Darfur? It’s the Oil, Stupid…

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Darfur? It’s the Oil, Stupid…

Postby Byrne » Fri May 25, 2007 8:45 am

The latest from F. William Engdahl


Darfur? It’s the Oil, Stupid…
China and USA in New Cold War over Africa’s oil riches

By F William Engdahl, May 20, 2007


To paraphrase the famous quip during the 1992 US Presidential debates, when an unknown William Jefferson Clinton told then-President George Herbert Walker Bush, “It’s the economy, stupid ,” the present concern of the current Washington Administration over Darfur in southern Sudan is not, if we were to look closely, genuine concern over genocide against the peoples in that poorest of poor part of a forsaken section of Africa.

No. “It’s the oil, stupid.”

Hereby hangs a tale of cynical dimension appropriate to a Washington Administration that has shown no regard for its own genocide in Iraq, when its control over major oil reserves is involved. What’s at stake in the battle for Darfur? Control over oil, lots and lots of oil.

The case of Darfur, a forbidding piece of sun-parched real estate in the southern part of Sudan, illustrates the new Cold War over oil, where the dramatic rise in China’s oil demand to fuel its booming growth has led Beijing to embark on an aggressive policy of – ironically – dollar diplomacy. With its more than $1.3 trillion in mainly US dollar reserves at the People`s Bank of China, Beijing is engaging in active petroleum geopolitics. Africa is a major focus, and in Africa, the central region between Sudan and Chad is priority. This is defining a major new front in what, since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, is a new Cold War between Washington and Beijing over control of major oil sources. So far Beijing has played its cards a bit more cleverly than Washington. Darfur is a major battleground in this high-stakes contest for oil control.

China Oil diplomacy

In recent months, Beijing has embarked on a series of initiatives designed to secure long-term raw materials sources from one of the planet’s most endowed regions – the African subcontinent. No raw material has higher priority in Beijing at present than the securing of long term oil sources.

Today China draws an estimated 30% of its crude oil from Africa. That explains an extraordinary series of diplomatic initiatives which have left Washington furious. China is using no-strings-attached dollar credits to gain access to Africa’s vast raw material wealth, leaving Washington’s typical control game via the World Bank and IMF out in the cold. Who needs the painful medicine of the IMF when China gives easy terms and builds roads and schools to boot?

In November last year Beijing hosted an extraordinary summit of 40 African heads of state. They literally rolled out the red carpet for the heads of among others Algeria, Nigeria, Mali, Angola, Central African Republic, Zambia, South Africa.

China has just done an oil deal, linking the Peoples Republic of China with the continent's two largest nations - Nigeria and South Africa. China's CNOC will lift the oil in Nigeria, via a consortium that also includes South African Petroleum Co. giving China access to what could be 175,000 barrels a day by 2008. It’s a $2.27 billion deal that gives state-controlled CNOC a 45% stake in a large off-shore Nigeria oil field. Previously, Nigeria had been considered in Washington to be an asset of the Anglo-American oil majors, ExxonMobil, Shell and Chevron.

China has been generous in dispensing its soft loans, with no interest or outright grants to some of the poorest debtor states of Africa. The loans have gone to infrastructure including highways, hospitals, and schools, a stark contrast to the brutal austerity demands of the IMF and World Bank. In 2006 China committed more than $8 billion to Nigeria, Angola and Mozambique, versus $2.3 billion to all sub-Saharan Africa from the World Bank. Ghana is negotiating a $1.2 billion Chinese electrification loan. Unlike the World Bank, a de facto arm of US foreign economic policy, China shrewdly attaches no strings to its loans.

This oil-related Chinese diplomacy has led to the bizarre accusation from Washington that Beijing is trying to “secure oil at the sources,” something Washington foreign policy has itself been preoccupied with for at least a Century.

No source of oil has been more the focus of China-US oil conflict of late than Sudan, home of Darfur.


