Congressman Blasts Media for Sudan Apathy

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The final witness was Yasir Arman, secretary general of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N). Commander Arman was the popular candidate for president of Sudan, who ran against al-Bashir until the SPLM-N decided to boycott the race to protest election fraud. Arman, a great example to all Sudanese, is a northern Arab who shares the vision of a new Sudan with freedom and equality for all, espoused by the late leader of South Sudan, Dr. John Garang de Mabior. Arman declared that al-Bashir is a terrorist, and although his terrorism “starts with the Sudanese people,” it goes “worldwide.” He revealed that over 140 leaders of the SPLM-N had been arrested and tortured, and that Malik Agar, the governor of Blue Nile State “had been sacked” and replaced by an NCP loyalist. But these besieged areas, in their resistance to the radical Islamists in Khartoum, are the “new South in the North,” Arman promised.

The high level of frustration among members of Congress was evident even as Congressman Wolf, the co-chair of the commission and a long-time advocate for the beleaguered Sudanese people, described the hearing as one of the best ones he has ever been to on Sudan (and he has been to many). Wolf admitted that he was still pessimistic about conditions in Sudan “until Bashir is taken to The Hague and tried.” He declared, as he had done at a previous hearing in August, that “until there is regime change, and Bashir is no longer in power, we will not see change in Sudan.”

U.S. Rep. Michael Capuano (D-MA), co-founder and co-chair of the Sudan Caucus, also contrasted the situation in Sudan with the “Arab Spring.” “We are perfectly happy to shoot missiles at Gadhafi for threatening to hurt his people, but we are doing nothing about a government that has been killing its people for years!” he exclaimed. “None of us really understands why we are not doing more,” Capuano added.

As the hearing came to a close, Congressman Wolf searched the packed hearing room, demanding of the crowd, “How many of you are from the media?” He counted as five hands went up around the room in the Cannon House Office Building. “Of you five, are any of you from Fox News, CNN, ABC, CBS, or NBC?” he questioned further. Silence.

Wolf lamented that no one in the media had asked any of the Republican presidential hopefuls about Sudan in any of the debates, and since only answers to questions and no opening statements were permitted, it was hard to gauge whether or not there was any interest on the part of the GOP candidates. The congressman said he intended to send the testimonies from the hearing to the five major networks and urge them to air the views of the candidates on this important issue. Perhaps he should send copies to each of the candidates’ campaigns, as well, and seek a direct response.

Increased media coverage from all quarters would help build pressure for change in Sudan as it did for the “Arab Spring.” But the mainstream media that reported breathlessly each protest in Tahrir Square and each NATO air strike to aid Libyan “rebels” has been mostly silent about Sudan’s fight for freedom. It’s up to the rest of us to keep up the pressure.

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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  • Jim

    The secret to getting media support for the Christians and Animists of southern Sudan is to have the southerners blame every thing on Jews and America.

    The "Mouse That Roared"

  • Chezwick_mac

    Wolf is great. What a breath of fresh air…a Congressman who is actually aware of the world as it is.

    In Libya, we give material support to radical Islamists with terror ties who then – with our help – overthrow a despotic government; in Sudan, we turn our backs on a nascent non-Islamic polity fighting for its life.

    I'd say our priorities are ever-so-slightly skewed, wouldn't you, folks?

  • mrbean

    If blacks could apply their ability to make excuses to any other endeavor they might actually achieve something. So American blacks complain that they're useless because of slavery. But you can point to Africa and find blacks that seem to be even more useless. In fact, the article below does a good job of describing what a total sh*thole Africa is. War, starvation, complete lack of sanitation or technology, dying from preventable diseases, etc. Blacks would be a lot more tolerable if they would just admit their uselessness instead of using their very limited intelligence to come up with ridiculous excuses. Here is proof about life in the Sudan.

  • Mark

    Part of the answer is to look at where in the world Obama and the US State Department are stone dead quiet. Once you look at those issues and see who else is there, you can identify who or what the administration is trying to not upset. That is, Iran.

  • mrbean

    We should intervene for this? No way!

  • Linda Rivera

    Omer Ismail, senior policy advisor for Enough Project: “The U.S. must listen and respond to the voices for change in Sudan,” he urged, noting that the same international community that became so heavily involved in Egypt and Libya because of government oppression".

    Obama made a special point of inviting U.S. leaders' favorites, the Muslim Brotherhood, to his speech in Cairo. Behind the scenes, America was instrumental in ousting U.S. ally, MODERATE Mubarak and massively empowering the Muslim Brotherhood whose goal is the destruction of civilization. Predictably, things have become extremely grim for Egypt's Christian Copts.

    Muslim attacks on Christians, their homes, properties and churches has increased enormously. The kidnappings of female Christian children by Muslim males has also increased enormously. G-D help Egypt's Christians. THERE IS NO ONE TO HELP THEM!

    Because of US/FRANCE/UK/NATO fighting the war for Libya's rebels and winning the war for the excessively cruel Islamists, every single day is HELL ON EARTH for Libya's blacks. They live in daily fear. THERE IS NO ONE TO HELP THEM! US/FRANCE/UK/NATO continue fighting the war for the Al-Qaeda linked rebels. G-D help the Black people!

  • Linda Rivera

    Your despicable racism against blacks is revolting.

  • Linda Rivera

    For the media to remain silent, and for the nations to not help the desperate, terrified blacks in the Nuba Mountains and other areas of Sudan is to AID and ABET the wicked crimes, atrocities and genocide of the black people by Khartoum's Arab Islamic government. It is unforgivable and evil.


  • Linda Rivera

    Hundreds of thousands of Black Christian children and women have been taken for slaves by Sudan's Arab Muslims.

    Jihad Slavery in Sudan, with Dr Charles Jacobs

    May every slave be free one day!

  • Orpha Slepski

    Một Phát hiện bất ngờ. Lão Nhất viết tắt là TDN, Ông Dũng TT viết tắt là NTD, chỉ đảo vị trí cho nhau thôi, hay là….hehehhe. Biết đâu đấy, đất nước lại thay đổi, không biết có nhiều không, nhưng chắc chắn blog được coi là lề phải heheheh