Learn About Darfur
The current crisis in Darfur, a region of Western Sudan the size of Texas or France, began in 2003. After decades of neglect, drought, oppression and small-scale conflicts in Darfur, two rebel groups mounted a challenge to Sudan’s president, Omar al-Bashir. These groups represent agrarian farmers who are mostly non-Arab black African Muslims from a number of different tribes. President al-Bashir’s response was brutal. In seeking to defeat the rebel movements, the Government of Sudan increased arms and support to local tribal and other militias, which have come to be known as the Janjaweed. Their members are composed mostly of Arab black African Muslims who herd cattle, camels, and other livestock. They have wiped out entire villages, destroyed food and water supplies, and systematically murdered, tortured, and raped hundreds of thousands of Darfurians. These attacks occur with the direct support of the Government of Sudan’s armed forces.
Ahmed Adam is in the second grade. When he was just five years old, his uncle was killed in an attack on their village. The one thing he remembers about that day is the fear he saw in his elders and his parents, a fear that he did not expect from his protectors. Over eight people were killed that day. Luckily, after the attacks, him and his family were able to escape to Jabal Mastaria. For three weeks they stayed on that mountain until they were finally able to make their way to the Mastaria valley where many other villages had gathered.
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and Google Earth have teamed up to show actual images from the destruction on the ground in Darfur.
Athletes: Ready to join Team Darfur? Click here!