Sudan oil riches

Beijing’s China National Petroleum Company, CNPC, is Sudan’s largest foreign investor, with some $5 billion in oil field development. Since 1999 China has invested at least $15 billion in Sudan. It owns 50% of an oil refinery near Khartoum with the Sudan government. The oil fields (see graphic) are concentrated in the south, site of a long-simmering civil war, partly financed covertly by the United States, to break the south from the Islamic Khartoum-centered north.

CNPC built an oil pipeline from its concession blocs 1, 2 and 4 in southern Sudan, to a new terminal at Port Sudan on the Red Sea where oil is loaded on tankers for China. Eight percent of China’s oil now comes from southern Sudan. China takes up to 65% to 80% of Sudan’s 500,000 barrels/day of oil production. Sudan last year was China’s fourth largest foreign oil source. In 2006 China passed Japan to become the world’s second largest importer of oil after the United States, importing 6.5 million barrels a day of the black gold. With its oil demand growing by an estimated 30% a year, China will pass the US in oil import demand in a few years. That reality is the motor driving Beijing foreign policy in Africa.

Image
Source: USAID

A look at the southern Sudan oil concessions shows that China’s CNPC holds rights to bloc 6 which straddles Darfur, near the border to Chad and the Central African Republic. In April 2005 Sudan’s government announced it had found oil in South Darfur whoich is estimated to be able when developed to pump 500,000 barrels/day. The world press forgot to report that vital fact in discussing the Darfur conflict.


Using the genocide charge to militarize Sudan’s oil region

Genocide was the preferred theme, and Washington was the orchestra conductor. Curiously, while all observers acknowledge that Darfur has seen a large human displacement and human misery and tens of thousands or even as much as 300,000 deaths in the last several years, only Washington and the NGO’s close to it use the charged term “genocide” to describe Darfur. If they are able to get a popular acceptance of the charge genocide, it opens the possibility for drastic “regime change” intervention by NATO and de facto by Washington into Sudan’s sovereign affairs.

The genocide theme is being used, with full-scale Hollywood backing from the likes of pop stars like George Clooney, to orchestrate the case for a de facto NATO occupation of the region. So far the Sudan government has vehemently refused, not surprisingly.

The US Government repeatedly uses “genocide” to refer to Darfur. It is the only government to do so. US Assistant Secretary of State Ellen Sauerbrey, head of the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, said during a USINFO online interview last November 17, "The ongoing genocide in Darfur, Sudan – a 'gross violation' of human rights – is among the top international issues of concern to the United States." The Bush administration keeps insisting that genocide has been going on in Darfur since 2003, despite the fact that a five-man panel UN mission led by Italian Judge Antonio Cassese reported in 2004 that genocide had not been committed in Darfur, rather that grave human rights abuses were committed. They called for war crime trials.


Merchants of death

The United States, acting through surrogate allies in Chad and neighboring states has trained and armed the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Army, headed until his death in July 2005, by John Garang, trained at US Special Forces school at Fort Benning, Georgia.

By pouring arms into first southern Sudan in the eastern part and since discovery of oil in Darfur, to that region as well, Washington fuelled the conflict that led to tens of thousands dying and several million driven to flee their homes. Eritrea hosts and supports the SPLA, the umbrella NDA opposition group, and the Eastern Front and Darfur rebels.

There are two rebel groups fighting in Sudan's Darfur region against the Khartoum central government of President Omar al-Bashir – the Justice for Equality Movement (JEM) and the larger Sudan Liberation Army (SLA).

In February 2003 the SLA launched attacks on Sudan government positions in the Darfur region. SLA Secretary-General Minni Arkou Minnawi called for armed struggle, accusing the government of ignoring Darfur. "The objective of the SLA is to create a united democratic Sudan.” In other words, regime change in Sudan. The US Senate adopted a resolution in February 2006 that requested North Atlantic Treaty Organization troops in Darfur, as well as a stronger U.N. peacekeeping force with a robust mandate. A month later, President Bush also called for additional NATO forces in Darfur. Uh huh... Genocide? Or oil?

