Monday, December 8, 2008

What's up with Obama?!

What's up with Obama? Why is he making the wrong choices? Is this the change he was talking about?

Yes, I know it's too early to judge, but I'm about to tell my family and friends, I told you so!

First he hires Ron Emmanuel, so let's say goodbye to peace in the Middle East. This guy prefers the use of force , does he even believe in peace?

Also, is he thinking about Susan Rice? Didn't she suggest bombing Sudan?
What do people say,oh yeah.... bombing for peace is like ****ing for virginity?
Yes, Sudan is in chaos but bombing it is not going to solve any problem! Stop trying to "save "us by bombing us! I don't get your logic Rice.
Do me a favour LAY OF Sudan because you don't understand it.

Another thing,

Richard Miniter, author of Losing Bin Laden, David Rose of Vanity Fair and Mansoor Ijaz, a Pakistani businessman all believe that Rice was central in refusing Sudan's office to turn Bin Laden over to the US.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Searching for a feminist interpretation of the Qu'ran

My good friend /blogger African Sister and I are looking for a feminist interpretation of the Qu'ran. We believe in Ijtehad, but we also believe that women should be involved in the reinterpretation of the Qu'ran.

Please suggest articles/books or anything of use.

If not, we are going to consider writing one!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Why the Arabic language is problematic in the Sudan

Is colonialism really over? A question asked many times by the Southern Sudanese and other marginzalied ethnic groups. Officially, Sudan is no longer Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, but it is still a colony. A colony of the Arabized Northerners.

The colour of the colonial masters is different, but their actions are not.

Our new masters speak Arabic, practice Islam and read Naguib Mahfouz. They wear the toub and look down on "tribal" languages and custom.

My father learned the Arabic language at the age of 7. Before that, he lived with his grandmother in a village in Nubian-sudan and spoke Nubian.
Then came the move to Port Sudan. His father was working there at the time, so he left his village to join them. School was difficult, it was in another language. You couldn't speak a language other than the Arabic language there. If you break the rule, teachers beat you.
You are abused into learning a language.
He never taught me Nubian though. We always spoke Arabic at home.
I grew up believing it was for my own good. I lived in the Middle East most of my life and speaking Arabic made me less of an outsider there.
The official language of the Sudan is Arabic or so they tell us. There are currently 142 langauges spoken in the Sudan. Eight are extinct.
In the future, the Nubian language is going to be extinct too. I don't speak it , I can't pass it on to the next generation. Most Nubians my age don't speak it.
Language represents a big part of culture. If you speak a certain language, you start reading books in it, listening to music in this language and so on. Your cultural entity becomes unidenitifed.
I don't speak Nubian. I don't like listening to music in the Nubian language, it sounds weird. When I visit the ancient pyramids and monuments built by my ancestors, I wouldn't be able to understand what's written on them.

Friday, September 26, 2008

African Sister joined the blogosphere!

My wonderful friend Sarah joined the blogosphere.
She is a delightful Dutch/Egyptian/Zambian university senior interested in feminism, globalization and its impact, reading, travelling, colonialism, post-colonialism, African studies, Europe, photography, shopping, and chocolate.
If you are interested in Africa, Islam, gender issues (especially in the Middle East/Africa region) and Muslim/western, Arab/western relations, this is your blog.

Read her blogs @

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Note:- America is under the curse of Bush

9/11, Hurricane Katrina and now Hurricane Ike. Did Bush curse America?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

A Long Overdue Note.

The ICC issued charges against my president for war crimes and genocide...old news!

It's hard for me to write about it because I'm in the grey area right now. It brought the Sudanese together and the overwhelming majority are against the ICC's verdict to indict Bashir ( note:-We all dislike the government, but for the average Sudanese, it was a verdict against Sudan more than its head of state). We are patriotic as hell. The international community doesn't know that. So the anti-Ocampo protests surprised them.

I want to see Bashir rotting in jail , but if he promised to LEAVE US THE HELL ALONE, I personally don't mind giving him amnesty. He should bugger off and allow the formation of another transitional-government.

The international community is happy about this decision( keep in mind, most of them know nothing about Sudan and Sudanese politics). They probably don't know that Bashir is just a puppet. He didn't even go to university for crying out loud! But he is surrounded with Oxford,Cambridge and Sorbonne-educated advisers. Many of them are lawyers and they know all about international law. They know how to break the laws and get away with it.
Bashir deserves what he got, but a part of me feels that he shouldn't go down alone. He is not the mastermind.

Never mind...... I'm off to watch Bones....

