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Lest we forget: South Sudan narration of their history:Part 1

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If there is any history that has been written in a way that  does not represent  views, and insterests  the common people in any country, then it is that of South Sudanse people. Their history, particlarly the periods covering 1947 up to the time when Torit uprising, otherwise known in official cycles as Torit Mutiny occurred in August 18, 1955. During that short (12 years) period, many issues around which critical events have taken place, did set the tone and trend of the poltical crisis that followed in Sudan for the coming five decates.

Today events that constributed to the present political, economic and cultural cririses are, disturbngly being seen through lenses other than that of the Southern Sudanese common men and women. Most South Sudanee are genuinely disturned when they hear experts or politicians-particularly those from the North-distorting every bit of information about South Sudanese heritage.

South-North divide and subsequent mutual hostilities and wars that ravaged Sudan as it is constituted now is being blamed by the Northerners  on either the South Sudanese “backward behavious” mostly, or on the British and the missioneries for stopping their strides right to civilize the backward and heathen South.  That perception guided the grand strategy of chiefly the nascent middle-class there, aimed at reclaiming their  percieved natural right to of islamzing Southerners.  from 1924 onwards, following the  abortive armed uprising led by Ali Abdel Latif and his colleagues in the Egypian army based in Sudan, poltical agitation based on above Islamic and Arab sense of spremacy over the Africans took shape, sideling Ali Abdel Latif’s call for a Sudan where ethnic ideentity is not a factor that determines who is rightfully Sudanese and who is not.

He was not a member of the Arab stock. Borned in Aswan to  a Dinka mother and a Nuba father who was a slave to Ahmad Hassan, a donggolwai from Khandak.  Ex slaves from the South, classified as detribalized (Mouludeenin Sudanese slang),  and Nuba from western Sudan dominated the army. Though they were Moslems themselves, they could not gain public support of a sociey dominated by the influence of sectarian world outlook with Arab supremacy prejuces. as its means of mobilization.

The White flag, for that was the name of Abdel Latif’s Movement was called,viscerally composed of locally recruited soliders  drawn from  humble social background  of  detrablized,ex-slaves. Their  political campaign agenda conflicted the Arab-Islamic ones. The White Flag’s agenda which is hinged building Sudan as a future nation based on its as a geographic territory indentification instead of racial or ethnic identity of Sudan did endear their religeous leaders and political activist in those years, thus they greeted the movement with ambivallence if not outright opposition. That was e as early as eighty five years ago.

These ideopogical differences refelct the interwining  complexity of the historical realities of this country and how the identity of the cocuntry and its people remained a contested issue, blurring other underlying issues, such as rhw variousconcerns,  needs, agenda and powers struggle within and among various actors in Sudan often conflictual history.

In the next post, I will try to  tackle the next important topic, the Closed Districts Ordance and the Southern Policy, and how this policy dominated debate over and over when the so called “Southern Problem”is mentioned.

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Written by torit1955

July 12, 2008 at 1:54 pm

Posted in Sudan Politics

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