Monday, February 12, 2018

Americans Are Our Friends

By Pal Chol Nyan* 
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 "A house whose owners talk does not disintegrate. Our leaders need to unify their positions and voices regardless of what happens. They need to get accustomed to the culture of talks and political engagements."   - Pal Chol Nyan
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Photo: Courtesy of the Author
I take my hat off to General Salva Mathok for speaking out against anti-American political rhetorics, and more specifically, against the incumbent [American] administration. It was misplaced although I admit that the imposed arms embargo and calling the President as an unfit partner is uncalled for, but it needs to be addressed in a diplomatic way.

Our country is too young to engage in volatile arguments with the West and the Region.

Who can deny that America has been a staunch supporter of the SPLM/A since the days of armed struggle all the way to the attainment of Independence? America has been spending millions of dollars on Southern and South Sudan. 

Their contribution cannot be underrated, but this should not prevent us from expressing our grievances once aggressed. Our country needs a panel of experts and a think-tank to iron out our differences with the international community and help streamline our foreign and domestic policies. It should not just be wealthy individuals dictated by their emotions to set us against superpowers without the consent of the president.

General Salva Mathok was right and he should not be quoted out of context.

A house whose owners talk does not disintegrate. Our leaders need to unify their positions and voices regardless of what happens. They need to get accustomed to the culture of talks and political engagements. China was drilling the oil for Khartoum to buy weapons to kill Southerners. What good has China done to us?  Pursuing individual interests at the expense of the ordinary citizens is unbecoming.

If my memory serves me well, the late Chairman Dr. John Garang sternly warned during the CPA negotiation in Naivasha that the peace-keeping forces should not include the countries with vested interest in Southern Sudan. He was indirectly referring to China. The solution focus must be directed at the peace talks in Addis. It is the only way out. 

As a former red army and a refugee in Itang, Ethiopia, I know the relief and the free education we got was from America. The camp overseers became even richer than the target groups. I am surprised how this could easily be forgotten. The UN/OLS, a partnership of UN (especially UNICEF and World Food Program), various NGOs working in Southern Sudan and the two then two warring parties in Sudan [SPLA/M &Government of Sudan], operated with American funding. Malow Military college was established and supported by Americans. The Chevron American oil company was the one to explore and discover the oil in Unity state in the 1970s.

The Guinea Worm eradication project was also initiated and funded by Carter center. Close here, the army headquarters were put in place by our friends, the Americans. The Nyachigak Military College was established with the help of the Americans, leave alone many police stations and the police training.

We have a legion of live examples in relation to how our American friends helped and continue to help South Sudan. The Juba-Nimule USAID-funded tarmac road was constructed and asphalted by the Americans now being bullied.

I applaud the call made by our Ambassador, Garang Diing, to the USA on touch down in Juba International airport that we want cordial relations with America.

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*Mr. Pal Chol Nyan is a concerned citizen, a former red army soldier and reachable @palcholnyan2016@gmail.com


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Editor: DISCLAIMER: The views expressed in this article belong to the author not 'The Philosophical Refugee' website. 


ON CULTURAL IDENTITY & BELONGING

Dear Melbournians, the South Sudanese people to be precise. Do you think we have seen it all? Do you think we have seen that: I mean in the aftermath of yesteryears, in regard to our culture and the notions around identity and belonging? Do you think we have seen the true reaping of what we sowed years ago? Do you really think so? After all, did we really sow anything like seeds and that there’s something to be reaped? Did we really live it out well to be seen today?

I am sorry to have bothered you, my potential readers, with questions regarding our social, economic, and political location in our host society: Australia. I think we have not seen it all and as a whole: The idea that people are bound by certain values and beliefs of significance to them. This requires cooperation and role-specific obligations on the roles of every man and woman across a given people and their society.

TOLERANCE & INCLUSION


While it is possible for us to racially discriminate or judge people we know, the chances of judging people we know diminish significantly the more we know them. An easy example of the importance of understanding others is the attitude people develop when they want to harm others or when they want to deny them something valuable. Essentially, before you fight someone, you insult them. Insults are attempts at diminishing the value of people, an attempt at estranging them, as Toni Morrison argued in The Origin of Others. It is easy to discriminate against strangers or make others strangers or dehumanized in order to discriminate against them.

Transformational Leadership, Inclusive Institutions and Service Provision

Leadership, given what is happening now in South Sudan, and generally in Africa, fascinates me. And it fascinates me not in a good way but because of the sociopolitical and socioeconomic ills facing the African continent and most of the so-called 'Third World.' To me, South Sudan, now, is a classic case.

Rebellion by disaffected politico-military leaders and repression by the government of South Sudan in Juba have stunted institutional development and leadership growth. This has made service provision almost irrelevant as political survival has taken primacy and supremacy. CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

‘Black’ as an Identity Oversimplification and Mockery

Black as a universalized cultural identity of the African Person (AP)* is a residual effect of slave and colonial mentality; a racial/race paradigm. It is a malady I call, conservatively speaking, stuck-in-the-past syndrome of color constraints. Black could be an on-the-street ‘social identifier’ of race figures not a meaningful phenomenon of deep cultural identification on a universal scale.