Fifteen Eighty Four

Academic perspectives from Cambridge University Press


Omar Hassan al-Bashir Charged with Genocide

Luis Moreno-Ocampo, prosecutor for the International Criminal Court has filed a request for an arrest warrant for President of Sudan Omar Hassan al-Bashir.

From the New York Times:

‘Announcing the request, the prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, said that Mr. Bashir “masterminded and implemented” a plan to destroy the three main ethnic groups in Darfur, the Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa. Using government soldiers and Arab militias, the president “specifically and purposefully targeted civilians” belonging to these groups, killing 35,000 people “outright” in attacks on towns and villages.

‘“His motives were largely political,” the prosecutor said. “His alibi was a ‘counterinsurgency.’ His intent was genocide.”’

Does Moreno-Ocampo have a case?

M. W. Daly feels that he does, and The Economist agrees :

“[Darfur’s Sorrow] makes clear how the conflict was precipitated by the regime of President Omar Bashir, who still denies that anything is much amiss in the region.”

Robert O. Collins is a veteran historian of the region and a frequent visitor.

His account of Sudan shows how the seeds of strife were planted years ago. Collins provides a real backdrop to the conflict, detailing from 1821-1956.

Darfur and the Crime of Genocide reveals a shocking discrepancy: a $1million 2004 State Department survey in the Darfur region that interviewed over 1,000 refugees, confirming the extent of the region’s crisis. No action was ever taken based upon the survey’s results.

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