Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS- Daesh) Entering Sudan without a Deterrent
By Mahmoud A. Suleiman
This article comes against the background of the Extremism, which has become epidemic growing and spreading like a cancer from the Levant region to the Middle Eastern region and around the globe, engulfing the State of Sudan under the leadership of the movement of political Islam, the arbitrary despotic regime of the National Congress Party (NCP). It is a milestone in the jihadist storming unprecedentedly the privacy of Sudanese families and robbing their daughters and sons and loved ones in daylight without a deterrent. In the aftermath of that are the grieving parents and relatives who get no tangible support from the State. What prompted me to write this article is the pain of grief that I felt when I talked with a couple of my acquaintances whose loved ones joined the Islamic state in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) as well as my empathy with my compatriots whose sons and/or daughters went to join the fundamentalist jihadi group. The transmission of the epidemic of the (ISIS) to Sudan occurred when news media outlets made headlines in March 2015 announced that nine medical students of Sudanese origins studying at a private medical college in Khartoum entered Syria through Turkish crossing to Syria for a volunteer work in ISIS hospitals. At the time, it became clear that all those students but probably one their parents live in the West. Then came the third of the andirons where other twelve Sudanese medical students leaving Khartoum to join the (ISIS) to work as volunteers in its hospitals.
Political observers ask as to why all the students from just one private medical school in Khartoum. It remains phenomenon-making people wonder of the phenomenon in which all Sudanese students who joined the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) were studying at the same private Faculty of Medicine despite the presence of so many private and public medical schools throughout Sudan. Some analysts started speculating the possible underlying reasons for the phenomenon. University of Medical Sciences and Technology (UMST) aka University of Mamoun Hummaida, in honor of its founder and owner, Professor Dr. Mamoun Hummaida , former Minister of Health for the state of Khartoum. It is a private university founded in 1996 in the City of Khartoum. This medical school is highly academic where students need showing ongoing high achievements. This means higher performance in clinical academic expected from the students at all times without much regard to other activities such as cultural and political activity and periods of entertainment found in other universities where the Students Affairs Deanship allows activities such as seminars and leisure pursuits and entertainment events to break the boredom. This is most likely makes medical students in the Mammon’s Medical College as machines calcified feeling demoralized and bored and easy targets prey for consoling which comes from whomever especially if enveloped in religious preaching format. It is no wonder that the atmosphere is conducive for the jihadis imposing themselves as paternalistic guardians for the students for radicalizing especially the gullible young naive lacking worldly experience and so eager to believe appearances. The annual tuition fee for the Medical School Student amounts to about 150 million Sudanese Pounds about £16000 Sterling Pounds; the amount only the well to do parents can afford paying that fee. The parents of students joined the ISIS ranks are in the category affording the payment, as they are either medical doctors or professionals working in the West or businesspersons.
Daesh is abbreviation of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/ISIS) in Arabic.
The Consequences of the spread of ISIS to Sudan echoed its effects to haunt Khartoum, Britain, Canada, USA, Turkey and Syria causing extreme grief and sadness to parents and relatives of scores of radicalized male and female medical students at a private college in Khartoum joining the (ISIS- Daesh). The students referred to hold passports from Western countries mentioned above along with Sudanese passports. Majority of the students who referred to, their parents are citizens with dual nationalities living in the Western countries as Diaspora. Among the purposes of the parents of those students besides studying medicine in Khartoum was to give them opportunity leering from the established Sudanese culture and customs and traditions. What raises anger and bewilderment is that the government of the National Congress Party (NCP) does not pay any attention to what is going on and continues turning a blind eye to what is happening.
Deterioration of Religious Discourse in Sudan is the most important cause for the phenomenon of extremism among the Higher Education students joining the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria/Levant (ISIS/ISIL).
The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is a terrorist organization adopts Takfiri ideology (infidels), and has the arsenal variety of munition and weapons. It managed of controlling several cities and oil wells in both Iraq and Syria, following the implementation of a series of terrorist attacks and massacres against the population of these two states. The ISIS or Daesh became the organization with lenticular branches in Yemen, Libya, Sinai, Somalia, Nigeria, and Pakistan! Moreover, it already drew the map for the geographical territories expected for its spread and published it. The ISIS means that – in practice – it threatened all Arab countries alleged map of the state targeted by the organization covered all the Arab world, which is what actually happened! It spread out terrorist operations in many countries in the region, according to their confessions – people Daash – most recently, what happened in Kuwait, Tunisia as a sad living example!
