As for the rebels in Darfur, the group remains fractured and the
leaders are still not talking face to face. But they reportedly are still
e-mailing each other.
NAIROBI -- The leaders of the main rebel movement in Sudan's Darfur region were once brothers in arms. But last year, the two powerful men had a falling out, and each proclaimed he was the rightful president of the Sudanese Liberation Army. Things got ugly.
But not a single shot was fired. Instead, the feuding insurgents battled as bloggers over the Internet.
"I got his e-mails and read those bitter diaries," said Mohamed al-Nur, a founder of the rebel group, at a conference held here late last year by the United States to try to bring the two sides together.
"That's the only place we hear from you -- on that Internet!" hooted Saif Haroun, a spokesman for Minni Arko Minnawi, the newly proclaimed leader. "You run your rebellion from a computer?"
-From The Washington Post
I will advise every one blogging in or on Africa to read the Washington Post article "African Rebels Take Their Battles Online:
Internet Extends Political Debate" written by Emily Wax of the Washington Post Foreign Service published on Saturday, January 14, 2006; Page A16.
The Washington Post Report is good for the general public knowledge of the fast developing African virtual world. But it has also exposed us to the majority of ignorant African rulers who don't read blogs, because they think we should be ignored. To them ignorance is bliss. Because, it is better to ignore our hysterics on their tyrannical politics than to pay us attention so that we will not bask in the limelight of such official recognition.
The most popular politcal web site in Nigeria is the Elendu Reports http://www.elendureports.com of JONATHAN ELENDU whose statement below best illustrates his character.
"I was appalled by Jeff Koinange's report on CNN, but I cannot claim, in good conscience, that he invented those people he interviewed. They are Nigerians who see increased insecurity, hunger, poverty, and thuggery as the only fruits that have been borne by democracy since 1999. CNN did not cause our problems."
"Obasanjo and Tinubu should get serious and stop looking for scapegoats in the media. The Obasanjo administration and indeed Nigerian politicians should not use this single episode as an excuse to step on freedom of the press. Every individual has a right to ask for whatever type of government he or she wants."
"This is not illegal. Obasanjo should counter negative reports in the media by doing the people's business as he promised he would. Nigerians need jobs, security, a conducive atmosphere for business to grow, and efficient basic amenities."
But Elendu has been questioned for his subjective reports by many critics.
Most of my fellow Nigerian bloggers are based outside the shores of Nigeria where they are safer than me who is right here in the battlefield in the troubled waters of the Niger Delta. And as they say, "Goldfish Have No Hiding Place."
"In the past few months the underground media and later the mainstream Nigerian media have been inundated with stories of corrupt Nigerian officials putting up residences abroad, buying mansions in foreign lands and supposedly sabotaging the war that we all have declared against corruption. Against all odds, most of these stories have emanated from web based journalists especially those situated in United Kingdom and United States: two countries that have become overnight refuge for confused and dislocated citizen-refugees, most of whom will truly prefer to be back home in their country were it not for the profound decadence of a nation of such huge potential like ours."
-Michael Oluwagbemi II
I don't want to be over exposed and become the target of witch-hunting in high places. But since this Washington Post report, I am afraid that the tyrants on rampage in Africa will now be haunting us from pillar to post in our blogosphere.
Now, only God can save us.