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Me on the BBC radio

Listen to some of my comments on Africa have your say, BBC Radio.
The topic was African films and as an aspiring scriptwriter, I was asked to join the discussion. It was an honour to hear some of Africa's greatest film-makers share their thoughts on the future, past and present of African films.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


The Arab Press Network interviewed me

Friday, August 22, 2008

RIP Levy Mwanawasa

Mwanawasa,59, the president of Zambia died last Tuesday in a hospital in Paris.

The world is going to remember him as a competent and responsible African leader, Zambians are going to remember him for his great economic policies and the nation-wide fight against corruption.
He encouraged investments to Zambia and he stood up against African tyrants like Mugabe.

Mwanawasa was only 59 ( Mugabe is 84 and Bashir is in his early 60's and they are healthy and wealthy.)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Paying for your rights

In Sudan, there is no rule of law, I believe.
I've been trying to convince myself that things in Sudan are "not that bad" for a while now.. but it is not working!
Sudanese people are known to use the word "ma3leesh" ( sorrry) and"mafi moshkela"( no problem) a lot. Something happens and we are quick to say not a big deal, thank god for everything else!
The war in Sudan is the longest-running war in Africa- it's ok, at least it's not the longest-running war in the world!
At least 2 million died in the war- well, 38 million are still living! Thank god for that!

But sometimes it's difficult to say mafi moshkela.

We have two stores in my house in Sudan. They are facing the main street and we usually rent them . A few years ago, we rented it to this guy who looks exactly like an arms dealer.
Anyways, a few years later, our deal with him was over and we wanted him out. He also didn't pay a penny in a very long time.
Apparently, the guy had contacts in the government. We had documents and we were the owners of the store. So, the court was on our side.

Wrong Answer.

I don't know how much it costs to bribe a judge , but he bribed him and we knew it.

Three years on, three lawyers and thousands of dollars later, he is out of OUR property.

I don't feel any better knowing that there is no rule of law in Sudan. I don't feel any better knowing that if you don't know the right people, you don't have any rights.

I can't help but wonder if my mother's friend gave us the best advice when she said " hire a few thugs, let them break into the store and smash everything there"
I mean I don't support violence , but what do you do to get your rights in Sudan?

Take up arms like the rebels. Be gangster about it. Bribe or my favorite, sleeping with an official to get what you want ( according to my sources: it works!)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

If you want Africa to Unite, think again

Countenance @ wrote a very interesting post about the so-called United States of Africa.

"When the African Union website opens, a welcome message declares that “Africa must unite.” But while such sentiment may be growing, an initiative to move the continent towards a formal union has failed.

Good luck. East Africans in a little east African country couldn’t even get along to the point where one ethnicity slaughtered a million of the other in an attempt at genocide in 1994.

How East Africans, West Africans, South Africans, Arabs and North Africans are supposed to compete for singular control of a unitary continental state without butchering each other is beyond me.

If there can be such a thing as a semi-successful AU, it will have to: (1) Apply only to sub-Saharan (i.e. black) Africa, (2) Allow for three sub-AU semi-sovereign entities encompassing the three major types of black Africans, (3) erase the current political map of sub-Saharan Africa, a legacy of European colonialism, and redraw the boundaries around tribes and ethnicities, (4) restore Zimbabwe and South Africa to white rule. "

I don't agree with everything he said, but the African Union needs to know that Africa is going to unite (eventually) just give it a few decades. Uniting by 2012 is out of the question.

This is Zimbabwe- The Campbell's are alive but traumatized for life.

Mike Campbell (74), his wife Angela (70) and their son-in-law-Ben were abducted from their farm in Zimbabwe and badly beaten.

"Mike, Angela and Ben were taken by a “war vet” named Gilbert Moyo and approximately twenty thugs to Pixton Mine (Pixton Mine is currently being used as a youth militia torture camp). Implicated in the attack is a Zanu PF party member named ‘Mazambani’ and an army General.
Cold water was thrown over them before all were beaten.
Mike Campbell, who is 74 years old, was beaten with rifle butts. Mike has serious concussion and a broken collar bone and fingers.
Mike’s wife Angela (70) was thrown to the ground by the abductors resulting in a double fracture of her arm/shoulder, requiring surgery. One of the militia took burning twigs from the fire and put them on her lips."

The attack was of course "justified", after they were beaten to near death, they were forced to sign a formal withdrawal of their case from the SADC Tribunal.
All of this was to take their farm away.

God help them.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

The Human Stain

Most of the movies nowadays are based on books. Personally, I prefer the books. You just have to read The Notebook and a Walk to Remember before watching them. When you read a book, you start painting pictures of charcters in your mind.

