By Kuir ë Garang
April 16, 2014 (SSNA) — I’d assume there are many, bigger challenges you are dealing with: Russia-Ukraine, Syria, Palestine-Israel, selling Obamacare …etc. I’d also assume the mentioned problems are more important that the Sudanese mother and child lives. And I know there are times when you have to do exactly the very same thing your conscience tells you not to do…because you are in the ‘White House.’
I know you are a humble man and you respond to issues some people may assume to be beneath your personality and stature of presidency. However, should this message reach you, then, I know, young South Sudanese will really appreciate you talking directly to them.
I don’t beat about the bush because leaders understand critical issues better when presented to them in non-traditional methods. I don’t spare leaders when I feel their performances do little to save the lives of innocent civilians. However, I’ll spare you for a lot has already been said. And you aren’t a South Sudanese leader! I might contradict myself in the process and don’t spare you as such! Who knows?
South Sudan suffering Civilians
You’ve already signed an ‘executive order’ to open way for possible sanctions against South Sudanese officials, who’re obstructing IGAD-brokered ‘Peace Talks’. Thankfully, you’ve been putting pressure on South Sudan president General Salva Kiir Mayardit to end the violence and bloodshed. So why am I repeating to you things you’ve already done or are already doing?
I’m an African man and people would assume that I would support you for who you are rather than what you do. I’ve never been a fan of your policies but I like your humble edge and your being as a people-person (if honest). That’s one quality I admire. While all my colleagues were enamored by the idea that an African was at the helm of the American power base, the sound of your policies made me very sceptical. Sadly, some of them have now joined me in that scepticism. And that scepticism, sadly, tells me you care little about the African Child. Well, you do talk about them in your speeches!
Leadership is about leading not ornamental speeches! Lead the world and safe the Southern Child!
I can’t say much about this because you’ve failed these people. You slept on their suffering. Part of why the American public embraced you is your persona as colorlessly and painlessly American; your heritage being secondary or even irrelevant. While you are an American first and foremost, I think you’ve taken your Americanism to the extreme and this is costing Sudanese and South Sudanese a great deal of suffering.
With no question, I understand being too focused on African issues can arouse the spiteful passion of America right and give them some postprandial gossip’s flavor. Sadly though, Darfurians have died in their thousands in your watch. They say: “We wish Bush were here!”
And to this day, they are still dying! Some people (and Americans) may ask why I bother a foreign leader instead of my own leader! It’s the very same reason why American soldiers and spies are in almost every country in the world that I ask Obama to heed the Southern Child!
Somalia, South Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Congo, Tanzania, Sudan, Egypt, Libya…America is there!
Southern Kordofan and Southern Blue Nile
President Beshir continues to butcher these people while activists and humanitarian voices call for your leadership in relation to this matter. As has become your tradition, you turned a blind eye on them. The likes of George Cooleny present virtual evidence of Khartoum’s murder machine on the innocent people of Nuba Mountains. The request to initiate a no-fly-zone fell on deaf ears. You supported that in Libya and that makes Africans in Sudan wonder if their lives are less that others’.
Having seen the way you let down the people of Darfur, Southern Kordofan and Southern Blue Nile, I have absolutely no reason to believe you’ll do anything in South Sudan. Over 10, 000 innocent lives have been lost, cities obliterated, over a million displaced and over 3 million in dire need of basic needs. Sadly, you are aware of that!
Your envoy, Donald Booth, seems to be playing a spectator role at the IGAD’s brokered ‘Peace Talks.’ You need to play a more practical role than the symbolic threats of sanction South Sudanese leaders will just laugh off.
You’ve done little to nothing in Darfur, Southern Kordofan and Southern Blue Nile. Please don’t let the people of South Sudan down! How many more need to die? How many more generations need to be lost to illiteracy? How many more skeletons need to flood American TV screens for you to be practical enough? Hear the cry of the Southern child!
President George W. Bush is regarded by the world as one of the worst leaders America (or even the world) has ever produced; but if you ask South Sudanese, they’ll tell you he’s ‘The Best American President’ for the role he played in making sure the Sudanese second civil war ended. He’s admired in South Sudan for having helped end that brutal, genocidal, ethno-religious war; and he’s admired in Africa generally for the role he’s played ( and continue to play) in the fight against HIV-AIDS.
You’re admired in Africa for your eloquent speeches and for being the first ‘Black’ President, whatever that means!
I understand Africans will remember you for what you represent rather than what you did! And Bush will be remembered for what he did rather than what he represented.
Displaced people are eating roots and leaves of plants. They are also living in squalid conditions. That’s the job of South Sudanese and Sudanese leaders, some may say! America is the world power and that nullifies the previous statement!
You’ve played some role in making sure South Sudanese referendum and independence comes to fruition; however, thousands have died in Sudan (North and South) during your presidency. And by the way, you were just finishing what Bush had already started!
Please, listen to the wail and the cry of the South Sudanese mother and child!
The Dream of the Southern Child
Kuir ë Garang lives in Calgary, Alberta. For contact visit www.kuirthiy.info