Sunday, June 03, 2007

Save Darfur from the Save Darfur Coalition

The Save Darfur Coalition has fired its executive director, reorganized its board, and is rethinking its strategies (emphasis throughout in red):

“At the heart of the shake-up are questions of whether the former executive director of the organization, the Save Darfur Coalition, wisely used a sudden influx of money from a few anonymous donors in an advertising blitz to push for action.”

Anyone want to take a wild guess as to which members of the Jewish Billionaires Club provided the anonymous donations?  Continuing:

“The advertisements strained relationships with aid groups working on the ground in Darfur, the western region of Sudan, where at least 200,000 people have been killed and millions have fled their homes. Many of the groups opposed some of the tone and content of Save Darfur’s high-decibel advocacy campaign.

Coalition board members sought to minimize the dispute, saying that tensions had existed between advocates and aid workers in previous crises, like Kosovo, and that the organization’s rapid growth and changing membership had motivated the board’s decision to remove the director, David Rubenstein.

“We are grateful for the extraordinary job he has done and wish him the best in his search for new opportunities for public service,” said Ruth W. Messinger, president of the American Jewish World Service and a Save Darfur board member, who declined to discuss the reasons for Mr. Rubenstein’s dismissal. Allyn Brooks-LaSure, a spokesman for the organization, said Mr. Rubenstein was not available for comment.”


“. . . Save Darfur has gotten into hot water with aid groups helping the refugees of the conflict.

In February it began a high-profile advertising campaign that included full-page newspaper ads, television spots and billboards calling for more aggressive action in Darfur, including the imposition of a no-flight zone over the region.

Aid groups and even some activists say banning flights could do more harm than good, because it could stop aid flights. Many aid groups fly white airplanes and helicopters that may look similar to those used by the Sudanese government, putting their workers at risk in a no-flight zone.

Sam Worthington, the president and chief executive of InterAction, a coalition of aid groups, complained to Mr. Rubenstein by e-mail that Save Darfur’s advertising was confusing the public and damaging the relief effort.

‘I am deeply concerned by the inability of Save Darfur to be informed by the realities on the ground and to understand the consequences of your proposed actions,’ Mr. Worthington wrote.

He noted that contrary to assertions in its initial ads, Save Darfur did not represent any of the organizations working in Darfur, and he accused it of ‘misstating facts.’ He said its endorsement of plans that included a no-flight zone and the use of multilateral forces ‘could easily result in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of individuals.’

Another aid group, Action Against Hunger, said in a statement last week that a forced intervention by United Nations troops without the approval of the Sudanese government ‘could have disastrous consequences that risk triggering a further escalation of violence while jeopardizing the provision of vital humanitarian assistance to millions of people.’

Aid groups also complain that Save Darfur, whose budget last year was $15 million, does not spend that money on aid for the long-suffering citizens of the region.

The New York Times article, needless to say, goes on to provide various excuses for why the Save Darfur Coalition makes legitimate aid groups angry.  Of course, we know that the real reason for the Save Darfur Coalition isn’t to save the lives of the people in Darfur.  The people in Darfur are Muslims, and the Zionist Thrill Kill Cult would much rather they were dead.  The real reason for the Coalition is to remove an Islamist government in Sudan.  The legitimate aid groups know what is going on, and thus the dissent.

China is one of the few countries that has actually been helpful in the region, and for its troubles is insulted by Tom Toles (who really ought to know better).