Monday, June 20, 2011

Genocide Watch - Genocide and Mass Atrocity Warning: Syria

Originally posted (June 7, 2011) by Dr. Gregory Stanton - on his website Genocide Watch

– Since the beginning of March, the stability of the Syrian Arab Republic has degenerated at an alarming rate. Genocide Watch warns that there is an imminent threat of genocidal massacres and mass atrocities against protesters committed by Alawite troops and police loyal to the Assad government.

In the current climate of the Middle East – popularly referred to as the Arab Spring – Syrians have joined the thousands of citizens who have demanded democratic change in their repressive governments. Protests were sparked in March by the detention and torture of 15 boys who reportedly were writing anti- regime slogans on walls. On March 18th after Friday prayers, thousands of protesters marched in Daraa calling for the release of the boys and greater political freedom. The mukhabarat security force opened fire on the peaceful protesters, killing at least four people. In the following months protests erupted in many other cities. Over 1000 protesters have been killed.

Syria has attempted to close its borders to the foreign press, but cell phone images and reports have gotten through, though many cell phones have been seized. The government shut down the internet, but reports have reached the outside world. Closing of borders is one of the surest early warning signs of impending genocide and crimes against humanity. Among the other early warning signs of genocide in the top six factors to watch are:

· Prior unpunished genocidal massacres, such as those perpetrated by Assad’s father in Hama in the 1980’s;

· Rule by a minority sect – the Alawite sect that supports Assad;

· An exclusionary ideology by the Alawite rulers who believe they rule by right;

· Systematic human rights violations such as torture and rape;

· Fear by the ruling elite that any compromise will mean total loss of their power.

Current reports from the city of Jisr al-Shughour state that civilians are fleeing because the Assad regime is preparing for a mass attack on that city’s civilian population. The government attack is in retaliation for the deaths of up to 250 military/security personnel.

Genocide Watch warns that today could be the tipping point into mass murder. From the past history of violence against dissenters in Syria it is evident that this is a high risk situation for the residents in targeted cities.

France is calling upon the UN Security Council to draft a resolution warning Syria of grave consequences if it commits Crimes Against Humanity. The U.S. should support a UN Resolution.

About GENOCIDE WATCH: Excerpts from Genocide Watch's website:

Genocide Watch exists to predict, prevent, stop, and punish genocide and other forms of mass murder. We seek to raise awareness and influence public policy concerning potential and actual genocide. Our purpose is to build an international movement to prevent and stop genocide.

We address genocide as it is defined in the Genocide Convention: "the intentional destruction, in whole or in part, of a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such." We also address political mass murder, ethnic cleansing, and other genocide-like crimes.

Genocide Watch is the Coordinating organization of The International Alliance to End Genocide (IAEG), an international coalition of organizations. The IAEG aims to educate the general public and policy makers about the causes, processes, and warning signs of genocide; to create the institutions and political will to prevent and stop genocide; and to bring perpetrators of genocide to justice.

Copyright © Dr. Gregory Stanton

Report - Genocide Watch for the Nuba Mountains in Sudan

Originally posted (June 10, 2011) by Genocide Scholar Dr. Gregory Stanton - on his website "Genocide Watch"

Due to confirmed reports of a military buildup and atrocities by the Sudanese Army in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan, Genocide Watch is issuing a Genocide Watch for the area. The people of the Nuba Mountains in South Kordafan again face genocide by the Government of Sudan.

Many people of the Nuba Mountains fought on the side of the southern Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Army (SPLA) during the twenty-year civil war. Now that South Sudan has voted for independence, they are afraid of massive retaliation by the northern government. They are stranded in “northern” Sudan but are ethnically considered “black Africans,” like the people of the south, by the Arab government in Khartoum.

As Alex de Waal, an expert on Sudan, wrote in 2006, “The counterinsurgency fought by the Government of Sudan against the rebels of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) in the Nuba Mountains of central Sudan during the early 1990’s was not only exceptionally violent, but also aimed at depopulating the area of civilians. Not only did the government aim to defeat the SPLA forces but they also intended a wholesale transformation of Nuba society in such a way that its prior identity was destroyed. The campaign was genocidal in intent and at one point, appeared to be on the brink of success….The conflict took on a distinct racial character. The war was notable for attacks on civilian targets with forced displacement, rape and killing.” (

The people of the Nuba Mountains fear that they will again be dispossessed of their land and herded into displaced persons camps as they were in the 1990’s. They fear re-imposition of Sharia law by President al Bashir. In violation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, the Sudanese Army invaded the oil-rich Abyei area of South Kordofan in May, driving out its Dinka inhabitants, in order to ensure northern victory when Abyei votes on whether to join Sudan or South Sudan. al-Bashir said Abyei belongs to Sudan.

In May elections, Abdel Aziz al Hila, a popular former commander of the SPLA was expected to win the election for Governor of South Kordafan. Instead Ahmed Haroun, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for atrocities perpetrated in Darfur, was declared the winner by Khartoum. The ICC has charged Haroun with 20 counts of crimes against humanity, including persecution, rape and torture, and 22 counts of war crimes, including attacks against the civilian population, destruction of property and outrage upon personal dignity. Haroun was reportedly nearly arrested by SPLA troops this week, but escaped and was immediately evacuated to Khartoum.

Two and a half weeks ago, Sudanese President Omar al Bashir was in Kadugli, the capital of South Kordafan, where he reportedly announced, “If the people here [meaning those in the Nuba Mountains] refuse to honor the results of the [gubernatorial] election, then we will force them back into the mountains and prevent them from having food just as we did before.” Intentional deprivation of food is an act of genocide under Article 2(c) of the Genocide Convention. Open threats such as al-Bashir’s cannot be ignored. Al-Bashir is a serial genocidist with an arrest warrant for genocide in Darfur from the ICC.