The Pentagon has been busy training African military officers in the US, much as it has for Latin American officers for decades. Its International Military Education and Training (IMET) program has provided training to military officers from Chad, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Cameroon and the Central African Republic, in effect every country on Sudan’s border. Much of the arms that have fuelled the killing in Darfur and the south have been brought in via murky, protected private “merchants of death” such as the notorious former KGB operative, now with offices in the US, Victor Bout. Bout has been cited repeatedly in recent years for selling weapons across Africa. US Government officials strangely leave his operations in Texas and Florida untouched despite the fact he is on the Interpol wanted list for money laundering.

US development aid for all Sub-Sahara Africa including Chad, has been cut sharply in recent years while its military aid has risen. Oil and the scramble for strategic raw materials is the clear reason. The region of southern Sudan from the Upper Nile to the borders of Chad is rich in oil. Washington knew that long before the Sudanese government.


Chevron’s 1974 oil project

US oil majors have known about Sudan’s oil wealth since the early 1970’s. In 1979, Jafaar Nimeiry, Sudan head of state, broke with the Soviets and invited Chevron to develop oil in the Sudan. That was perhaps a fatal mistake. UN Ambassador George H.W. Bush had personally told Nimeiry of satellite photos indicating oil in Sudan. Nimeiry took the bait. Wars over oil have been the consequence ever since.

Chevron found big oil reserves in southern Sudan. It spent $1.2 billion finding and testing them. That oil triggered what is called Sudan’s second civil war in 1983. Chevron was target of repeated attacks and killings and suspended the project in 1984. In 1992, it sold it's Sudanese oil concessions. Then China began to develop the abandoned Chevron fields in 1999 with notable results.

But Chevron is not far from Darfur today.


Chad oil and pipeline politics

Condi Rice’s Chevron is in neighboring Chad, together with the other US oil giant, ExxonMobil. They’ve just built a $3.7 billion oil pipeline carrying 160,000 barrels/day of oil from Doba in central Chad near Darfur Sudan, via Cameroon to Kribi on the Atlantic Ocean, destined for US refineries.

To do it, they worked with Chad “President for life,” Idriss Deby, a corrupt despot who has been accused of feeding US-supplied arms to the Darfur rebels. Deby joined Washington’s Pan Sahel Initiative run by the Pentagon’s US-European Command, to train his troops to fight “Islamic terrorism.” The majority of the tribes in Darfur region are Islamic.

Supplied with US military aid, training and weapons, in 2004 Deby launched the initial strike that set off the conflict in Darfur, using members of his elite Presidential Guard who originate from the province, providing the men with all terrain vehicles, arms and anti-aircraft guns to Darfur rebels fighting the Khartoum government in the southwest Sudan. The US military support to Deby in fact had been the trigger for the Darfur bloodbath. Khartoum reacted and the ensuing debacle was unleashed in full tragic force.

Washington-backed NGO’s and the US Government claim unproven genocide as a pretext to ultimately bring UN/NATO troops into the oilfields of Darfur and south Sudan. Oil, not human misery, is behind Washington’s new interest in Darfur.

The “Darfur genocide” campaign began in 2003, the same time the Chad-Cameroon pipeline oil began to flow. The US now had a base in Chad to go after Darfur oil and, potentially, co-opt China’s new oil sources. Darfur is strategic, straddling Chad, Central African Republic, Egypt and Libya.

US military objectives in Darfur – and the Horn of Africa more widely – are being served at present by the US and NATO backing of the African Union troops in Darfur. There NATO provides ground and air support for AU troops who are categorized as “neutral” and “peacekeepers.” Sudan is at war on three fronts, each country – Uganda, Chad, and Ethiopia – with a significant US military presence and ongoing US military programs. The war in Sudan involves both US covert operations and US trained “rebel” factions coming in from South Sudan, Chad, Ethiopia and Uganda.


Chad’s Deby looks to China too

The completion of the US and World Bank-financed oil pipeline from Chad to the Cameroon coast was designed as one part of a far grander Washington scheme to control the oil riches of central Africa from Sudan to the entire Gulf of Guinea.

