Sudan Introduction

February 1, 2000
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From the merriment and absurdity of Purim, we travel halfway around the world to focus our consciousness and conscience on Africa’s largest country, Sudan. In this exclusive to Sh’ma, we offer an exchange between Nobel Laureate (and Sh’ma contributing editor) Elie Wiesel and President Bill Clinton. We hear, reverberating in the genocide of millions of innocents who do not follow the fundamentalist Islamic laws of the land, echoes of the death sentence to the Jews in the Purim megillah. For 17 years the Sudanese government has slaughtered millions without an Esther to save them. And, we, citizens of the world, have stood by silently as if not being able to recognize the difference between good and evil.

Jews have a special responsibility to follow in Mordechai’s footsteps and seek intervention. We know what it is to have a death sentence against an entire people. And the current regime in Sudan came to power in the aftermath of Operation Moses, the miraculous airlift of the Jews of Kush (Ethiopia) in 1984, in which Sudan was the transit point. General Numeri’s moderate Sudanese government was toppled after helping the Zionists bring Jews to Israel, unleashing the forces of hatred and genocide that continue to enslave, rape, maim, “destroy, kill and exterminate” (Esther 3:13) an entire people. Elie Wiesel calls on President Clinton–and all of us–to act. –YIA

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