Genocide Watch has received confirmed reports of a dramatic increase in the number of heavily armed Government of Sudan troops massing in the Nuba Mountains. According to sources on the ground, over the past three days fighting between government troops and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army have exploded in the Nuba Mountains, at Umm Durein, Toladi, Angaruthu, and Kadugli. An unnamed source reported, “Abdul Aziz al-Hila is back fully in military uniform.” Another reliable source reported over satellite phone, “If Aziz goes down, the entire Nuba Mountains will erupt.”

The open announcement of genocidal intent by al Bashir and the militarization of the Nuba Mountain area are clear early warning signs of imminent genocide and mass atrocities. We urge diplomats at the United Nations and in the African Union to undertake immediate diplomatic action to warn al-Bashir that another genocide in Sudan will not be tolerated.

In Sudan, genocide anew?

by Eric Reeves

Originally posted on Washington Post, June 18th

We are, once again, on the verge of genocidal counterinsurgency in Sudan. History must not be allowed to repeat itself.

By early 2004, it was clear that the ideologically Arabist and Islamist regime in Khartoum was waging a genocidal counterinsurgency war throughout the western region of Darfur. Yet months passed before a broad range of human rights, government and academic voices said as much, even as the consequences of silence and inaction were conspicuous. In February 2004 I argued on this page that a “credible peace forum must be rapidly created. Immediate plans for humanitarian intervention should begin. The alternative is to allow tens of thousands of civilians to die in the weeks and months ahead in what will be continuing genocidal destruction.”

This prediction was borne out in the months that followed, the most destructive phase of the Darfur genocide, in which African tribal groups were mercilessly targeted by soldiers and militias. Sadly, mortality from war-related causes continues to mount. But now we are debating how many hundreds, not tens, of thousands have perished from war-related causes in Darfur.

Today, another episode of genocidal counterinsurgency is beginning in another part of Sudan. Absent a vigorous international response, there will almost certainly be a reprise of ethnically targeted human destruction in the middle of the country, specifically within the Nuba Mountains region of South Kordofan, which has a rich mixture of African inhabitants.

Sudan was ravaged by a north-south civil war from 1983 to 2005; the war nominally ended with the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, signed by Khartoum and the southern Sudan People’s Liberation Movement. But key terms of the agreement were never fulfilled, among them “popular consultations” that were to give the people of South Kordofan a voice in how they were governed. The armed wing of the liberation movement was especially strong in the Nuba Mountains, and Khartoum saw a threat that it was determined to eliminate.

On June 5 a military campaign began in South Kordofan. It has rapidly escalated in ferocity, and disturbing accounts have emerged of the African people of the Nuba being rounded up in house searches and road checkpoints, and subjected to indiscriminate aerial bombardment. All signs point to a new genocide.

It will be similar to the 1990s, when Khartoum declared a jihad against the peoples of the Nuba (who practice a range of religions, including Islam). Because the Nuba Mountains are not geographically contiguous with South Sudan (with which the area is militarily, politically and culturally allied), its people were largely left to fend for themselves.

Then, the regime imposed a total blockade of humanitarian assistance from the south. Many starving Nuba were forced into “peace camps,” where receiving food was conditional upon conversion to Islam. Some who refused were tortured or mutilated. Khartoum’s decade-long campaign killed and displaced hundreds of thousands.

Today, reports from the ground and wire services detail heavy fighting underway in Kadugli, the capital of South Kordofan, and surrounding areas. There are multiple reports (including photos) of military aircraft such as MiG-29s attacking deep in the mountains; on Wednesday these attacks destroyed the key runway at Kauda, critical for transporting humanitarian supplies into the Nuba, a disturbing sign of how Khartoum will carry out the genocide.

Nearly all humanitarian operations in the region have ceased, as Khartoum denies the United Nations air clearances; workers for the U.N. Mission in Sudan have been evacuated or confined to their base. On June 8 that base was raided by Khartoum’s military intelligence, and the United Nations was effectively disabled.

Khartoum’s actions come just days after regime forces seized Abyei, whose indigenous residents are overwhelmingly Dinka Ngok and see themselves as part of the south. The 2005 peace agreement promised them a referendum for self-determination, which Khartoum has aborted. Last month the regime launched a military attack to seize Abyei; the U.N. High Commission for Refugees reports that some 113,000 civilians have fled south — virtually the entire Ngok population. They are living in extremely difficult conditions, and many will die. A U.N. report found that Khartoum’s actions were “tantamount to ethnic cleansing,” a decisive phrase that senior U.N. officials excised from later versions of the text.

The U.N. Security Council demanded on June 3 that Khartoum immediately withdraw its forces from Abyei, but the regime scoffed — as it has at previous council demands, including those bearing on Darfur. This is bad news for the people of Abyei and for the prospects of a just and peaceful separation of Sudan’s north and south, which is scheduled for July 9. For the Nuba people, such fecklessness spells catastrophe.

Too often with Sudan, empty demands and threats signal to the regime that the world is not serious about halting atrocities. Either the international community gets serious about preventing further violence in Abyei and the adjacent region of South Kordofan, or we will again see “tens of thousands of civilians . . . die in the weeks and months ahead in what will be continuing genocidal destruction.”


Eric Reeves is Professor of English Language and Literature at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts. He has spent the past twelve years working full-time as a Sudan researcher and analyst, publishing extensively both in the US and internationally. He has testified several times before the Congress, has lectured widely in academic settings, and has served as a consultant to a number of human rights and humanitarian organizations operating in Sudan. Working independently, he has written on all aspects of Sudan's recent history. His book about Darfur (A Long Day's Dying: Critical Moments in the Darfur Genocide) was published in May 2007. (Read critical praise for A Long Day's Dying.)

He is also at work on a longer-range project surveying the international response to ongoing war and human destruction over the past 25 years ("Sudan – Suffering a Long Way Off"). The project will survey not only the history of Darfur, and the world's failure to halt the first genocide of the 21st century, but the substitution — for over two decades — of humanitarian aid for diplomatic resolve to end conflict in South Sudan and the transitional areas along the North/South border.


