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Thread: Darfur attack kills peacekeepers

  1. #1
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    Darfur attack kills peacekeepers

    This wouldn't be the first time peacekeepers were attacked by the people they were there to help. Surely they have to realize that this attack is going to lower international concerns for their cause. Darfurians have suffered horribly at the hands of the Sudanese armed forces and the Janjaweed militia, what can these rebel groups expect to gain? A few looted arms and vehicles are not worth international consternation.
    Darfur attack kills peacekeepers

    An attack on an African Union army base in the Sudanese region of Darfur has killed at least 10 peacekeepers.

    Thirty vehicles overran the base, and 50 AU soldiers were missing and seven seriously injured. Vehicles and property were looted or vandalised.

    Rebel sources told the BBC that the raiders were members of breakaway factions from two rebel groups.

    The attack came as S African Archbishop Desmond Tutu arrived in Sudan bringing a new peace initiative for Darfur.

    The casualties were the most serious suffered by the AU mission since it arrived in 2003, an AU statement said.

    AU-UN Joint Special Representative Rodolphe Adada said he was profoundly shocked and appalled by the "outrageous and deliberate" attack, which happened on Saturday evening at a base in Haskanita town.

    BBC Africa analyst Martin Plaut says the fighting comes at a particularly unfortunate moment, with discussions about to take place between the AU and UN to pave the way for peace talks between government and rebels.

    Prospects of an agreement at the talks are starting to look bleak, he says.

    'Unconscionable crime'

    A spokesman for the rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) condemned the attack, saying it was carried out by three dissident commanders from his own movement, in conjunction with one of the groups that broke from the Sudan Liberation Army.

    "It's a group which has been expelled," Ibrahim Jalil said.

    "They're looking for equipment - vehicles and weapons. They couldn't get these within JEM, and they don't have the capability to fight government forces. They found the AU an easy target."

    Sources told the BBC that the attackers made off with all the weapons and vehicles they were able to take, and burned the vehicles that remained.

    The AU statement described the attackers as "a large and organised group of heavily armed men", but did not say whether they were rebels or government troops.

    "It is staggering to imagine what could possibly have been the intentions of those who perpetrated this wanton and unprovoked act," Mr Adada said.

    "Not only was it a flagrant violation of the ceasefire but an unconscionable crime that breaks every convention and norm of international peacekeeping."
    BBC NEWS | Africa | Darfur attack kills peacekeepers

  2. #2
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    Would it really be so hard for the USAF to carpet-bomb a rebel camp to show them force will be met with force?

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    Quote Originally Posted by -{SpoonmaN}- View Post
    Would it really be so hard for the USAF to carpet-bomb a rebel camp to show them force will be met with force?
    Well first off the US isn't even involved in that peacekeeping mission. Second off the rebels are simply fighting back against the Sudanese government, which the U.S. acknowledges has committed and is continuing to commit, genocide against it's African inhabitants.

    What actually has been bothering me is that many call for a U.S. intervention in the area. Is this feasible, from the point of view of logistics, and the current capabilities of the U.S. Army?

    Consider: Sudan is inland, you can't just park a carrier battle group for air support. It's far from regional allies, and U.S. bases. The infrastructure is horrid, and the country is notably larger then Iraq. It would be highly opposed by the A.U. and offers little in terms of benefits to the U.S.

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    Feanor Reply

    "What actually has been bothering me is that many call for a U.S. intervention in the area."

    Well, if anybody goes besides AU troops, this American is calling for the immediate insertion of Russian stabilization forces for the indefinite future.

    Maybe Somalia too.
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    I was actually hoping for a response to this part of my post :/



    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    Is this feasible, from the point of view of logistics, and the current capabilities of the U.S. Army?

    Consider: Sudan is inland, you can't just park a carrier battle group for air support. It's far from regional allies, and U.S. bases. The infrastructure is horrid, and the country is notably larger then Iraq. It would be highly opposed by the A.U. and offers little in terms of benefits to the U.S.

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    Feanor Reply

    Sorry to disappoint.

    "Is this feasible, from the point of view of logistics, and the current capabilities of the U.S. Army?"

    If sufficiently important to America's national security, I'd suggest that Kenya, Egypt, and/or Israel might permit the staging of forces and logistics. Egypt would be preferable. We've conducted numerous BRIGHT STAR exercises there.

    As to capabilities, what's the mission? Occupy the Sudan, secure the citizenry, suppress the janjaweed AND the gov't? All by ourselves? Sorry. No thanks. Really. We're actually rather busy with a couple of projects that we deem more important.

    It's a Euro job, plain and simple. Or Russian.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    I was actually hoping for a response to this part of my post :/
    Wars in Africa are decided by forces in the 100s, not 1000s, never mind the 100s of 1000s that we're thinking of. The Congo was decided by a force of less than 3000 men. So yeah, the US, and a hell of alot of other countries including China and India can win wars in Africa.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
    Wars in Africa are decided by forces in the 100s, not 1000s, never mind the 100s of 1000s that we're thinking of. The Congo was decided by a force of less than 3000 men. So yeah, the US, and a hell of alot of other countries including China and India can win wars in Africa.
    I'm talking about stabilizing the region in a long term occupation, to prevent the genocide and fighting between the GoS military, Janjaweed, SLA and JEM. In addition to those groups, many additional splinter groups are appearing. I'm not asking about winning a war in Africa. I'm asking about stabilizing the region, and rebuilding the country through a military intervention.

