Newly leaked minutes of the Security and Military Committee meeting held on the premises of the High Academy of Security, 3 June 2014

 

On May 27, 2015 I received from a highly trusted source in Sudan the minutes of another high-level meeting of officials from the National Islamic Front/National Congress Party regime in Khartoum, held on June 3, 2014.  I attach the Arabic original at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Ik

I have archived the completely unedited text of an accompanying translation at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Ij

Here, in two parts, is my effort at rendering a fully clear and idiomatic version of this often awkward and confusing translation.

Part 1 may be found at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1In

Part 2 may be found at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Il). 

In a few places I have been forced to guess at the meaning of a sentence, and in a few places I simply confess my confusion.  But it is a long text-the longest I have yet received-and context is ample on most occasions.

I will provide a full analysis as soon as possible, but it has seemed to me important to put the Arabic original and a clear translation in the public domain as quickly as possible.  What I have offered in place of a stand-alone analysis is a series of comments and observations, as well as factual corrections and additions; some are a paragraph, some are only a few words.  All are marked off by a distinct formatting: italics, in [brackets], and in the color blue.  My initials (ER) also follow every interpolated comment.  I have done this in part to make reading simply the translation without commentary as easy as possible.

I have highlighted in bold, or at a few particularly significant moments in underlined bold, comments of particular significance.  I have also highlighted in bold proper names and terms that are of particular importance in following the grand political vision outlined here.  I have sometimes used acronyms, but often return to the full name (e.g., Rapid Response Forces).  I have consistently used the name and acronym Sudan People's Liberation Army/Movement-North (SPLA/M-N) to designate the political and military forces opposing the regime in South Kordofan and Blue Nile, and which make up the most important part of the military coalition known as the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF). 

The political nature of the meeting is indicated by the length of time given over to comments by Ibrahim Ghandour, Deputy Chairman of the National Congress Party (NCP): his initial presentation makes up well over a third of the commentary recorded in these minutes.  There are also present a number of lower ranking political and military officials who are not present at subsequent meetings for which I have received minutes; these are dominated by the most senior military and security officials in the regime:

July 1, 2014 | see http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Cb

August 31, 2014 | see http://wp.me/p45rOG-1wk

September 10, 2014 | see http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Ff

(all have links to the full texts of the Arabic originals; the Arabic original text of the present minutes can be found at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Ik

What emerges in the document is the record of a meeting that often seems to be a high-level political instructional session, with particular talking points repeatedly being proffered.  These revolve chiefly around the so-called "National Dialogue," which is still in its political infancy at the time.  It will be described in later meetings as a mere "ploy" and as offering the regime "political cover" in the run-up to the April 2015 national elections. Defense Minister Abdel Rahim Mohamed Hussein-indicted by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity in Darfur declared: "Our National Dialogue initiative is just a maneuver to provide us with political cover for a continuation of the war...."  President Omar al-Bashir himself weighed in with the claim that, "The National Dialogue is also intended to provide political cover for the present Constitution and the Decisive Summer Campaign [against rebel groups in Sudan]."

Clearly it was never taken seriously by the most senior members of the regime; but the idea that this was a development of political significance had to be sold to this (to be sure willing) audience.  What questions to anticipate, what responses to expect, what to say in defense of the regime's military policy-all this appears in various forms throughout the document . . .

Part 1 may be found at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1In

Part 2 may be found at | http://wp.me/p45rOG-1Il). 

-- 

Eric Reeves 

Smith College
Northampton, MA  01063
       413-585-3326
       ereeves@smith.edu

       Skype: ReevesSudan 

       Website:   www.sudanreeves.org

Compromising With Evil: An archival history of greater Sudan, 2007-2012   www.CompromisingWithEvil.org