From US Political Stories on Sudan … 14th Anniversary of Shifa Plant Bombing .. (Opposition Alliance) