FAO happily reports that food insecurity decreased in southern Sudan during 2010 thanks to favorable rains. Though food production is up 30% on 2009, there is still a sizable food deficit. People returning to the area following the referundum are expected to increase food demand further, increasing the deficit. The range of estimates suggest an increase of 40-170% in the number of food insecure people.
Texas in Africa on political stability:
My real worry for this situation is not that war will break out between north and south ... but rather than tensions within the South will be played out in the context of an extremely fragile state. Southern Sudan will immediately become one of the world's poorest, weakest states - albeit one with oil - with a plethora of ethnic groups who don't see eye-to-eye on everything. That's rarely a recipe for stability.McDoom at the African News Blog on southern Sudan's ability to govern itself:
“Is (the south) ready to govern itself? That’s what they’ve been doing for the last six years, doing just that,” David Gressly, the top U.N. official in the south, said.According to the Economist, Arabs have viewed the separation in a much different light than other groups. Some have claimed it is part of a Western plot to isolate Arabs, while others have pointed out to the implications for Kashmir.
It has its own constitution, a separate central government, 10 state governments all answering to Juba, its own parliament and even its own laws.
The two regions even have different banking systems...Juba in fact kept an entirely separate immigration system.
Blattman also discusses [below the fold] a few important points on thinking about using aggression and the threat of aggression to bring about peace. Granted, he's largely discussing Cote d'Ivoire, but the principles apply equally well to any future instability in or around southern Sudan. Also below the fold are two videos: one on the life of Sudan's pastoralists and The Daily Show on Clooney-vision.
We cannot advocate against aggression without advocating for an alternative. What is the cost and risk of nonaggression?
Bill has elsewhere argued, vociferously and probably correctly, that democracy and human rights are not an outcome of development, nor a luxury affordable to a few. They are not just essential to economic progress, he says, but are development and progress itself. ...
most of us who enjoy rights and democracy owe them to cabals that took enormous, callous, possibly careless risks. Those who succeed we call nation-builders. The ones who fail we call war criminals. (Remember: both Bill and I write from a nation who puts a former child soldier turned genocidal populist on its twenty dollar bill.) ...
I don’t believe the West, or Cote d’Ivoire’s neighbors, are capable of decisive, consistent, principled, and resolute action—aggressive or not. In a different world I might easily succumb to the view that, along with a large coalition of Ivoirian citizens and politicians, rights and freedoms must be seized, even at great risk and cost.
But we live in a world where dithering and inconsistency are the norm even in nations of strategic Western interest. And one where we look back on previous West African interventions in their neighbors are see the cure as worse than the disease. But as we dither and inact, let’s not assume than nonaggression is any less risky or consequential than the alternative.
Except, that is, for us.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
HT: Poverty News Blog