The official figures on South Sudanese IDPs and refugees become obsoleteeven before you finish reading them . But if we try we have (had ?) 1,793,000 IDPs and 831,582 refugees . But if we take a few minutes and collect the figures country by country , we have (when I read it last) 286,578 refugees in Ethiopia , 832,000 in Uganda and 170,000 in the South Kordofan of (North) Sudan , which seems to add up to slightly less than 1.3 million . And in this we did not factor in the refugees in other North Sudanese provinces than South Kordofan (there should be over 200,000 in South Darfur and smaller numbers elsewhere) and we did not include either those who fled to the D.R. Congo (at least 40 to 50,000) . So should we say 1.5 million ? Meaning that a total of nearly a fourth of South Sudan’s population is somehow on the run . Looking at this , what is the reaction of the international community ? Mostly sitting tight and looking elsewhere . The last ones to do something  — anything — are the Japanese . Poor Japanese ! They had promised to fund the National Dialogue loudly promised by the Merry Band of Robbers in Juba that pretends to be a “Government”. This sounded like a relatively moderate and reasonable initiative and Tokyo promised to foot the bill . But there was still one hurdle to clear  : the  Juba artists had –reluctantly — promised to accept a new “peace force” on top of UNMISS. But there was one (Juba edicted) proviso : the Regional Peace Force (RPF) had to be …………regional . But since the regional States are quite wary of sending troops to South Sudan , the UN brokered a deal with …………………Bangladesh and Nepal ! On April 7th , Information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth expressed the refusal of his “Government” to accept such exotic soldiers in the RPF . Tokyo did not like it and said (unofficially) that sorry , no RPF , no money for the National Dialogue . The Juba authorities immediately shot back that there would be no national dialogue “for lack of funds”. The same Juba autorities spend 50% of their national budget on weapons (weapons , not soldiers’ salaries : the SPLA troops have not received any money for the last four months ; instead they are allowed to loot whatever comes their way) but they could not come up with a minimum perdiem for a national dialogue . Instead of National Dialogue , President Salva Kiir just issued a radio appeal , asking “those who are in the bush” to “join hands with us and abandon violence“. This was the shortest negotiating session ever . But who is in the bush ? The problem is that it is just about anybody who is neither a Dinka nor a refugee . Fighting is now spluttering almost anywhere . At the beginning of the month it was in Eastern Equatoria , around Parajok , at the foot of the Imatong mountains , where the SPLA was killing Acholis . A week later it burst near Mapel , South East of Wau . Organized rebels (probably Nuer of SPLM/IO) attacked the SPLA . Battle losses were never given by either side but angry SPLA men went around several neighborhoods in Wau , shooting non-Dinka civilians , mostly Luo but including some others (Jur , Belanda or Fertit) . A few days later dozens more were killed when Murle warriors attacked a Bor Dinka cattle camp in Eastern Lakes Province . The Bor-Pibor road had been closed after several cars and buses were shot up . The Bor are now gathering forces to counter-attack the Murle . Where is this going ? Probably nowhere because nobody is ready to try doing anything and even if anybody were , the obvious solution is not offering itself visibly . Roughly speaking , the Dinka , draping themselves in their past “liberation” glory , are trying to take over the Southern Sudan because they combine the largest tribal population , the weapons and the official legitimacy of having had control of what passes for “government” in the eyes of the international community . What they do not have is the 70% of the population who are not Dinka . Some Dinka are aware of the fact that this “policy” is a dead-end road leading nowhere but tribal passion still keeps most of the big tribe if not united at least mostly roped together . There won’t be a genocide , either by or against the Dinka , because the place is way too much of a mess (and too big as well) to have a genocide . But thousands will die , not so much by bullets , but through starvation , sickness and exhaustion . The toxicity of the situation is limited since the poor refugees are mostly running for their lives and do not have the military capacity to upset anything in their countries of asylum (except perhaps locally the Nuer in western Ethiopia , around Gambella) . The “solutions” proferred by the international community would be laughable if they did not make you want to cry . The last advice was provided by Mr Festus Mogae when he went to see Riak Machar , still living under house arrest  in South Africa , and asked him “to renounce violence and join the National Dialogue” . This was shortly before the National Dialogue aborted “for lack of funds“. The fact that Juba was spending milions of dollars purchasing weapons was known to Mr Mogae but he went ahead anyway and asked Riak Machar to marry a corpse . Riak Machar has to be included in any solution but he cannot be relied upon to marshall a miracle . Now South Sudan has entered a variety of the concept of a Hobbesian war , which is “the war of all against the Dinka — but without any alliance or unity“. Many of the “rebels” behave more like thugs than like freedom fighters and the refugees are running away from them almost as much as they are running away from the SPLA . Thomas Cirillo is sitting in Addis Ababa , waiting for the goodwill of the Ethiopians ; Riak Machar is biting his nails in polite detention in South Africa ; the various tribal militias are on the loose and UNMISS , with its new gung-ho commander (see my last blog) , is waiting for New York to come up with something (!) . None of this is likely to lead to anything constructive , given the fact that the whole political elite (not the victims ; but those have no voice) refuses the notion of any international mandate over their benighted land .

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