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Israfil
 
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Quote Israfil Replybullet Posted: 24 May 2006 at 8:51am

Wa Salaam

I saw the photos and I still don't see this as a black on black incident as thise author notes the distinction here:

Who Are the Janjaweed?

A guide to the Sudanese militiamen.

By Brendan I. Koerner
Updated Tuesday, July 19, 2005, at 3:50 PM ET

Much of the violence in Sudan, which has created over 1 million refugees, has been attributed to militias known as the Janjaweed. Who are the Janjaweed?

The word, an Arabic colloquialism, means "a man with a gun on a horse." Janjaweed militiamen are primarily members of nomadic "Arab" tribes who've long been at odds with Darfur's settled "African" farmers, who are darker-skinned. (The labels Arab and African are rather misleading, given the complexity of the region's ethnic history. For simplicity's sake, Explainer will stick with these inelegant terms.) Until 2003, the conflicts were mostly over Darfur's scarce water and land resources—desertification has been a serious problem, so grazing areas and wells are at a premium. In fact, the term "Janjaweed" has for years been synonymous with bandit, as these horse- or camel-borne fighters were known to swoop in on non-Arab farms to steal cattle.

The Janjaweed started to become much more aggressive in 2003, after two non-Arab groups, the Sudan Liberation Army and the Justice and Equality Movement, took up arms against the Sudanese government, alleging mistreatment by the Arab regime in Khartoum. In response to the uprising, the Janjaweed militias began pillaging towns and villages inhabited by members of the African tribes from which the rebel armies draw their strength—the Zaghawa, Masalit, and Fur tribes. (This conflict is entirely separate from the 22-year-old civil war that has pitted the Muslim government against Christian and animist rebels in the country's southern region. The Janjaweed, who inhabit western Sudan, have nothing to do with that war.)  Here is the reference Sister Mishmish http://www.slate.com/id/2104210/

Also if you want more proof here is another article:

I interviewed refugees spread over hundreds of miles in eastern Chad. One woman, Hadiya Adam Ahmed, had crossed into Chad only two days before and was living under a tree near the remote border town of Bahai. Spread around her were her few remaining possessions: a blanket, some water jugs, a few bowls. She had left home without food and in two weeks of travel had depended on her fellow refugees for occasional handfuls of soaked sorghum for herself and her nine children. Hadiya had two bullet wounds in her right leg. She said she had been shot by a Sudanese soldier when she and a 17-year-old girl went to draw water from a well for themselves and others who were fleeing.

When asked why their villages were attacked and burned, most of the refugees said it was because of their black skin. They believe that the Khartoum-based government of President Omar Hassan Bashir wants to give their land to his Janjaweed allies who, like him, are Arab. Members of the Zaghawa, Masalit, Fur and other black African tribes will simply have to go. Like the Janjaweed, the Darfurians are Muslims. But culturally and ethnically they retain an African identity, of which they are proud. They also tend to be more settled than the nomadic Janjaweed. Racism undoubtedly does play a part in Bashir's support of the Janjaweed, as the blacks are seen as inferior here is your reference:http://www.ushmm.org/conscience/alert/darfur/stari ng_genocide_in_the_face/main.php?print=y

Sister the following is an excerpt by an Arab Scholar who notes the strained relations between black African and Arab please read the following as well as the response, its quite long so please take time in reading it:

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Arab Racism against Black Africans

In a response to charges of Arab racist attitudes towards Africans and their causes posted on the Professor Toyin Falola-moderated USA/Africa dialogue list, Professor Iliya Harik, a Lebanese who is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Indiana University, posted the following response, which I have edited for length and relevance without distorting its essence or context:


