By BO Staff Writer
It is the Sudanese people’s unrelenting struggle which culminated in President Omar al-Bashir’s removal from power two months ago. Since then the Sudanese people have continued the fight against the ‘Transitional Military Council’ (TMC) which has captured power for the ruling class. The people are clear. They remain camped outside the military headquarters in Khartoum calling for the generals to cede power to them. They want the TMC gone!
There’s a counterrevolutionary offensive being conducted in Sudan by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), the militia of the TMC. It is indeed instructive that the RSF is commanded by the deputy leader of Sudan, Mohammad Hamdan (aka Himeidti) who evidently has stationed 7000 troops in Yemen at the behest of Saudi Arabia. In the leadership of the RSF is also Salah Abdallah Gosh, the chief of the intelligence services, who strongly controls very powerful forces in Khartoum and is closely linked to the United States, Criminal Investigation Agency (US CIA) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The rulers of the three western imperialist backed regional powers – Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the UAE – had thrown their weight behind the TMC for fear of revolutions (particularly of the nature of the 2011 Arab Spring) which pose a threat to their rule.
Negotiations have broken down between the TMC and the opposition leaders of the Sudanese Professional Association (SPA). While there was consensus between the parties for elections to be held within three years, the TMC rejected the demand for a civilian council to rule during the transition. It further retaliated by unleashing its RSF on protesters which lasted many days killing 120 and injuring countless others.
On June 6 the African Union (AU) responded by suspending Sudan from the regional block – basically halting its participation in all AU activities – on condition that it establishes a civilian-led transitional authority towards resolving the crisis. Two days later SPA announced a national campaign of “civil disobedience” until the TMC transfers power.
It is noteworthy that while the National Congress Party (NCP) government of Bashir has historically opposed US and Isreali imperialism resulting in Sudan being slammed with sanctions, subversion and bombardment – it has nonetheless succeeded in various respects in becoming a good servant of US imperialism. To this end the NCP government has: collaborated with the extraordinary rendition program of the CIA; ended relations with Iran in 2014; provided military assistance to the Saudi war in Yemen; implemented strict austerity measures on the instructions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) which sparked the people into spontaneous upsurge to remove Bushir; and caused the 2011 split of Sudan into two, which saw South Sudan constituting 75 % of the country’s oil which in turn amounts to about 90 % of its foreign exports.
Moreover the NCP government has been trying to establish friendly relations with Israel. Just last year (2018) the Sudanese investment minister called Israel a “democratic” state and admonished the Palestinians for selling their land out. He was correctly denounced by the Arab and Palestinian left for this.
In November 2018 the U.S. State Department praised the NCP government thus preparing the path for fresh bilateral relations. In other instances the US had backed the protest movement to topple a President.
In all this time of getting closer to Sudan, the US was tightening its austerity measures against the people which led to Bashir’s removal.
Post Bashir, Sudan is still in a mess. Bashir was toppled via the power of the people not via negotiations, hence any negotiations with the TMC must be rejected. The struggle must continue. The people must take control. Negotiations with the TMC serves to delay the struggle and in fact contain it. The military junta must be defeated via an intensified campaign of mass action. Progressive elements within the ranks of the army should be engaged to rid itself of reactionary members and to link up with the revolutionary forces.
1. The TMC must step down.
2. A revolutionary government of the people must be formed which will put Sudan first.
3. There must be nationalization of banks and the major industries
4. The the counter revolutionary militias must be disbanded and disarmed.
5. All state brutality and repression against the people must be brought to an end!
6. Internet connectivity, access to all information, as well as water and electricity supply must be restored.
7. Decent public services must be provided generally
8. All unemployed must get a basic wage
9. Full employment or subsidy for graduates must be realized
10. The defence of the people and of their neighborhoods must be organised.
The Sudanese people are in a crisis! The most important lesson is that without a revolutionary movement, putting the Sudanese people first becomes impossible. What is needed is a revolutionary movement to clarify the contradictions, make visible the real enemy, and give clear political direction. The revolutionary movement moreover must be linked to a clear strategy for seizure of power, lest the the military dictatorship and its repression at the behest of imperialism shall prevail.