fulfill their desire to wish the top. I feel that oftentimes, when the international community sees a situation like the current one in Chad, they remark that it’s “another African disaster.” The problem is that this does not reflect the majority of the African people; it reflects the power-hungry few. It’s a perception we need to shake.
So, another day of disappointments, but we are safe. Please monitor the unfolding events in Chad, not just for our purposes, but for the sake of the hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians in harm’s way. And remember, this isn’t another African hopeless situation. It’s one that the international community can play its part in helping to rectify.