26 April 2012

Why is media coverage of the Sudan conflict so biased?

Eric Reeves argues that it is about Abyei and a lack of attention to (recent) history:
Some of the confusion in international reporting comes from a failure to follow the course of the dispute over the Abyei border region, which Khartoum seized a year ago. Following Khartoum’s military assault on Abyei town in May 2008, the southern leadership---convinced that the matter could not be resolved militarily---concluded that "final and binding" arbitration of the Abyei border issue was essential, and succeeded in bringing the matter before the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in the Hague. Though in many ways unfavorable to Juba, the PCA ruling was nonetheless accepted. Khartoum’s land grab last year flouted the court’s "final and binding" ruling, issued in July 2009, which defined the area in which the critical Abyei self-determination referendum was to be held. This abrogation of a key protocol called into serious question Khartoum’s commitment to honor the CPA.
Any other ideas?

Don't get me wrong, Sudan is complicated. I have trouble keeping track of all of the issues.

His conclusion is pretty depressing reading:
If there is to be a chance of peace, the factitious parceling out of equal blame to Juba and Khartoum must end. To be sure, the odds of changing this decades-long pattern seem exceedingly small next to the likelihood of war 
... 
In all likelihood, none of these measures [required for peace] will be taken, with Khartoum’s obduracy used to justify diplomatic fecklessness. But the responsibility for that war will not be Khartoum’s alone. It will be shared by the international leaders who chose the expedient route, even with millions of lives at risk.

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