But Washington’s erstwhile pal, Chad’s President for Life, Idriss Deby, began to get unhappy with his small share of the US-controlled oil profits. When he and the Chad Parliament decided in early 2006 to take more of the oil revenues to finance military operations and beef up its army, new World Bank President, Iraq war architect, Paul Wolfowitz, moved to suspend loans to the country. Then that August, after Deby had won re-election, he created Chad’s own oil company, SHT, and threatened to expel Chevron and Malaysia’s Petronas for not paying taxes owed, and demanding a 60% share of the Chad oil prieline. In the end he came to terms with the oil companies, but winds of change were blowing.

Deby also faces growing internal opposition from a Chad rebel group, United Front for Change, known under its French name as FUC, which he claims is being covertly funded by Sudan. This region is a very complex part of the world of war. The FUC has based itself in Darfur.

Into this unstable situation, Beijing has shown up in Chad with a full coffer of aid money in hand. In late January, Chinese President Hu Jintao made a state visit to Sudan and to Cameroon among other African states. In 2006 China’s leaders visited no less than 48 African states. In August 2006 Beijing hosted Chad’s Foreign Minister for talks and resumption of formal diplomatic ties cut in 1997. China has begun to import oil from Chad as well as Sudan. Not that much oil, but if Beijing has its way, that will soon change.

This April, Chad’s Foreign Minister announced that talks with China over greater China participation in Chad’s oil development were “progressing well.” He referred to the terms the Chinese seek for oil development, calling them, “much more equal partnerships than those we are used to having.”

The Chinese economic presence in Chad, ironically, may be more effective in calming the fighting and displacement in Darfur than any African Union or UN troop presence ever could. That would not be welcome for some people in Washington and at Chevron headquarters, as they would not find the oil falling into their greasy bloody hands.

Chad and Darfur are but part of the vast China effort to secure “oil at the source” across Africa. Oil is also the prime factor in US Africa policy today. George W. Bush’s interest in Africa includes a new US base in Sao Tome/Principe 124 miles off the Gulf of Guinea from which it can control Gulf of Guinea oilfields from Angola in the south to Congo, Gabon, Equitorial Guinea, Cameroon and Nigeria. That just happens to be the very same areas where recent Chinese diplomatic and investment activity has focussed.

“West Africa’s oil has become of national strategic interest to us,” stated US Assistant Secretary of State for Africa, Walter Kansteiner already back in 2002. Darfur and Chad are but an extension of the US Iraq policy “with other means” – control of oil everywhere. China is challenging that control “everywhere,” especially in Africa. It amounts to a new undeclared Cold War over oil.
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Postby StarmanSkye » Sat May 26, 2007 3:32 pm

(Being sarcastic):
I guess this report detailing the US's covert and duplicious funding & training of civil strife, war and what is essentially terrorism in equatorial Africa is yet more evidence of the Bush Gang's avowed aim, to 'fight them over there so we don't have to fight them over here.'

Of course, to anyone peering behind the carefully-scripted on-message propagandized text and imagery that passes for 'news' today, the Pentagon has always been heavily involved in coordinating and operating defacto resource wars around the world that directly contributes to the US's wielding the lion's share of global balance-of-power, divvying-up the spoils to a double handful of powerful, well-connected Corporations that work hand-in-glove with the MIC. It's a true Georgian-knot revolving-door black-hole conspiracy of unbelieveable wealth and power involving ruinous US geopolitical intrigues, enormous abuses of power, and reckless and insidious foreign policy re: provoking an irresponsible weapons-trade, unrestrained greed-driven market-share, epic criminal conspiracies, warcrimes, black ops, human trafficing, blackmail and extortion, drug smuggling, and other forms of Imperialistic overreach that have resulted in horrific, monstrous consequences of death, suffering, destruction, and terror.

The unpalatable truth Americans are loathe to grasp but that is becoming harder and harder to ignore, deny or spin, is that the US has become the world's foremost dangerous rogue state -- which in the context of the US's presumption it is the world's pre-eminent bastion of democracy and justice, and in that it is the world's greatest superpower, makes its dangerous rogue status an almost incomprehensible thing to grasp.

