Refugees from Darfur in Ft. Wayne, IN

Not only is Ft. Wayne, IN home to the largest population of Burmese Karen refugees in the US it is also home to refugees from Darfur.   I didn’t know that and as a matter of fact this article in the Journal Gazette today is the first mention I’ve seen of refugees from the Darfur region anywhere in the US.

Mastora Bakhiet’s family was forced to flee their home in 1996, after Arabs in her Darfur province threatened to kill everyone in her tribe.


Six years later, after a journey that took her throughout Sudan and the Arabian Peninsula, her family won the U.S. green card lottery and eventually settled in Fort Wayne.


Back in Darfur, members of Bakhiet’s non-Arab tribe, the Zaghawa, are not so lucky. They live in fear of attacks by the Janjaweed, the Sudanese government-backed Arab militia.

I’ve been confused about the political situation in the Sudan and this article actually helped clear up some of that confusion — mostly because it’s the first I’ve read that so explicitly blames the trouble there on “Arabs.”  So, help me clarify something else.    Why do American leftists want American troops to fight militant Muslims (the Janjaweed)  in this region of Africa but then condemn the Bush Administration for fighting militant Muslims elsewhere?

BTW, searching around just now I learned that we have given nearly $3 billion (that is with a ‘b’) to Sudan and eastern Chad just since 2004.   Wow, that must really put us up on the compassion meter!

Muslims hold strategy session to shut us up

Well, not us directly anyway (yet!).    I’ve been away so this article may have been thoroughly discussed this weekend elsewhere, but thanks to blulite special for sending it our way.

DAKAR, Senegal – The Muslim world has created a battle plan to defend its religion from political cartoonists and bigots. [who me?]


Concerned about what they see as a rise in the defamation of Islam, leaders of the world’s Muslim nations are considering taking legal action against those that slight their religion or its sacred symbols. It was a key issue during a two-day summit that ended Friday in this western Africa capital.


The Muslim leaders are attempting to demand redress from nations like Denmark, which allowed the publication of cartoons portraying the Prophet Muhammad in 2006 and again last month, to the fury of the Muslim world.


Though the legal measures being considered have not been spelled out, the idea pits many Muslims against principles of freedom of speech enshrined in the constitutions of numerous Western governments.


“I don’t think freedom of expression should mean freedom from blasphemy,” said Senegal’s President Abdoulaye Wade, the chairman of the 57-member Organization of the Islamic Conference. “There can be no freedom without limits.”