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History of the Sudan: What Led Up to the Genocide in Darfur By Reid Rosenberg, Katie LaBarre, Charlie Carroll, Laura O’Friel and Sandrine Fimbi.

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Presentation on theme: "History of the Sudan: What Led Up to the Genocide in Darfur By Reid Rosenberg, Katie LaBarre, Charlie Carroll, Laura O’Friel and Sandrine Fimbi."— Presentation transcript:

1 History of the Sudan: What Led Up to the Genocide in Darfur By Reid Rosenberg, Katie LaBarre, Charlie Carroll, Laura O’Friel and Sandrine Fimbi

2 Ancient History of Kush Kingdom in northern Sudan from 11 th century BC to 4 th century AD Province of Egyptian Pharaohs until 8 th century BC 23 BC- Northern region a Roman province, after Egypt is conquered by Romans

3 Christian Nubia 350 AD- Christian invasion from Ethiopia 6 th Century AD- Three Christian Kingdoms of Nubia 9 th -10 th Century AD - Peak of prosperity -Isolation from Muslim dominated Middle East

4 Muslim Domination 16th century AD- Kingdom of Sennar Black Muslims known as the Funj begin Sultanate 19th century AD- Internal corruption and discord weakens Sennar 1822 AD- Defeat of Sultanate Ruled by Ottoman Turks and Egyptians

5 Darfur: Arab vs. African Dar Fur—independent Sultanate (c ) – Fur identity –Traces roots to Arab past—Mohammed The Arabs of Dar Fur are Bedouin Arabs who trace their lineage directly to Mohammed. In their view, they see themselves as more Arab than the Riverian Arabs of lighter skin tone. Riverian Arabs treat Bedouin Arabs as second class citizens. Nilocentrism—three Sudans Labels—“Arabs” and “Africans” –Response to Turco-Egyptian state ( ) –“From the viewpoint of Dar Fur, the distinction between ‘Arab’ and ‘African’ [had] not [yet] arise[n]” (de Waal, 2005)

6 Arabs and Islam Islam—Came from the west. Hakura—land awarded by Fur sultanate in exchange for loyalty (de Waal, 2005) –Southern, Baggara (cattle-men) received these. The Rizegat were a main Baggara tribe who received a great portion of the Hakura. –Northern Abbala (camel-men) nomads became subjects of Dar Fur and they received no land or Hakura The Janjaweed (who later became Arab militias) were mostly made up of Abbala – i.e. their clans were poorer because they did not have land.

7 s 1820: Northern Sudan was unified by Ottoman Turks and Egyptian forces, “Turkiyah” government Egypt was a rising economic and military power under the Khedive Muhammed Ali so took advantage of its place on the Nile and near the Sudan for natural resources, slave trade 1870s: European slave trade caused an economic crisis in the south, which caused widespread poverty and paved the way for the rise of the Mahdists

8 Mahdism Muslims believe in a “Mahdi”, a redeemer who will come to the world unannounced as a prophet to redeem the world Muhammad Ahmad claimed to be the Mahdi in the 1830s and gained followers Capitalizing on the discontent resulting from Anglo-Egyptian rule, he declared a jihad against Egyptian rule and started a nationalist revolt that peaked at the siege of Khartoum (the capital of Sudan) in 1885

9 Independence: Part I The Mahdi raised an army of followers (“Ansar”) and led a successful revolt against Ottoman rule in 1881 Khartoum was held by the British (Col. George Gordon), the Mahdi and his Ansar began a siege of the city in 1884 Khartoum finally fell to the Mahdists in 1885, the Mahdiyya (Mahdist government) took over. The Mahdi died in 1885 but a successor, the Khalifa took over his government

10 Independence: Part II In 1895, England started to make plans for the reconquest of the Sudan 1898: Battle of Omdurman (near Khartoum) between Horatio Kitchener’s English army and the Ansar “dervishes” In 5 hours, 11,000 Ansar were killed, compared to 40 English (400 wounded) The Mahdiyya was clearly ended, England took control again

11 Foreign Rule From 1898 on, England and Egypt were in charge of the Sudan (this was a strange relationship because England was the dominant world power and it ruled Egypt, which was a dominant power in Africa) They divided the country into 2 distinct zones (north and south) Northern Sudan: Main languages were Arabic and English, Muslim population Southern: Main languages were African and English, Christian population (missionaries)

