AFRICANS FALL INTO OIC TRAP
The Organization of Islamic Countries (OIC) is meeting in Dakar. African countries hope kow towing to rich Arab would help them secure Arab money. They argues that there should not be poor and rich Muslim countries. They should all share and share alike. Not an easy proposition in the best of times. But inter Muslim conflict such as the one between Sudan and Chad are particularly embarassing:
The meeting, however, started on a sour note as Chad accused its neighbour and fellow OIC member Sudan of launching a rebel attack across its border.
"The Chadian government informs national and international opinion that Sudan on Wednesday March 12, 2008 launched several heavily armed columns against Chad," an official statement released in the Chadian capital N'Djamena said.
It was a major embarrassment for Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade who had billed the summit as the opportunity for a definitive peace deal between the two oil-producing states, after five previous agreements had collapsed.
A deal seemed unlikely after Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir failed to turn up to a meeting with Chadian leader Idriss Deby late on Wednesday, leaving U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, called as witness, waiting for nearly three hours.
Then they are stuck with the question of which countries are Muslim enough to join:
Some members are pushing to make OIC membership conditional on a state having a"majority" Muslim population, but this has been resisted by mixed-religion nations like Uganda.
Pakistan was also insisting the new charter should make potential members resolve their conflicts with existing members before being allowed to adhere -- reflecting its long-running dispute with neighbour India over the Kashmir region.
Also, too many big shots stayed home:
With several prominent leaders not present -- from Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah to Libya's Muammar Gaddafi and Pakistan's Pervez Musharraf -- some delegates had called for a decision on the charter to be postponed until a Cairo summit in three years.
Well, delay has always worked before. In the meantime they can do what they have so successfully done before. It is always easy to unit with UN support against the perennial fall country, Israel:
"UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon . . . said Israel had employed"inappropriate and disproportionate use of force" in its renewed attacks on the Palestinian territories and called for an immediate ceasefire by both sides.
Highlighting the deaths of women and children in the Israeli attacks he said,"I condemn these acts and call on Israel to cease them" in his speech to the Organisation of the Islamic Conference summit.
OIC head, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, even called "for Israelis to be tried by an international war crimes court for"heinous" attacks against Palestinians:"
"The situation in Palestine remains deplorable due to the successive crises fabricated by Israel to stall the peace process and to thwart the many peace plans and initiatives proposed by the international community," he said.
"It has become indispensable that these aggressions and heinous crimes be officially documented and their perpetrators be brought before international justice designed for these kind of acts ... such as the International Criminal Court."
Nor had the OIC trouble condemning Western Islamophobia nor indirectly threatening"Islamophobic" Netherlands:
The Netherlands comes under fire for its attitude towards Islam in a report by a monitoring committee of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), Dutch paper De Volkskrant reported Thursday.
The Islamophobia Monitor, the first ever such report by the OIC,will be discussed by the 57 OIC member states at a summit in Senegal Thursday.
In the report, which covers the period from May 2007 to March 2008, the Netherlands stands out in a negative sense.
The OIC has informed Dutch Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen that the soon-to-be-released film by Dutch right-wing lawmaker Geert Wilders will have"serious repercussions which could get out of hand and will be difficult to control," the paper said.
After all, no one knows better than Muslims leaders how to sell the idea that"infidels" are responsible for the miserable existence of the Muslim populations. They have been doing it for centuries.
Pity the Africans who trust rich Arab states to lift them from poverty for they will never get closer to the promised land.
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