Israel Whitewashes Genocidal Sudanese Regime
Israel has been lobbying U.S. and EU states to soften their opposition to Sudan, whose leadership has engaged in genocide in Darfur and pursued a violent campaign to suppress a secessionist movement in South Sudan, which itself has been riven by civil war after gaining independence. Remember that Sudan’s dictator, Omar al Bashir, is wanted by the ICC for charges of war crimes and genocide. That he was an early supporter of, and provider of refuge for Osama bin Laden before he found refuge in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
For nearly a decade, Israel has frequently but covertly attacked Sudan, which it claimed acted as a way station for Iranian arms shipments to Gaza on behalf of Hamas. Both ships and land-based arms convoys were attacked by the IAF, which even launched a massive attack on a supposed Iranian arms depot, causing massive explosions in Khartoum. Israel has seen Sudan as a puppet of Iran and supporter of Palestinian terror for as long as anyone can remember.
But now all appears forgiven. This is the fruit of the budding bromance between Bibi Netanyahu and the House of Saud. Due to their mutual enmity toward Iran, Israel has parlayed this into a budding love affair with much of the Sunni world including Egypt, the Saudis and the Gulf States.
It appears that as far as al Bashir is concerned Iran couldn’t better the Saudi offer. So the latter, in effect, flipped him. The Saudis don’t make many friends naturally. Not too many even in the Muslim world are attracted to Wahabism, repression of women, and a largely hostile attitude toward much of the outside world. But money talks and there’s lots of it flowing out of Saudi oil wells. So the Saudis showered rials on al Bashir, who is facing economic catastrophe due to a set of economic sanctions against his country.
Bashir became a cheerleader for the Saudi massacre of Shia Houthis in Yemen. His country evicted Iranians from Sudan, even cutting off diplomatic relations. It welcomed the Saudis to take their place.
There is a new compact between Israel and the Saudis. Not many in the west (including the U.S. and Europe) have much favorable to say about Saudi Arabia. It has little influence outside of Riyadh. But Israel, despite its pariah status, does have the ear of policymakers, especially in the U.S. So Israel agreed to run interference on behalf of Sudan.
This seems to have borne some fruit. Secretary of State John Kerry hasn’t seemed to have met a genocidaire he can’t break bread with. You’ve seen that vile photograph of him dining in elegant luxury with Bashar al Assad in the years before the civil war. Now Kerry is meeting with Sudanese diplomats seeking a way to remove U.S. sanctions against their country. How short our memory is when we need someone to do our dirty work for us. Or to reward someone who’s betrayed a former ally we detest (Iran).
How little it surprises me that Israel champions the genocidaires of the world: it arms Congolese rebels who are responsible for killing 4-million there. It champions Paul Kagame, the Rwandan dictator who keeps the fuse well-lit in that decades-old war. Israel also supports the “moderate” Syrian Islamist rebels, al-Nusra, which are affiliated with al Qaeda.
Barak Ravid’s Haaretz story notes an Israeli pivot to Africa in recent years. But he neglects to note that this isn’t a pivot to democratic Africa (Nigeria, South Africa, Tunisia). But rather a pivot to the worst dictators and killers known to that continent. The kind of scum who no decent nation or human being would be caught dead with. And those scum whom the Israeli government won’t officially deal with, are serviced gladly by Israeli military contractors who earn billions in consulting fees by providing security, weapons, and computer systems which permit them to rig elections (Zimbabwe) and maintain control of the population.
The next thing you know, there will be African refugees expelled from Israel and dumped in Kharthoum as they currently are in Uganda and other states whose acquiescence has been bought by Israeli arms and trade deals.
So will we anoint al Bashir with oil and christen him a new, redeemed man? Will we give him a free pass at the ICC? God, how the thought disgusts me.
24 thoughts on “Israel Whitewashes Genocidal Sudanese Regime – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم”
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The king who is situated anywhere immediately on the circumference of the conqueror’s territory is termed the enemy.
The king who is likewise situated close to the enemy, but separated from the conqueror only by the enemy, is termed the friend (of the conqueror).
— Kautilya, Arthasastra
The enemy of my enemy is my friend.
And diplomacy and foreign affairs are conducted according to interests – not ideals. Ideals usually are there for pretexts, not for substance.
There were no saints in the Yugoslav wars. Almost all sides engaged in ruthless behavior. Western intervention, however, was focuses against the anti-Western regimes.
I love your Israeli sense of morality. So telling…
“I love your Israeli sense of morality ”
Elizabeth. Why do they call it a ‘Dutch Oven’?
@Trippin’ Jon: comments are meant to be substative. Snark & attempts at wit are not.
I have often wondered, but now I know:
I have no idea though, what your comment was about.
@Elisabeth: See, hasbara brigade has its uses, small though they may be!
From my sickbed:
As far as Israel’s image in Holland is concerned I have got a tale to tell. I might have told it before. Around the time of the Six Day War the Dutch population was fanatically pro-Israel. It was then regarded as the closest thing to a ‘Republic of Saints’. One illustration:
Renate Rubinstein relates in her book “Jood in Egypte, Goi in Israel”, how she at that time attended a “teach-in” led by Heldring, then deputy editor of the Dutch quality paper NRC. A participant came up with a question about the alleged use of napalm by Israel. Heldring (later a quite dominant political commentator) answered approximately as follows (I quote by heart). Somebody raised a question about napalm. I am glad he did. It shows that the Israelis are no angels. They are therefore all the dearer to us.
