The West Wants to Take the Rest of Sudan’s Oil


A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

Less than a year ago, Sudan was split in two after decades of U.S. support for the secessionist South. Newly independent and deeply impoverished South Sudan has now seized much of what remains of the North’s oil fields. The South refuses to return to its borders, despite widespread international denunciation – a boldness that is inconceivable without the connivance of the United States.


The West Wants to Take the Rest of Sudan’s Oil

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

South Sudan refuses to return to its borders, and its generals are talking about marching all the way to Khartoum.”

The campaign to chop away more territory from the African nation of Sudan is in full swing. South Sudan, which comprised one-third of the country until becoming independent, last year, seized the oil town of Heglig on the northern Sudan side of the border and is refusing international calls to withdraw. The region around Heglig contains half of Sudan’s remaining oil fields. Most of the country’s oil went to South Sudan when the country was partitioned. But the Heglig fields indisputably belong to northern Sudan, having been awarded to the Khartoum government by a Permanent Court, in 2009. Nevertheless, South Sudan refuses to return to its borders, and its generals are talking about marching all the way to Khartoum.

The European Union describes the South Sudanese seizure of northern territory as “completely unacceptable,” and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expressed his “grave concerns” directly to South Sudanese President Salva Kiir. But President Kiir, who wears a signature cowboy hat given to him by President Bush in 2006, shouted back at the UN chief, “I am not under your command.”

So, who does have influence on South Sudan? That would be, overwhelmingly, the United States, which supported South Sudan’s secessionist movement for more than a generation and steamrolled African and international opinion into accepted the dismemberment of what had been the continent’s largest country. It was an especially bitter pill to swallow for that African Union, whose predecessor, the Organization of African States, in 1964 declared that national boundaries left by colonialists should be left alone. The founding statesmen of Africa feared that tampering with borders would expose the continent to foreign intrigues, as Europeans and Americans stirred up secessionist movements for their own gain.

Green Berets now operate in South Sudan and neighboring Uganda, Congo, and the Central African Republic.”

That time has fully arrived. No sooner had South Sudan declared itself independent, than President Obama devised an excuse to move U.S. Special Forces into the country – one of the poorest on Earth, if you don’t count the oil. Green Berets now operate in South Sudan and neighboring Uganda, Congo, and the Central African Republic. American money keeps the Sudanese army equipped and paid. And President Kiir met with Obama only two weeks ago. The official press release on their talks said Obama had expressed concern about the tensions between North and South, and “emphasized the importance of...reaching an agreement on oil.”

Well, it looks like Obama and the cowboy-hatted President Kiir reached their own agreement: to seize the North’s oil fields. South Sudan is a U.S. client state that owes its independence to the U.S. and Europeans and Israel, which was deeply involved in the Sudanese civil war. It is inconceivable that South Sudan would defy the United Nations and the European Union to invade North Sudan and seize half of its oil reserves without the connivance of the United States. U.S. Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice, who has been calling for the head of Sudanese President al-Bashir since George Bush was in office, will pretend that she is “concerned” with the fighting between the two Sudans, and so will Obama. But U.S. client states like South Sudan don’t invade their neighbors without Washington’s blessing. For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, go to

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at [email protected].




I too am deeply suspicious of the West's willingness to allow borders in Africa to be altered only when it creates compliant proxy states such as South Sudan. We should all be extremely wary of any African leader willing to be photographed wearing a cowboy hat, and grinning along side of President Obama. However, one must be realistic. Is the bigoted Arabic "government" in Khartoum a friend of Black Africans? If that regime hadn't tried to shake down the South Sudanese by over charging for shipping oil which it does not own, the current crisis wouldn't have occurred. I would prefer to see Afro centric forces overrun and dominate the entirety of Sudan, if they respected the diversity of region's peoples, and used the natural resources to improve everyone's lives. 

Are african leaders caring of their own people?

First, Northern Sudanese are not 'arabs'. The don't have an arabic government. They are negroes who think they are arabs because of Islam and a few ancestral links to arabs. I am surprised a lot of black people have fallen for this simplistic analysis that it is racist arabs vs black southern sudanese. The whole thing is geopolitics on play. The black nincompoops of Africa always think the West is on their side when racism is invoked is invoked by the worst perpetrators of racism itself. You see that fool in a cow-boy hat? The Northern Sudanese are equally another bunch of black fools who have been braiwashed to think they are not Africans; most of them have arabic names but they are negroes. Most of them would be killed if they showed up in present Libya. Both sides are being manipulated because they are all fools. This is the sad story of Africa and as a matter of fact most black people.

our brothers,42224

“In order to redirect resources towards construction and development, we chose peace” he [Bashir] declared.

“It is clear, however, that our brothers in South Sudan did not think about the interest of Sudan or South Sudan because the two countries have no interest in continuing the war for it is a lose-lose situation for both sides.”

Speaking on Thursday to reporters at Khartoum International Airport after bidding farewell to the visiting president of Niger, Bashir said that South Sudan had chosen “a path of defeat in execution of external agendas.”

The Sudanese president elaborated that South Sudan’s occupation of Heglig was part of “bills Juba is paying to the quarters that used to support them in the past during the war”, in reference to the north-south conflict in the once united Sudan and which ended seven years ago with the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement that gave South Sudan independence in July last year.

“Despite the fact that it [South Sudan] is a nascent state and needs stability, peace, development, services, and lacks many of the basic needs of citizens, it has chosen to take another direction,” Al-Bashir said.

The Sudanese president regretted that South Sudan did not appreciate that Khartoum signed the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) for the sake of stopping the war that went on for many years and depleted Sudan’s human and material resources.

[End Quotes]


In Khartoum, Bashir said "our brothers in South Sudan have chosen the path of war, implementing plans dictated by foreign parties who supported them during the civil war. War is not in the interest of either South Sudan or Sudan but, unfortunately, our brothers in the South are thinking neither of the interests of Sudan or of South Sudan," he told reporters.


They're talking about building a pipeline that runs from S. Sudan to the Kenyan port of Lamu (bypassing Northern Sudan).

See map:


Kenya’s find raised less joy in Uganda, where oil was first struck in 2006. Tullow, together with China’s CNOOC and Total of France, will start pumping it next year, initially at a paltry rate of 5,000 barrels a day (b/d).

But the Lake Albert basin, which straddles the border between Uganda and Congo, holds over a billion barrels of proven reserves and possibly twice that in potential finds.

Uganda has always played Oklahoma to Kenya’s Texas.

It believed its bonanza had for once put it at an advantage: instead of importing oil through the Kenyan port of Mombasa, it [Note: CHINA] would build a refinery and export petroleum products to Kenya [Note: AND OIL FOR CHINA!] at a premium.

Uganda still has a head start, but Kenyan officials now see their country as a regional hub that combines geographical advantages, and its own newly discovered energy resources, with tax breaks, skills and services.

South Sudan, for years the largest oil producer in the region and locked in an oil dispute with Sudan, now wants to send crude out through Kenya on a pipeline to a proposed new port in Lamu (see map).