History rhymes: A note about the start of the current Sudan war
Comparing the start of the 2023 Sudan war with the 2003 Darfur war
As an observer of Sudan’s ongoing civil war, I have focused on the future trajectory of the conflict and the possibilities for escalation or deescalation. I’m less interested in the specifics of who started the fighting and why.
Regardless of which party fired the first shot, both sides have had ample opportunities since then to change course. They have chosen not to do so.
Nevertheless, for historical reasons I think it’s important eventually to get to the bottom of what happened in the days leading up to the outbreak of war. It’s clear that both sides were maneuvering troops and making preparations for a potential conflict.
On the morning of April 15, the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) claim that they were attacked in the Sports City area, and that was what triggered the fighting. They characterize the entire war as one of self-defense.
However, on the same day, the RSF quickly took over military airports in Khartoum and Merowe, and a helicopter base in Jebel Aulia. They destroyed or disa…