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Posted on on November 22nd, 2008
by Pincas Jawetz (

War in Congo has caused by now 5 million death and there is no end to it,   war in Sudan has cost by now 2.5 million lives. Further many millions of people were driven from their homes – both these very large countries, rich in natural resources, have been driven to abject poverty with a very thin crust on top – rich people that made their fortune from the misery of the many,

China has now invested $9 billion in Sudan in oil deals, and $5 billion in Congo in minerals – someone from the locals gets some of this money. Americans and Europeans spend money on aid campaigns and would really want to see an end to the Killings. They clearly feel this is a bottomless pit. Three prominent leaders in the NGO effort to do something about this upheaval in Africa are:

George Clooney – famous actor and director,   David Presman – human-rights lawyer, and John Prendergast – co-chair of “the Enough Project” wrote the following article as an opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal.

Not on Our Watch, and the Enough Project cry out to President-Elect Barack Obama in hope that, despite the other enormous tasks that he will have starting January 20, 2009, he should also take on the problems of Africa – specifically Congo and Sudan. We are with them but we do not see how he could spread out in his first days in office beyond the clear focus on the US economy as we reported today based on Obama’s media presentation of today – November 22, 2008.

By coincidence, today I also met Safiyya Sarkin, President and Founder, Women Beyond Survival. She told me about East Chad, which has become an extension of the war in Darfur, a war caused by Sudan. Chad is not alone, The Central African Republic is in similar condition as extension of wars in South Sudan and Congo. The whole region is in flames and why cannot Africa get its act together and show that they are ready to speak up for their people?

The point is that a government should be responsible for the protection of its own citizens, and if they do not act according to the UN principle “The Responsibility To Protect” their neighbors should be helped to move in and establish order. And if the neighbors do not want to do it – or cannot – the UN should be able to take over. But did you ever look at what goes on at the UN Security Council? If there is no oil to protect, seemingly nobody acts, and if it is just one large power that works on that oil – what then? Will President Obama be ready to stand up and be counted as a defender of the people of Darfur even without a US interest in the oil of Sudan? We hope he will, but we are not convinced that this will be right at start. Further, we actually think that incoming Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton, who visited Darfur, and knows the atrocities, and being a woman, would be ready, after confirmation by the US Senate, to look at least on the women’s side of the East and Central African problems in line of


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