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Since even with superior weapons, the NCP has been unable to defeat the SPLA-North, it appear that they have called in reinforcements. SPLA-North intelligence sources reported on Wednesday, July 27, the arrival of 200 Iranian Revolutionary Guard officers, accompanied by 10 advanced tanks at the Kassala airport in Eastern Sudan. Kassala was also the location of the arrival of Al Shabaab Somali jihadists heading to South Kordofan/Nuba Mountains two weeks before. Eastern Sudan’s indigenous Beja people have often warned that the NCP uses Eastern Sudan as a launching area for terrorist operations.
On August 11, 2011, the SPLA-North intelligence services reported that four Iranian jet fighters, listed as STAR 33, STAR 66, 55 NC, and 49 NSTAR, and “loaded with poison gas,” had arrived at El Obeid airport in North Kordofan. The Iranians were joining the SAF to attack the towns of Salara, Krongo, Fama, Tais, Hagar Almak, Chat Dammam, and Chat Alsifia, and to target Commander Abdelaziz Adam Alhilu. The report also said that Khartoum planned to force the recruitment of Nuba living in Khartoum as militias to fight against their own people in the Nuba Mountains, disseminate false information about the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM)/Northern Sector, and initiate ceasefires to delay any action against them and weaken the resolve of the international community.
Sure enough, just as it began to look as if fellow tyrant Muammar Gaddafi’s days are numbered, Khartoum began its usual tactics of delay and deception. The Washington Post on August 20 reported that Sudan’s U.N. Ambassador, Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman, had announced that ” it will allow six U.N. agencies to take part in a government-organized mission to South Kordofan, where the U.N. human rights office has called for a probe into alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity.” Osman said that the Khartoum-led ‘investigation’ would refute the findings of a U.N. report released on August 15 alleging that Sudanese security forces had committed mass atrocities in the region. Khartoum has denied committing atrocities and has called the U.N. report “biased” and “unfounded.”
It remains to be seen if the world community will be snookered by Khartoum or not. The Obama administration seems as unable or unwilling to see the regime’s evil nature as they are to see that supporting Sudan’s marginalized people in their efforts to transform the country (far less effort than we provided to nebulous Libyan rebels) would be a great strike against jihad terrorism and would help the cause of freedom all over the world.
Because the Nuba and Sudan’s other marginalized and oppressed people groups, as well as many brave young Arab Sudanese around the capital, truly desire freedom and secular democracy, regime change in Sudan might actually bring about a better situation for all Sudanese. Most of Sudan’s “rebels” have more in common with America and Israel than they do Egypt and Libya. They are men like Commander Abdelaziz Adam Alhilu and Commander Yasir Arman, who says of his dream of a new Sudan, “Not the Sudan of today, a Sudan of misery and wars and human rights violations,” but one “which respects human rights, in which every citizen feels he belongs to that country.” And unlike the rebels of Libya, these freedom fighters would ensure that the constitution of a new Sudan is Shariah-free.
Faith J. H. McDonnell directs The Institute on Religion and Democracy’s Religious Liberty Program and Church Alliance for a New Sudan, and is the author of Girl Soldier: A Story of Hope for Northern Uganda’s Children (Chosen Books, 2007).
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