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Rift Valley Institute

Making local knowledge work

The Yarmouk Complex – Sudan in the World

By Magdi El Gazouli

Sudan's Military Industry Corporation (MIC), established according to its website in 1993, has as its motto the phrase 'for peace we gather all our effort'. The phrase mocks the fact that the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) which grew out of the Egyptian-clad and British-disciplined Sudan Defence Force (SDF) has been consumed throughout its history in battling insurgencies within the country's territories. Ghazi Suleiman, once a regime-critical human rights lawyer and today a loud enthusiast for President Bashir, did not mince words in spelling out the esprit de corps of the SAF officer class with reference to the envies and passions of his own social milieu, the educated effendis of the professions.

An innocent-looking TV presenter asked Ghazi over Eid whether there was anything he regretted during his rather dramatic life of political zigzags. Ghazi, priding in his frankness, said he regretted the decision to enter the law faculty of Khartoum University instead of joining the army. Had I been an officer, he said, I would have surely managed to pull off a coup and realise my dream of becoming the country's president, the uncontested Bringi (number one). …

The author is a fellow of the Rift Valley Institute. He publishes regular opinion articles and analyses at his blog Still Sudan.

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