12 British Conquest 1916 Darfur Darfur finally incorporated into Sudan Native Administration established to create new tribal hierarchy. It also “contributed to tidying up the confusion of ethnic identities” (de Waal 2005). “Definitions” of tribes. Hakuras become Dars –Ethnic territory where dominant ethnicity had control –Hakuras were racially and culturally mixed almost entirely by 1970s

13 Unification 1946: England decided to reverse its policy of dividing the coutry and unify it into one country Southerners felt betrayed: –New govt’s language was Arabic, but the southerners had not been trained in that language (or much English) –South not as politically organized, so it was not as well represented in new gov’t.

14 Independence 1945: formation of political parties. The National Unionist Party, headed by Al-Azhari, was the political faction of one of the most powerful Muslim sects in the country at the time, the Khatmiyah brotherhood. This party wanted union to Egypt and was facing the opposition of the Umma Party of the Ansar, who favored sole independence 1953: British and Egyptians grant Sudanese-self government for 3 years. 1956: Independence proclaimed on January 1, after unanimous vote of senate.

15 Summary/General Trends The Mahdists had a big effect on keeping the British out from , although it was a primarily Muslim movement centered from the north. Colonizing powers divided the Sudan into 2 regions: North and South. They had different languages, governments, etc. The powers then unified the country without consulting the Southerners. Many Southerners don’t recognize the Sudan as a legitimate state

16 Government Supported Islamic Groups Muslim Brotherhood 1930s: originates in Egypt as a nationalist movement during decolonization -goal of institutionalizing Islamic Law, Muslim values, restoring a global Caliphate, anti-colonial, anti-Zionist, contains armed wings Other radical movements, some using violence, have been partially inspired by them in later years (Bin Laden) National Islamic Front (NIF) 1960s: Founded by Hassan Al- Turabi -government official under Nimeiri and Al-Bashir - strongly promotes nationalism through Shari’a (Islamic law) 1983: September Laws Shari’a= National Law - great opposition to this in South who are largely NOT Muslims 1990s: led by President Al-Bashir who funds militias that perpetrate genocide in South

17 National Democratic Alliance *umbrella group for opposition parties* 1993: Formation of NDA as opposition force to NIF/Al-Bashir Government Current Goal: Overthrow of Bashir regime and replace with democratic government 1. Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement (SPLA/M) 1980s: Founded by John Garang - From Sudanese military unit that defected to rebel side - Promotes democratic reform, against imposition of Islamic law nationally 2005: Garang becomes Vice-President of Sudan and administrative head of South after Comprehensive Peace Agreement -Killed same year in helicopter crash, provoked riots throughout the country because of suspicion of assassination

18 National Democratic Alliance 2. Sudan Liberation Army/Movement (SLA/M) Darfur Liberation Front -Wanted secession from Sudan 2003: Changed goal and name New Goal: greater autonomy, democracy, distribution of resources throughout all Sudan 3. Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) 1993: Islamic dissidents within the IMF meet secretly to plan reform 2000: Publish The Black Book: Imbalance of Power and Wealth in the Sudan -focuses on the disproportionate distribution of power in Sudan Goal: Overthrow Bashir, Reform of law so that Shari’a applies only to Muslims Current: Suspicions of leadership by exiled Al-Turabi (he denies) *SLA/M and JEM merge in 2006

19 Major People In Modern History Al-Turabi: Founder of NIF -Government positions under Nimeiri and Al- Bashir -previously pro-Shari’a, suspicions of now heading JEM Nimeiri: Semi-Dictator from , who rose to power in coup d’etat -gradually enforced strict Islamic Law to retain political support Al-Bashir: President of Sudan since another military coup in Head of NIF, supports Islamization and Shari’a Law -his current regime funds militants such as the Janjaweed and turns blind eye to genocide in South John Garang: Founder of SPLA/M -Insistance on keeping one Sudan instead of secession of Darfur caused divisions within the rebel groups during the 1990s -Appointed Vice-President in 2005 after peace talks with Khartoum, killed same year in helicopter crash