“I wish I could reassure everyone on the USA/Africa Dialogue forum that there are no racists in Arab countries any more than in any other part of the world. In general, antipathies in the Arab world tend to be cultural more than racial and I can say that racism is less in evidence there than in other countries of the world. I cannot agree….. that Arabs are anti-African on a
racial basis. They are not anti-African on any basis. For one thing, the largest ethnic component of the Arab world is African. Egypt, which is the most populous Arab country, is mixed of different races with a noticeably black African strain. I never noticed any markedly racial awareness or sense of difference associated with color there. The Sudan and Chad are mostly Arabic speaking, yet they are totally black African. Forget about what you hear and read in the media here that Arabs are killing Africans in Darfur. The people in Khartoum are no
less black African than those in Darfur, as many of you well know. It is just that the government in Khartoum is oppressive in a way that affects all the population, but is mostly felt now in an ugly way in Darfur because the Darfurians dared stand up and speak.”…. Let me add that the populations of Libya, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco are predominantly Arabic-speaking Berber, an African race. You will find that there is a mixture of eastern Arabs and black Africans too. Besides, Arabs and sub-Saharan Africans have since independence been together in the Non-Aligned Movement (that was once dominated by Tito, Nkrumah, Sukarno, Toure, Nasser, Keita and others) and its derivations.”

Professor Iliya Harik's piece is a commendable and bold attempt by an Arab scholar to openly discuss the sensitive issue of Africa-Arab relations. There is need for an open, unfettered dialogue between Africans and Arabs on the fractured state of relations between the two peoples.

Professor Harik's write-up is however trapped in the language of denial and obfuscation that has become a key defining feature of Arab responses to charges of racism against blacks. His response sounds eerily familiar; I have heard many such feeble defenses of Arab racism against blacks--defenses which merely deracialize the racism and/or emphasize the African roots of North African Arabs. One would normally excuse such defensive posturing were it not for its diversionary implications for understanding the history of Afro-Arab relations--a history which preceded Africa's relations with the West.

Professor Harik's rendering of the crisis in Darfur is offensive to blacks in that it is not only an intolerable simplification and trivialization of a racist genocide being systematically carried out by the Arabized government in Khartoum but also an inexplicable attempt to dilute the fact that race, even if it is mediated by culture, is at the heart of the crisis in Darfur.

Harik claims that Arabs are not "anti-African on any basis." But this is a straw man. You’ll be hard pressed to find black Africans who would make such a sweeping characterization. The allegation, which Harik does not directly respond to, is that there is a disturbing pattern of anti-African racism in many Arab countries, and that this attitude translates to a widespread Arab indifference to African struggles and sensibilities at a time when black African leaders like Mbeki and Obasanjo are bending over backwards to accommodate and protect the interests of Arab North African nations. Many people, in the interest of Afro-Arab political alliances and in order not to alienate our North African brothers, do not want this issue discussed publicly. But it should. This is why Harik must be commended for making his post, as disappointing as its contents are.

It is true that the population of most North African countries is mixed, but it is not a secret that in these countries there is a gradation of human valuation that corresponds directly to skin color, with the most privileged status being accorded those perceived rightly or wrongly as being of "pure" Arab stock while those with the darkest skin and curliest hair are located on the lowest rung of the social hierarchy.

In fact, Arab racism is deeply embedded in the history of North Africa itself and in the Arabic language. The Arab conquest of North Africa and the subsequent conversion and marginalization of the original Berbers and Moors of North Africa and parts of the Sahel were undergirded by a racist ethos. Till this day, the descendants of the dark-skinned Moors, the Berbers, and other non-Arab peoples are confined to the fringes of North African and North-west African society--in Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Mauritania, etc. The plight of the descendants of blacks (some of whose inhabitation of the Maghrib predated the Arab conquest of the 9th century and others who came to North Africa as slaves, captives, and free migrants) is worse than that of the Berbers. In Morocco, Tunisia, and throughout much of the Arab world, the only ticket to social visibility for blacks is soccer. Becoming a soccer star gives a black person access to coveted corridors of society and enables them to "marry up", racially speaking. This is a sad commentary on the state of race relations in any society. So, while Harik is right that a uniquely complex racial taxonomy is at work in much of the Arab world, this reality hardly detracts from the presence of an unspoken, normalized, and stealthily institutionalized racism which casts black people as the dregs of society who must prove themselves worthy of social recognition and privileges.

Arab racism is so deep it is inscribed in the fundamental semantic structure of the Arabic language. Till this day, the generic word or for a black person is the preface "abd," which translates as "slave," as in "Abd"-allah (slave or servant of God). This linguistic norm, among many other racially-charged ones, is an expressive constant which holds true for the entire Arab-speaking world regardless of dialect and orthography.