We increasingly have been, and now are, being 'led' by a relatively few absolutely reckless, totally unaccountable, criminal, madmen (well, mostly men).

An overarching question thus confronts us: To what extent do we share responsibility for allowing this, our tacit complicity in allowing our democracy to be so perverted?

Reading about the hidden, manipulated role the US and a few allies play in the genocidal conflict by way of expropriating strategic and commercial natural resources now taking place in Africa, I'm just astonished (and disheartened and infuriated) that such despicable thuggery CAN take place without any effective relief or corrective in sight.

Anyway -- The following article is a good follow-up that expands on the covert oil-wars in the Sudan to include the related ongoing conflict in northern Uganda, discussing the MSM's actions in covering-up the US's role as a hidden sponsor of terror as cover for outright theft.
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http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php? ... cleId=5771

Northern Uganda: Hidden War and Massive Suffering. Another White People's War for Oil
by Keith Harmon Snow

Global Research, May 26, 2007
allthingspass.com

On May 18, 2007, ABC news broke a hidden story about horrors in Uganda, and then they censored and deleted reader’s comments. ABC has deleted hundreds of comments by people horrified by the atrocities who only want to bring the truth to light and help stop the horrible suffering. What are ABC’s real motives? From Darfur to Congo to Ethiopia to Somalia to Kenya—who or what is ripping apart this region of Africa?


On May 18, 2007, ABC News “The Blotter” posted a story titled “Secret Photos Reveal New African Horrors.” The short ABC web clip describes in unusual candor—for ABC—the hidden war and horrors in Northern Uganda. The title suggests that it is a “new” conflict, and yet another “African” conflict. Is ABC sincere in their reporting? Or is this just another propaganda campaign narrowly controlled to serve private profits?

“Documentary filmmakers in Uganda were subjected to intimidation and coercion and were the victims of break-ins while attempting to film what a former U.N. official calls “Uganda’s secret genocide” in the northern part of that country,” the ABC Blotter report begins. “The filmmakers say these threats came from Ugandan officials and secret intelligence organizations there.”

The story goes on to describe how an American film crew was reportedly robbed of footage and equipment as the photographers documented the suffering of millions of people, and the role of the Ugandan People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) and Ugandan government officials in perpetrating massive atrocities, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The ABC report calls it “Uganda’s Secret Genocide,” a remarkable revelation in a world attuned only to the crisis in Darfur, Sudan, a place not so far away from Northern Uganda, and one involving some of the same combatants.

“The Ugandan government says it created refugee camps,” ABC reported, “for displaced people who were victims of a violent, ongoing civil conflict with a rebel group from the north called the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).”

Like Somalia and eastern Congo, the wars in Darfur and Northern Uganda are prosecuted for the same reasons: petroleum, gold, land—and other natural resources. There is money to be made, indeed, and the Uganda government is depopulating the land to make it easier. But this has been going on for years. Out of sight, out of mind. But absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Spotlight War, Hidden War

While the war in Darfur is always described as a genocide by Arabs against black Africans—and never a “war” by competing factions—the war in Northern Uganda is almost never described at all. This is also true of the multiple fangs of conflict in Ethiopia, where the U.S. backed government of Meles Zenawi is committing genocide against indigenous people, the Anuak minority and others—but it’s completely out of the Western news. The AID for ARMS scandal in Ethiopia has seen hundreds of millions of dollars of weaponry purchased—and used—by AID dollars. This is a country of starvation, drought, and famine—and now the largest standing military in Africa, serving the interests of the Pentagon. The United Nations, UNICEF, everyone is silent.

The Darfur story receives massive press, but the Northern Uganda story has been in complete media whiteout. Like the millions of people at risk today in Somalia, where hundreds of thousands of refugees are on the move today due to a U.S. backed insurgency there, the war in Northern Uganda is off the agenda. The Darfur story has been running for about five years—an outrage where nothing happens to stop it—while the Uganda conflict has been running for more than fifteen years.

What’s the hidden agenda? Whose hidden agenda is it?