20 National Democratic Alliance 2. Sudan Liberation Army/Movement (SLA/M) Darfur Liberation Front -Wanted secession from Sudan 2003: Changed goal and name New Goal: greater autonomy, democracy, distribution of resources throughout all Sudan 3. Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) 1993: Islamic dissidents within the IMF meet secretly to plan reform 2000: Publish The Black Book: Imbalance of Power and Wealth in the Sudan -focuses on the disproportionate distribution of power in Sudan Goal: Overthrow Bashir, Reform of law so that Shari’a applies only to Muslims Current: Suspicions of leadership by exiled Al-Turabi (he denies) *SLA/M and JEM merge in 2006

21 Sudan and Libya Old relationship (long before colonization) Very amicable until Qaddafi seized power in Libya in Qaddafi failed attempts to unify Egypt, Sudan and Libya, then Chad, Sudan, and Libya, under a common Islamic state. Coup d’etat sponsored by Qaddafi against Numeiry in 1976 failed. Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Sudan unite against Libya.

22 Sudan and Libya 1989: Bashir coup d’etat. Relations warmed up between Sudan and Libya. Possibility of unification of Chad, Libya, and Sudan once again discussed. Bashir and Qaddafi fell out. Qaddafi then accused of supporting the southern rebels and also, later, the Darfur rebels. Nevertheless, Qaddafi tried to use his influence to resolve the Chad-Sudan conflict with the February 2006 Tripoli Agreement, which was signed by Libya, Sudan, and Chad. The tensions between Chad and Sudan result from the fact that each of the two countries believes that the other has a hand in destabilizing the civil order in its territory.

23 Sudan-Chad Conflict Starting in September 2005, some Janjaweed began to cross over the Chadian border presumably to follow the Darfuri who succeeded in escaping, but in fact attacking Chadian population and stealing food. Around the same period, the UFDC (United Front for Democratic Change) rebels, who are based in Darfur, started some attacks on Chadian soil. This Chadian rebel group is, according to the Chadian government, backed by Sudan. On December 23, 2005, Chad declared state of belligerency with Sudan

24 Sudan-Chad Conflict Sudan denied Chadian accusations of backing the UFDC and claimed Darfur rebels are backed by Chad. Tentative peace agreement reached in Tripoli on February 8, 2006, but neither rebels nor Janjaweeds invited at the meeting. Janjaweeds and UFDC continue attacking and massacring the Chadian population. Bilateral relations between the two countries severed first in April 2006, and have been on and off since.

25 Why do Chad and Libya Matter? Chad is important to the resolution of the Darfur conflict not only because it is neighboring Darfur, but mostly because it supporting the Darfuri rebels as Sudan is supporting the Chadian rebels. This war of tit for tat must be solved first to have lasting peace in the region. For more information on that dynamic, click here.click here It is essential to have Libya on board for peace in Darfur because Libya is the big power of the region, and Qaddafi is known for his love of interfering in the internal affairs of other countries. Also Libya has been providing arms to Darfuri and Southerner rebels, contributing to the instability in the region.

26 Musa Hilal Powerful leader of Janjaweed, member of Um Julal clan of Rizeigat tribe Pride in position as government agent to fight rebels and organize militias Arab Supremacist Hilal issued a directive in 2004 to military intelligence agencies to “change the demography of Darfur and empty it of African tribes.”

27 Origins of Janjaweed: History of the Rizeigat Janjaweed developed from tribal and economic conflicts involving the Abbala Rizeigat Began with Sheikh Hilal Mohamed Abdalla of the Um Julal Moved to Aamo to ally himself with Ereigat [who are they?] and bring in Arabs from Chad to develop a following

28 Origins of Janjaweed: History of the Rizeigat Great drought of : Pastoral lands devastated and Rizeigat migrate south to farmlands of Fur and Tunjur & they are only given poor land 1985: Fall of Nimeiri; Libyan Islamist exiles flood into Darfur with weapons By 1990, weapons become easily available and crime increases

