• Nate

    I’ve been following the Sudan story with sorrow. When the last remaining rationale for invading Iraq is the idea of freeing people from a ruler that was harming his own people, where is the call to help Sudan? If that is the rationale for invasion, where is the call?

    OK, let’s ignore right wing hypocrisy for a moment and rise above partisanship. Why aren’t more Americans concerned about this issue? Why isn’t this a bigger story? There are truly awful things going on over there.

  • http://100freepics.net/207/ Zephyr

    Thanks, Larry, for posting on this. Nate, the best theory I’ve heard about why more people aren’t concerned is television — its largely not on TV, and even when it is (in a great PBS segment) its described first as a health crisis, second as a political one — the guests on the PBS show rightly pointed out that the biggest issue is security, as “refugees” are kept in “camps” which they can’t leave, and are likely to die in, from sickness or starvation.

    So if you know anyone in television…. My own solution for now is to try to raise awareness in the community I know — I’d like to see more discussion on the blogs, for example. Also I recommend you call your reps. Many of them have supported legislation calling this a genocide, but thanking someone doing something right may be ask important as anything, letting your reps know you’re behind them in pushing this forward, that it IS a priority. I’d love to hear other ideas. I’m hopeful that we will do something — but its going to take lots and lots of personal connections.

  • http://www.fallinggrace.com Neil Wehneman

    To answer your question: the media doesn’t cover wars outside of Iraq. Therefore the majority of the populous don’t know what’s going on.

    I don’t have an answer as to why the media chooses not to cover it in detail. Perhaps the American media don’t view a connection between those events and the American people.

    If the current (or future) administration took a stronger position on the issue of Sudan or other African nations, we’d probably have more news coverage.

    I believe Mark Fiore said it best in this Flash cartoon.

    – Neil Wehneman

  • http://www.fallinggrace.com Neil Wehneman

    Slight correction to my post…

    Populace is a noun.

    Populous is an adjective (as well as a great classic computer game).

    Sorry about that.

    – Neil Wehneman

  • http://www.zacker.org Zack Rosen

    We can do something about this. It is completely possible. Maybe not likely. But what else are you going to do? Nothing?

    there are a couple projects I know of under way to try to raise awareness on the issue. One is up:


    check it out. help out.

  • http://foreword.ospreydesign.com Amanda

    It might also be nice to stop genocide in the United States.

  • Alan McCann

    Unnoticed? Blogs have been covering this for over 6 months with almost daily updates. They just don’t happen to be left wing blogs.

    The reason for lack of press coverage – most of the press has only one goal right now: the removal of George Bush because he “lied”.

    Powell recently went to the Sudan and tried diplomatic solutions – little coverage in the press.

    France, ever the defenders of freedom in the world, have publicly stated that they believe this is an internal problem. The UN focuses most of its resolutions on Israel, not on situations like this.

    What do we do? Talking to them doesn’t work. UN action = US action because much of the world has disarmed and is ineffective at dealing with situations like these (see UN/France actions in Rwanda, Ivory Coast)

    What I’m truly surprised at is that the media hasn’t seen this as another opportunity to hit Bush by saying that because we are tied up in Iraq we can’t take care of this.

  • Anonymous

    The reason for lack of press coverage – most of the press has only one goal right now: the removal of George Bush because he �lied�.

    That’s the case with the newspaper where I live. The entire front page every day is covered with a big headline that says “Bush Lied and Should Be Removed From Office”. There is simply no room for stories about Sudan.

    When will people realize that having negative opinions about the decisions made by the president leads to genocide? People just don’t see the truth!

  • Rob

    I was watching an episode of “The West Wing” on Bravo a couple of days ago that dealt with this very topic (not Sudan of course); civil unrest in an African country, and the U.S. response being limited to making sure American citizens got out safely. The question was asked “why do we value American lives more highly than [foreign] lives?” The answer given was “because they’re not Americans.” I think that’s very true. There is a small percentage of people in this country who actually do value lives of all people in all nations equally highly and are willing to offer their support to ending tragedies like Sudan and Somalia; the rest either don’t feel that strongly or actively don’t care about people who are irrelevant to American interests. The media merely reflect this general disinterest in what goes on in pathetic little countries outside our borders.

    Nate knows the answers to his own questions. I believe Iraq was fought as an attempt to show the Muslim world that we can strike anywhere in the world we want with overwhelming force, in the belief that that would cow them into not supporting terrorism and threatening our oil supplies. It was an exercise in power, not really fought over WMD or to topple Saddam or even to install democracy in a country where people can’t even spell it; those were all just excuses used to create and sustain a pretext for invasion.

    Even if Sudan were front-page news like the ethnic cleansing in the Balkans, there would not be sufficient support for military action to end it. There was barely enough support for us to intervene in the Balkans, which was a European disaster and therefore much closer to our interests, and in Haiti which is just next door. There was no support for our action in Somalia when it got a little ugly, there was no support for action in Rwanda, little support for action in Liberia (and then only on a small scale, just protect Americans); and those were all widely-reported situations. So it should be no surprise that given the lack of news coverage on Sudan that there is no prospect of Americans supporting military intervention. At base, most of us just don’t care about those people. It’s sad but true.

  • ruian1983

    I think we are all born to be equal !
    Your America have no right to intervene other countries’ own
    affair,especially when yourself is no better than others.
    People right is not in a good situation in America,but you American government publish a book saying that which country is what what !

  • Sharon Prentice

    should be “our” doing — possessive form for gerund (verb form used as noun)
    I’m sorry — I couldn’t help myself