In the mid-1980’s today’s President of Uganda Yoweri Museveni seized power in a bloody conflict. Fighting alongside Museveni were Tutsi soldiers who would later go on to overthrow the government of Rwanda, in a low-intensity conflict that began in October 1990, and culminated in the spectacle of the Rwanda genocide of 1994. Powerful corporate, intelligence and defense interests from the United States backed both insurgencies.

Museveni also sent his bloodthirsty troops into Congo. Millions of innocent people died under Ugandan occupation, while Museveni and his gang plundered Congo’s natural resources, raped women and whipped up killing fields scattered with skeletons.

But Museveni is someone’s “Golden Boy,” just like Uganda was always Britain’s “Pearl of Africa.”

President Yoweri Museveni has controlled Uganda for more than 20 years in a one-party dictatorship friendly to powerful corporate interests predominantly from the United States, Britain and Israel.

But years ago, up in the north of Uganda, the Museveni government herded the minority Acholi people into forced settlements—they called them “refugee” camps—under the claim that the government was providing protection from rebel forces supposedly hostile to the Museveni government. They became death camps, and they are death camps still.

For years Museveni’s low-intensity war against the Acholi people has waged on, completely out of sight, while the army of Joseph Kony—the evil Christian forces of the Lord’s resistance Army—was the only party ever accused of anything. The LRA is purported to be a rebel army opposed to the Museveni regime, but this is a convenient ruse that serves the dictates of a permanent warfare economy.

The Lord’s Resistance Army

A perfect example of the skewed Western racist reportage is the Vanity Fair feature article of January 2006. Here we have popular writer Christopher Hitchens—the once left wing (sic) Nation magazine writer who went right wing after September 11—telling us a tall tale as if the only culprits—and even the only combatants—were the fanatical Lord’s Resistance Army. The Hitchen’s story, “Childhood’s End,” appeared in the posh Conde Nast publication Vanity Fair, which almost never runs anything on Africa by anyone other than Hitchens. (The Vanity Fair editors once returned a query letter to this author stating that Hitchens was their expert on Africa.)

“For 19 years, Joseph Kony has been enslaving, torturing, raping, and murdering Ugandan children,” Hitchens began, “many of whom have become soldiers for his ‘Lord’s Resistance Army,’ going on to torture, rape, and kill other children. The author exposes the vicious insanity—and cynical politics—behind one of Africa’s greatest nightmares.”

But the very same enslaving, torturing, raping, and murdering have been policy—from the highest officials—by UPDF soldiers against innocent people in Congo, Sudan and Uganda.

“These children are not running toward Jordan and the Lord,” Hitchens also wrote, putting an African tribal face on the conflict, “they are running for their lives from the “Lord’s Resistance Army” (L.R.A.). This grotesque, zombie-like militia, which has abducted, enslaved, and brainwashed more than 20,000 children, is a kind of Christian Khmer Rouge and has for the past 19 years set a standard of cruelty and ruthlessness that—even in a region with a living memory of Idi Amin—has the power to strike the most vivid terror right into the heart and the other viscera.”

“My Acholi friends look to the days of Idi Amin as ‘the good old days,’ wrote human rights activist Lucy Larom of the Campaign to End Genocide in Uganda (CEGUN). Several of Larom’s posts to the ABC Blotter site were also removed or sanitized. “Things were better then. At least in my understanding individuals were targeted, not a whole population. Or maybe because death was quick, relatively speaking. Not the prolonged year by year kind of suffering that has caused a whole new concept and reality to creep into the Acholi consciousness: suicide, one of the leading causes of death in the camps among women.”

Why does Joseph Kony get so much attention? Because he’s a terrorist? Because he’s a fanatical Christian? Maybe. Mostly because he is reported to be an ally of the Islamic government—read Islamic fundamentalist terrorists—running the genocide show in Sudan.

Currents of Holy War

“Joseph Kony and four other leaders of the L.R.A. were named in the first arrest warrants ever issued by the new International Criminal Court (I.C.C.),” wrote Christopher Hitchens, in the one paragraph in the entire Vanity Fair feature that has any ring of truth about it. “If that sounds like progress to you, then consider this. The whereabouts of Kony are already known: he openly uses a satellite phone from a base across the Ugandan border in southern Sudan.”

