Waiting in Darfur

Tragedy in slow motion

The valley that stretches north from the Bela Mountains turns deep green every year when the rains come to West Darfur. Any farmer would love the wide, well-watered valley, and indeed you can see faint outlines of fields where donkey-drawn plows once turned the soil over seeds of sorghum and peanuts. But there are no farmers and no donkeys today, just an occasional herd of camels and a herder or two lingering in the shadows of the trees along the wadi that absorbs the afternoon thunderstorms. And there are no farmers’ homes, but only the decaying circles of mud that were once the walls of huts whose thatched roofs sheltered the laughing children of the Fur tribe.

 

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