Ramping Up to Another Jihad Genocide in The Sudan?

by: Andrew Bostom

Originally Posted by Andrew Bostom on June 20, 2011, at:

Churchill understood the jihad depredations of Sudan’s Arab Muslims

There is a refreshingly honest—and alarming—piece by Alan Boswell [1] writing for Time on the accumulating evidence that yet another jihad genocide may be under way in The Sudan—Arab Muslim mass murderers preying upon indigenous non-Arab, primarily Christian blacks—this time in the Nuba Mountains.

Sudan’s history is strewn with cases of mass atrocities against non-Arabs in the south and north, with Darfur being only the latest; reports in recent weeks from Sudan’s South Kordofan state suggest history could be repeating itself yet again. There, members of a minority, opposition-aligned African ethnic group are being slaughtered “like animals,”in the words of one alarming church statement. The diverse tribes live in a rugged land of mud-hut villages called the Nuba Mountains. So far, besides an aerial-bombardment campaign against the Nuba areas, the targeted killings against them have been mostly confined to the major towns, as tens of thousands flee into the hills where, for now, they are mostly safe.

However, Boswell reports [1] that internal U.N. documents obtained by TIME,

…show that refuge might soon come under attack too. Hundreds of military vehicles have streamed into South Kordofan’s capital Kadugli, the epicenter of the bloodbath, according to U.N. reports. Preparations for a major ground offensive were becoming increasingly clear, the U.N. Kadugli base warned in a June 15 confidential dispatch, which urgently called for political intervention to ward off the crisis.

Ever since the one-sided carnage began [1] two weeks ago, the Arab Muslim-dominated Sudanese government in Khartoum under jihadist and war criminal Omar al-Bashir,

…has done its best to isolate the already remote region to keep information from flowing out and humanitarian assistance from flowing in. But aid workers working in the affected area who recently escaped to Juba, capital of South Sudan – set to declare formal independence in July under a cloud of conflict – tell TIME of a land under a spell of impending doom. “You can see it in all their eyes. They are scared. They see this as a fight for survival,” said one in an interview in Juba. The children and women pouring in from Kadugli and other towns wear signs of deep trauma and hunger, say aid workers, and tell stories of Arab militias killing anyone who is black. “The government thinks that all black people are opposition supporters, and are therefore targets even if they are children or old grannies,” explained one aid worker who had just left the area. One visibly disturbed Nuba aid worker who had fled with his family from Kadugli said the pro-government forces were acting as if under an order to clear out the whole Nuba population. …The aid workers interviewed predicted that if the ground offensive commences, “absolute carnage,” in the words of one, could ensue. None of the aid workers wished for their names or organizations to be mentioned for security reasons.

These accounts are consistent with official statements from church and domestic and international advocacy groups, based on reports they are gathering from the ground. Conservative death toll estimates as of now suggest that the number is at least in the “hundreds,” with a minimum of 60,000 displaced.

The feckless UN peacekeeping presence confined to its Kadugli base, includes Egyptian peacekeepers, viewed as very sympathetic toward the Arab Khartoum government, and accused by many Nuba of being complicit in targeted assassinations within the U.N. camp sheltering displaced refugees.

President Obama’s call “to end the fighting”—regardless of its immoral equivalence—has had no discernible impact on the ground. Although U.S. special envoy to Sudan, Princeton Lyman, told Time that the U.S. was attempting to facilitate a cease-fire, it remained unclear whether the government in Khartoum was even willing to negotiate.

Jihad depredations against the Nuba are a recurring phenomenon in Sudan’s history. Winston Churchill’s accounts from The River War as a young British soldier fighting in the Sudan at the end of the 19th century, described the chronic situation, in its larger context, as follows:

Thus the situation in the Sudan for several centuries may be summed up as follows: The dominant race of Arab invaders was increasingly spreading its blood, religion, customs, and language among the black aboriginal population, and at the same time it harried and enslaved them. The warlike Arab tribes fought and brawled among themselves in ceaseless feud and strife. The negroes trembled in apprehension of capture, or rose locally against their oppressors.

Churchill also includes a specific description of a jihad campaign against the Nuba under Emir Abu Anga’s “Jehadia,”

…as his soldiers were called because they had joined the Jehad or Holy War, armed with Remington rifles

Known for their weaponry, cruelty, and predatory nature, the Jehadia

…were dispatched under their general to Kordofan, where they increased their reputation by a series of bloody fights with the Nubas, an aboriginal mountain people who cared for nothing but their independence.

During the 1990s, some 500,000 Nuba were killed when the Arab Muslim Khartoum government declared jihad against them.

Alan Boswell concludes [1] his report by noting that when he visited the Nuba Mountains in April,

I found a people terrified that war would return but resigned to their frightful and uncertain future. Given their history and the history of their government, they seem to have good reasons to fear.

The Nuba’s chronic plight raises yet again this overarching moral and existential question for our era of resurgent global jihad posed in 1999 by the late southern Sudanese leader John Garang:

Is the call for jihad against a particular people a religious right of those calling for it, or is it a human rights violation against the people upon whom jihad is declared and waged?


Copyright © Dr. Andrew Bostom

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Is Omar Hassan al-Bashir Up to Genocide Again?

June 18, 2011, 4:34 PM
Source: The New York Times - Nicholas Kristoff’s Blog

Reposted with permission of author - Genocide Scholar Samuel Totten

Is Omar Hassan al-Bashir Up to Genocide Again?


Omar Hassan al-Bashir, the president of Sudan, is a genocide extraordinaire. If medals were given out for such activity, he’d be going for the gold.

