All posts tagged: military coup

Darfur: The New Massacres | Jérôme Tubiana

Darfur: The New Massacres | Jérôme Tubiana

[ad_1] In 2009 Arbab, a tall, slim, thirty-five-year-old man, was driving a pickup truck in North Darfur province, part of a rebel convoy that had crossed into Sudan from Chad. Aside from a small circle in the windshield through which to see the road, his vehicle was covered in mud, making for a stark contrast with his perfectly clean uniform. The guerillas were trying to hide from the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF), whose fighter jets nonetheless launched optimistic volleys at their convoy.  The conflict in Darfur, a region the size of France in the west of Sudan, had begun in 2003. It pitted two rebel forces, largely drawn from local non-Arab communities, against the central government of President Omar al-Bashir. Rather than relying on the army alone to deal with an uprising in a remote area, Bashir formed the Janjaweed (“devil horsemen”) militias, largely comprised of Darfuri Arabs, which laid waste to the region and attacked non-Arab civilians as part of a campaign of ethnic cleansing. A common estimate for casualties is 400,000, but this counts only the most …

US Marks Anniversary of Myanmar Coup With New Sanctions

US Marks Anniversary of Myanmar Coup With New Sanctions

[ad_1] U.S. state department —  The United States is imposing further sanctions on Myanmar’s military regime three years after the February 1, 2021, military coup, and designating four individuals and two entities associated with it. The U.S. State Department said the latest action targets sources of revenue that support the regime’s military activities against civilians and those who provide material and support for arms production in Myanmar, also known as Burma. On Wednesday, the U.S. Treasury Department announced sanctions against the Shwe Byain Phyu Group of Companies, its owner Thein Win Zaw, and his wife and two adult children. Sanctions were also announced against Myanma Five Star Line, a shipping company. The two entities are said to maintain a relationship with Myanma Economic Holdings Public Co. Ltd., or MEHL, which is controlled by the now-ruling Burmese military or Tatmadaw. The Tatmadaw has long relied on business activities to finance its own operations. The Treasury said these two entities have facilitated the military regime’s acquisition of foreign currency and the importation of petroleum and other materials …

How Chile Won Back Its Democracy

How Chile Won Back Its Democracy

[ad_1] “There is a graveyard smell to Chile, the fumes of democracy in decomposition,” wrote Edward Korry, the U.S. ambassador to Chile, soon after the 1970 election of the Socialist President Salvador Allende. The United States government, the Brazilian military, and Chilean elites spent the next three years working to destabilize Chile’s left-wing government. Their efforts culminated in a military coup on September 11, 1973—50 years ago today—that deposed Allende and his democratically elected government, and plunged the country into dictatorship. That history made Chile a textbook case of Cold War anti-Communist machinations, but this perspective has tended to overshadow the ways in which Chile is also a study in resistance to autocracy. In 1988, after 17 years under the iron rule of General Augusto Pinochet, the country rose to shrug off the dictatorship through nonviolent mass protests and civil-society mobilization. After a major effort to register voters and restore electoral procedures, Chile achieved a peaceful return to democracy. In standing up to the regime, Chileans took on not only a military that had used …

The Coup in Niger Is About Power. Russia Will Exploit It.

The Coup in Niger Is About Power. Russia Will Exploit It.

[ad_1] Late last month, armed troops in Niger overthrew the government, arrested the elected president, and seized power for themselves. Soon after, a small group of Nigeriens who supported the coup in the capital city, Niamey, gathered to show their support for the military government, some waving the Russian flag. They denounced the West in general, and France, the former colonial power, in particular. “Long live Putin!” they chanted. “Down with France!” The coup has created considerable alarm in Western capitals, and with good reason. Since 2020, there have been coups throughout the Sahel, the strategically important belt of hot, semiarid land stretching across Africa just below the Sahara desert. In 2020, Mali’s government fell. In 2021, the same thing happened in Sudan, Chad, and Guinea. Last year, a coup took place in Burkina Faso. Niger was seen as the Sahel’s final bulwark against chaos and instability, the last regime standing. The United States had a drone base in Niger, and France had stationed troops there, a crucial line of defense against surging West African …