Western powers, through the International Criminal Court (ICC), have succeeded in preventing a nascent peace initiative between Darfurian rebels and the central Sudanese government – a prelude to the eventual partition of the country.
On Friday, Khalil Ibrahim, chief of the primary Darfurian rebel group, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), which had earlier surprised the west by engaging in Qatari-brokered peace negotiations with the Sudanese central government, announced his group’s abandoning the peace process as a result of Sudan banning 13 international aid groups from Darfur. The recent expulsion of the 13 aid groups by Sudan came in response to the ICC issuing an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.
The ICC issued the arrest warrant against al-Bashir for war crimes in Darfur despite the fact that analysts had warned that the issuance of the arrest warrant would further endanger Darfurian refugees, and despite the fervent demands of African and Arab leaders to at least ‘temporarily’ suspend the issuance of the arrest warrant for one year in order to allow the nascent peace initiative an opportunity to produce results.
The scuttling of the Darfurian peace by the ICC is eerily similar to NATO’s scuttling of the Dayton Peace Accords that had negotiated an end to the post-Yugoslavia wars. In that instance, war crimes allegations against Serbian leaders ended the peace process, led to years of further war, and the eventual division of the former Yugoslavia along boundary lines chosen by the western powers.
Like the ICC with Sudan, an international criminal court—the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY)—was exploited by the west to prevent a peace contrary to NATO’s long-term military objectives. While with the former Yugoslavia those objectives were expansion into the Balkan region (Russia’s recognized sphere of influence), with Sudan it is the long-term military ambitions of the United States and its allies (NATO) in the Horn of Africa.
And just as the West divided Yugoslavia on their terms, it appears that they are intent on doing the same with Sudan. By stopping the peace through legal recourse, the west could use the continuation of violence as a pretext for intervention, enabling them to partition Sudan into two, if not more parts: a contained Muslim Arab north and the establishment of client states from the oil-rich Christian south, client states susceptible to western geo-strategic and military ambitions.
SUMMARY OF EVENTS: March 16 – 23, 2009
For more than a year, the U.S. Federal Reserve System has been increasingly acting as the world’s central bank, injecting hundreds of billions of dollars into foreign government treasuries in an effort to increase liquidity in those countries.
A purported top leader of Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel was in police custody Thursday, as authorities extended a cross-border crackdown on the gang that has included the arrest of 755 of its members in the U.S.
After comments made by a New Yorker journalist about Vice President Dick Cheney’s alleged involvement in an “executive assassination ring” abroad, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) called Monday for a formal congressional probe.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Pakistan’s president and opposition leader over the weekend U.S. aid could be at risk unless they defused a crisis over a top judge, U.S. officials said on Monday.
Barack Obama has ordered his treasury secretary to take all legal measures to stop insurance company American International Group (AIG) from paying millions of dollars in bonuses.
The U.S. Army has launched an inquiry into how and why active duty troops from Fort Rucker, Ala., came to be placed on the streets of Samson, Ala., during last week’s murder spree in that tiny South Alabama community. The use of the troops was a possible violation of federal law.
A leaked report by the International Committee of the Red Cross on treatment of detainees held at CIA “black sites” describes a variety of interrogation techniques which the report says “constituted torture.”
The Central Intelligence Agency disclosed Friday that it has 3,000 summaries, transcripts, reconstructions and memoranda relating to 92 interrogation videotapes that were destroyed by the agency, the American Civil Liberties Union revealed Friday evening.
A provision that would have restricted companies receiving federal government bailout aid from paying bonuses was quietly stripped from a bill last month.
The United States could intercept a North Korean missile launched toward U.S. territory with “high probability,” the top U.S. commander for the Pacific region said on Thursday.
A British former diplomat at the centre of events in the run-up to the Iraq war revealed yesterday that the government has a “paper trail” that could reveal new information about the legality of the invasion.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said on Tuesday that Russia would rearm its military and boost its nuclear forces despite the raging economic crisis because U.S.-led NATO is expanding toward its borders.
Iran has not yet received any S-300 air defense systems under a 2007 contract and the deal depends on the leadership in Moscow, a Russian military exports source said on Wednesday.
U.S. forces shot down an Iranian drone aircraft that ventured inside Iraq last month, U.S. and Iraqi officials said on Monday, an incident that highlights deep U.S.-Iranian tensions.
A Tehran businessman who allegedly helped run a major weapons-smuggling ring for Iran was charged Monday with multiple export-related crimes, two days after he was arrested in San Francisco after stepping off a flight from Europe.
A United Nations human rights investigator said on Thursday that Israel’s offensive against Hamas in densely populated Gaza appeared to constitute a war crime of the “greatest magnitude.”
An Israeli military college has printed damning soldiers’ accounts of the killing of civilians and vandalism during recent operations in Gaza.
Rabbis in the Israeli army told battlefield troops in January’s Gaza offensive they were fighting a “religious war” against gentiles, according to one army commander’s account published Friday.
A man who said he was a Chinese spy appealed Thursday to the United States to pressure Beijing, charging it was running a vast intelligence operation at home and abroad to suppress dissent.
South Korea warned Wednesday that it would respond with decisive action if Pyongyang again blocked access to a joint factory park in North Korea, but said it was too early to consider shutting the project down.
A wave of clashes in Afghanistan killed 70 people, including nearly 20 police Friday, officials said, as the country welcomed in its New Year amid alarm about a mounting Taliban-led insurgency.
President Marc Ravalomanana of Madagascar has vowed to fight to the death if rebel soldiers try to drive him from power in the Indian Ocean island.
Madagascar’s beleaguered President Marc Ravalomanana resigned and transferred power to the military on Tuesday after a months-long political crisis which left around 100 people dead.
Madagascar’s new president, Andry Rajoelina, celebrated and consolidated power on Wednesday after being appointed by the Indian Ocean island’s military in a move which drew international disapproval.
Madagascar faced international isolation Friday as the African Union suspended its membership and threatened sanctions, while the United States, France and Germany rallied behind the deposed president.
Manjit Singh is a contributor to Geopoliticalmonitor.com