The main obstacle to a
peacekeeping force in Chad and western Sudan appears to be Libya, and its
unstable dictator, Muammar Kadhafi. Libya has long been involved in Chadian
politics, providing guns and money for pro-Libyan tribes. In the 1980s, Libya
even sent troops into Chad, but these were quickly defeated by Chadian
tribesmen. This is a humiliation that Kadhafi has never forgotten. But,
mainly, Kadhafi simply doesn't want Western peacekeepers in his backyard.
Too many Westerners speaking to too many of the locals will discover too many
stories of Libyan meddling in the area. Libya can influence the leaders of
Sudan and Chad by reminding them of Libyas ability to stir up trouble by
supporting rebels. Libya has been doing this for decades, and it is no idle
April 10, 2007: Chad apologized for fighting
Sudanese army troops in Sudan, but insisted it was unintentional, as Chadian
forces were pursuing tribal rebels, and the Sudanese army forces seemed to be
working with the raiders.
April 6, 2007: Chadian forces, pursuing the
Sudanese tribal raiders who had earlier torched villages in Chad, entered
Sudan. A Chadian helicopter was used to help track the Sudanese raiders. There
were several skirmishes between the Chadian and Sudanese forces. In some cases,
Sudanese army troops came to the aid of the Sudanese tribal raiders returning
April 2, 2007: Over the weekend, Sudanese raiders
attacked several towns in Chad, killing and wounding nearly a thousand. It was
later discovered that over three hundred had died. Nearly ten thousand
survivors fled towards refugee camps. Such violent attacks have not been seen
since last Fall, and the peace deal between Chad and Sudan was supposed to have
ended this kind of violence. Survivors report that some of the raiders were
Chadian, confirming rumors of Chadian tribes getting support from Sudan. In
some cases, tribes have people on both sides of the border, and the tribe goes
to war irrespective of nationality.
March 27, 2007: For the first time since
January, Sudanese transports dropped bombs on a town in Chad. There were no
dead, several wounded, and thousands of eye witnesses. Chad protested, says
that this broke the ceasefire with Sudan.
March 26, 2007: There are now over 400,000
refugees (234,000 Sudanese, 48,000 Central Africans and some 120,000
Chadians) in Chads border areas. There is no one to protect them, and the camps
are subject to increasing attacks by bandits, rebels from Chad and Darfur, as
well as government supported forces from Chad and Sudan. Much of the
violence springs from ancient tribal feuds, which are being exploited by the
Sudanese and Chadian governments. The governments have given loyal tribes
weapons, vehicles and a license to kill with impunity.