The case of the Sudan is perhaps the most vivid, poignant, and irrefutable example of Arab racism against black Africans. Let it be noted that until the Janjaweed and their racist and murderous Sudanese government backers gave a bad name to the art of hating, marginalizing, and murdering blacks, Arabs never quite saw the raiding of black villages for slaves and cattle, especially in Southern and Western Sudan, as a crime. The racism which propels these practices was increasingly authorized (and rationalized) by the discourse of the distinction, within Islam, between dar-al Islam (the abode of Islam) and dar-al-harb (the abode of war and unbelief). For many Arabs, the historical description of blacks as slaves and servile presences in the Arab world is hard to unlearn. Descriptive categories etched in received grand-narratives and myths can only be dismantled through a self-conscious (and self-critical) denunciation of prejudices constructed in a historical time and place as a function of power.

Arabs still generally regard the Darfur genocide as a public relations disaster rather than as a barbaric racist war against black people. We have yet to hear unequivocal condemnation of the Sudanese government's racist practices from Arab states. To do that would be hypocritical because some of these states themselves condone the racist practices of mavericks or practice anti-black racism in their own official policies. For instance, black African immigrants are routinely killed, maimed, and their houses and properties destroyed in Ghadaffi's Libya--- the same Ghadaffi who wants to be the leader of a politically united African super-state. Africans have become jaded about Ghadaffi's feeble condemnations of anti-black riots in his country and the ad-hoc and sterile apologies he offers after each tragic episode.

Professor Harik is only half right about the Arab-speaking Northern Sudanese. They are a dark-skinned people, although most of them are of mixed Arab and African ancestry. But these folks, by virtue of the aggressive Arab penetration of the Sudan (from the 13th century), a politically-implicated process of strategic intermarriages, and the adoption of the Arabic language and many aspects of Arab and Bedoiun culture, no longer perceive themselves as blacks, or African in any functional way. Indeed, they have long become Arabized. So deep is this new sense of the Northern Sudanese self that the region’s meta-narrative of origin and social evolution bears the imprint of an Arab antiquity more than it does that of African origins. This is the construction of racial and social memory par excellence. While Harik and I, as historically conscious people, may recognize them only as cultural and linguistic Arabs, the Northern Sudanese people and their ideologues and rulers have since, for good or ill, racialized their identity and their distinction from the people of Darfur (Western Sudan).

It is not for me to say if it is wrong or right to conflate Arabization with Arab racial consciousness, which is what the Northern Sudanese people seem to have done. What I do know is that in both its practical expression and its tragic consequences, the attitude of the Arabized Northern Sudanese people and their government towards Darfur is racist, and that the racist script unfolding in that part of Africa is sustained by an undying adherence to historical claims of Arab superiority over black Africans.

So, to conclude, I would say that Africa-Arab political solidarity and alliances have survived not because of the absence of Arab racism towards black Africans--as Harik seems to suggest--but in spite of its painful existence. Nkrumah, Toure, Mbeki, Obasanjo, and other black African leaders were/are aware of this racism but are/were motivated by avowedly higher ideals and goals in their interaction with North Africa and the entire Arab world. This pursuit of South-South alliance and solidarity has cost Africa dearly in human and material terms. Sub-Saharan Africa has acquiesced in the lubrication of this relationship with the blood of black Africans, the latest of such sacrifices being Darfur, where Sub-Saharan African leaders have, to the disgust of their countrymen, refrained from outright condemnation of the Darfur debacle as a racist genocide directed at black Africans. The crucial question is: what price has the Arab world paid and what sacrifices and concessions has it made in the service of this alliance? My personal opinion is that we are approaching a tipping point as Arab disrespect for black Africans and their interests heightens. The emotional blackmail of accusing black Africans of racism against Arab North Africa, which is often subtly deployed by our North African AU members to obscure the racist treatment of blacks in the Arab world, is no longer tenable.

