Sunday, May 08, 2005

Genocide, Then and Now

Last week there was Holocaust Remembrance Day and today was the 60th anniversary of V-E Day. The Holocaust was the genocide of the Jewish people that succeeded in slaughtering 6 million people in three years. But even though that genocide has been wiped out, other forms of genocide are still occuring right now. Most notably, there is the genocide in Darfur, Sudan. For more information on the history of the conflict there, check out the Save Darfur Coalition's website (their mission statement has been signed by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops). I'm still a bit murky on all the details of the genocide, but Fr. Gareth told me many, many of the victims are Christians. Since early 2003, 250,000 people have been killed, 2 million have been displaced from their homes and thousands of others have been raped and had other human rights abuses inflicted upon them. Oh, you might say, compared to the Holocaust, with its 6 milion victims, the violence in Darfur isn't so bad. Well, there was a time when there were "only" 250,000 victims of the Holocaust. In fact, the founding members of the Save Darfur Coaltion are the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and the American Jewish World Service. The genocide in Darfur, regardless of the ethnicity, religion, gender, etc. of the victims, is a great insult to God and a great crime against humanity. Please keep the victims - and perpertrators - in your prayers and ask God for a quick, peaceful end to this horrible violence.