CIA Involvement In Darfur
Has Gone Unreported
By Jay Janson
09 May, 2007
has been a glaring omission in the U.S. media presentation of the Darfur
tragedy. The compassion demonstrated, mostly in words, until recently,
has not been accompanied by a recognition of U.S. complicity, or at
least involvement, in the war which has led to the enormous suffering
and loss of life that has been taking place in Darfur for many years.
In 1978 oil was discovered
in Southern Sudan. Rebellious war began five years later and was led
by John Garang, who had taken military training at infamous Fort Benning,
Georgia. "The US government decided, in 1996, to send nearly $20
million of military equipment through the 'front-line' states of Ethiopia,
Eritrea and Uganda to help the Sudanese opposition overthrow the Khartoum
regime." [Federation of American Scientists fas.org]
Between 1983 and the peace agreement signed in January 2005, Sudan's
civil war took nearly two million lives and left millions more displaced.
Garang became a First Vice President of Sudan as part of the peace agreement
in 2005. From 1983, "war and famine-related effects resulted in
more than 4 million people displaced and, according to rebel estimates,
more than 2 million deaths over a period of two decades."
[CIA Fact Book -entry Sudan]
The BBC obituary of John
Garang, who died in a plane crash shortly afterward, describes him as
having "varied from Marxism to drawing support from Christian fundamentalists
in the US." "There was always confusion on central issues
such as whether the Sudan People's Liberation Army was fighting for
independence for southern Sudan or merely more autonomy. Friends and
foes alike found the SPLA's human rights record in southern Sudan and
Mr Garang's style of governance disturbing." Gill Lusk - deputy
editor of Africa Confidential and a Sudan specialist who interviewed
the ex-guerrilla leader several times over the years was quoted by BBC,
"John Garang did not tolerate dissent and anyone who disagreed
with him was either imprisoned or killed."
CIA use of tough guys like
Garang in Sudan, Savimbi in Angola, Mobutu in Zaire (now the Democratic
Republic of the Congo), had been reported, even in mass media, though
certainly not featured or criticized, but presently, this is of course
buried away from public awareness and meant to be forgotten, as commercial
media focuses on presenting the U.S. wars of today in a heroic light.
It has traditionally been the chore of progressive, alternate and independent
journalism to see that their deathly deeds supported by U.S. citizens
tax dollars are not forgotten, ultimately not accepted and past Congresses
and Presidents held responsible, even in retrospect, when not in real
Oil and business interests
remain paramount and although Sudan is on the U.S. Government's state
sponsors of terrorism list, the United States alternately praises its
cooperation in tracking suspect individuals or scolds about the Janjaweed
in Darfur. National Public Radio on May 2, 2005 had Los Angeles Times
writer Ken Silverstein talk about his article "highlighting strong
ties between the U.S. and Sudanese intelligence services, despite the
Bush administration's criticism of human-rights violation in the Sudan."
Title was "Sudan, CIA Forge Close Ties, Despite Rights Abuses."
Nicholas Kristof, of The New York Times, won a 2006 Pulitzer Prize for
"his having alerted this nation and the world to these massive
crimes against humanity. He made six dangerous trips to Darfur to report
names and faces of victims of the genocide for which President Bush
had long before indicted the government of Sudan to the world's indifference."
[Reuters] But last November saw the opening of a new U.S. consulate
in Juba the capital of the Southern region. (Maybe consider this an
example of "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!" especially where
oil is involved.)
The point is there is human
suffering at mammoth level proportions. Humanitarian activists are trying
to pry open the purse strings of an administration and congress willing
to spend billions upon billions to get people killed and keep them in
their place, namely, at our feet. Reminding Congress of what needs to
be atoned for because of past policies of supporting war and human destruction
could eventually make present policies of war intolerable. Americans
are presently not exactly conscious stricken about dead and maimed Iraqis
and Afghans, for commerical media always keeps of most of the human
particulars of war crimes modestly out of sight, dramatizing much lesser
losses and suffering of American military personal abroad.
Darfur made the headlines
again because a governor of presidential timber was building up his
foreign policy credentials. Meanwhile we are going to continue to see
newsreels of our mass media depressing us with scenes of starving children,
basically as testimony of how evil another Islamic nation's government
is, so we can feel good - and want to purchase the products needing
the advertising - which pays for the entertainment/news programs - which
keep viewers in the dark about THEIR contribution to the suffering brought
upon those people all the way over there in Africa.
Just try to put 4 and 2 million
of anything into perspective. We are talking about an equivalent to
the sets of eyes of half the population of Manhattan. Imagine one of
us, whether a precious child ,a handsome man, a beautiful women, - to
the tune of, (dirge of), one times four million, half of us dead. Sorry!
It has no impact right? We realize that, remembering the words of Joseph
Stalin (of all people), "One man's death is a tragedy, a thousand,
is a statistic." There is absolutely no way we can whip up enough
anguish to match a total of four million displaced and two million dead
Sudanese, unless we could be of a mind and heart with Martin Luther
King dealing with three million dead Vietnamese, also as in this case,
over on the other side of the world, far from our living rooms - "So
it is that those of us who are yet determined that "America will
be" are led down the path of protest and dissent, working for the
health of our land." (MLK, 1967, "Beyond Vietnam")
This writer remembers reading
newspapers articles about the U.S. backing the Southern Sudan rebellion
way back then. If we had supported a side that wound up winning, we
would be bragging about our having supported 'freedom fighters'. But
we just threw a lot of money and outdated weapons at a John Garang in
the Sudan, as we did with Jonas Savimbi in Angola, to the ultimate destruction
of millions of people, and they LOST! Like we did in Vietnam, and half-way
lost in Korea, and now are mid-way losing in Iraq and Afghanistan. Jesus!
Calculating the chances of an investment in human life and money coming
to a fruition of sorts - that is certainly the job of any intelligence
gathering agency! What we have had is an Agency using its gathered intelligence
to do unintelligent things because, as our Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote
more than a hundred and twenty-five years ago, "Things are in the
saddle and ride herd over men" (trampling others under foot, we
The European Union is under
pressure from inside to assure that a United Nations force of 20,000
men will be sent to Darfur as required by Security Council resolution
1706, and to threaten sanctions in order to halt a war the U.S. was
originally interested to see begun.
The U.N. Security Council
will receive a list from the International Criminal Court of those Sudanese
officials who could be charged with war crimes. The list is expected
include some members of rebel organizations among Sudanese government
officials and Janjaweed militias. There assuredly will be no names on
the list of non-Sudanese officials of nations which were known to have
involved themselves in this Sudanese civil war contrary to accepted
provisions and obligations of U.N. membership. But we can know that
the responsibility for war, slaughter, rape and theft in Sudan extends
beyond the leaders of those murderously weilding guns and swords.
It will be good if outside
influence will now be focused on peace, but citizens best be vigilant
of their nation's foreign policy intentions. The world has heard many
protestations that oil is not a reason for war, but blood and oil has
been known to mix.
it! And spread the word!
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