Monday, October 01, 2007

Darfur rebels kill 10 in peace force

I realize that my naivety will be revealed when I make the statement that even in war and rebellions, there are certain basic rules, which should be followed by all. There are groups such as peacekeepers, humanitarian services, medical professionalists and journalists who should not be attacked and brought into the war or dispute. I believe this rule is fundamental to any kind of working society and those who can not honor this, are completely lawless and should be dealt with very harshly i.e. cut off from all other elements of society. An example of such lawlessness occurred on Sunday, September 30th when there was a major attack in Nairobi, Kenya. Darfurian rebels attacked an African Union peacekeeping camp in the town of Haskanita, about 100 miles east of Nyala- a major city in Darfur. Hundreds of Darfurian rebels attacked the peacekeeping camp from all sides outnumbering the peacekeepers in what seems to be a planned attack. At least 10 soldiers are dead, numerous people are missing and the rebels took supplies and heavy weapons. According to Noureddine Mezni, an African Union spokesperson the purpose of the attack on this camp was to seize quality weapons and materials. This raid “was the deadliest and boldest attack on African Union peacekeepers since they arrived in Darfur three years ago.” The African Union has been trying to restore peace in Darfur for the past three years, but they are currently mixed up in a battle between two competing rebel tribes and the government. The fighting and raids in Darfur seem to only
be getting worse, “the attack was the most dramatic display yet of the new kind of chaos that is engulfing Darfur…” the fighting in Darfur has turned into a “free-for-all” power struggle between dozens of armed groups and the fighting in Haskanita seems to be the worst. The main issue, which stems from this recent raid is whether or not other countries are going to withdraw aid as a consequence of this new chaos. Other countries that have been considering supplying troops to the United Nations-African Union peacekeeping mission might rethink their position. The plan was to increase the number of peacekeepers from 7,000 to 26,000, but now those numbers might not be possible. This ongoing fight in Darfur needs to come to an end. But with no help from supporting countries I don’t see the “light at the end of the tunnel.” Instead of this last raid scaring people away it should shake them enough to realize how desperate the Darfur region is, and how badly they need help to prevent this from happening again and furthermore to take a stand and stop even more severe genocide which is occurring in this region.


Nikki M said...

I don't think it should come as a surprise that the same group that is orchestrating a genocide sacked a peacekeeping station. The "rules of war" seem to apply only in traditional military conflicts, which are not the type the world is facing today. The Janjaweed is a gang of thugs, they submit to no higher code of honor. While these events might be unheard of in past conflicts, I think this is probably the new face of war.

I agree with you in saying that if anything these events should trigger more support to the area. Perhaps if the African Union peacekeeping troups were larger in number and better supported they would not be vulnerable to such attacks.

RobbyCano23 said...

I agree with your assertion that these attacks on the peacekeepers should result in a cry for help, and more support, but countries put themselves first. While this attack should result in more peacekeepers to prevent such an attack from happening again, it will probably result in the removal of peacekeepers. Countries our more concerned with the well being of themselves than that of the outside world. Yes the 10 deaths of the peacekeepers is tragic but at the same time this cant even compare to the genocide that is occuring their. Maybe the death, of a few peacekeepers is a price we need to pay in order to realize that something needs to be done to put an end to this genocide. More likely the world will turn its head and ignore the matter, just as it has done so many times before.