Monday, July 24, 2006

The Disarming Facts

Dave Kopel has a good article discussing the gun bans and the effects in places like the Sudan:

The Darfuris are Muslims, but like the majority of Sudan’s population, they are black Africans, in contrast to the Arabs who control the government.

The foundation of Sudan’s genocide is, as with almost every other genocide in world history, the disarmament of the victims.

In Sudan, it is virtually impossible for an average citizen to lawfully acquire and possess the means for self-defense. According to the national gun-control statutes, a gun licensee must be over 30 years of age, must have a specified social and economic status, and must be examined physically by a doctor. Females have even more difficulty meeting these requirements because of social and occupational limitations.

When these restrictions are finally overcome, there are additional restrictions on the amount of ammunition one may possess, making it nearly impossible for a law-abiding gun owner to achieve proficiency with firearms. A handgun owner, for example, can only purchase 15 rounds of ammunition a year. The penalties for violation of Sudan's firearms laws are severe, and can include capital punishment.

The practical application of the gun laws is different. If you are someone the government wants to slaughter—such as all the black Africans of southern and western Sudan, regardless of their religion—then you are absolutely forbidden to possess a firearm. A U.S. Department of State document notes: “After President Bashir seized power in 1989, the new government disarmed non-Arab ethnic groups but allowed politically loyal Arab allies to keep their weapons.”

On the other hand, if you’re an Arab who wants to kill blacks, then Sudan’s gun control laws became awfully loose. In Darfur, there has been a long rivalry between camel-riding Arab nomads and black African pastoralists. The Arabs consider the blacks to be racially inferior, and fit only for slavery. In Darfur Rising, the International Crisis Group explains: “Beginning in the mid-1980s, successive governments in Khartoum inflamed matters by supporting and arming the Arab tribes, in part to prevent the southern rebels from gaining a foothold in the region….Arabs formed militias, burned African villages, and killed thousands. Africans in turn formed self-defense groups, members of which eventually became the first Darfur insurgents to appear in 2003.”


An illustration of what happens when the power imbalance between the government and the people is too great.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting site. Useful information. Bookmarked.
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8/12/2006 1:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great site lots of usefull infomation here.
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8/17/2006 5:57 PM  

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