Day 8: June 22, 2009

A meeting with Obama

Adef reading We’re sitting in a hut in the middle of camp with a group of men, talking war, politics, and pain. It is hot, and there are flies everywhere, the kind of flies that think nothing of swatting.  It is only the men and us, no children and no laughing.  One of them, soft-spoken and wearing their traditional head-scarf that protects them from heat and sand in the desert, starts listing all the attempts at negotiations between rebels and Khartoum government and all the signed agreements–all failed and unkept.  Do they, Khartoum, really want to find a peaceful solution? “No, they want all blacks out of Darfur.”

Another even more serious looking man and even more soft-spoken, looks at me straight in the eyes and keeps that eye connection the whole time he speaks–no blinking.  We are only about seven feet away, and I feel uncomfortable–I am not sure why, but it must be that, with the look, he is telling me “Now you know.  You are responsible.”  He is dressed in safari green pants and long-sleeve shirt–very clean and neat.  “Justice.  Without justice there is no peace.  If you start with justice, peace follows.  Then we can go home.”

We leave the hut and follow the serious man in green, walking all the way to the other side of the camp.  He has us sit in a much cooler hut than the one before, and there are no flies.  His wife joins us and is carrying a beautiful 20 days old boy.  “His name is Obama.”

One reply on “A meeting with Obama”

Hi Gabriel and Team,

I feel your frustration. So many years have gone by and you have looked into so many eyes… It’s hard to look at someone in the eyes and feel like you are the only one listening…When the whole world should be listening. Just keep on doing what you’re doing and hopefully the world will find its way…with open eyes…

Rachel and Familia

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