Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

AN INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER SERVING THE GW COMMUNITY SINCE 1904

The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

NEWSLETTER
Sign up for our twice-weekly newsletter!

Crime log: Subject barred after shoplifting at bookstore
By Max Porter, Contributing News Editor • February 26, 2024

Perspective: Sudan deserves your advocacy

The people of Sudan are suffering. Yet it seems nobody is talking about it.

Six months of war have forcibly displaced millions of Sudanese people from their homes, with thousands of people killed and many more injured. But the people of countries like Sudan are more than statistics or case studies to be analyzed in class — each person killed, injured or displaced was a real person, someone with a life and a family who needs help.

When I traveled to Sudan to visit family in 2021, people of all ages from different tribes and regions of Sudan came together to fight against military rule and for a civilian government. I witnessed the protests of the Sudanese Revolution and can affirm that the citizens of Sudan need real change. 

The current conflict began when a peaceful transfer of power to a civilian government failed. The Sudan Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces, a militia group also known as the Janjaweed, started fighting over authoritarian control of the country. The RSF, which was formerly funded by the government, is responsible for the genocide in Darfur, a western region of Sudan. The Sudan Armed Forces, the military wing of the government, has seized power of the country for months after the revolution. Neither group supports the establishment of a civilian government and continues to disregard the livelihoods of the citizens. 

The violence in Sudan is causing one of the largest humanitarian crises in decades. Airports, hospitals and schools are all being targeted by bombing and turbulent raids. Violence in recent weeks has increased in Darfur, where the RSF is looting, assaulting and killing civilians. More than 24 million people are facing hunger and the country is on a brink of a mass cholera outbreak. And more than 19 million children are out of school, setting up Sudan for the worst education crisis in the world.

The people of Sudan are suffering. Yet it seems nobody is talking about it.

Every human rights crisis around the world deserves the awareness and pressure of the international community, including Sudan. But the country has been overlooked: Aid is dwindling, and Sudan is in desperate need of the global community’s support and action.

Major U.S. news outlets like the Washington Post rarely shed light on crises in African countries. The Post has published 547 articles in the past year mentioning Sudan, compared to 568 articles mentioning Israel in the past month and 422 articles mentioning Ukraine in the past 90 days.

Despite priding itself on its international involvement, the GW community rarely gives the Sudanese conflict — let alone Africa — the time of day. One of my professors called Sudan a “basket-case country” during a time when people, including my own family, were forced to flee the country and leave their entire livelihood. Using phrases like “basket case” or “third-world country” to describe African countries only further perpetuates the idea that there is no helping or improving the issues of non-Western countries. GW as an institution cannot claim to promote the creation of global citizens while disregarding discourse about African countries. The University should not only promote discourse and awareness for African countries but also create those spaces. 

I should not have to tell you the stories of my own family in order to humanize the Sudanese people, to persuade you to care. Instead, I urge you to use your voices and resources to create change. Do not let Sudan suffer further in a silent genocide. Educate yourself and become aware of the catastrophes occurring around the globe, not just those the Western media is covering.

I also urge you to take action: Donate and contact your representatives — thoughts and prayers only go so far. The UN Refugee Agency and Sudan’s Children Emergency Fund allocate funds to those displaced by the conflict. The UN Sudanese Humanitarian Crisis Fund and Islamic Relief USA for Sudan respond to the needs of those still in the country, and Doctors Without Borders for Sudan provides emergency medical care. Each organization could use your help.

Black and brown people deserve your protection and advocacy — Sudan deserves your advocacy.

Rowa Nawari, a first-year majoring in international affairs, is an opinions writer.

More to Discover
Donate to The GW Hatchet