Beyond the domain of group relations, there is a preponderance of individual anecdotal evidence to support the notion of a pattern of Arab racist attitudes towards blacks. A Nigerian friend of mine (a Muslim) who now lives in London was appalled at the racist treatment that he and other black Africans received when he traveled to Egypt a few years ago. The irony is that he was in Egypt as part of the Nigerian contingent to an “African” trade fair hosted by Egypt.

So instead of arguing that the populations of the Sudan and North Africans have remote African ancestry, which we all know they do, we should ask why and how people who are, by their own (convenient?) admission, of mixed stock and who themselves are victims of white racism, could become so socialized into an Arab racial consciousness as to begin to perceive blacks as their inferiors.

 

 

 



Edited by Israfil
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Israfil
 
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Quote Israfil Replybullet Posted: 24 May 2006 at 8:54am

Wa Salaam

According my serveral sources I've refuted any attempt here to trivialize the situation and people here noting it as "black on black genocide." As the author above has noted their hisorical difference and cultural difference this is not the case. This is, as I have thought it to be before an African-Arab incident carried out by the Sudanese government whom is composed of Arabs so please guys spare me the excuses I've refuted any claims here otherwise and if you need more references I will be more than happy to show you guys!

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Mishmish
 
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Quote Mishmish Replybullet Posted: 24 May 2006 at 11:42am
Originally posted by Israfil

Wa Salaam

According my serveral sources I've refuted any attempt here to trivialize the situation and people here noting it as "black on black genocide." As the author above has noted their hisorical difference and cultural difference this is not the case. This is, as I have thought it to be before an African-Arab incident carried out by the Sudanese government whom is composed of Arabs so please guys spare me the excuses I've refuted any claims here otherwise and if you need more references I will be more than happy to show you guys!

Walaikum Assalaam:

I have never tried to trivialize this situation. I was posting information on the genocide here when no-one else was.

But I see it as people killing people, as all genocides ultimately are, an evil that must be stopped. Not as a soap box to go off on why the Arabs hate black Africans.

I also see the Palestinian situation as a slow genocide.

I also view what happened in the DR Congo as genocide. The Congo was actually the first genocide of this century. Not as interesting to talk about I guess as there were no murdering Arabs involved.

Of course, we could talk about Somalia, where the secular war lords are fighting, with back from the U.S., and killing the Muslim government. The next possible genocide, but no Arabs....



Edited by Mishmish
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Israfil
 
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Quote Israfil Replybullet Posted: 24 May 2006 at 12:34pm
I'm not saying that this is an "why Arab hate black issue" I was merely commenting on what  YOU said. As the subject head appropriately states I was commenting on what it entails not to go off and speak upon issues not relating to it. The reality of this situation here is, this is what it is. It's called genocide but I call it ethnic cleansing....
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Quote Escobar Replybullet Posted: 09 July 2006 at 11:59pm

hmmm i dont know...

these so called arab millitia mean dont look black to me!!!

i think its alot of manipulation by the media as to the cause of the Darfur Crisis....

Firstly the region of Darfur is REVOLTED against the government of Sudan...not to justify whats happened there...

 

but anyway muslims should be smart...i dont think its arab Vs Blacks...

 

none the less something needs to be done!!!

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Quote Abeer23 Replybullet Posted: 11 July 2006 at 1:12am
Originally posted by Escobar

hmmm i dont know...

these so called arab millitia mean dont look black to me!!!

They're black trust me

none the less something needs to be done!!!

I agree! 

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Quote usama Replybullet Posted: 17 July 2006 at 7:20pm

Asalaam alaikum

The nature of the identities of the victims and perpetrators is less relevant than the solution and the method of its application.  The concept of genocide emerges from a distinctly Western international legal concept. This should not suggest that the solution should follow. 

Historically, people have grouped and formed societies based on families and tribes which modernized into nations.  One can add that within this, race has been identified and tied to these particular groupings.  Does it matter than people of different tribes see someone of a particular racial composition and attack him, or rape her, killing them, taking their belongings?   The act of attacking, raping, killing, usurping is what matters.  

Let there arise from amongst you a group inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right, forbidding what is wrong, and they are the successful ones. Al Imran:104
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