Kony also has direct ties to people in Washington. In 2006, while working in northeastern Congo in 2006, I spoke with a special intelligence investigator sent in by the United Nations Secretary General and tasked with finding and negotiating with Joseph Kony. When Washington got wind of it, they intervened, and blocked the negotiations, and the investigator was called off.

“Like the United States, Sudan is not a signatory to the treaty that set up the I.C.C.,” Christopher Hitchens went on to explain. “And it has sponsored the L.R.A. because the Ugandan government—which is an I.C.C. signatory—has helped the people of southern Sudan fight against the theocracy in Khartoum, the same theocracy that has been sponsoring the genocide against Muslim black Africans in Darfur.”

And so this is a remarkable admission by Christopher Hitches: the Ugandan government has helped the people of southern Sudan fight against Khartoum. Of course, the Hitchen’s comment is a gross understatement. Uganda’s clandestine support for the people of South Sudan—the Sudan People’s Liberation Army—and the UPDF/SPLA alliance with the Pentagon and private military companies is something that is equally unreported and hidden, especially by the purveyors of the genocide line on Darfur. The UPDF and SPLA, with their foreign backers, have perpetrated massacres and war crimes using the human population as shields.

(See: keith harmon snow, Oil in Darfur? Covert Ops in Somalia? The New, Old, Humanitarian Warfare in Africa,
www.allthingspass.com/journalism.php?catid=24.)

Christopher Hitchens never gets into the reasons for the conflict, and instead of telling the truth about the natural resources that might be up for grab, or the depth of foreign intervention, or the involvement of companies like Bechtel, for example—whose subsidiary Nexant is part of the consortium of corporations building a massive oil pipeline across Uganda and Kenya—instead we find Hitchens spewing the standard litany of racist excuses for Africa’s hopeless plight. This could not possibly have anything to do with white people, according to Hitchens, and the posh luxury wasteland of Vanity Fair, instead it must be that the problems in Uganda are the “decades of war and famine and tyranny and Ebola and West Nile fever and AIDS.”

The ABC’s of War in Uganda

And so we have this new ABC expose, which takes quite a different line. Now we find ABC revealing the true story, with a little obvious hesitation, and a lot of deception of its own, but reporting, nonetheless, that more than 1500 indigenous Acholi people are dying every week. ABC even cites a recent report about Northern Uganda by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), claiming that “approximately 1.2 million internally displaced persons—IDPs—reside in overcrowded camps where mortality rates remain above emergency levels, largely as a result of inadequate water availability, poor sanitary conditions, and the spread of diseases.”

“It’s a huge conspiracy of silence about the genocide which has been committed in northern Uganda,” ABC quotes Olara A. Otunnu, the former U.N. undersecretary-general and special representative for children and armed conflict, to say.

But if ABC is interested in exposing the truth, why have they censored so many of the comments from readers of the story? Hundreds of comments were deleted on the night of April 20, and hundreds more were deleted or blocked before and since.

Perhaps the answer can be found in the comments made by those whose posts were deleted. Here are some, the comments of this writer, which were copied by another ABC reader (before ABC found and deleted them) and sent back to their source.

The posts were made with a sense of hope, and trust, that ABC was concerned about the people of Uganda, and interested in doing the right thing.

To read the post's and review further documentaiton on this issue, visit www.allthingspass.com
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Darfur Genocide: What Do YOU Know About Darfur, Sudan?

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat May 26, 2007 5:37 pm

Darfur Genocide: What Do YOU Know About Darfur, Sudan?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xTgltR7rCI&eurl=

O Genocídio em Ruanda
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIWeRS7j ... ed&search=

Rwanda 1994
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1b6-gqJok94

http://www.progressiveindependent.com/d ... g_id=29764




http://www.commondreams.org/views03/0619-12.htm

Did I mention to you that (ex-)Congresswoman McKinney is black? And not just any kind of black. She’s the uppity kind of black. What I mean by uppity is this:

After George Bush Senior left the White House, he became an advisor and lobbyist for a Canadian gold-mining company, Barrick Gold. Hey, a guy’s got to work. But there were a couple of questions about Barrick, to say the least. For example, was Barrick’s Congo gold mine funding both sides of a civil war and perpetuating that bloody conflict? Only one Congressperson demanded hearings on the matter.

