Travel Log 7: “Global Responsibility Part1” By: Stephen Sharo, Dunedin, NZ

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This cartoon depicts a church labeled “Never Again Official U.N Memorial” with the word Rwanda put above the doorway. On the inside of the church there are layers of skulls lining the walls. On the other side of the cartoon, there is a jeep labeled Janjaweed speeding right through the church and heading towards a sign that says Darfur. The militia in the jeep are also shooting at people trying to run away. In order to better understand the cartoon, background information on the situation in Darfur should be better understood. The Janjaweed are a militia group located in Darfur and Chad and are responsible for killing hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians. In 2003 the government and the Janjaweed began ethnic cleansing of non-Arabs in the area and the conflict is still continuing today. The author’s message was very clear, he is trying to show that the current situation in Darfur is exactly what has happened in Rwanda. The U.N said tragedies like this should never happen again, but they are currently allowing it to happen in Darfur and Sudan. The Janjaweed blew past the U.N condemnations of Rwanda and are continuing to murder innocent people. The amount of human rights which were violated in the cartoon were many. The people depicted in the cartoon are receiving cruel and inhuman treatment and were denied the rights to life liberty and security of person. (UN News Center). I think it takes a global effort in order to keep these rights enforced. The crises which cause the violations of these rights are too large for any one country or person to handle. For example, in the movie Shake Hands with the Devil General Roméo Dallaire attempts to change the situation in Rwanda. He was fully committed to remedying the situation and attempted to protect the rights of the people. However his small peacekeeping force was too small to make an impact. As a result, he completely blames himself, even though he did everything in his power to help. Preserving these human rights is a task that is too large for any one man or country. Other situations similar to the Rwandan genocide occurring today include the situations in Syria, Darfur, and Iraq. I think that there is a greater awareness and knowledge about these situations compared to Rwanda, but there is still little actions being taken. I think that as people we have a responsibility to help maintain the rights of these people.

 

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights | United Nations.” UN News Center. UN, n.d. Web. 15 Mar. 2016

 

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