HOUSTON, TX (Jan. 29, 2008) – Since 2003, more than 400,000 people have been killed and more than 2.5 million have been displaced from their homes in the Darfur region of Sudan. The Sudanese government has sent its troops and militias known as the Janjaweed to destroy villages, pillaging national resources and torturing, raping and murdering innocent civilians in what the Bush administration has declared a genocide.
What can be done to prevent such occurrences will be the focus of a Feb. 18 lecture at Holocaust Museum Houston entitled "Darfur Genocide: Never Again, Again?" featuring Mark Hanis, founder and executive director of the Genocide Intervention Network.
Hanis will discuss the crisis in Darfur, what America has done in response and specific things that can be done to help bring an end to the genocide. Hanis will appear at a reception at 6 p.m., Monday, Feb. 18, followed by his lecture at 6:30 p.m. Both events will be open to the public and will be held at Holocaust Museum Houston’s Morgan Family Center, 5401 Caroline St., in Houston’s Museum District.
Admission to both events is free, but seating is limited, and advance registration is recommended. Visit www.hmh.org/register.asp to register online.
"Every single person can have a hand in stopping genocide because it is all man-made," Hanis said in discussing his lecture. "This is the first time the United States has declared a genocide, and we are not doing enough compared to what we could and should be doing."
The network, commonly called GI-Net, was founded in 2004 at Swarthmore College by Hanis and other students to give concerned Americans the ability to help protect civilians from genocide. The founders believed that the financial support of peacekeepers in Darfur could help protect civilians and convince policymakers to take action.
The organization’s current focus is on ending the ongoing genocide in Darfur, providing material support for African Union peacekeepers in the region and organizing political action campaigns for an effective civilian protection force, Hanis said.
Hanis said that the African Union is the only organization providing protection to the people of Darfur, and that the people of Darfur need more protection than relief.
Hanis is the grandson of four Holocaust survivors and was raised in Quito, Ecuador. He graduated from Swarthmore College with a degree in political science and public policy and, in 2006, was named a Draper Richards fellow and an Echoing Green fellow.
Hanis and the GI-Net have been featured in the New York Times and The New Republic, and Hanis has appeared on CNN Headline News, the NBC television network and National Public Radio.
Holocaust Museum Houston is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust, remembering the 6 million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors' legacy. Using the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides, the Museum teaches the dangers of hatred, prejudice and apathy.
Holocaust Museum Houston is free and open to the public and is located in Houston’s Museum District at 5401 Caroline St., Houston, TX 77004.
For more information about the Museum, call 713-942-8000 or visit www.hmh.org. For more information on GI-Net, visit www.genocideintervention.net.