General Thomas Cirillo Swaka has just proclaimed his launch of a new opposition Movement , the NAS (National Salvation Movement) . Never mind that the letters do not correspond to the name , what matters is that General Cirillo is now joining God (or at least His Church representatives) in his outright rejection of the Salva Kiir regime . This is coming a few days after an official famine has been announced and after an emotional if well-intentioned Rebecca Nyandeng Garang had declared that the present catastrophe was man-made and actually Salva Kiir-made . The only answer Salva Kiir found to these criticisms was to call for a national day of prayers . But prayers for what and because of what ? The Horn of Africa is suffering from an intense drought . But it was not drought the Catholic Auxiliary Bishop of Juba Rev. Santo Laku Pio was talking about on March 3rd when he declared to the Voice of America that he “was praying all the time for South Sudan but that he would have to be a dead corpse to be brought to Church for this “national prayer day” because it is a mockery , it is political”. Two days later General and former Governor Joseph Bakosoro joined the outcry and also denounced the ploy to conscript God on the government’s side . In fact , revolt , albeit inefficient , is spreading . If we look at the popular line up , the situation is increasingly the Dinka – or at least some of them – against the whole population of South Sudan . The Shilluk (who don’t like that name anymore , they prefer “Collo”) , the Nuer of course (except those Taban Deng Gai has managed to buy) , the Azande , most of the Central Equatorians and a good slice of the South and west Bahr-el-Ghazal tribes are now anti-Dinka . Actually the people worrying against the danger of a genocide in South Sudan used to be largely worried – and rightly so – about the continued gross abuses carried out by the Dinka tribal militias . But as time passes and everybody becomes so fed up with the Dinka , the danger would be to end up with a genocide of the Dinka carried out by every other tribe . Of course many innocent Dinka would be killed in such a process but , as the Pope’s Legate said in the XIIIth century during the Crusade against the Albigenses , “kill them all , God will recognize His Own”. Yes , indeed , the situation has now become that dire . Will the Dinka kill everybody or will everybody kill the Dinka ? Remember the days the South Sudan situation was described as a tribal war between the Nuer and the Dinka ? Lo and behold , those were the (bad) old days . Now we have worse : a war of all against all and a potential mutual genocide . Not as killing efficient as in Rwanda (the country is way bigger and the killing militias much less well-organized) but horrible nevertheless . Actually the present situation could be described as horror on the installment plan : little killings everywhere, the pattern being the Dinka militias killing the locals , the locals trying , (rather unsuccessfully) , to kill the Dinka and meanwhile anybody killing anybody else to take advantage of the situation to settle old scores . Of course , it is now necessary to push aside the Salva Kiir regime , even in order to save the Dinka from their own excesses! But do not count on the international community which is still on the line of a negotiated peace agreement – a “peace agreement” even after that Riak Machar who had signed one was nearly assassinated on July 8th 2016 in Juba by his “partner in peace” Salva Kiir ! — and do not count either on an international mandate to save South Sudan from itself . The international community wants peace if it is easy , cheap and do-it-yourself . So the only way left is armed rebellion . But there is not much hope there either , at least in the present set up . Riak Machar is still under house arrest in South Africa , his former Ethiopian friends have forsaken him , General Cirillo’s potential troops are bordering on the Congo which doesn’t care , having too many problems of its own and on Uganda which is pro-Kiir (even if it is with a diminishing enthusiasm) . The same goes for Joseph Bakosoro and his so-far ectoplasmic SSNMC . SPLM/IO remains the only rebel group worth the name . But there is an additional danger : foreign involvement . Recently some Bani Shangul Liberation Front fighters attacked the site of the great Ethiopian dam on the Nile from a base in South Sudan . They were easily stopped and either killed or gotten prisoner . But this desultory attack could easily be a probe . Egypt wants that dam gone off the face of the earth and Salva Kiir is so bankrupt that he has accepted Egyptian help after his recent trip to Cairo . Was Egyptian security behind the Bani Shangul border jumpers ? It is not known but it is a reasonable possibility since the Bani Shangul fighters have been around since the 1980s and are therefore unlikely to be blind and stupid . Here we go again : the untended conflicts tend to fester as travelling bacteria tend to land on their open wounds . But who looks at South Sudan in Washington ? President Trump is unlikely to know about its existence . So what about Moscow then . A bit worrying , isn’t it ? March 6th 2017

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