Darfur, Israel, & Congressman Tom Lantos
- When you analyze the situation in Darfur, you should be aware of
Israel's strategy, and Congressman Tom Lantos' past record.
Darfur, Israel, and Congressman Tom Lantos
May 2, 2006
THE WISDOM FUND News & Views
According to a book published by the Dayan Institute for Middle East
and Africa Studies called "Israel and the Sudanese Liberation
Movement," Israel adopted a strategy which they called 'pulling the
limbs then cutting them off.' What this policy entailed was the
building of bridges with minority groups, pulling them out of the
nationalist context and then 'encouraging' them to separate.
Tel Aviv hoped that this strategy would inevitably weaken the Arab
world, break it down and threaten its interests at the same time. In
order for this strategy to work, Mossad agents opened lines of
communication and connections with the Kurds in Iraq, Maronites in
Lebanon and Southerners in Sudan.--"Israel's hand in Sudan's past and
future," Yemen Observer, January 15, 2005
A high point of the public relations campaign against Iraq, was the
testimony of a Kuwaiti refugee, before the Congressional Human Rights
Caucus on October 15, 1990, who told of Iraqi troops removing over 300
babies from incubators in Kuwait City hospital, and dumping them on
the floor to die.
On January 6, 1992, John R. MacArthur, publisher of Harper's Magazine
and author of "Second Front: Censorship and Propaganda in the Gulf
War," revealed in a New York Times Op-Ed that "Nayirah," the alleged
refugee, was the daughter of Saud al-Sabah, Kuwait's ambassador to the
United States, and that Hill and Knowlton, a large public relations
firm, had helped prepare her testimony, which she had rehearsed before
video cameras in the firm's Washington office.
"The chairmen of the Congressional group, "Tom Lantos, a California
Democrat, and John Edward Porter, an Illinois Republican, explained
that Nayirah's identity would be kept secret to protect her family
from reprisals in occupied Kuwait" wrote MacArthur.
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What imperialists don't say
Oil is behind struggle in Darfur
By G. Dunkel
Apr 27, 2006
The mass media in the U.S., France and Britain are writing a great
deal about the suffering in the Darfur region of western Sudan and the
tensions between the Sudanese government and neighboring Chad. Not
surprisingly, they write very little about the economic interests
these three imperialist countries have in the oil recently discovered
in this part of Africa.
Chad, which was once a French colony and still is occupied by French
troops, is accusing Sudan of supporting and encouraging an April 14
raid on its capital, Ndjamena. It is threatening to expel 200,000
Sudanese living in Chad who get their support from the office of the
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Sudanwhich at one time was a British colony, but has since been using
its oil to develop an independent economycharges that Chad has been
supporting rebellion in Darfur. Sudan wants the UNHCR to financially
support the 15,000 Chadians who have fled to Sudan recently to escape
heavy fighting in eastern Chad.
The fierce fighting in eastern Chad at the end of March resulted in
the combat death of Chadian Army commander Brig. Gen. Abakar Youssouf
Mahamat Itno, underlining the army's decline.
China plays a different role
Darfur is known to have major yet untapped oil reserves, representing
a vast amount of potential wealth at a time when crude oil has risen
to nearly $75 a barrel.
While France and the U.S. are the only two imperialist countries with
significant military forces in Africa, Britain still plays a major
diplomatic and political role there, generally in coordination with
China plays a different role. The Western imperialists see China as
their growing competitor for Sudan's oil.
China has actually helped Sudan's economic development while serving
its own needs for oil.
According to a Dec. 23, 2004, report in the Washington Post, China
National Petro leum Corp. (CNPC), owned by the Chinese government,
invested $300 million in an expansion of Sudan's largest refinery,
doubling its output. The refinery now supplies most of Sudan's
The CNPC also began trial production of oil at a field in southern
Darfur in 2004 and has a 41-percent share of the oil from a field in
the Melut Basin. Another Chinese firm, Sinopec Corp., built a
1,000-mile pipeline from that complex to Port Sudan on the Red Sea,
where China's Petroleum Engineering Construction Group has built a
All in all, China buys about two-thirds of Sudan's oil.