In the early to mid 1990s, under Bashir’s leadership, the Government of Sudan (GoS) perpetrated genocidal actions in the Nuba Mountains, largely by starving people to death and preventing humanitarian aid from reaching the victims. Not a decade later, Bashir and his henchmen committed genocide in Darfur, carrying out a scorched earth policy that resulted in an estimated 400,000 plus deaths, over two million internally displaced persons, and another 275,000 plus refugees. More recently, just over the past two weeks, Bashir’s soldiers and militia carried out at least crimes against humanity, if not genocidal actions, in the Nuba Mountains.

Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity for the atrocities perpetrated in Darfur, is purportedly furious that the people of South Kordafan refuse to acknowledge the recent election of Ahmed Haroun as governor. Not only do many in the state (which borders the new nation of South Sudan) perceive the election as having been rigged, and thus stolen from the highly popular Abdul Aziz, a former commander of the Sudan Peoples Army, but they are outraged that a man wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on over 40 charges of crimes against humanity and war crimes for atrocities perpetrated in Darfur is still free and allowed to run for office.

There are also rumors afloat that Bashir is intent on firming up his hold on all regions of Sudan, as he continues to be miffed that southern Sudan, which Khartoum battled for some twenty years in an internecine war that sucked some two million dead into its maw, seceded from the north. Next month, South Sudan formally becomes an independent state.

Finally, some speculate that Bashir is wrangling to obtain a bit more land along the amorphous border of Sudan and South Sudan. In doing so, it is said that he wishes to strengthen his hand in the ongoing negotiations between the north and the south over oil-rich Abyei.

As is the case in most violent conflicts across the globe, civilians (men, women, children babies, elderly) suffer most grievously. This is particularly true in Sudan because of Bashir’s propensity for targeting an entire population of a region and not just those engaged in fighting his troops. A colleague in the Nuba Mountains related the following examples to me over satellite phone the past week:

* Tens of thousands are on the run, seeking sanctuary anywhere they can find it, following bombings and ground attacks by Sudan Armed Forces (SAF).

* At least two fresh mass graves were discovered late last week; approximately 1,000 dead bodies filled the one in Kadugli, the capital of South Kordafan

* In Kadugli, SAF soldiers and a ragtag assortment of others went door-to-door in search of SPLM/A members and supporters, executing them on the spot.

* In Dilling, another town in South Kordafan, SAF soldiers and militia hunted down SPLM/A members and supporters and sliced their throats, leaving them to perish in puddles of their own blood

* In Kaduguli, soldiers with the United Nations Mission in Sudan allegedly raped girls and women as the latter begged to be allowed into the UN compound as they feared certain death at the hands of the SAF and assorted militia

In conversations with two individuals who have close ties in the Nuba Mountains I was told the following:

• “Many, particularly civilians, are being killed randomly. PDF [Popular Defense Forces] control the roads. All Nuba are wanted, no investigation, only kill (sic) on the spot. People who are black black [dark black] are sought out and killed. Dead bodies are along the road. PDF given long hand on these matters. Please get this out to as many people as possible” – a Nuba Mountains man currently in Kenya, whose family continues to reside in the Nuba Mountains

* “MIGs and Antonov bombers have made 24 hits. They’ve totally destroyed the airstrip, thus no planes will be able to bring in food or water or airlift out any expats with humanitarians organizations or any of the injured. All roads are blocked by the SAF. Now we hear that the bombing was in preparation for a ground attack; if so, many, many more will be killed. Please help us. Ask [your leaders] to establish a no fly zone” — a phone call from inside the Nuba Mountains

A major worry of human rights activists and genocide scholars is that the international community’s attention is focused elsewhere, and understandably: the ongoing tension between Sudan and South Sudan; the Arab Spring (the uprisings in Libya, Syria, Yemen, and the ongoing tension in Egypt); and, of course, Iraq and Afghanistan. Not to mention Pakistan, the perdurable Israeli/Palestinian conflict, and the antics and threats of Iran and North Korea.

Admirably, U.S. Representative Frank Wolf (VA) fired off a letter to President Obama on Saturday, June 12th, 2011 in which he pleaded, “I am deeply concerned by the rapidly deteriorating situation in Sudan, especially in Abyei and South Kordafan.” Wolf specifically asked Obama to dispatch former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, in partnership with Special Envoy Princeton Lyman, to Khartoum to attempt to “secure a peaceful resolution of the crisis.” Continuing, Wolf warned Obama that “I am afraid Sudan could plunge into another major war if a peaceful resolution is not soon found.”

On Thursday, June 15, five scholars (Samuel Totten, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; Eric Reeves, Smith College; Greg Stanton, George Mason University; John Weiss, Cornell University; Bruce Hoffman, Georgetown University; and Ervin Staub, University of Massachusetts, Amherst) sent a letter to Representative Wolf commending him for his concern and actions, presented a list of recommendations that the U.S. and UN should take immediately to quell the violence in the region, and asked him to circulate the letter throughout Congress seeking signatures of support for the recommendations.

Among some of the many recommendations were:

• Call for the arrest and extradition of Ahmed Haroun to the International Criminal Court, noting that he is responsible for the deaths of far more people than President Qaddafi of Libya, and call for him to be dismissed immediately as Governor of South Kordafan;

• Set a short deadline (one week) for the Government of Sudan’s withdrawal from Abyei and a halt to military attacks in South Kordafan. If Khartoum fails to meet the deadline, re-impose those sanctions that have been lifted since the last year of the Bush Administration;

• Demand unfettered humanitarian access and freedom of movement for UNAMID in Darfur and commit significant US training and transportation resources to UNAMID;

• Demand the immediate arrest and prosecution of UNMIS personnel who allegedly raped females in the Nuba Mountains.

• Sign a Congressional letter to the President asking him to instruct the US Ambassador to the United Nations to propose a UN Security Council Resolution that will urgently strengthen the UNMIS mission in South Kordafan by increasing its numbers of combat ready soldiers, and increasing its financing, heavy weaponry, communications, transportation, and logistical capacity.

The scholars suggested that the letter then be sent to President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Susan Rice, among others. To date, Representative Wolf has not responded to the letter.

