SUDAN WATCH: Dear Baby Mogo in Upper Nile State, S. Sudan: Will you live to your 5th birthday?

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Dear Baby Mogo in Upper Nile State, S. Sudan: Will you live to your 5th birthday?

Copied here below is a must-read short story from Sudan Watch archives November 14, 2005. The story was written by a friend of Rob Haarsager, Richard Reesor, who had just returned from a visit to a small village in Upper Nile, Southern Sudan (photo also courtesy of Richard - sorry, hyperlink to Sudan Man blog has broken).

Dear baby Mogo, I often think of you, hoping you are alive and feeling well, wondering what your eyes are seeing now.  God bless the children of Sudan and pray for US sanctions on Sudan to be lifted.  Here is the photo and story by Richard Reesor c. November 2005, followed by another of my favourites from Sudan Watch archives, November 27, 2004:   A prayer for the janjaweed rape babies.
Insightful Baby Magog Story

Baby Mogo, what will your eyes see?
You were born 5 months ago, the first baby born in your village after the signing of the peace treaty ending 22 years of war. Will you know a life of peace, or will the prospects of peace in your land only be a cruel mirage that evaporates in your eyes before your 5th birthday?

Will you live to your 5th birthday?
Or, will you succumb to the threats of malaria, malnutrition and unsafe drinking water because your village lacks access to a medical clinic. As your village chief warns, "Disease does not wait until morning and the 10 hour walk to the nearest clinic!"

Will you attend school?
Will your mind learn to recognize the letters and words your eyes see so you can read and write, so you can explore through books, the sciences, history, learn to reason and learn about other cultures and their understanding of God?

How will you earn your living?
Will you learn from a teacher about mysteries and vocations unknown to your village or will you learn only from your elders knowledge past down through the generations teaching you how to subsist by keeping livestock, fishing, cultivation, gathering wild foods and herbs and making petitions to the mysterious god NGO?

Will you marry?
Will you find a way to accumulate the bride price of 10 cows and 24 goats? Will you learn about other models of marital relationships or will you learn that your masculinity divines you the right to the family assets, including your wife, who will be responsible for providing food, water, firewood and comfort for you and your children?

Will you learn how to be a peacemaker?
Or, will you learn from your elders that your enemies are the Dinka, the Nuer and the Jalaaba and that your responsibility is to avenge the wrongs done to your ancestors when your eyes see the opportunity?

Baby Mogo, what will your eyes see?
- - -

A prayer for the janjaweed rape babies

Prayer for Janjaweed rape baby

Click here to read:  A prayer for the janjaweed rape babies (from Sudan Watch archives, November 27, 2004)

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