Writings of the general word's body

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Endgame in Darfur

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“Never Again” is the mantra we hear over and over again, when people talk of the horror of the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda. Then, the World (and in this sense, the World is the International community and the ones who hold the balance of power, led by the US. The World of course is also the United Nations, which to its eternal shame, was able to do absolutely nothing in Rwanda). Yet the World acted in Yugoslavia. More people were killed in Rwanda in 100 days, than in over 9 years of the Yugoslavia Campaign. As Romeo Dallaire once said: "The World is Racist".

We all know what happened in Rwanda in 1994. I will never forget the television news footage of bloated human bodies floating like mutant mushrooms upon Lake Victoria. So many. So many were they, that one couldn’t even see an inch of water in some places. How can I ever think of Lake Victoria again without re-imagining that nightmarish footage?

Now it is Darfur. The World again is being its (or is it her?) old useless self. The World is being racist again. Not only are the people being killed in Darfur as black as night, they are Africans - a terrible thing to be if you want the World to care about you.

What is more, the Dead, Dying and Displaced of Darfur are Muslims. I don’t know which is the worse thing to be in the current World order - African or Muslim. The people of Darfur have a terrible Double Whammy of an albatross round their necks.

In the last few days, the anxiety over Darfur is choking. Sense of asphyxiation worsened by helplessness and the horror of what we know: that time is running out. And why this anxiety? After all, Darfur has been with us for some time. An estimated 200,000 people have been killed in Darfur since 2003. The World has been busy twiddling its thumbs.

And so the new anxiety. And how inadequate a word is ‘Anxiety’. But what word should we grasp and attempt to speak, to express the unthinkable?

And is the new ‘anxiety’ because Hollywood liberal George Clooney spent 5 days with his father in Darfur in April, and in the last few days urged the US government to do something about “the first Genocide of the 21st century”?

Or is it because earlier today, faith leaders in Britain (remarkable, in light of Pope Benedict’s grossly unwise remarks about the Prophet Mohammed; Pope John Paul II, how irreplaceable you were!) - Anglican (Church of England), Islam, Jewish - led by Cormac Murphy O'Connor (leader of the Catholic faith in Britain) prayed at the door of 10 Downing Street. A prayer/letter was also read on behalf of Archbishop Desmond Tutu - you can’t have more moral integrity than that… [I don’t know whether the last few sentences comply with the rules of composition, but what is composition in the face of genocide?]… All these faith leaders came to express their anxiety at the front door of power in London earlier today. They were met at the door of Downing Street by Baroness Amos (don’t know why Blair himself couldn’t do it). We are told that Blair has written to fellow European powers urging action in Darfur. I don’t know that Blair’s gesture is not just another case of twiddling thumbs.

And the anxiety… African Union Peacekeepers have to leave Darfur by September 30. The Government of Sudan (in effect, an Arab government in the North) has refused to agree to a UN peacekeeping force in the region. They are adamant in this stance.

And the fear now, is that the government and its Janjaweed are planning The Final Solution to the Darfur 'Problem'. Genocide! And the World twiddles its useless thumbs. When it’s all over and done with, the World will again chorus: Never Again.

The World is Racist.

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Anonymous said...

Well said, Molara.

I saw Clooney on most of the news headlines talking about Darfur and wondered whether we as Africans had lost our voice. Then I read posts such as yours and know that no, we have not.

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I will be honoured if you post my poem on your blog.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Molara!

Anonymous said...

Ih ave a poem of darfur about
a young girl who when after selling into slavery, then she escape with a prince who save her from Arab men.

Oh Darfur, Darfur what?
Darfur, in conclusion, not?
Darfur, black Arabs, but?
Wherefore is justice sought?

Turbaned idols run to Mecca
Singing praises to Eshu Elegba
I forgot the rest.
Thank you.
Segun Adu

Frank Partisan said...

I read part of this post at Black Looks.

It is the most moving post, I ever read on the subject.

I dislike loud rhetoric, combined with small actions. That is what the world powers are doing.

Frank Partisan said...

Is it ok for me to reprint your post?

Anonymous said...

You should have more postings on politics on your blog. Excellent! Hey you are a 'wordsboy' after all.

Wordsbody said...

Renegade: I've left a comment on yours saying: of course, you may...

All: This piece was written by me in a highly anxious state, and probably carries the signs of that anxiousness. If it resonates with people, then that is some kind of consolation. Even as we are unconsoled...

"" said...

Renegade Eye's blog directed me. Everything you say is so. I wish art and beauty were enough to change the world. I try to convince myself that it can make a difference.

LeftyHenry said...

Great article, but a horrific subject. It's really a shame that the US doesn't go anywhere where there is no profit. I did a little poll a little while back with about 250 people and asked them if they knew what was happening in Darfur. Only about 30% knew.

Anonymous said...

Omolara, Good on you and more grease to your elbow for your positive contribution to African Art and Culture.

People like you are indeed a blessing to we Black Africans.

My writings is geared more towards the need for a redefinition of Black in Britain. My book, "The Curse of Being Black in Britain" will be out soon.Visit my website www.simonowoade.com

Best wishes and God Bless.