On June 16, Khartoum announced that the SPLM/A and the Government of Sudan agreed to a cease-fire and to undertake negotiations. However, a source in the Nuba Mountains who must remain unnamed, emailed me this morning (June 17), and said, “Supposedly a ceasefire is in effect but fighting is still going on very near here!”

As of this week an array of human rights organizations (including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch) and anti-genocide groups (Save Darfur and the Enough Project) vigorously attacked this matter, issuing a flurry of updates, broadsides, and pleas for their members/supporters to take action.

If the GoS’ record in Darfur presages its actions in the Nuba Mountains, one can almost bet on it breaching the ceasefire within weeks, if not days. This is no time for activists, human rights organizations, the U.S. or the UN to get complacent. All that does is provide al Bashir with an opportunity to seize more time for more killing.

Samuel Totten is a genocide scholar based at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. He served as one of the 24 investigators with the U.S. Atrocities Documentation Project in eastern Chad. His most recent book is “An Oral and Documentary History of the Darfur Genocide” (Praeger Security International, 2010). He was last in the Nuba Mountains in January 2011 conducting research for a new book, “Genocidal Actions Against the Nuba Mountains People: Interviews with Survivors of Mass Starvation and Other Atrocities.”

Friday, June 17, 2011

Genocide Scholars write to Congress urging sanctions against Sudanese Government

June 15, 2011

Dear Members of Congress:

Over the past two weeks, Government of Sudan troops have laid waste to the Nuba Mountains in the state of Southern Kordafan. Jets and Antonov bombers have attacked towns, villages and farms. Tukuls (homes of mud walled with conical shaped roofs), churches, and other buildings have been burned to the ground. Farms have been destroyed.

Tens of thousands of people are on the run. Many have headed into the mountains where there is no food or water. Government of Sudan troops have gone door-to-door in Kudugli and Dilling in search of Sudan Peoples Liberation Movement supporters and executed them on the spot, either shooting them or slicing their throats.

This is the very same Sudanese government that committed the atrocities in Darfur and whose president (Omar al Bashir) is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of crimes against humanity and genocide. The newly “elected” governor of South Kordafan, Ahmed Haroun, who has been imposed on South Kordafan as its “Governor” by Khartoum, is also wanted by the ICC on over 40 counts of crimes against humanity and war crimes for the atrocities perpetrated in Darfur.

Outrage is beginning to swell among human rights activists, genocide scholars and certain members of the media across the United States that the U.S. government has not spoken out publicly against these atrocities and threatened to reimpose sanctions on the Sudanese government.

We believe that it is imperative that the U.S. also addresses these massacres in the UN Security Council. Now is the time to act, not after the Nuba Mountains have become the next genocide by the Government of Sudan.

We represent human rights and scholarly organizations. We urgently request that you support Representative Frank Wolf's (VA) request to President Obama to send former Secretary of State Colin Powell to Khartoum to demand that President Omar al Bashir stop these attacks on his own citizens. 

We also urge you to convince your fellow Members of Congress and the Obama Administration to:

  • Suspend further movement toward diplomatic normalization with the Government of Sudan;
  • Call for the arrest and extradition of Ahmed Haroun to the International Criminal Court, noting that he is responsible for the deaths of far more people than President Qaddafi of Libya, and call for him to be dismissed immediately as Governor of South Kordafan;
  • Set a short deadline (one week) for the Government of Sudan’s withdrawal from Abyei and a halt to military attacks in South Kordafan. If Khartoum fails to meet the deadline, re-impose those sanctions that have been lifted since the last year of the Bush Administration;
  • Announce publicly that, unless Khartoum withdraws its forces from Abyei and halts the ethnically targeted violence and forced displacement in South Kordofan, the U.S. will vigorously oppose debt relief for Khartoum in its discussions with the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.
  • Announce plans to further constrain Khartoum’s ability to use the international banking system;
  • Announce that there will be no further negotiation over Northern Sudan's status as a terrorism-sponsoring nation; all further discussion will be suspended pending withdrawal of all troops from Abyei and an end to military actions in South Kordofan.
  • Demand unfettered humanitarian access and freedom of movement for UNAMID in Darfur and commit significant US training and transportation resources to UNAMID;
  • Demand the immediate arrest and prosecution of UNMIS personnel who allegedly raped females in the Nuba Mountains.
  • Sign a Congressional letter to the President asking him to instruct the US Ambassador to the United Nations to propose a UN Security Council Resolution that will urgently strengthen the UNMIS mission in South Kordafan by increasing its numbers of combat ready soldiers, and increasing its financing, heavy weaponry, communications, transportation, and logistical capacity.
  • Furthermore, we urge you, as Members of Congress, to support a Congressional Resolution that urges the President to instruct the US Ambassador to the United Nations, working with other members of the UN Security Council, to strengthen the mandate of UNMIS, by adding the duty to “use all necessary means to protect the lives of civilians in South Kordafan and Blue Nile provinces.”

This is not the time for realpolitik, but the time to prevent another genocide in Sudan.

In the name of the humanity we all share,

Professor Bruce Hoffman


Center for Peace and Security Studies

Georgetown University

Dr. Eric Reeves

Professor of English

Smith College

Author of A Long Day’s Dying: Critical Moments in the Darfur Genocide (The Key Publishing House, 2007)

Dr. Gregory Stanton
Research Professor in Genocide Studies and Prevention, Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University

President of Genocide Watch and Chair of the International Alliance to End Genocide

Author of The Eight Stages of Genocide: How Governments Can Tell When Genocide Is Coming and What They Can Do to Stop It (forthcoming, Woodrow Wilson Center Press)

Ervin Staub, Ph.D.

