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11.03.2009 Feature Article

Let the Games Begin in Sudan

The Indictment of Sudanese President Al-Bashir for Crimes committed in Darfur has created a series of unique Diplomatic Initiatives. Some of these actions can be interepeted as being harbingers of actions to come by various actors.

The UN Security Council will be one key battleground. In recent years various attempts for the UN to augment UNAMID (United Nations Mission in Darfur) have been thwarted by both Russia and China. Both Nations are key allies of Sudan and Have Permanent Seats on the Security Council. Sudan has been receiving crucial support from Libya which is the Chair of the African Union this year and from the Arab League itself. Also for this year Sudan has the Presidency of the G-77 group of Nations or the Non-Aligned Movement from the Cold War Days.

One concern regarding UNAMID is the fact that in the past the Force has been targeted by "Unknown" Parties. Late in Feburary A Contingent of Belgian Peacekeepers was attacked in Eastern Chad. On the 10th of March 4 UN Peacekeepers were wounded in another attack. Some Military Strategists are concerned that one possible avenue that Sudan could use in "revenge" is to launch some form of Operation in Eastern Chad. Several Opposition Movements in Eastern Chad formed an Alliance earlier this year. Some of these groups have close ties to Khartoum and have launched attacks against the Chadian Capital to shield bad acts being committed in Darfur.

Another Possible act of retribution could be a return to the past. In the past the Sudanese Intelligence Services provided Key Logistical Support for Joseph Kony and the Lord's Resistance Army. When the North-South Peace Accords aka the CPA (Comprehensive Peace Accord) was signed under the stewardship of the United States one of the provisions called for the ceasing of Aid to the LRA. There are now concerns that the this Peace Accord could unravel.

The scenario involving the LRA which very few people have discussed has the threat of rolling 3 Major Conflict Areas (Darfur, Northern Uganda and the Eastern DRC) into one large Conflict Zone. Currently the United States is providing Key Logistical Support for Operation Lightning Thunder. After Initial Setbacks and Criticism directed towards AFRICOM recent press reports are indicating that this effort is showing some late progress in the Operation. Currently there are calls from Anglican Leaders in Sudan for the US and Britain to enter this effort.

Right Now the United States is reportedly preparing to evacuate all non-essential personell from the Embassy in Khartoum. This step is being taken after threats were made against the French Embassy. With Non-Essential Personell being given the option of leaving Sudan and Other US Citizens being urged to maintain contact with the Embassay are indictitve that the situation within Khartoum is expected to deteriorate soon. Could this result in US Troops being deployed to Sudan? It is too early to actively predict that but it appears that with each hour the chances increase slightly.

So the Indictment of one World Leader has the potential of causing so much disruption in several countries. This will be played out in the Deserts of Darfur and Chad, The Streets of Khartoum, Behind the Closed Doors of the Security Council in New York and in AFRICOM Headquarters to name but a few spots. The situation promises to be interesting for sometime now.

The Author Comments on US Policy towards Africa and Publishes Confused Eagle on the Internet. Confused Eagle can be found at morganrights.tripod.com

Scott A Morgan
Scott A Morgan, © 2009

This author has authored 88 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: ScottAMorgan

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