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    Quote Originally Posted by S-2 View Post
    Sorry to disappoint.

    "Is this feasible, from the point of view of logistics, and the current capabilities of the U.S. Army?"

    If sufficiently important to America's national security, I'd suggest that Kenya, Egypt, and/or Israel might permit the staging of forces and logistics. Egypt would be preferable. We've conducted numerous BRIGHT STAR exercises there.

    As to capabilities, what's the mission? Occupy the Sudan, secure the citizenry, suppress the janjaweed AND the gov't? All by ourselves? Sorry. No thanks. Really. We're actually rather busy with a couple of projects that we deem more important.

    It's a Euro job, plain and simple. Or Russian.
    I disagree. It is not for Europe or Russia. It should be for Africa to sort out. Should be, but they are inept bunglers who cannot ( or dare not) do it. The only chance for a solution to the problem lies with the UN. Oh dear, poor Darfur.
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    Glyn Reply

    "I disagree. It is not for Europe or Russia. It should be for Africa to sort out. Should be, but they are inept bunglers who cannot ( or dare not) do it."

    I understand your sentiment but the assumption underlying this question is the need for a long term stabilization force. That implies military forces as the peacekeeping component of the operation.

    We're otherwise occupied and not inclined, AFRICOM or not. Africa can't do it beyond their current expression of commitment- African Union peacekeepers. The U.N. can't offer any diplo/political/health/civil engineering/FUNDING to complement a military force.

    Who's that leave? Should the S. Koreans, Chinese, and Japanese rise to the occasion for a continent (Africa) whose refugees from war and despair most threaten the demographic stability of Europe?

    Finally, it seems a perfect opportunity for Europe to take the lead by example and deed in shaping the future of 21st century peacekeeping/stabilization operations- of which there will undoubtably be many.

    Just my thoughts as a voting American citizen.
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    [QUOTE=S-2;413129][B]

    Finally, it seems a perfect opportunity for Europe to take the lead by example and deed in shaping the future of 21st century peacekeeping/stabilization operations- of which there will undoubtably be many.

    Just my thoughts as a voting American citizen.

    I see where you are coming from (as they say in the former Colonies) but you are employing logic, reason and common sense to a political problem. Europe is not the United States of Europe, and how on earth are you going to get over 20 countries and almost as many languages to agree to do something - and then actually do it?
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  12. #12
    Senior Reader Senior Contributor entropy's Avatar
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    Just how much support will the US receive from the international community if they do such a move?

    Besides, I heard something about Somalia here. The only thing one can do with it is to recognize Somaliland. Somalia is a wretched case.

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    [QUOTE=glyn;413155]
    Quote Originally Posted by S-2 View Post
    [B]

    Finally, it seems a perfect opportunity for Europe to take the lead by example and deed in shaping the future of 21st century peacekeeping/stabilization operations- of which there will undoubtably be many.

    Just my thoughts as a voting American citizen.

    I see where you are coming from (as they say in the former Colonies) but you are employing logic, reason and common sense to a political problem. Europe is not the United States of Europe, and how on earth are you going to get over 20 countries and almost as many languages to agree to do something - and then actually do it?
    I'm thinking more in terms of reasonable capability. Politics aside, how difficult would it be for the U.S. military to conduct the operation given it's present deployment levels in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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    Feanor Reply

    Feanor,

    Are you being disingenuous? It appears that you are attempting to have somebody AGREE with you that a unilateral peacekeeping/stabilization mission requiring the occupation of Sudan would be beyond the means of the United States. Yet you've failed to even make the case as to why we would want to, much less provide evidence at our inability to do so. OR WHAT THAT IMPLIES.

    Can you even prove that the African Union would oppose the U.S. doing so? Under whose mandate would this be taken, btw? Our own? The U.N.? Do you believe that this is a mission which we would undertake were it not for our preoccupation with Afghanistan and Iraq? What's wrong with Egypt and Kenya as logistics heads?

    So many questions...
    "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
    "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

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    Quote Originally Posted by S-2 View Post
    Feanor,

    Are you being disingenuous? It appears that you are attempting to have somebody AGREE with you that a unilateral peacekeeping/stabilization mission requiring the occupation of Sudan would be beyond the means of the United States. Yet you've failed to even make the case as to why we would want to, much less provide evidence at our inability to do so. OR WHAT THAT IMPLIES.

    Can you even prove that the African Union would oppose the U.S. doing so? Under whose mandate would this be taken, btw? Our own? The U.N.? Do you believe that this is a mission which we would undertake were it not for our preoccupation with Afghanistan and Iraq? What's wrong with Egypt and Kenya as logistics heads?

    So many questions...
    I'm not making a case, I'm asking for someone to make a case as to whether this would be feasible or not. It seems to me like it wouldn't, but I don't know enough.

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