Darfur Q&A (#1)

Yesterday, I was asked to help field a bunch of questions about Darfur and genocide for Richmond.com. Not surprisingly, the questions ranged from background questions to the much tougher ideological questions.

My responses to the questions I received will be showing up on their site in the next day or two and I plan on answering another batch here at geistweg † genocide. In the meantime, I thought I’d share one of the questions here, with a less philosophical answer than I originally gave.

I’ve heard that a while back, people were saying Darfur would be the next Rwanda. So where’s the next Darfur?

The next Darfur will be in Iraq.

Regardless of whether the US pulls out of Iraq, as a new government takes hold and feuding factions attempt to express their disillusion for (or against) the new regime, violence will boil up until it erupts into an all out conflagration. Whichever faction winds up holding the reigns of power will then pick up the machete (or AK-47) and march against the opposing sectarian, religious, or ethnic groups.

What’s worse is that unlike similar conflicts in Africa, where refugees spill across borders in order to find safety, those who are fleeing the violence in Iraq will be boxed into the country, unable to escape to Iran or Turkey without meeting further violence. This will create a situation where rebellions will appear and disappear, shadowing the movements of a civil war, while the controlling faction(s) refine their execution by either legislation or force.

To further exacerbate the problem, humanitarian groups won’t be allowed to enter the country and sanctions will be all but untenable against a nation with immense oil reserves. The military, if they’re still in the country (as we don’t deploy troops to stop genocides), will find themselves unable to cope with such a conflict, for which they have no training, or will be unable to act on the violence because they have no mandate.

Either way, the next (big) genocide is bound for the Middle East.

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