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joe emersberger

Joined: 24 Jan 2004
Posts: 513
Location: Windsor, Onatrio, Canada

Post Post subject: to economist re Sudan Reply with quote

In your May 13 article on Sudan (Fleeing the horsemen who kill for Khartoum) you state that in 1998 "President Bill Clinton bombed a Sudanese factory he said was producing nerve gas, but which may have been making aspirin"

You have trivialized an appalling atrocity. Your statement doesn't even make clear that Clinton's allegations were completely discredited years ago.

Jonathan Belke, regional director of the Near East Foundation, who had field experience in Sudan, reported in the Boston Globe that the plant supplied 90% of Sudan's major pharmaceutical products. According to Belke tens of thousands of people may have died as an indirect result of Clinton's attack (Boston Globe, Aug 22, 1999).

How many people would die in a wealthy country like Britain if production of its major pharmaceutical products were abruptly halted?

Kenneth Roth, the executive director of Human Rights Watch, wrote a letter to Clinton weeks after the bombing informing Clinton of other indirect consequences:
"....we wish to draw your attention once more to the famine gripping southern Sudan, where the U.N. estimates that 2.4 million people are at risk of starvation. Unfortunately for this devastated population, the U.S. bombing has had the unintended effect of leading to a disruption in assistance. For instance, all U.N. agencies based in Khartoum have evacuated their American staff, as have many other relief organizations. As a result, many relief efforts have been postponed indefinitely, including a crucial one run by the U.S.-based International Rescue Committee in the government garrison town of Wau in southern Sudan, where more than fifty southerners are dying daily. We urge you to remain mindful of this terrible crisis as you continue to assess U.S. policy in Sudan."

Westerners are constantly shielded from the truth about their governments' crimes. Little wonder that Bush, Rumsfeld and their underlings at Abu Ghraib felt they could get away with anything.


Joe Emersberger
Sun May 23, 2004 3:34 pm
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