Condoleezza has “Real Regrets” about Darfur

US Secretary of State Rice

In an interview with the NY Times this week, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice expressed “real regrets” about the way her country and the world has handled the Darfur atrocities.

The US officially deemed the crisis in Darfur a “genocide” in 2004. However, no immediate further action was taken. Whether the country really believed a simple label would end the violence or whether taking the next step was not determined to be in its best interest has been widely debated.

Rice referred to the failure by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to do more as an “enormous embarrassment” and that the proclaimed “responsibility to protect” was “nothing but words”.

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Al-Bashir Scoffs at ICC and Western Countries

Omar Al-Bashir

Omar Al-Bashir

In July 2008, an arrest warrant was issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for Sudanese president Al-Bashir, alleging crimes against humanity, murder, and genocide.

So is Al-Bashir shaking in his boots at the thought of his potential punishment?

The answer to this question is a resounding NO. At a rally held this week, Al-Bashir discounted the actions of the ICC as nothing more than “mosquito buzz”.

He further dismissed pressure from Western countries (particularly the US, France, and UK), asserting that such countries were “under his shoes”.

Al-Bashir’s statement is one of utmost insult, as in the Arabic culture, shoes are a symbol for ultimate filth and impurity. The statement is also intriguing considering the Sudanese government hired a UK law firm this week to represent it in front of the ICC.