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Thread: Climate change behind Darfur killing: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

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    Celtkin's Avatar
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    Climate change behind Darfur killing: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

    UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that the slaughter in Darfur was triggered by global climate change and that more such conflicts may be on the horizon, in an article published Saturday.

    "The Darfur conflict began as an ecological crisis, arising at least in part from climate change," Ban said in a Washington Post opinion column.

    UN statistics showed that rainfall declined some 40 percent over the past two decades, he said, as a rise in Indian Ocean temperatures disrupted monsoons.

    "This suggests that the drying of sub-Saharan Africa derives, to some degree, from man-made global warming," the South Korean diplomat wrote.

    "It is no accident that the violence in Darfur erupted during the drought," Ban said in the Washington daily.

    When Darfur's land was rich, he said, black farmers welcomed Arab herders and shared their water, he said.

    With the drought, however, farmers fenced in their land to prevent overgrazing.

    "For the first time in memory, there was no longer enough food and water for all. Fighting broke out," he said.

    http://www.breitbart.com
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    Miamian's Avatar
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    It's plausible. Of course, the European-imposed economic system of agricultural mercantalism imposed on the area didn't help. In this case, cotton.
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    Celtkin's Avatar
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    I'm sure that there are a ton of factors that led to and fuel the crisis in Darfur. I never considered that one of the causes could be climatic.

    I don't know if I completely buy off on Ban's theory but it is an interesting one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celtkin View Post
    I'm sure that there are a ton of factors that led to and fuel the crisis in Darfur. I never considered that one of the causes could be climatic.

    I don't know if I completely buy off on Ban's theory but it is an interesting one.
    I think he has a point. The inappropriateness of economic systems vis a vis geographical factors has been documented in the Sahel region of Africa. There, the French imposed a peanut-growing industry to support their industrial development. However, a place like the Sahel which experiences a monsoonal climate with a dry season wasn't the place for it. As Ban points out in Sudan, they used to have a system in which herders would graze on agricultural lands during the dry season and at the same time they would fertilize the land. The herders would then return north during the rainy season and the farmers would grow crops. On top of that the land requires a period of lying fallow to fully regain nutrients. All of that disappeared during the European conquest.

    It's all explained thoroughly in Seeds of Famine.
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    Nice way to exonerate the folks doing the killing. "It's not my fault that I've slaughtered women and children, they were living on the land I wanted and they wouldn't just give it to me".
    - "What do we mean by the defeat of the enemy? Simply the destruction of his forces, whether by death, injury, or any other means -- either completely or enough to make him stop fighting. . . . ."-Carl von Clausewitz-
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    Miamian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhinPhan1227 View Post
    Nice way to exonerate the folks doing the killing. "It's not my fault that I've slaughtered women and children, they were living on the land I wanted and they wouldn't just give it to me".
    I don't think that anyone is trying to exonerate the Janjaweed. Stoning seems to be the appropriate punishment.
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    ckb2001's Avatar
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    Well, historically, climate change is responsible for a lot of movements of groups of people, and with it the war that ensues because of territory disputes, etc..

    Just look at the history of the Asian steppes for one of the best examples of that (that history influenced Europe too.. start with the Huns, etc..)
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    Phinsome's Avatar
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    Here is the key quote.

    "This suggests that the drying of sub-Saharan Africa derives, to some degree, from man-made global warming," the South Korean diplomat wrote.

    It is just one of many factors. No surprise here.
    "Fiction can be fun, but I find the reference section a bit more enlightening." Ace Ventura
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miamian View Post
    I don't think that anyone is trying to exonerate the Janjaweed. Stoning seems to be the appropriate punishment.
    You don't think a headline which reads, "Climate change behind Darfur killing", places the blame on the climate change? You don't think that when the man points out that during times of plenty everyone was peaceful, but now that times are tight, they are not, lays a good part of the blame on the weather?

    It reminds me of those folks who try to assuage the blame for criminals by pointing out that they came from a difficult environment.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhinPhan1227 View Post
    You don't think a headline which reads, "Climate change behind Darfur killing", places the blame on the climate change? You don't think that when the man points out that during times of plenty everyone was peaceful, but now that times are tight, they are not, lays a good part of the blame on the weather?

    It reminds me of those folks who try to assuage the blame for criminals by pointing out that they came from a difficult environment.
    I'm sorry but I don't see it that way. You could also make an argument that climatic change created a set of conditions which allowed the Janjaweed to take advantage, which doesn't exonerate them but also explains the environment in which it took place.
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