Founding Director of the Ph.D. program in the 
Psychology of Peace and Violence, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Author of Overcoming Evil: Genocide, Violent Conflict and Terrorism

Dr. Samuel Totten

Professor of Genocide Studies

University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Fulbright Scholar, National University of Rwanda, 2008

Author of Oral and Documentary History of the Darfur Genocide (Praeger Security International, 2010) and Co-editor (with Eric Markusen) of Genocide in Darfur: Investigating the Atrocities in the Sudan (Routledge, 2006)

Dr. John Hubbel Weiss

Assoc. Professor of History

Cornell University

Founder, Bosnia Coordinating Committee, Ithaca

Founder and Director, Darfur Action Group-Cornell

Former director, Cornell Institute for European Studies

Author of "Lessons from the Failure to Rescue Darfur"

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Mosques as Barracks in America

Originally Posted By Andrew Bostom On June 5, 2011 at:

[1]The Islamic Center of Toledo Mosque and Minarets

Cross-posted at The American Thinker [2]

Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan represents the triumphant Janus-faced approach to the fundamentalist global “Islamic revival.” He and his pious forbears have now completed dismantling Turkey’s secular experiment, and achieved the full-throated re-Islamization of Turkish society, an insidious process begun already [3] within the decade after Ataturk’s death, in 1938. When currying favor with gullible Western audiences, Erdogan burbles disingenuous ecumenical platitudes about the “Alliance of Civilizations.” But in reality, this is an Islamization campaign [4] promoted by the Organization of the Islamic Conference, notably Saudi Arabia, which rewarded [5] Erdogan, for his role in the Alliance, specifically, as “services to Islam,” with the “King Faisal International Prize,” considered the “Nobel prize” of the Arab world. Regardless, Erdogan has always aroused his Muslim constituencies by brazenly appealing to their deep-seated jihadist sentiments as he did while mayor of Istanbul, in 1997, delivering a fiery speech that reminded the masses of these words from the poem “The Soldier’s Prayer,” written (in 1912) by Turkish nationalist poet Ziya Gokalp:

The minarets are our bayonets, the domes our helmets, the mosques our barracks and the faithful our army.

Cited [6] appropriately by successful [7] opponents of minaret construction in Switzerland [6], such rhetoric should now resonate uncomfortably in America with the online release [8] Monday June 6, 2011 of alarming survey data from a representative national sample of US mosques.

During August 2007, the New York City Police Department (NYPD) released “Radicalization in the West — The Homegrown Threat.” This insightful 90-page report [9] evaluated the threat that had become apparent since 9/11/2001, analyzing the roots of recent terror plots in the United States, from Lackawanna in upstate New York to Portland, Ore., to Fort Dix, NJ. Based upon these case-study analyses of individuals arrested for jihadist activity, the authors concluded [9] that the “journey” of radicalization that produces homegrown jihadists began in so-called “Salafist” (“fundamentalist” to non-Muslims) mosques characterized by high levels of Sharia—Islamic Law—adherence. The landmark study just published, “Sharia and Violence in American Mosques” (Kedar M, Yerushalmi D. The Middle East Quarterly, Summer 2011, Vol. 18, No. 3, pp. 59-72) sought to expand considerably upon the NYPD’s post-hoc, case study approach [9]—systematically gathering objective survey data, with much greater methodological rigor—and address these two a priori questions: I) Is there a robust association between observable measures of religious devotion, coupled to Sharia-adherence in US mosques, and the presence of violence-sanctioning materials at these mosques?; and II) Is there a robust association between the presence of violence-sanctioning materials at a mosque, and the advocacy of jihadism by the mosque’s leadership via recommending the study of these materials, or other manifest behaviors?

Full details of the sampling methodology, extracts of representative jihad [10] promoting materials (texts), and specific Sharia-compliant behaviors recorded, are provided in the accompanying appendices, reproduced from the full study (which will be available here [8] 6/6/11). In brief, survey data were collected from a nationally representative, random statistical sample of 100 US mosques, covering 14 states, and the District of Columbia. This concise overview of the basic data collection procedures—including a self-critical, honest caveat by the authors about “completeness” of the available information on US mosque locations—is reproduced verbatim from the report (p. 68):

A surveyor visited a subject mosque in order: (a) to observe and record 12 Sharia-adherent behaviors of the worshipers and the imam (or lay leader); (b) to observe whether the mosque contained the selected materials rated as moderate and severe; (c) to observe whether the mosque contained materials promoting, praising, or supporting violence or violent jihad; and (d) to observe whether the mosque contained materials indicating the mosque had invited guest speakers known to have promoted violent jihad. Thus, the survey only examined the presence of Sharia-adherent behaviors, the presence of violence positive materials in mosques, whether an imam would promote the study of violence-positive materials, and whether a mosque was used as a forum to promote violent jihad. Since there is no central body to which all mosques belong, it was difficult to ascertain that the sampling universe list was complete. This may have introduced bias into the sampling although the authors find no evidence of any systemic distortions.

The study’s results provide clear—and ominous—affirmative answers to the a priori questions posed. Sharia-adherence was strongly associated with the presence of jihad-violence sanctioning materials, and the presence of jihad-violence sanctioning materials was in turn robustly associated with advocacy of jihadism by mosque imams—religious leaders. This key summary finding was highlighted by the authors:

…51 percent of mosques had texts that either advocated the use of violence in the pursuit of a Shari‘a-based political order or advocated violent jihad as a duty that should be of paramount importance to a Muslim; 30 percent had only texts that were moderately supportive of violence like the Tafsir Ibn Kathir and Fiqh as-Sunna; 19 percent had no violent texts at all.

Thus 81% of this statistical sample representative of US mosques were deemed as moderately (30%) to highly (51%) supportive of promulgating jihad violence to impose Shari’a.

Additional profoundly troubling findings emerge when the data are explored in depth beyond these summary observations. For example, only 4.7% of Muslim worshippers attended mosques where jihadist materials were not provided because Sharia-compliant mosques promoting jihad were the most heavily attended. The authors also describe these specific details indicating that the preponderance of US mosques sanction jihad terrorism and its ultimate goal of a Caliphate [10] (i.e., the transnational imposition of strict Islamic law in current Muslim nations, and ultimately global imposition of Islamic Law, including in the US), if one includes advocacy of financial support for this sacralized violence (from pp. 67-69).