The Human Stain was a good movie based on a great book.

The book is loosely based on the life of Anatole Broyard, a Creole ( mixed race) literary critic. When he started his career after World War 2, he decided to "pass" as white. After his death, his race was questioned in many articles. This encouraged his daughter to trace her roots back to West Africa.

The book is about Coleman Silk, a professor of Classics at a fictitious university in Massachessets. At first, we knew nothing of his background , he was just your average Jewish-American man. Earlier in the movie, he is accussed of using a racial slur and because of that, he quits his job.
The movie is narratted by Nathan Zuckerman, his close friend who ends up writing his story. Then the flashbacks start, we are introduced to his family. His mother had an affair with a white men and he was the product, a green/blue-eyed very light-skinned Colored man.

Silk just chose the easy way out, all he had to do is check white on applications.

He chose to live a lie his whole life.

nterestingly, it was played by WentWorth Miller, an American of Syrian,Jamaican, African American, Lebanese, Somali, Russian and German heritage. He describes his father as black and his mother as white.

In 1994, Miller was a student at Princeton. He published a cartoon in the Daily Princetonian. The cartoon was misunderstood and he was accussed of being a racist. Interestingly, he didn't use the race card to explain this misunderstanding.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

South Africa- a note

South Africa's transition to democracy is often cited as a peaceful one, but South Africa's transition to democracy was not very peaceful.

One of the most pressing issues in post-apartheid SA is crime. The crime rates are numbing and it seems that more and more people are gun-holders. After the anti-immigrants protest a few

weeks ago, one thing was certain, South Africa is not at war, but it is also not at peace with itself.

After apartheid, there was alot of apologizing. Alot of "we are sorry for the atrocities committed during apartheid". I'm not South African and all I know about apartheid is what I read, but honestly, sorry is sometimes not good enough. Sorry doesn't put food on the table. We have the recognize that people suffered during apartheid, but we also need to remember that many people in post-apartheid South Africa are living in worse conditions. The slums keep expanding and crime and rape is rife there.

Isn't this most important than apologizing to each other?

Improving the living conditions of the majority of the citizens should be the number one priority. It would lead to racial harmony in the sense that many people feel that "white south africans" are still the richest of the rich. Many hold a grudge towards them and this is not going to go away if whites apologized.

The problem is many non-whites believed that apartheid is their only problem, after apartheid is gone, their living conditions still didn't improve. Yes, people had alot of expectations and aspirations, but the goverment should be blamed instead of blaming white south-africans for their economic power. The government has failed its people. Yes, apartheid ended only 14 years ago,but 14 years ago is not a short time. Alot of things could have been accompolished. Give your citizens the necessities before anything else. Running water, shelter ( not a shack) , free or affordable education and so on.

South Africa is not a poor country, it's one of the most visited countries in the world and they are well-endowed with natural resources.

The fact that SA is the largest economy in Africa should not make the govt of SA feel good . it should not be taken for granted. Regional powerhouses appear and disappear.

Ban Ki Mon said something interesting last month, hungry people are angry people.
A few weeks ago, the immigrants were attacked, it wasn't black on black violence, it was broke on broke violence.
Next time, another group is going to be attacked, you always need a scapegoat for your problems.

Is the SA government incompetent?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Sudan:- What's next?

This is Khartoum, the capital of Sudan and the safest place in the country. In fact, it’s known to be one of Africa’s safest capitals.

Yesterday, it was nothing short of a battlefield.

Wake up call, this is a wake up call for the Sudanese government! The message was clear and simple:- solve the crises inDarfur or you will be overthrown.

Yesterday, rebels from Darfur entered the capital of Sudan to “seize power”. Although, the capital wasn’t damaged as much as its twin sister, Omdurman, the situation remains extremely fragile.Previously, the Sudanese army has stepped up security in an attempt to secure the capital from what they believe to be an “invasion” by darfur rebels supported by their ally, Chad.
After 5 years of endless conflict, there is no peace in sight. Peace talks are scheduled to take place in London this month, but the rebels outsmarted the government known to be one of Africa’s strongest governments.

Five years on, there is still no real progress in the peace process in Darfur and the government is reluctant to implement the Abuja peace agreement. They’ve failed to bring peace to Darfur, but how could they bring peace to Darfur if they’ve orchestered crimes against humanity there?This government is not going to bring peace to Sudan.

