Monday, July 14, 2008

Sudanese President Charged With Genocide

Frankly, this is a headline I did not think I would ever see.

Who would have the temerity to charge a sitting head of state with genocide? According to today's Washington Post, NAIROBI, July 14 -- "The chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court charged Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir Monday with genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity for orchestrating a brutal, scorched-earth campaign against particular ethnic groups in Sudan's western Darfur region." The ICC is the same group that brought charges against nazi war criminals, if memory serves.

I have been to many protests in my fourty odd years on this earth. One of the most heart-wrenching was organized by an amazing woman, Anabel Scheinberg - we met in Salt Lake City, Utah at the City and County building. The Mayor was also in attendance and shared heartfelt comments on the situation waging a world away. This woman, Anabel, a Jew, was determined to see that these atrocities not continue to take place on her watch. Some 100 or so people attended that protest. The mood was solemn, serious and one of quiet desperation.

I have long since left Utah, but am glad to see that for the first time, a sitting head of state is going to be made accountable (such as he can be) for his hand in these deplorable happenings. It happened on his watch - he is the head of the nation - he should know what is going on, and should be doing all in his power to see that such actions cease.

Are we taking a chance with what might happen as a result of this legal action? Absolutely. Someone has to take a stand for the people of Darfur.

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