The survey found a strong correlation between the presence of severe violence-promoting literature and mosques featuring written, audio, and video materials that actually promoted such acts. By promotion of jihad, the study included literature encouraging worshipers to engage in terrorist activity, to provide financial support to jihadists, and to promote the establishment of a caliphate in the United States. These materials also explicitly praised acts of terror against the West; praised symbols or role models of violent jihad; promoted the use of force, terror, war, and violence to implement the Sharia; emphasized the inferiority of non-Muslim life; promoted hatred and intolerance toward non-Muslims or notional Muslims; and endorsed inflammatory materials with anti-U.S. views… [O]f the 51 mosques that contained severe materials, 100 percent were led by imams who recommended that worshipers study texts that promote violence.
[M]osques containing violence positive materials were substantially more likely to include materials promoting financial support of terror than mosques that did not contain such texts. A disturbing 98 percent of mosques with severe texts included materials promoting financial support of terror. Those with only moderate rated materials on site were not markedly different, with 97 percent providing such materials.
These results were comparable when using other indicators of jihad promotion. Thus, 98 percent of mosques that contained severe-rated literature included materials promoting establishing an Islamic caliphate in the United States as did 97 percent of mosques containing only moderate rated materials.

These are the hard data that make plain why the “see no Sharia [11] in America” mindslaughter [12] redolent across the political spectrum amongst our policymaking, academic, and journalistic elites, is so dangerously delusive.
Indeed such disturbing survey results from a nationally representative sample of US mosques demonstrate Islam’s doctrinal and behavioral consistency across nearly 14 centuries, past as prologue to the present. Over 17,000 [13] jihad terror attacks have been committed by Muslims worldwide since the cataclysmic acts of jihad terrorism committed against the United States itself on September 11, 2001. These data should remind us that there is just one historically relevant meaning of jihad [10] despite contemporary apologetics. Jahada, the root of the word jihad, appears 40 times in the Koran. With 4 exceptions, all the other 36 usages in the Koran as understood by both the greatest jurists and scholars of classical Islam (including Abu Yusuf, Averroes, Ibn Khaldun, and Al Ghazali), and ordinary Muslims—meant and mean, “he fought, warred or waged war against unbelievers and the like.”

The Muslim prophet Muhammad waged a series of proto-jihad campaigns [10] to subdue the Jews, Christians and pagans of Arabia. Numerous modern day pronouncements by leading Muslim theologians (see Yusuf Al-Qaradawi’s “The Prophet Muhammad as a Jihad Model,” 2001) confirm that Muhammad remains the major inspiration for jihadism today. Jihad has been pursued continuously since the 7th century advent of Islam, through the present, because it was institutionalized by seminal early Muslim theologians based on their interpretation of Koranic verses, and long chapters in the “hadith,” or acts and sayings of Muhammad. Within a century of Muhammad’s death, violent jihad conquests—achieved by religiously sanctioned massacre, pillage, enslavement, and deportation—Islamized a vast swath of territory, extending from modern Pakistan to Portugal. The permanent goal of jihad is to bring humanity, en bloc, under the jurisdiction of Sharia—a totalitarian system of religious governance, particularly oppressive to all non-Muslims, and women.

American Presidents John Quincy Adams and Theodore Roosevelt each possessed a remarkably clear, uncompromised understanding of the permanent Islamic institution of jihad war—both its doctrinal basis, and history. Regarding jihad, Adams states in an 1829-30 essay series [14],

…he [Muhammad] declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion, against all the rest of mankind…The precept of the Koran is, perpetual war against all who deny, that Mahomet is the prophet of God.

Roosevelt offered this historical perspective [15] in 1916 on the consequences for Western civilization of succeeding, or failing to repel jihad conquerors:

The civilization of Europe, America, and Australia exists today at all only because of the victories of civilized man over the enemies of civilization…[including] those of Charles Martel in the 8th century [over Arab jihadists] and those of John Sobieski in the 17th century [over Ottoman Turkish jihadists]. During the thousand years that included the careers of the Frankish soldier [Martel] and the Polish king [Sobieski], the Christians of Asia and Africa proved unable to wage successful war with the Moslem conquerors; and in consequence Christianity practically vanished from the two continents; and today nobody can find in them any ‘social values’ whatever, in the sense in which we use the words, so far as the sphere of Mohammedan influence [is]…concerned.”

Also writing in 1916, C. Snouck Hurgronje [10], the great Dutch Orientalist, underscored how the jihad doctrine of world conquest, and the re-creation of a supranational Islamic Caliphate remained a potent force among the Muslim masses:

…it would be a gross mistake to imagine that the idea of universal conquest may be considered as obliterated…the canonists and the vulgar still live in the illusion of the days of Islam’s greatness. The legists continue to ground their appreciation of every actual political condition on the law of the holy war, which war ought never be allowed to cease entirely until all mankind is reduced to the authority of Islam-the heathen by conversion, the adherents of acknowledged Scripture [i.e., Jews and Christians] by submission.

Hurgronje further noted that although the Muslim rank and file might acknowledge the improbability of that goal “at present” (circa 1916), they were,

…comforted and encouraged by the recollection of the lengthy period of humiliation that the Prophet himself had to suffer before Allah bestowed victory upon his arms…

Thus even at the nadir of Islam’s political power, during the World War I era final disintegration of the Ottoman Empire, Hurgronje observed how

…the common people are willingly taught by the canonists and feed their hope of better days upon the innumerable legends of the olden time and the equally innumerable apocalyptic prophecies about the future. The political blows that fall upon Islam make less impression…than the senseless stories about the power of the Sultan of Stambul [Istanbul], that would instantly be revealed if he were not surrounded by treacherous servants, and the fantastic tidings of the miracles that Allah works in the Holy Cities of Arabia which are inaccessible to the unfaithful. The conception of the Khalifate [Caliphate] still exercises a fascinating influence, regarded in the light of a central point of union against the unfaithful (i.e., non-Muslims).