The government is looking for a quick fix-up right now, they are taking security measures and the streets are mostly covered with soldiers. However, if they are keen on “saving Sudan” and “stopping the senseless bloodshed”, they should step down with the little dignity they have left and hand over power to a transitional government. Next year, we can have elections and elect a new president for the first time in 23 years.

If the government keeps looking for quick fixes and doesn’t take this situation seriously, the country is going to collapse into civil war. The whole country, including the “peacful” north and east.

Is there a way out of this chaos?Yes, a transitional government to faciliate an easy transition to democracy.

Currently, the situation is extremtly fragile in the whole country, but there is a way out. There is a solution.

Catch 22

The rebels are in Khartoum.
Khartoum is going to be the site of the last battle.

Things might get better, we might be heading towards a democraty or we are on the brink of disaster.

What's going to happen?

40 million Sudanese are waiting for an answer.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Break-up.

You see, they've been dating (on and off) for over 50 years, but they are still not used to each other.

You see, it's strictly dating, they are too reluctant to take it to the other level.
She is suspicious of him, he thinks she is fine, she has alot of wealth and goodies, that's his vocab.


you see, she wants to break up, but he wants her to reconsider.

He is trying to appeal to her in every single way, he is polite to her, he makes promises and he keeps some of them, he respects her sometimes, but it still doesn't feel right to her.

You see, he is reluctant to let her go, but she sees it coming.

She is worried.

I mean some couples break up czechslovakia style, peaceful and smooth.

She wonders if it is going to be Yugoslavia-style.

Is he going to stalk her all the time? mabye wage a war, kidnapp her sister and hold her hostage, throw her mother in the sea, blackmail her with old pictures or mabye he is just going to be rude to her.

She wonders

I don't know. She still wants to leave. Her bags are packed, her ticket is booked and she can't wait to get out of this abusive relationship.

She wanted her indepedence and respect. Is it too much? Men!

But, he loves her passionately. He is crazy about her.

Mabye that's why he hurts her sometimes.

It is some kind of perverted admiration, right?

Finally, she decided that she needs some time off. She needs to think straight. He agreed to give her 6 years, all the time in the world.

Take your time, dear, I will sit back and wait for you to make up your mind.

Three years on, she is still thinking.

Mabye she just wants advice.


I understand that the r.ship wasn't exactly milk and honey, but men can always change. Sister, why don't you resocialize him and talk to him. Invite him over, make some tea and talk your heart away.
Tell him to listen to you. Talk to him. If he loves you, he is going to take your views into consideration.

You are meant to be together, sister...right?

Praying for Unity.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Professor Collins

I first met him last summer, the 29th of June to be exact. It was my second day in Santa Barbara, California and my first time in America.
It was about 2 o'clock and I rushed back to the hotel to meet him because I didn't want to be late.
When I emailed him a week before travelling, I didn't expect a reply. After all, he was a distinguished professor and a well-known author. To my surprise, he emailed me back and told me to write to him as soon as I arrive.
I did. He agreed to come to the Upham hotel, where I was staying at the time. He said he knows the place very well.

We talked about politics, the Sudan, the war, the referendum in 2011, the future of the country, my family, my studies, his life in the Sudan and his books.
He was my favorite author. A Sudan expert.
He was first introduced to Africa in the 50's through books. He went to Sudan a month after its independence, in 1956. For the next 52 years, Sudan became his interest. He wrote atleast 15 books on the Sudan alone, he met many intellectuals, leaders and liberation fighters and he is one of the few people in the world to have traveled in every part of the country ( including Sudanese and non-Sudanese).

He knows the country better than all of us combined.

I've emailed him a few times after I came back. A few days ago, I wanted to e-mail him about a couple of interesting articles I wanted him to read.

I forgot his e-mail so I looked at his page only to find the following announcement
"We are sad to report that Professor Robert Collins passed away suddenly on Friday, April 11, 2008. A full obituary will be available soon."

This can't be happening. We were supposed to meet again, right? I was supposed to write my phd under his supervision. He was supposed to live love enough to see Sudan at peace. He was supposed to celebrate with us.
He should've waited, 2011 is only 3 years from now. He wanted to know the future of South Sudan more than any other person.

Friday, April 11, 2008

When Judgement day comes,the Sudanese deserve to go to Heaven

Decades of war, a psychotic president and an unendurable climate , I believe that the Sudanese should go to heaven.
Everytime I lose hope, I look at the average Sudanese and I'm optimistic again.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Burj El Fateh

It's a good imitation of Dubai's Burj Al Arab.

We, the Sudanese are excited about Burj El Fateh, the new egg-shapped hotel/mall in K-town.