You’ve guessed: Cynthia McKinney.

That was covered in the . . . well, it wasn’t covered at all in the U.S. press.


Congo Signs $332 Million Mineral Deal - Wed Mar-24-04

http://www.democraticunderground.com/di ... _id=442682


Expelled Congo Diamond Miners Tell of Terror

http://www.democraticunderground.com/di ... _id=566995



The Lost World War - What is Coltan?
http://archive.corporatewatch.org/newsl ... sue13/is...


The war on Iraq is not the only war in the world and it is not the only war being fought for our material benefit. Western consumers’ seemingly insatiable demand for mobile phones, laptops, games consoles and other luxury electronic goods has been fuelling violent conflict and killing millions in the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire). By Erik Vilwar.


What is Coltan?
Coltan looks like black mud, but is three times heavier than iron and only slightly lighter than gold. It is found in abundance in eastern Congo and can be mined with minimal equipment. Coltan is vital to the high tech economy. Wireless electronic communication would not exist without it. The ‘mud’ is refined into tantalum – a metallic element that is both a superb conductor of electricity and extremely heat-resistant. Tantalum powder is a vital component in capacitors, for the control of the flow of current in miniature circuit boards. Capacitors made of tantalum are found inside every laptop, pager, personal digital assistant, and mobile phone.1 Tantalum is also used in the aviation and atomic energy industries. A very small group of companies in the world process coltan. These include H.C.Starck (Germany, a subsidiary ot Bayer), Cabott Inc. (US), Ningxia (China), and Ulba (Kazakhstan). The world’s biggest coltan mines are in Australia and they account for about 60% of world production. It is generally believed, however, that 80% of the world’s reserves are in Africa, with DRC accounting for 80% of the African reserves.2

At the end of 2000, there was an unprecedented ‘gold rush for coltan’. Over a few months the price rose tenfold. In January 2000, an international trader would have paid between US$30 and US$40 for a pound (lb) of unprocessed coltan. By December 2000 the price has risen to US$380/lb. This dramatic price increase was driven by a sudden and steep rise in the demand for tantalum powder, caused by an overvaluation of the technology market triggered by a new generation of mobile phones and the consumer rush following the launch of the Sony Playstation 2.

At the height of the demand for coltan, it is known that Rwandan soldiers and other affiliated criminal groups were making roughly US$20 million a month solely from the trade in coltan.3 However, the coltan boom was short-lived and prices rapidly fell as more and more coltan came on to the market. By October 2001, coltan prices were back to where they started. In the meantime, thousands of destitute Congolese people had gone digging for the precious ore, a few international traders had made a fortune and millions of dollars had flowed to the parties waging war. Prices have fallen from the late 2000 peak, but the trade in coltan is still fuelling the war.
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Postby yesferatu » Sat May 26, 2007 6:49 pm

StarmanSkye wrote:To read the post's and review further documentaiton on this issue, visit www.allthingspass.com


I could not find the post's at the site. Where do I look for the link when I get to this site? thanks
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KEITH HARMON SNOW

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat May 26, 2007 7:00 pm

I would post his stuff years ago, sometimes people had a problem with him. :wink:


http://www.democraticunderground.com/di ... _id=442682
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videos

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat May 26, 2007 7:17 pm

Africa - What Does Keith Harmon Snow See
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmCmpgljCes

Africa - Keith Harmon Snow vs. The Man
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWSuXDz_bTw&eurl=

A look at the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) (1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1U28joj6d1A


A look at the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) (2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMMQhHuI ... ed&search=

A look at the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) (3)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=biEXCEOy_vs

A look at the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) (4)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IPKcgo4Es8E
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