Now that we have completed the festivities of the transition from one year to the next, we might want to reflect on what has been happening in Sudan before, during and now after our celebrations.
The violent attacks on Black Africans by the Arabized clique in Khartoum have continued unabated in the most racialized war of the current era. More than 3 million people have been killed in what has to be called a genocide of the most vicious type. If one looks at the deaths in Darfur, the assault on the Nuba Mountains, the Blue Nile, the Beja and South Kordafan are nothing if not an attempt to bring into existence a Sudan devoid of African people.
What must be done for us to see this genocide for what it is? It is as if the holocaust is happening in front of us and we are so deaf and dumb and hardened that we cannot understand the racist attacks on the African people. Humans easily forget or ignore the destruction of others if it is not their own people. This is why we had the rape of the Americas by the Europeans. Now we can all say that at one time there were Native Americas in this or that American nation, but at the time they were being eliminated from their historical lands, few people raised their voices. I must raise my voice against this violation of human rights going on in the African continent. There may be reasons for our apathy, but those reasons pale against the background of constant destruction of Africans’ lives and lands.
I am asking the political leaders of the U.S. Congress to take leadership in the discourse against rampant assaults on the people and culture of Africa by those intent on imposing Arab culture and control over the historical lands of Black people. If this is not a racist war, then there has never been a racist war. What we are seeing everyday is the machine—an astute, diabolical machine that has learned how to confuse white and Black Americans.
Let me tell you how this works. They have learned the psychology of America by looking at how Americans see race and color. The perpetrators of Arabism have used American sensibilities and attitudes about race to advance their agendas against the Black people of Africa. Here is how it works. Most Americans see Blackness and whiteness in the historic legal sense, that any person in America with one drop of African blood is often called Black or African. This is an unscientific way of viewing race or color.
The Sudanese Arabs know this American idea. So when they approach American political leaders, they can guarantee that those political leaders will look at them as Black because their skin is darker than many African-Americans. These Arabs will even say to American members of Congress, Black and white, that they cannot be racist because they, too, are Black. This is a sinister argument.
Knowing that white Americans and Black Americans have little understanding of the dynamics in Sudanese society, the perpetrators of a greater Arabia in Sudan turn the American racial politics upside down. This is why we cannot get any traction in our country against the racism that is practiced in Sudan.
Thousands have been killed and are being killed simply because they do not want to be Arabs. The Nubians, Nuba, Blue Nile people, Darfur people, Beja, Dinka and Nuer, as well as scores of other African groups, are being marginalized in their own lands. The death toll is more than 3 million people over the decades of the war in that country.
Sudan is not experiencing a religious war. It is experiencing a war of aggression based on race and culture. If the Arabs are able to unseat the legitimate owners of the land from their places in the country, they will be able to exercise complete authority as a colonial force to remove Africans from their homeland. We must say no to Arab colonization of Africa.
Because of its weakness, the African Union has not been able to do anything concretely to prevent the Arab conquest of African lands. Arabs are not indigenous to Africa; they are like the Europeans who were in Africa in charge of South Africa. The Arab idea of controlling Africans is like the white minority regime’s idea was in South Africa. They believe that they are superior to Black people and that they have a right to rule over them.
Certainly, people should be free to live in any society, but no humans should ever condone the crushing and killing of the original owners of the land as in Sudan. This is genocide. There is no other word for it, yet the United Nations and the African Union have acted as if they cannot do anything to relieve the situation in Sudan.
What I say is, “Black lives matter everywhere, even in Africa!” We cannot and should not be silent about the Arab attacks on Black Africans in Sudan. This war is the war that has led to many of the other battles throughout the continent. We know that it is not religious because the Arabs have attacked African Muslims and the Boko Haram attack African Muslims. It is about the imposition of Arab culture, influence and philosophy over Africa.
It is time for a righteous uprising against all forms of human oppression. Omar al-Bashir’s regime in Sudan has been one of the worst on the continent for continuing to persecute and humiliate those who simply want a free and democratic Sudan. Let the 85 percent of the people of Sudan vote and the regime would be ousted immediately. Let’s save Nubia, the Blue Nile, the Nuba Mountains and all the people of Sudan. Let the United States step up to the plate and counter the actions of the al-Bashir regime.
Molefi Kete Asante is the most published contemporary African-American author. His book “The History of Africa” is a standard in the field.