The Sudanese December Revolution … when the peaceful revolutionary people overcame the dark age of tyranny

By Al-Hassan Mohammad Osman, Founder of Fridays For Future Sudan

FFF Digital Team
Fridays for Future Digital

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Courtesy of dabangasudan.org

When I was 12 years old, coming home from school with my friends. We were happy and innocent kids, blazing through life with a beautiful smile. On my way to school, I heard neighborhood youth talking among themselves: “Al-Bashir killed the protesters.” Another shouted loudly, “Dozens of people were killed by the security forces’ bullets!” I asked someone, “What are you talking about? What happened?” One of them replied that the security forces had killed peaceful protesters in Khartoum.

After I returned home, I searched the Internet for the news, and I was very sad. When I saw the manifestations of oppression, killing unarmed protesters with live bullets, I thought to myself — why all this brutality?

Those were the September 2013 demonstrations that were brutally suppressed by the ousted regime of Omar al-Bashir. The peaceful protesters were not guilty — the demonstrators only demanded the cancellation of the decision to lift the fuel subsidies. At that time, the security forces killed at least two hundred people according to human rights organizations. The repression of the September 2013 demonstrations was not the first witness to the violence of the Al-Bashir regime — but for me, it was the point where I was introduced to the bad regime. Although I was young at the time.

Years passed and the revolutionary spirit of the Sudanese people came again. Here were the people who suffered from dictatorial dictatorships for six decades; in addition to that, they were the people who made the first African revolution that succeeded in overthrowing a military dictator, the October Revolution of 1964 that toppled General Ibrahim Abboud. And once again the people succeeded in overthrowing another despot, General Jaafar Nimeiri, in the April 1985 revolution. However, the era of the Bashir regime was different.

Al-Bashir came as a tyrant who wore a military uniform and was empowered by the support of a religious-political current. His speeches used false religious slogans to predominantly deceive simple people.” Financial corruption has spread throughout the regime of the despotic Omar Al-Bashir, and it reached levels unprecedented in Sudanese history. All these thefts and criminal encroachment on public money were in the name of religion. Al-Bashir created major crises in Sudan. Thousands of youths mobilized to fight in the south (which later became a new country) against the “ popular movement “ led by John Garang — and it is the war in which all parties lost because it is a war that only the simple people will be affected by and they will only be her cold-blooded victims. Another crisis occurred in Darfur, fuelled and ignited by the Bashir regime, and tens of thousands were killed.”

The youth were the ones who suffered the most in the era of the deposed — they are the ones who were deprived by Bashir of their rights and robbed of all their dreams. Many of them left school because of poverty, and others like them were displaced due to the wars that took place during the era of the criminal general. Because of this, the youth’s participation was effective and important in the revolution that took place on December 13 in Damazine. Then Atbara and Port Sudan followed on December 19, and youth and students came out demanding the dictator’s overthrow. Young people were the fuel and spirit of the revolution. I saw first-hand the enthusiasm in their eyes as they chanted, “Freedom, peace, and justice. Revolution is the people’s choice.”

The sit-in of the General Command that began on April 6 was the defining and focal point in the course of the revolution. Hundreds of thousands gathered in front of the army headquarters and said, “We will not leave until after the regime is overthrown and the goals of our revolution are achieved.” The sit-in was like a bright painting in which the Sudanese of all sects gathered. They sought freedom, justice, and equality; they aimed to achieve democracy and did not seek anything else.

Al-Bashir fell on April 11 and the people succeeded in uprooting the military tyranny that had been lying in place for three decades. In the era of Al-Bashir, the Sudanese people saw nothing but repression, killing, and intimidation. Al-Bashir and the pillars of his regime sought to separate the people and promote hatred and racism. As Hassan Al-Turabi, the godfather of the Al-Bashir coup said: Al-Bashir was nothing but a man who found power “by chance”. Al-Bashir was removed from power while he was involved in corruption, war crimes, and many human rights violations. During his reign, the expression of opinion regarding his powers was “betrayal.” Hundreds were arrested for expressing their views peacefully. Freedom had no room in the dictionary of Al-Bashir and his gang, as they only believed in the language of oppression and intimidation.

But in the end, the peacefulness of the people and their will triumphed, and the people began a new phase in which they sought justice and equality, knowing with certainty that their journey was difficult — especially with the axis of the counter-revolution looking to pounce on their revolution and thwart it, as had happened in Egypt.

The Sudanese are waiting for justice for all the victims of the peaceful demonstrations and the massacres that followed the fall of the regime — the massacre of the General Command, the Al-Ubayyad massacre, and the October 15 massacre in Kassala.

But two years after its inception, is the December Revolution on its correct path to success?

In its beginning, the revolution was not a revolution with an ideological dimension. It was only the revolution of justice against injustice, the revolution of freedom against tyranny, and the revolution of peace against the regime of war. Its slogans were clear, rejecting all discrimination, and most of the revolutionary youth had no party affiliations — even if the political organizers had a role in the revolution, the vast majority of the revolutionaries were not affiliated with a clear political or ideological passion. Rather, they were united by one thing: the hatred of the military tyranny that killed them, stole their homeland and destroyed it.

The tyrant, Omar Al-Bashir, did not live up to what his followers shouted in his meetings: “We are with you, Bashir” and “The Lion of Africa.” This “lion” was an ostrich that buried its head in the sand when it met other leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, to whom Al-Bashir went to at the end of his term, asking him for “protection”. Al-Bashir appeared at the time, humiliated, kneeling, his head bent in front of Putin. This humiliation was associated with Al-Bashir, who was fond of the rulers of the Gulf — including the kings of Saudi Arabia and the leaders of the Emirates, who he used to go to annually.

In addition, he joined with them in the coalition that contributed to deepening the Yemen crisis, which was ignited by the Yemeni terrorist Houthi militia loyal to Iran. The Arab coalition continued what Iran started, and the country of Yemen became described as suffering from the worst humanitarian disaster in the world, according to the United Nations. Al-Bashir concluded his ruling by meeting him with the serial killer of Syria, Bashar Al-Assad. He became the first leader to visit the capital of the terrorist regime supported by Iran and Russia. Al-Bashir was not different from Bashar, as both of them killed, stole, and displaced hundreds of thousands of their homes because of the futile wars they fought for nothing other than enjoying the killing that has become their method.

After the revolution, Sudan entered into a new era in which the revolutionaries hoped that the state of justice they had believed in throughout their revolution would be fulfilled. It is true that the transitional phase agreement was not at the level of the revolution.

Because it gave room for the military and made them partners in power, and it is true that the forces of freedom and change, after the formation of the authority, differed from their “revolutionary” discourse during the period of the Military Council, which was described as a “coup” and its members today have become “partners in the revolution” according to press statements by a number of members Freedom and Change Alliance.

Despite these facts, the people still believe in their revolution and will not give up on it — even if those who were once part of it began to flatter the military!

The people will not give up their revolution that they started to achieve a new reality. Revolution is the title of the people. It is not the property of a political alliance or an armed movement or an ideological current that tries to impose its ideology on everyone or anyone else. It is the revolution of the people who will not fear anyone. The Sudanese have suffered military coups; parties such as the Communist Party, the Islamic Front, the Umma Party, and the Democratic Unionist Party. have been involved, and some parties have come to like playing with power.” The duality of military tyranny and the political failure that accompanied all political organizations the Sudanese suffered from, and they hope that the December revolution will succeed in changing even a small part of this reality.

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FFF Digital Team
Fridays for Future Digital

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