Axver (axver) wrote,

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See them driving nails into souls on the tree of pain.

In a move that would be humorously absurd if it weren't so tragically serious, a United Nations report on 25 January stated that the humanitarian crisis in Darfur does not constitute genocide, but in a bizarre twist, asserted that some have acted "with genocidal intent". Despite this pathetic, miserable excuse of a report into what is obviously at least an attempt at genocide, the UN did choose to refer the case to the International Criminal Court to bring the perpetrators of crimes to justice. Argue all you want about this solution versus others - no-one yet has come forth with anything that will really stop the bloodshed, and this was at least constructive action with the support of much of the international community. Will it make significant inroads? Hard to know. But involving the ICC is a step in the right direction.

Of course, the Bush administration has now decided to show its true colours. Last year, I actually applauded the Bush administration when it chose to label the situation in Darfur as genocide before many others did. It was a bold and positive move. However, now that a potential solution is on the table, now that there is the opportunity to dispense some justice and stop some of the carnage, the Bush administration has chosen to follow its own crusade. Instead of embracing the opportunity to bring murderers, criminals, and terrorists to justice, it is actively resisting this move as part of its curious anti-ICC crusade. Bush himself speaks often and at length of capturing terrorists, bringing justice to criminals, and promoting freedom. Apparently, he doesn't give a shit about the people being terrorised and deprived freedom by the criminals of Darfur. All he cares about is his precious opposition to the ICC and making sure no state-sponsored criminals (Abu Ghraib torture?) can possibly be convicted in a court he can't control. Stopping the wanton killing and genocide in Darfur is no longer a concern to Bush, it seems. He's quite happy to let thousands more die and murderers go unpunished just because he doesn't like the ICC.

This is a disgrace of the highest order - claiming a situation is genocide and then actively working to block one of the first serious attempts to end the bloodshed - and it just gets better. Have you seen the Bush administration's proposed alternative? It's a joke. It's a farce about an African tribunal set up alongside that investigating war crimes in Rwanda. The Rwandan tribunal is already struggling to cope with its current workload, and there is absolutely no point in setting up a new tribunal when the ICC is ready to go and has both the funding and resources to carry out its activities more effectively and promptly than any new body Bush would like to cobble into existence. Despite the fact the ICC is the most capable body to carry out this proposed solution, Bush is so afraid that US nationals will be prosecuted (What, Bush wants others punished for committing crimes but not his own people? Since when was the US above the law or in any position to be judged separately from all the other nations?) that he is prepared to sacrifice Darfurian lives and let criminals continue to live in freedom for the sake of his paranoia.

There was so much promise when the US proclaimed the Darfurian crisis as genocide last year. Late last month, the blow of an insipid UN report was delivered, and now the Bush administration is quickly ignoring its own goals of promoting justice and freedom for the sake of its own interests. The West let Rwanda die and it's doing the same to Darfur.

So, Bush and Co., what is it? Hypocrisy in the name of self-interests, or dignity in the name of compassion?

From the brightest star comes the blackest hole
Would you deny for others what you demand for yourself?
Where you live should not decide
Whether you live or whether you die
You speak of signs and wonders
But I need something other
I'd believe if I was able
But I'm waiting on the crumbs from your table

- U2, Crumbs From Your Table

(If you haven't done so already, go join darfur_crisis now. There's no reason not to.)
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