New recent breaking news indicated that before boarding a plane to go to Turkey in search for his daughter, Ambassador Ali al-Sadig, as saying that there are unidentified agencies paying bribes in US dollars to facilitate for the Medical Students from the University of Mamoun Hummaida, including his daughter, to join the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) – Daash. Moreover, journalists reported quoting the official Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ambassador Ali al-Sadig as saying that his daughter left Khartoum airport to Ankara in Turkey without obtaining an exit visa with 12 of her colleagues. They are stressing that they did not go through the routine procedures followed by every passenger departing the country, which means that there is a large network working to smuggle of students out. Ambassador Ali al-Sadig is the spokesperson of Sudan’s Foreign Ministry. The biggest catastrophe that Sudan and its people bear the consequences of all of these terrorist acts. The regime of the NCP-led genocidal criminal has hidden subversive hands for enhancing and enabling terrorists in the implementation of terrorist acts in all the neighboring Arab and African countries. Harboring terrorists fleeing from Egypt, Libya and others by the Muslim Brotherhood government in Khartoum is the greatest scourge borne by the components of Sudanese people who have tried hard and struggled to overthrow the regime so far been unsuccessful, though.
To show that the ruling (NCP) remains in complicity with terrorists, the authorities in Khartoum released Muhammad Ali al-Juzuli the coordinator of an organisation known as (the Stream of One Nation). The Sudanese authorities allegedly detained Muhammad Ali al-Juzuli for a period of 240 days (they claimed) because of his support of the organization Daash. Moreover, he even became Amir (a prince) to ISIS (i.e. Daesh) in Sudan, according to other rumors! Al-Juzuli’s attachment to the ideology of Daesh for ending the presence of the Arab rulers who are accomplices with Israel for not fight it, which are fundamentalist remarks yet the NCP regime has released him from detention. This action indicates the complicity of (NCP) regime administrators with this al-Juzuli. These contradictory positions and contrasting acts do not give positive indications for Sudan, and lead to further restrictions and penalties that weighed upon the Sudan since the nineties of the last century and that only affect the ordinary in particular. Furthermore, those positions in particular, reflect the lack of sincerity of Omar al-Bashir’s statements that broadcasted between now and then, particularly with regard to fighting terrorism and opposition to keep Sudan on the US terrorist sponsoring list. This also reflects the contradictory acts, treachery inherent in the ruling Islamist group in Khartoum. The actions of Islamism group are always driven by lust for fulfilling hidden interests without any moral scruples or pangs of conscience! The regime disowned Iran, which supported them and was a friend to them by expelling the Iranian Cultural Attaché and closed down the sub-centers (Iranian cultural centers), which were widespredly deployed in the Sudan. This was done under the pretext of posing threat to the security and to the intellectual and the social norms of the Sudan! The underlying reasons for the awakening of al-Bashir is the mounted pressure of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and other the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries.
The real reasons for the drastic measure taken by the NCP regime lately against their master of grace Iran is the (bending) to the international and regional pressures exerted. Thus, Omer al-Bashir and those around him bowed to the warnings and pressures of the (KSA) after the dubious visits of the Iranian war barges to Port Sudan along with the warm reception of Iranian officials. Moreover, the suspicious industry and smuggling weapons to extremists in Libya resulted into the series of successive air raids such as those that destroyed the Yarmouk factory in Khartoum, next to the air raids to the Eastern Sudan by unidentified warplanes believed belonging to Israel! Thus, terrorism will continue to be an integral part of the ruling Islamism regime of the NCP and the harboring of the fundamentalist jihadi terrorists will continue. As the adage goes, snakes cannot get rid of their venom.
I conclude by quoting Harriet Tubman who was an African-American abolitionist– Abolitionism is a movement to end slavery, humanitarian, and during the American Civil War, a Union spy. He is quoted as saying:” Never wound a snake; kill it’.
Dr. Mahmoud A. Suleiman is an author, columnist and a blogger. His blog is https://thussudan.wordpress.com/