U.S. policy: divide and rule
After Sudan achieved its formal independence from Britain in 1956, the
country went through a period of internal struggles. Beginning in the
1970s Sudan began moving in a radical Islamic direction, rejecting the
neocolonial relations that the United States and other European powers
wanted to impose.
A well-organized and well-financed rebellion in southern Sudan began
soon after. The United States supported the south financially,
politically and militarily in order to divide and conquer. By
tightening an economic embargo on the Sudanese government, the U.S.
could also exert economic pressure.
Washington even went so far as military attacks, like the cruise
missile strike in 1998 that blew up the only pharmaceutical plant in
Sudan. No proof was ever offered to back up the imperialist pretext
that the plant manufactured chemical weapons, or that Sudan was
somehow connected to terrorist bombings in Kenya and Tanzania.
A delegation led by former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark of the
International Action Center visited the ruins of the plant and
confirmed that it had simply been making medicines.
In 2005, the central government and the Sudanese People's Liberation
Movementthe group which led the struggle in the southratified an
agreement. The settlement granted the south substantial auto nomy, a
50-50 split of oil revenues and a referendum on full independence
within six years. China was instrumental in the negotiations for this
Once the Sudanese settled this conflict, the imperialists needed
another one to keep up the threats and pressure on Sudan.
Washington foments division
Drought and the subsequent encroachment of the desert have led to
fighting over grazing and water rights in Darfur, which escalated in
2003 into a major conflict. The fighting has grown so intense that
tens of thousands of people are reported to have died and 200,000 to
have fled across the border into Chad.
Two competing armed movementsthe Sudanese Liberation Army and the
Movement for Justice and Equalitywon some early victories against the
Sudanese Army. These two armed movements maintained their logistic and
training bases in the eastern part of Chad, near the border with Darfur.
Once the rebellion in Darfur began, the Sudanese government set up
counter-militias, called Jinjaweed, recruited from nomadic ethnic
groups in Darfur who main ly speak Arabic. The Sudanese Liberation
Army and the Movement for Justice and Equality recruited from ethnic
groups in Darfur who don't use Arabic.
The U.S. government, among others, is trying to exacerbate these
differences by defining this conflict as between "Arab vs. black."
Washington has accused Sudan of "genocide" and "ethnic cleansing."
However, Paul Moorcraft, a British expert on Sudan, points out,
"Darfur's Arabs are black, indigenous African Muslimsjust like
The African Union has 7,000 troops in Darfur trying to keep the peace.
But the imperialist powers want more direct control by replacing the
African Union forces with either NATO or UN troops in order to further
imperialist interests in the region and to deny the Sudanese control
over their own territory.
Propaganda for NATO intervention
The New York Times, whose right-wing columnist Nicholas D. Kristof
just won a Pulitzer prize for demanding U.S. intervention in Darfur,
supplies the liberal cover for imperialist troop deployment.
Two Zionist groups, the American Jewish World Service and the Jewish
Council for Public Affairs, have taken a very active role in building
a national rally set for April 30 whose main demand is direct U.S.
intervention in Darfur to "stop the genocide." The AJWS is pushing to
replace the African Union soldiers in Darfur with 20,000 UN or NATO
But that would require the approval of the UN Security Council. China
is very likely to veto any such resolution. So the U.S. and Britain
are stepping up their propaganda against Sudan and against China's
significant support and investment there.
France, the main competing imperialist power in Africa, is concerned
about Sudan. But its real worry is Chad and its oil, which is
currently being extracted by a consortium led by ExxonMobil. France is
concerned that a key part of its sphere of influence in Africa is
The World Bank has forced a deal on Chad that restricts how that
country can spend its oil revenue and that limits its oil income per
barrel to $10 to $15 less than world market prices. (Jeune Afrique,
Opposition to the World Bank oil deal is growing in Chad. And many
Chadians also resent the fact that French soldiers are still guarding
government buildings 45 years after independence.
The U.S. want to get President Déby out and a new president in who
relies on it, not France. The very day of the attack on Ndjamena, U.S.
Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick called on Chad to adopt a
"different political process" and to reach a "satisfactory
arrangement" with the political opposition. Undersecretary of State
for African Affairs Donald Yamamoto began a two-day visit there on
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