15 FEBRUARY 2012


With a done deal on South Sudan by the "Two Generals," President Bashir could now breathe easier in Khartoum and the U.S. Obama Administration could claim an accomplishment, particularly for African Americans. As to International Court Prosecutor General, who used to make headlines on his threats to take the Sudanese President to court, he is well on his way back to Buenos Aires where he may update his Tango, where it takes two to dance. Ambassador Susan Rice, a stalwart of impunity by the Court has suddenly kept her distance from the subject, since personally meeting the accused senior officials at the celebration anointing Silva Kir as Southern President of the 193rd U.N. member state.

In fact, since then, officials formally accused by Senior Ocampo have found available seats at U.N. helicopters, of course mainly in the interest of facilitating appropriate Peacekeeping.

The next question will be: what happens in Darfur?

Remember Darfur. The whole international community was up in arms against what was going on there. Security Council sessions gave unprecedented access to witnesses, advocates, and self-promoting movie stars to come and highlight it. However, gradually, carefully, all that seems to be fading out. To begin with, the main opposition party leader was recently found dead: killed in battle or from overwhelming sorrow -- no news media seemed interested to really find out. Within the neighborhood, Qaddafi -- the self-appointed mediator -- was gone and the other more reluctant player, Idriss Deby, 60 year old President of close-by Chad, is very busy with his new 27 year old bride. Should you wonder, her name is Amani Hilal. Yes, she is the daughter of Mousa Hilal, leader of the famous -- or infamous -- Janjaweed militant force accused of Darfur's main atrocities. A celebration was held late January in Sudan's capital under the auspices of an eminent Sheikh of the Tijani sect who came from Algiers. The bridegroom, who did not show up, sent someone to sign on his behalf named Abdallah Bangie. President Bashir was there and, of course, the bride's father.

Let us then speculate on the next phase on Darfur.

There would be more attacks picking on UNAMID soldiers there, one or two at a time. Nigerians, the largest contingent, would bear most of the losses, particularly as they become more vulnerable with Boko Haram's disruptive actions. The attacks, by "unidentified elements," will be condemned in the strongest terms as investigations will be required immediately. Accusations will be leveled by all parties at all parties, but no real action would be taken. Ms. Fatou Bensouda, Ocampo's successor from Gambia, will find other more pressing issues to pursue. So will the Security Council, except for a dutiful briefing every now and then, perhaps when Hilde Johnson submits a heart throbbing report on the agonies of the South. Issues on other parts of Sudan and disputes like on mineral resources, may crop up depending on who seeks to change the goal posts of the done deal.

Meanwhile, George Clooney will find another cause to pursue, perhaps in partnership with the Dalai Lama, and Qatar will continue to discreetly hand out cash envelopes to all concerned.