As to the present mood in Holland: Elisabeth is much better placed to answer that question. I haven’t lived there for a very long time.
We have perhaps one clue to present day feelings about Israel in Dutch society in the open letter addressed to Netanyahu by the spokesman for foreign affairs of the Dutch labor party, Michiel Servaes. I will translate here a section of it:
“Let us talk therefore about how it came about that support for the policy of Israel has decreased so strongly in the Netherlands. Perhaps you are able to not just point here to others and external circumstances but to look at your own responsibility. It is after all only you and your government who can stop violating international law and show genuine leadership by recognising the Palestinian state. It is not too late yet but with the sad milestone of fifty year occupation coming up the possibilities are quickly dwindling. How quickly understanding for the Israeli approach has drained away in Dutch politics became clear shortly before this summer. A parliamentary majority supported for the first time a motion that states in plain words that cooperation with Israel will be suspended if your government continues its illegal policy and keeps rejecting peace initiatives. A broad majority in Dutch society is of exactly the same opinion.”
After the publication of this letter, which was read by Netanyahu, Servaes and a few others had a long conversation with Netanyahu. He twittered afterward that it was disappointing. The present situation was the fault of all and sundry except him. Absolutely no self reflection judged Servaes.
Arie, thank you for translating the piece by Servaes. I find it hard to say what the mood is like, as it seems to me that attention shifts here and there. It is all ‘refugees’ one moment, and then on to all kinds of silly hypes. I do not remember this from when I was younger, but attention (in the media at least) shifts rapidly from one hotly debated topic to another all the time.
In general, people do not believe Israel wants peace, a two state solution, or ending the occupation, but most people do not care much either. People who believe and support Israeli standpoints nowadays are limited groups: sentimental Christian fundamentalists, chauvinist Jews, and right wing extremists. (Apart from the right wing extremists, they are all groups that are dwindling in size…)
I hope you recover soon Arie!
[Comment deleted: comments must be substantive and offer an argument. Snark is not substantive nor an argument.]
Oh. And by the way.
Today, there is no mass killings going on in the Sudan. The killings largely came to an end when (Arab) Northern Sudan let go of southern (African) Sudan, letting it form it’s own country, Southern Sudan, which is currently embroiled in it’s own civil war.
But why let facts stand in the way of a good story.
@Trippin’Jon: False. One of the conditions for U.S. ending sanctions is that ongoing attacks & Genocide in Darfur cease. If they had ceased already there would be no reason for the U.S. to demand that they cease.
[Comment deleted. Iranophobia and anti-Semitism are both comment rule violations.]
What else is new in the world?
The enemy of my enemy is my friend.
And since you consider the Israelis to be on a genocidal path this should seem normal for you.
It does indeed seem normal to me. That’s how highly I esteem Israel nowadays.
Did you esteem Israel higher before?
It wasn’t always this bad in Israel, but it has been for a long time now.
So much rhetorics but the fact is US is involved and so is EU. http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article58532
Funny Haaretz post-zionist article is being blown so more here
The problem with US sanctions against Sudan is that a government sponsored genocide in Darfur most likely never occurred. There was definitely a civil war that broke out in that province that began as a dispute between farmers and herders. This was aggravated by some of the Darfurian members of the Khartoum government resigning and turning the civil war into a war of independence. Bashir responded with his military. Most of the deaths that did occur during that insurrection was the result of famine (which is what led to farmer-herder dispute in the first place.). The US concocted the genocide charge because Bashir’s government was hostile to the US.
Richard you should show a little more skepticism for stories from the NY Times.
Let me see if I got this.
Your country, the United States, has been in a permanent war for 15 years, and is now bombing six countries in North Africa and the Middle East. http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/a-reminder-of-the-permanent-wars-dozens-of-us-airstrikes-in-six-countries/ar-AAiFleC?li=BBnb7Kz
Yet if Israel tries to make peace with her enemies, she’s vilified by you.
How very strange.
@ Trippin’ Jon: Whenever anyone says:
You know they don’t “got” this or anything else.
The U.S. is fighting wars with the Arab & Muslim world, something Israel has been doing for far longer than the U.S. has. Israel is currently bombing or has bombed six countries in the Arab world as well. Or have you forgotten that?
Israel is trying to make peace by hooking up with Saudi Arabia against Iran? How do you figure? THis is a peace alliance in which all the region is going to get together and sing Kumbaya? Are you out of your mind???
For those interested this gives the story ofthe charge of genocide in Darfur against the Bashir government:
Two interesting points: 1) the charge originated in the US while the African Union and the UN refused to accept it and 2) it was the holocaust museum in the US made the original claim. It seems very unlikely they would have done that without approval from Israel. So it looks like Israel took the lead on this charge and is now attempting to retract it.
“..it was the holocaust museum in the US made the original claim. It seems very unlikely they would have done that without approval from Israel”
What makes you say that the State of Israel had anything to do with Holocaust Museum’s decision to call the Darfur violence ‘genocide’.
@ Trippin’ Jon: I’ll make you a deal: find which Holocaust Museum staff person is responsible for filing the complaint against Sudan. Contact that individual and ask them what the Museum plans to do to support or promote this campaign from now on (Since Israel announced it was bringing Sudan in from the cold). If you get no answer or they tell you they’re not doing anything, you have your answer.