Nearly a century later, the preponderance of contemporary mainstream Muslims from Morocco to Indonesia, apparently share with their murderous, jihad terror waging co-religionists from al-Qaeda the goal (if not necessarily supporting the gruesome means) of re-establishing an Islamic Caliphate. Polling data released April 24, 2007 in a rigorously conducted face-to-face University of Maryland/ interview survey [16] of 4384 Muslims conducted between December 9, 2006 and February 15, 2007-1000 Moroccans, 1000 Egyptians, 1243 Pakistanis, and 1141 Indonesians-reveal that 65.2% of those interviewed-almost 2/3, hardly a “fringe minority”—desired this outcome (i.e., “To unify all Islamic countries into a single Islamic state or Caliphate”), including 49% of “moderate” Indonesian Muslims. The internal validity of these data about the present longing for a Caliphate is strongly suggested by a concordant result: 65.5% of this Muslim sample approved the proposition “To require a strict [emphasis added] application of Sharia law in every Islamic country.”

Such Caliphate dreams—to be achieved through jihad conquests—have always been nurtured in mosques. The authoritative Brill Encyclopedia of Islam entry on “masdjid,” or mosque, highlights the mosque’s primary socio-political functions—including holding war councils—since the advent of the first Muslim polity under Islam’s prophet-warrior and ruler, Muhammad, in Medina:

The mosque was the place where believers assembled for prayer around the Prophet, where he delivered his addresses, which contained not only appeals for obedience to God but regulations affecting the social life of the community; from here he controlled the religious and political community of Islam…From the Medina mosque was developed the general type of mosque.

It was inherent in the character of Islam, that religion and politics could not be separated. The same individual was ruler and chief administrator in the two fields, and the same building, the mosque, was the center of gravity for both politics and religion. This relationship found expression in the fact that the mosque was placed in the center of the camp, while the ruler’s abode was built immediately adjacent to it, as in Medina.

[W]ar was inseparably associated with early Islam and the mosque was public meeting place of ruler and people…councils of war were held in the mosque.

Richard Mitchell’s seminal analysis [17] of the contemporary Muslim Brotherhood—the prototype modern fundamentalist organization—state’s simply, that from its advent,

Throughout the history of the [Muslim Brotherhood] movement the mosque continued to be its principal recruiting office.

This doctrinal and historical context explains why the “Sharia and Violence in American Mosques” study results—while immediate, justifiable cause for alarm—are unsurprising, even predictable. Moreover the current findings were augured by a qualitative assessment of US mosques by Sheikh Hisham Kabbani described in 1999, and the localized Detroit area survey of mosques conducted in 2003.

During a 1999 State Department presentation entitled [18] “Islamic Extremism: A Viable Threat to U.S. National Security” Sufi Sheikh Kabbani, who heads The Islamic Supreme Council of America, based upon personal visits to mosques across the US, asserted that 80% were run by “militant,” i.e. fundamentalist clerics. “The Detroit Mosque Study: Muslim Views on Policy and Religion,” was conducted by Ihsan Bagby an Associate Professor of Islamic Studies at thye University of Kentucky and a fellow at the Institute for Social Policy Understanding—a Muslim organization. Data were gathered during the summer of 2003 and published online in 2004. These portentous findings were described on page 37 of the report [19]:

Mosque participants were asked, whether they agree or disagree with the statement, “Shari’ah should be the law of the land in Muslim countries?” Apply Islamic Law in Muslim Lands

Strongly Agree — 59%
Somewhat Agree — 22%

(i.e., collectively = 81%)

Somewhat Disagree — 8%
Strongly Disagree — 3%
Don’t Know — 8%

Such data supposedly reflected the Detroit area Muslims views of “Islamic countries,” only. But given the intrinsic, universally supremacist nature of Islam and the global umma (i.e., as stated in Koran 3:110 [20], and the Orwellian-named Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Islam [21], “Ye are the best community that hath been raised up for mankind. Ye enjoin right conduct and forbid indecency; and ye believe in Allah”), once an area has a Muslim majority it is assumed by Muslims that Islamic Law should prevail—hence the “enclave” phenomenon, even here in the United States.

Publication of the “Sharia and Violence in American Mosques” study provides irrefragable evidence that the overwhelming majority of American mosques—consistent with mainstream Islamic doctrine and practice since the founding of the Muslim creed—are inculcating jihadism with the goal of implementing Sharia here in America.

Finally, Whittaker Chambers’ autobiographical opus “Witness,” which chronicles his apostasy from Communism, offers these searing insights that elucidate how American Muslims could rationalize such seditious behaviors—consistent with Islamic doctrine—and why this phenomenon remains largely incomprehensible to American non-Muslims, despite its existential threat to them.

What went on in the minds of those Americans…that made it possible to betray their country? Did none of them suffer a crisis of conscience? The question presupposes that whoever asks it has still failed to grasp that Communists mean exactly what they have been saying for a hundred years: they regard any government that is not Communist, including their own, merely as the political machine of a class whose power they have organized expressly to overthrow by all means, including violence. Therefore the problem of espionage never presents itself to them as problem of conscience, but a problem of operations…

The failure to understand that fact is part of the total failure of the West to grasp the nature of its enemy, what he wants, what he means to do and how he will go about doing it. It is part of the failure of the West to understand that it is at grips with an enemy having no moral viewpoint in common with itself, that two irreconcilable viewpoints and standards of judgment, two irreconcilable moralities, proceeding from two irreconcilable readings of man’s fate and future are involved, and hence their conflict is irrepressible.

Link [22] to Jihadist Texts Distributed in Mosques Surveyed

Appendices on Methods [23]






















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