Chad: A Little Hell On Earth

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June 18, 2006: Southeastern Chad has become a war zone. Local bandits and Sudanese militias are roaming around attacking Chadian villages, and refugee camps full of Sudanese. It's gotten so bad that about 10,000 Chad civilians have fled into Sudan to get away from the violence. The army is too inept, or corrupt, to deal with the situation. The Sudanese refugees are demanding that the UN bring in peacekeepers, but no UN members are in a hurry to contribute peacekeepers for this out-of-the-way hell hole.

June 14, 2006: Corrupt soldiers on the Sudanese border have led to nearly 30 UN vehicles being stolen in the last six months. The distinctive white vehicles must get past several army check points after they are stolen, and that can only be done if Chadian soldiers are doing the stealing, or taking bribes to let the thieves pass into Sudan, where the vehicles can be repainted and resold. The threat of car-jacking has limited the movement of UN staff. Without an armed escort, UN vehicles are too vulnerable to the many bandits prowling the border area.

June 11, 2006: President Deby is trying to make peace with his internal opposition, and Sudan. Deby is weak, but strong enough to hold off his enemies for a while. Deby can make deals with the new oil wealth Chad has acquired, and given his past performance, he may pull it off.

 

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