We see and hear something about the horrific conditions in Darfur on an almost daily basis. So why do these reports become background noise to us, like the previous day’s NHL scores? Are we over-saturated?
Maybe its the distance. Those faraway events we can brush off as, “It’s not in our backyard so it doesn’t affect us”.
Maybe Africa is just a blur. Sudan, Somalia, Swaziland; who knows where they all are anyway?
Or maybe we figure we’ll just leave it to these folk$…
Can’t they just throw a few million that way and make everybody happy?
There are many reasons we choose to ignore the situation in Darfur. And all of them are wong. Genocide is happening on OUR WATCH. Until September 9th, 2004, when then Secretary of State Colin Powell declared it, the United States had never stamped “Genocide” on any conflict while it was still occurring!
Genocide, as in: The deliberate and systematic destruction of an ethnic, religious or national group.
This isn’t a retrospective. This isn’t a history lesson. This isn’t, “if we only knew sooner we could have done something”. This is “ethnic cleansing” on the scale of Rwanda, Yugoslavia and Biafra.
Are we going to let it get to the level of the Holocaust?
I saw the film, “Darfur Now”, tonight. I had read what some movie critics had to say about it. For the most part they thought it a valiant effort that falls short of truly inspiring and truly enlightening the viewer in the details, history and players.
I’d only agree in the sense that it can’t possibly disect all of the complex issues leading to this horrific slaughter. It seems to grow more complicated each day with multiple players and their policies, politics and passions….
The bureaucratic UN Security Council, the not-powerful-enough International Criminal Court, the sincere celebrities, the orphaned children, the vicious Janjaweed, the disengenuous Sudanese government, the flame-fanning Chadian government, the sanctioned policy of scorched earth and rape, the tireless World Food Program, a multitude of caring NGOs, the suppression of factual information.
All of it, good and evil, transacted with a currency of innocents. So much to loathe, so many to save.
Did you know that most, if not all, of the people that were driven out of their homes, villages, and lives were not poor desert dwellers, already subsisting on NGO charity and living amidst much suffering?
These were hard-working, tight-knit communities. They loved their homeland. It flourished with crops and other resources. They contributed positively to our planet. But now estimates show approximately two million are displaced, living in some 160 camps. Now, backed into these corners they are determined to fight or die. Sadly they are up against their own government that should be protecting them.
The movie I saw was not a feel-good story. There was no happy ending. It was more like an extended news feature than a feature film. It should be a must-see for everyone. I was disappointed that it is showing in only one small theater in the Phoenix metro area, and even more appalled that I shared the theater with only 5 other movie-goers.
Hopefully after it’s “pay-per-view” run it will be seen in high schools, churches and universities. The movie is as engaging as they come. It’s flaws are not enough to pan it. It’s perfection is simply that it’s here to see.
To paraphrase one of the main subjects of the film…We must help Darfur to resemble the rest of the world, or within 25 years the rest of the world will resemble Darfur.