The government of the predominantly Muslim nation of Sudan has stripped its 500,000 to 700,000 Christians of citizenship and has put them on notice that they have one week to leave the country. Even sub-Jim Crow dhimmi status is to be denied them.
According to an ENI report, the government of Sudan has declared that all whose “parents, grandparents or great grandparents [were] born in the South Sudan or [who] belong to any southern ethnic group” are no longer citizens of Sudan and must leave by April 8…or else.
There’s more to this than meets the eye, of course.
The Sudan has always been a borderland between Arab and black African, between slavemaster and slave. And increasingly, between Muslim and Christian. During the decades-long jihad by the Sudan between the early 1980s and today against the black Africans to the east in Darfur and in the south, conservative estimates put the death toll at over 2 million. Al-Bashir has already been indicted by the International Criminal Court for genocide, something the Arab League has thumbed their noses at, with al-Bashir able to freely attend meetings and travel all over the region without fear of arrest.
The charges he was indicted for — the mass rapes, the slavetaking, the wanton murders — make what’s going on now in Syria look like a particularly sedate bridge party.
In July 2011, the jihad officially ended when the largely Christian South Sudan achieved independence, although sporadic attacks by al-Bashir’s military and aircraft still continue in places like the Nuba Mountains and along the South Sudan borders.
Due to the discord caused by the breakaway, al-Bashir is under pressure to turn the Sudan into a extremist fundamentalist, Muslim Brotherhood-ruled Islamist state.
The key figure involved is a Muslim cleric by the name of Hasan al-Turabi, who leads the Sudanese branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. Al-Turabi is an interesting figure, rather like our old friend, the late and unlamented Imad Mugniyeh, in that he has the ability to transcend the usual Sunni/Shia divide and stay on good terms with a lot of different players and factions.
Al-Turabi comes from an influential and wealthy family and has a legal background, having studied at Khartoum University, the University of London, and finally at the Sorbonne in Paris.
As what passed for the Sudan’s attorney general, al-Turabi has been credited both with starting the civil war by forcing the introduction of sharia law into the Sudan in 1983 and with providing its religious wrapping, that of jihad. It was al-Turabi’s brother-in-law, Sadeq al-Mahdi, who was the Sudan’s dictator during the early stages of the civil war from 1985 until 1989, when the current strongman, Lt.-Gen. Omar al-Bashir, overthrew al-Mahdi in a military coup with al-Turabi’s assistance.
In the past, he’s been an ally of secular dictators like Saddam Hussein, as well as terrorist groups like al-Qaeda. He was on good terms with Osama bin Laden (bin Laden reportedly was married to one of Turabi’s nieces), remains on excellent terms with current al-Qaeda head Ayman Zawahiri, and was instrumental in inviting both to come to the Sudan and set up training camps during the Clinton years.
He’s also on good terms with Shiite entities like Iran and Hezb’allah, and he was instrumental in cementing the alliance between Iran and the al-Bashir regime.
The Iranians already have an arms factory in the Sudan to supply Hamas and their allies in Somalia, Yemen, and Central Africa. If my sources are correct, they also maintain training camps staffed by Iranian Revolutionary Guards and Hezb’allah members, some of whom have been killed by Israeli air strikes on arms convoys headed north in the desert towards Sinai and Gaza.
What al-Turabi and his allies want from Bashir is a full-on Muslim Brotherhood-ruled sharia state, comparable to Iran, Gaza, Saudi Arabia, or Afghanistan under the Taliban.
After South Sudan seceded, the Islamists demanded that Bashir implement this, and they have pledged to drive him from power if he doesn’t. They formed a party headed by al-Turabi known as the Islamic Constitution Front and drafted a sharia-based constitution that the imam of Khartoum’s Grand Mosque endorsed, saying Bashir must “either rule by Islam or go.”
Picture if you will the beginnings of a Muslim Brotherhood-ruled caliphate, with Libya’s and the Sudan’s oil wealth combined with Egypt’s and Gaza’s manpower and strategic locations…especially if it’s allied with a Shi’ite bloc consisting of Iran, Lebanon, and Syria.
That’s what al-Turabi has been working for and what he may end up being instrumental in creating.
The ethnic cleansing of over half a million Christians is only a first step.
What’s notable about this is the hideous silence. There’s little or nothing being reported in the media on this. For all the noise about the new Responsibility to Protect Doctrine that was evoked on Libya, the United Nations has nothing to say about what’s happening in the Sudan, even though it violates the organization’s own charter.
No one is talking about a no-fly zone to protect black Christians under air attack in South Sudan by the Bashir regime, even though our huge air base in Djibouti is within flying distance. The infamously misnamed U.N. Human Rights Commission is preoccupied with Israel to the point of derangement, and the Muslim countries running it will see to it that it stays that way.
And President Obama is utterly silent. No speeches, no talk of sanctions or aid to the Sudan’s Christians, not even any outrage expressed…not a word.
I’ve been following what’s been going on in the Sudan for quite some time. For all the demonization of Western Imperialism so popular these days, it was those hated imperialists who largely destroyed the slave trade in the 1870s and brought a measure of peace, civil order, and decency to the country for a brief time. It is our supposedly more modern and compassionate societies that have seen the horror that has gone on in Darfur and in the South Sudan and done nothing…except react with silence.
That silence comes from fear of offending Islam, no matter how egregious and hateful the actions of a significant number of its followers become and no matter how deeply those actions offend our civilized norms. In the case of President Obama, it undoubtedly comes from his administration’s deep-seated policy of encouraging Islamists, specifically the Muslim Brotherhood. It reminds me of nothing so much as the 1930s, when the appeasers in Britain and here in our own country reacted with the same indifference while Hitler armed his legions for conquest and ethnically cleansed Germany’s Jews.
There will be a price for us ignoring the cries of our brothers. I believe in a just G-d who does His own accounting in His own time, and the Christians of the Sudan are going to be set down in those eternal records as a debt for us to pay in the future. We may not care for what that repayment, with interest, entails.