I'm talking about a country at war and under severe American/ European and UN sanctions. I can't help but think about a Sudan at peace. It could easily become a regional powerhouse!
Sudan, the pride of Africa ( in the near future, say ameeen!)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Breakfast in Khartoum by Rob Crilly

Interesting article by Rob Crilly, a freelance journalist writing about Africa for The Times, The Irish Times, The Daily Mail, The Scotsman and The Christian Science Monitor from his base in Nairobi.

Breakfast in Khartoum

The coffee tastes like coffee, the croissants are flaky on the outside and soft on the inside, and the wifi is running at the speed of light. But this isn’t breakfast in Kenya - where the coffee was probably grown and which is setting itself up to be an internet hub for East Africa. This is Sudan, which is still recovering from decades of civil war in the south and where sanctions are supposed to be bringing the economy to its knees.
But since arriving in Khartoum I’ve updated my iTunes and downloaded new software for my phone. Doing that back home in Nairobi would have meant leaving my computer on overnight.
Khartoum has some of the most sophisticated coffeeshops in Africa. Wifi at Solitaire is some of the fastest I’ve found and I won’t bore you again by talking about Ozone’s fantastic carrot cake. (Danish pastries appear not to have been banned, incidentally.)
It’s all a long way from the Khartoum of the imagination - crowded souks, fiery imams and grilled goatmeat.
But there is one problem. I’ve been invited to a friend’s house for dinner tonight with a cheery reminder to bring a bottle. I’m not sure a bottle of Coke is going to hit the mark but - for the time being at least - the city remains dry.
Sometimes when I look at different parts of Sudan, I can't believe it's one country.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

At War

Dear government of Sudan and SPLM,

If you are planning to start another bloody civil war, evacuate a few villages and kill each other there.
There is no need to kill innocent civilians, focus on the real "enemy".

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Revolutionary Sudan

الحكومة دي كاتمة على نفسنا ليها 19 سنة انا خلاص زهجت

Dear Mr. President.

I really can't tolerate your government any longer. It's a criminal regime in every single way.
For the last 19 years, you've tortured, killed, looted, traumatized and you've failed to stabilize the country.

Two decades ago, Sudanese marched in every single city and they've succeeded in overthrowing the Nimeri dictatorial regime.

We are going to do it again.

All you care about nowadays is peace talks to solve the Darfur conflict. you know something, you are our biggest problem.

You can't solve the Darfur problem. You don't belong in the presidential palace, you should be in Kobar ( a jail in Khartoum North).

If we want to solve the Darfur problem, we need a comprehensive peace agreement. We need justice, we need equality, we need peace-makers, we need democracy.

We need another president.

We don't trust you Mr. President. You've failed us too many times. You've dishonored too many "peace" agreements.

I don't feel safe in my own country anymore.

Millions are living like refugees in their own country.

If we complain, you prosecute us.

We've been silent for 19 years.

Now, it is time to speak. It's time for you and the world to hear our voices.

We need a revolution.

We need to fix our crippled civil society and fight back.

But we are not going to be like you, we are going to protest peacefully.

We don't like your violent ways. Remember what you did in Nuba mountains, remember the Jihad in the South, remember Darfur, remember the ghost houses in Khartoum, remember the soldiers buried alive in 1990- no, they were not planning a coup, remember the mothers complaining about their 15 year old sons being forced to fight a war they don't believe in.

A war we never understood.

You've had your cake, you've licked the plate and you've broke the keep your shattered plate, we are buying a new one.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Friday, January 4, 2008

Ya Ma ' Afrika

You might call it an African version of "Girlfriends" or "Sex and the city", but Ya Ma'afrika is different in many ways.

It's a fictional drama about four African women living in the big apple. It explores the challenges and experiences of Africans living in the west specifically African women immigrants.

In the show, Yetunde, Kui, Chipo and Welisane are housemates from all corners of Africa with different backgrounds. The show captures the cosmopolitan side of Africans, rarely shown on TV in the West. "Ya Ma'Afrika" celebrates the diversity of talented actors from all over Africa and the Diaspora. The show's dynamic cast includes Zimbabwean poet U-Meleni Mhlaba, as Kui; A talented Noro Ejaita from Nigeria, as Yetunde; A celebrated Zimbabwean actor Nomsa Mlambo (Everyone's Child) as Chipo and Cameroonian actor/model Yana Bille, as Welisane.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Sudan

1/1/2008- Sudan turns 52.

We should also celebrate the fact that since 1956, Sudan was at peace for about 11 years!