29 Arab Supremacy 1981 – Darfurian Arabs demand more representation and control The Tajamu al Arabi organization, also known as the “Arab Gathering” creates militant Arab supremacy movement that pushes for Arab representation in government and majority rule in Darfur Prior to Darfurian governor elections, the Arab gathering had published and sent a letter to the government threatening more Arab representation. They published the “Quraish Manifesto” after election of Fur governor, which preached the supremacy of the Abbala and Baggara Arabs as pure Muslim descendants of Mohamed and called Arabs to action against Africans. Hilal receives arms from Ibn Omar, leader of Chadian opposition front (CDR) sympathetic to his cause 1989 conference – Warring Fur and Janjaweed militias disarmed at conference

30 Darfur —First conflict in Darfur between Fur militias and the Abbala Arabs Janjawiid Native Administration Council—NAC – Recreated by Sudanese government to find solutions between groups –Could not find solutions. Renewed conflict in 1994 –Gave land to certain ethnic groups as means of reinforcing central authority

31 Government Backing of the Militias and Arab Rule Militia used by government in two ways: 1) tool of military control and 2) to mask ethnic conflict 1991, SPLA enters Darfur and Militias used by government for first time 1994 – Ali al Haj, the Arab Minister of Federal Affairs, divides Darfur into three regions. More leadership positions go to Arabs, while non-Arabs made into minorities

32 The Masalit Conflict Governmental leaders known as “Amirs” arm themselves and persecute the Masalits, a non-Arab Darfurian tribe 1999: General Mohamed al Dabi from Sudanese Army sent to Darfur by Bashir in Khartoum to train youth militia, worsening militarization of the conflict For first time militia leaders are paid by government 2000: Arab becomes North Darfur governor and support for Janjaweed increases 2001: SLA growing and Arabs recruit for Janjaweed with promises of benefits October 2002: 1 st offensive against non-Arab civilians. Sudanese government ignores this and never punishes Janjaweed

33 Reflections and Analysis Riverine Arabs believed that the Bedouin Arabs in Darfur were less Arab than themselves, even though the Bedouins trace lineage directly to Mohammed. Thus, they tried to “arabize” Darfuris and promoted Arabized Darfuris to prominent government posts. African versus Arabs is way too simplified to understand this conflict SPLA influenced “Africans” and SLA which used to be Darfur Liberation Army. Visualization of conflict—a Westerner would imagine this as a conflict between light skinned Arabs and dark skinned Africans. Americans especially imagine aggressive Arabs as terrorists and black Africans as an oppressed people. When the two are combined, Westerners see light-skinned, dominant terrorists oppressing poor black people. This is not the case, both sides share a nearly identical skin tone. The term genocide further polarizes two sides by making them believe that the conflict is all about race, and if one side does not defend itself, the other will wipe them out causing more people to pick up arms. This escalates the violence.

34 References (2006, June 22). Chad: Armed Groups Maraud along Sudan Border. Retrieved November 17, 2006, from Human Rights Watch Web site: (2006, November 15). Chad/Sudan: End Militia Attacks on Civilians. Retrieved November 15, 2006, from Human Rights Watch Web site: (2006, June 28). Chad/Sudan: Sowing the Seeds of Darfur. Retrieved November 15, 2006, from Amnesty International Web site: Hennig, R (2005, September 7). Eritrea, Chad Accused of Aiding Sudan Rebels. Afrol News Online, Retrieved November 19, 2006, from Holliway, R (2006). Sudan/Darfur/Chad. Retrieved November 27, 2006, from CountryWatch Web site: (1991). Libya. Retrieved November 19, 2006, Web site: (2006, November 22). Mubarak, Gaddafi, and Al-Bashir Discussed Means for Achieving Peace in Darfur through an International Effort. Retrieved November 30, 2006, from Egypt State Information Service Web site: Reuters, (November 20, 2006). West's Oil Greed behind UN Darfur Push: Gaddafi. Retrieved November 30, 2006, from TradeArabia Business News Information Web site: (2006). Sudan-Chad Peace Deal. Retrieved November 19, 2006, from Arab Media Watch Web site: Flint, Julie & De Waal, Alex. (2005). Darfur: A Short History of a Long War. New York: Zed Books. de Waal, A. (2005). “Who Are The Darfurians? Arab and African Identities, Violence and External Engagements.” African Affairs, 104/415, , Retrieved November, 2006 from JSTOR database


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