For the past few weeks, Sudan has been slowly and silently crumbling to the ashes and mass media looks on, feigning ignorance. There has been little to no coverage of what is happening on the ground in Sudan and with the recent pulling of United Nations staff from the country, the Sudanese people are left wondering if anyone can hear their cries for help.
But what happened, and how did this massacre start? You may have heard of peaceful protests, but what happened beyond that? The death toll is surpassing 500, women and children are being systematically raped, family homes are entered by brute force and civilians are fired upon openly with no reason. Blood is being shed and on top of that, there is a country-wide internet blockade that prevents anyone in Sudan to go online. The militia is running a tight knit dictatorship that is built upon silencing the masses with bullets and internet barricades.
Let’s take a look at the time line of events so far. Without going into too much detail:
It is December 2018 and Omar Al-Bashir is and has been the President of Sudan since 1989. For the past 30 years, he has ran a dictatorship. It was in December that the government started making cuts to bread and fuel and increased the price of food and other goods. The anger and frustration that people in Sudan were feeling catalyzed a national protest movement that was spearheaded in the capital, Khartoum. Whilst the protests were initially cemented to call for fair prices of goods around the country, they became to stand for so much more. The entire country, regardless of class or religion, came together and began protesting for the removal of Omar Al-Bashir from his presidency. People wanted justice. They wanted democracy.
Fast forward to April 2019, the protests have been gaining momentum. The demonstrators pushed the army to force Bashir out of government, and eventually, this happens.
Since his removal however, Sudan has been controlled by a militia. It was decided between the military and the protestors that Sudan would have a transitional government for two years, and it would be led by Transitional Military Council until a new leader is elected.
Instead, on June 3rd 2019, innocent demonstrators began being shot by the Rapid Support Forces militia (RSF) or Janjaweed outside the military’s headquarters in Khartoum. Over 100 people died and more than 650 people were injured. Dozens upon dozens of corpses were being fished out of the River Nile as RSF tried to cover up the genocide. The security forces began their rampage and scrapped the three year deal. Instead, they said there would be elections that would take place in a few months.
View this post on Instagram
Man, what tribulations affect us during these times. Imagine, it’s 2019 and yet we still bleed for bread and freedom. It’s truly upsetting, but it’s a necessary struggle that is upon the people’s shoulders to overcome. I believe in them. I believe in us. I’ve seen many comparisons of the lacklustre coverage Sudan has received compared to the Notre Dame, and before anyone gets upset at that comparison, allow me to give you a Muslim perspective. Islamically, the spilling of an innocent Muslim’s blood – even a single drop – is harder on Allah than the destruction of the most holy site in Islam – the Kabah. What does this mean? This means that if the Kabah is destroyed or damaged, it is better than the spilling of an innocent Muslim’s blood. So before someone tries to be clever and “liberate” me from my beliefs, I was liberated 1400 years before I was born. If an Islamic landmark was burning instead of the Notre Dame I would still scream louder for the people in Christchurch and Sudan. If you ever see a Muslim counterpart acting in the opposite way, now you have the knowledge to pattern them up. I got you. This isn’t about who is better than who, this is about human life and how we sometimes fail to see the significance of it. May The Almighty give strength to the people of Sudan. May we see a world where injustice and oppression are extinguished before they get a chance to burn. #IAmTheSudanRevolution #IAmTheSudaneseRevolution #HoodIntellectuals #TheMarathonContinues
And now, at this exact moment in time, the situation has gotten much worse. Innocent people are still being shot and killed. Women and children are being raped. The military is forcefully entering people’s homes and opening fire. Hospitals are being targeted. Doctors are being murdered and shot so that they cannot save the lives of those who have been injured. People are being shot on the streets. Those who carry their injured loved ones to the hospital rarely make it because the RSF shoots them all down.
Where is the same international outcry when an empty French building caught fire? Where are the #PrayForSudan posts from social media influencers? Why are people not giving the same amount of attention to this instance? When innocent people are being butchered in their own homes just because they wanted freedom, democracy, and justice?
“‘If two men in a world of more than 7 billion people can provide €300million to restore Notre Dame, within six hours, then there is enough money in the world to feed every mouth, shelter every family and educate every child. The failure to do so is a matter of will, and a matter of system.
The failure to do so comes from our failure to recognise the mundane emergencies that claims lives all around us every single day. Works of art and architectural history and beauty rely on the ingenuity of people, and it is people who must be protected above all else.
Brick and mortar and stained-glass might burn, but they do not bleed, and they do not starve, and they do not suffer. Humans suffer. Everywhere in the world, from Paris to Persepolis, people are suffering. But their suffering is every day. It does not light up a front page, and it does not inspire immediate donations from the world’s wealthiest men.’ Yes it’s tragic what happened with Notre Dame, but I really do struggle to sympathize when that same sentiment let alone focus isn’t given to others in their struggles, especially in the global south.
There’s quite literally a revolution going on in #sudan . But how many of us care, how many of us know why this is happening? Why aren’t we moved to do more? Why are hundreds of thousands taking to the streets, why after thirty years of dictatorship is this happening now? Why has the janjaweed started to violenty attack peaceful protestors now? Look for the answers, reach out and think critically.
And yet even more so, how can we help? Why do we remain silent? Why are we conditioned to not care let alone spare a thought in such instances vs others? And I ask this of my self before anyone else- how do we decolonize our minds and thought processes in order to remove the Eurocentric lenses in which we are subjugated to view the world?” – dialectichiphop
What can you do?
- There has been a recent social media campaign to change your display picture to this shade of blue to commemorate the life of Mohamed Hashim Matter, a man who died shielding two women during the militia attack.
View this post on Instagram
This man was shot and killed as he was trying to protect and shield two women from gun fire by armed forced. This man is a hero! This man should be all over social media! . His name? His name is Mohamed Hashim Matter. If you're wondering why everyone is changing their profile pictures to blue (scroll right) it is because this is his favorite color.This photo of his birthday party was two hours before he was killed. Mohamed, may you rest in the heavens above my brother. If you don't know this story or your friends do not, now is the time to inform. I don't have the biggest voice on here, but we all need to do our part. I have very little to give to these people at the moment, but spreading their voice is one I and WE have. If you don't know what's going on in Sudan, look it up. They have been silenced so it's up to us. So don't just scroll. Tag. Share. Spread. INFORM! #hero #sudan #africa #wakeup #share #spread #instapic #instagram #uprising #words #tag #peace
- Educate yourself and your friends and family. You have the luxury of social media, of networks that are not severed. Use them. Spread the people of Sudan’s story like wild fire. They still cannot access the internet and are silenced. We can amplify their voices. Post on your social media, talk to those in your circle. Learn more about what is happening.
- Donate! Make sure that the source is reliable. The following are tried and tested donation outlets. You can be certain your money is going to the people in Sudan that need it.
- Pray for Sudan. Dua is a powerful tool. Be sincere in your prayer and ask Allah s.w.t. to grant our brothers and sisters justice, peace, freedom, and a glorious victory, inshaAllah.