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Essay: The genocide of Darfur

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  • Subject area(s): History essays
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  • Published: 4 June 2022*
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  • Words: 1,004 (approx)
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  • Tags: Genocide essays

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How would you feel to be without a home, family, and basic needs? What about having to struggle everyday just to live your life? If that is not bad enough, imagine being in a constant state of danger. The genocide of Darfur is rooted in decades of conflict and has lasting effects on the community that have resulted in an unstable environment. “The Sudanese armed forces and Sudanese government-backed militia known as Janjaweed have been fighting two rebel groups in Darfur, the Sudanese Liberation Army/Movement (SLA/SLM) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM),”(www.international.ucla).

The first civil war ended in 1972 but broke out again in 1983. This is what really initiated the genocide. However, the genocide escalated and was credited for starting in February of 2003. It was considered to be the first genocide of the 21st century. “The terrible genocide began after rebels, led mainly by non-Arab Muslim sedentary tribes, including the Fur and Zaghawa, from the region, rose against the government.”(www.jww). “This genocide is the current mass slaughter and rape of Darfuri men, women, and children in western sudan.” (www.worldwithoutgenocide). Unrest and violence continue today. The group that is carrying out the genocide is the Janjaweed . They have destroyed those in Darfur by “burning villages, looting economic resources, polluting water sources, and murdering, raping, and torturing civilians.”(www.worldwithoutgenocide).

Believe it or not, this genocide is still going on today. As a result, Darfur is now facing very great long term challenges and will never be the same. There are millions of displaced people who depend on refugee camps. However, at this point these camps are not much a source of refuge, but more so a danger themselves. The cause of this is severe overcrowding. (3). It is often unsafe for anyone to leave the camps. Women who would normally go in search of firewood cannot anymore because they may end up being attacked and raped by the Janjaweed militias (www.hmd). The statistics of this genocide show how bad it really is. Since 2003 when it began, it has accumulated over 360,000 Darfur refugees in Chad, been the cause of death for over 400,000 people, and has affected 3 million people in some way. (www.jjw) On top of that, more than 2.8 million people have been displaced (www.worldwithoutgenocide). An interview that was taken suggests that 61% of the respondents had witnessed the killing of one of their family members. In addition, 400 of Darfur’s villages have been wiped out and completely destroyed (www.borgenproject). To prove that this is a real problem, here is a personal experience. “Agnes Oswaha grew up as part of the ethnic Christian minority in Sudan’s volatile capital of Khartoum. In 1998, Agnes immigrated to the United States, specifically to Seattle. She has now become an outspoken advocate for action against the atrocities occurring in Darfur” (www.holocaustcenterseattle). Agnes has used her struggles to inspire others. She is a prime example that you can make something good out of something so devastating and wrong.

There are many help groups that are working to inform people about this problem. The two that I am going to highlight are the Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) and the Save Darfur Coalition. The first group, or the Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) is an anti-atrocities nonprofit organization that is led by women. They envision a world with justice for all, equal rights, and the respect for human dignity. They provide the people of Darfur with access to tools that will allow them to oppose violence. This group also addresses massive human rights abuses in their societies and works with others to prevent future atrocities. They do this all while promoting global peace. Along with that, they ask us to speak out and spread the word. Their ultimate goal is to bring this horrific situation to the attention of the world to end it for good (www.darfurwomenaction). The next help group is the Save Darfur Coalition. They have helped develop strategies and advocate for diplomacy to encourage peace.They have also helped conquer the deployment of peacekeeping forces in Darfur. Because of them, there have been billions of dollars in U.S. funding for humanitarian support. Violence against women has been used as a weapon of genocide and because of them, the awareness in Congress of this issue has grown (www.pbs).

As Americans, we can do many things to stop this issue. First, we must put aside domestic politics and help those even if they are not a part of our country. The growing genocide in Darfur is not a partisan issue but one that strecthes across a wide variety of constituencies, or bodys of voters and supporters. Some of these include religious, human rights, humanitarian, medical, and legal communities. All of these, and some others, are advocating a pugnacious worldwide response to the crisis (www.wagingpeace).

The genocide of Darfur is atrocious. It is rooted in decades of conflict and has lasting effects on the community of Darfur. This conflict has resulted in an unstable environment for all those who belong to the country of Sudan. It has made normal people live in fear every day. Millions of people are affected, and 2.8 million displaced people. Also, 400,000 innocent people have been killed. This is all because of the actions of the Janjaweed gang. This genocide is an overall horrendous thing that is actually going on in the world around us. There is much that can be done to help, but can we, being in the good situations that we are in, take time out of our own lives to think about those who really need our help? Do we care enough to spend time and money on people we don’t even know? If we choose to do so, we could be making a huge difference in the lives of people. Even though they might live across the world from us and live very different lives than us, they are very similar to us in many ways.

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