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Old 08-09-2004, 06:44 AM   #1
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Something the media won't cover...

Here's an email I got from a group I belong to, truemajority.org. I usually try to keep this stuff separate from AA, but I believe this is a worthy cause. The chances of the US going to war to liberate these people are slim to none. Here it is:

The Government Won’t Let Us Bring Darfur Witnesses Here

So We Want to Bring the Cameras to Them

The people of Darfur need to tell their stories.

We’ve had some big successes in our campaign to save the genocide victims in Darfur. Most recently, both houses of Congress unanimously passed the resolutions we supported, calling the atrocities in Sudan “genocide” and pressing the Bush administration to take any action needed to stop it. This has really isolated Bush’s position—that this isn’t really genocide requiring immediate action. Instead, he’s using a “go slow” approach with the hope that the Sudanese government will do an about-face and save the millions who are now being starved to death.

To focus the media’s attention on this, and really put the heat on the President, we tried to bring some witnesses from Darfur to the United States as “Refugee Ambassadors,” but the State Department wouldn’t issue them any visas. One employee actually defended the State Department’s position by saying that some of the refugees might be terrorists. If it wasn’t so tragic it would be funny.

Well, if the government won’t let us bring witnesses to the media, we’ll bring the media to the witnesses. Working with our friends at FaithfulAmerica.org, we have created a plan to send a camera crew, complete with a satellite uplink, directly into the refugee camps on the Chad/Sudan border. From there we’d be able to get witnesses, aid workers, and human rights activists directly onto talk shows here in the States. We’d also be able to have local experts appear in the studios, to comment on how our government can stop this.

Now we just need to raise the money to pay for this project. We figure the cost, including crew, equipment, and satellite time, will be about $45,000. If we raise any additional money, we’ll use it to continue pressing the government to do the right thing in other ways, such as an ad campaign. But first we need to get the crew over there.

To help send a camera crew with a satellite uplink to the Darfur refugees, click here and give whatever you can:


We are all doing what we can to stop the genocide. TrueMajority founder, Ben Cohen, was even arrested at a protest in front of the Sudanese embassy. Now please do whatever you can.

Thanks for helping,

Andrew Greenblatt,

Online Organizer

Here is some background on what is going on in Darfur:

Over the last several months, a government-backed Arab militia in Sudan, called the Janjuweed, has been attacking black Africans. The Janjuweed tactics are crude, but effective. They enter a village and use terror to force everyone to leave their homes and crops. Entire populations have fled to distant camps in the middle of desolate areas. These desert camps are now surrounded and controlled by the Janjuweed, and anyone who tries to leave is raped or killed. Unarmed international aid workers are turned away. A total of 370,000 human beings are already dead, or in the late stages of dying, from starvation in these extermination camps. The death toll could reach one million within the next few months.

Time is our greatest enemy. Every day one thousand people are dying in these camps. Currently, starvation is claiming the weakest—70 percent of the dead are children aged five and under. As time goes on, the death toll will rise more quickly. The United States needs to ensure that food aid is brought to the people of Darfur, along with the protection of an international military force. Both houses of Congress have already passed resolutions calling this “genocide”, and have called on the President to act to stop it. The problem is that the Bush administration is unwilling to take the decisive action needed to make sure that the food aid is safely delivered to those who need it most. Instead, they are calling on the corrupt Sudanese government to disarm their allies, the Janjuweed, and allow food aid in. To pressure the Sudanese government, the Bush administration is talking about using sanctions, a process that will take months—long enough to kill everyone currently starving in the camps. That is why it is crucial that President Bush act now.

You can learn more at www.darfurgenocide.org.

~Mike Shaw
Shawmutt.com. Blogs and Pictures of the Massively Multiplayer Offline game, Real Life.
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Old 08-09-2004, 07:56 AM   #2
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No offense intended, but we've got enough stuff going on right now. I would rather not see us get involved anywhere else until we get this cleaned up. We are not the world's police. It's tragic and all, but the threat to us as a nation from this incident is nil. I know that'll tick people off, but I am tired of American Soldiers being killed for backward nations who are not much better off after. Is Bosnia a good place to live now? No. We're busy, let someone else be hero for a change. What...no one else want's to have their country men killed for some backward nation...makes you wonder why we always do.

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Old 08-09-2004, 08:56 AM   #3
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Sheesh Bearfan, I'm almost speechless at your response.

shawmutt, you're right about the lack of media coverage.. I'd never even heard of Darfur until now. Makes me wonder just how much stuff like this is going on all around the world.

EDIT: Actually I wasn't speechless. I wrote a full page of ranting and then deleted it out of respect for the real topic of this thread.
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Old 08-09-2004, 10:10 AM   #4
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Charity begins at home. If we don't start paying more attention to the problems we have going on here, we'll eventually end up as one of those "backward nations".

Makes me wonder just how much stuff like this is going on all around the world.
I'm sure it happens all the time, all over the world, and has been for hundreds of years.

I cared a lot more about this sort of thing when I was younger. Now I care more about keeping a roof over my head and my family fed. Sometimes it really ticks me off knowing that my life and the lives of my family could be much better if we internalized more of our nations resources. Don't get me wrong, I don't think we should live like a country of royalty amongst a world of peasants, but I don't think we should feel obligated to help everybody that cries for it.

Back in the late 1700's a group of people took a stand for their beliefs and many of them died because of it. Those people gave birth to one of the greatest nations ever.
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Old 08-09-2004, 12:26 PM   #5
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I guess Darfur has no oil
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Old 08-09-2004, 12:42 PM   #6
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I think my reaction was similar to Atari's. Wow. I'm not offended, but I am shocked. So, we are too busy to help out when genocide is taking place, but we're stretched too thin because of an intervention that appears not to have much to do with a "threat to our nation". The only way (IMNSHO) for us to be truly safe in this dangerous world is to be respected, to provide human rights leadership, and to lessen the disparity between poor nations and rich nations. When genocide happens, and the US turns its back, how can we lay any claim to support of human rights, especially with the lack of respect that has been apparent recently?

Yes, we're stretched too thin. Instead of condemning backwards nations, please think about why we're unable to respond to a real moral crisis. Thanks, and sorry if this comes off as too harsh.

I'm going over to truemajority to see what I can do (on a grad student's salary...)
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Old 08-09-2004, 01:01 PM   #7
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Latest Status:
New Agreement On Darfur To be Signed

The Seceretary of States statement:
Secretary of State Colin Powell On Darfur

The reverse claim that it has an oil angle:
Darfur crisis has been fabricated by the US for oil reserve: envoy

I think America cares and is trying to do something about this. I think the biggest concern about this is that the longer it goes on the more people that are harmed which makes it an urgent / haste issue.
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Old 08-09-2004, 01:43 PM   #8
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History has shown that there's no depth to mans cruelty to his fellow man. I find it just as cruel to say "this doesn't concern me, so just let it happen".

The situation could be resolved if the moral and benevolent nations of the world stepped up to the batters box of morality. It's why I high hold France and Germany in such disdain. They cared when it was in their backyard (Bosnia), but not any other part of the world. Thanks for bringing the topic up shawmutt.
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Old 08-09-2004, 03:56 PM   #9
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I guess Darfur has no oil

you took the words right out of my mouth
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Old 08-09-2004, 06:20 PM   #10
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wow. you really can't say one thing either way without someone disagreeing. which is to be expected.

So here it goes.

If someone or a group is unable to defend themselves, them big brother needs to step up to the plate.

If we (the USA) need to be the ones to police this country, then we need to be the ones setting policy.


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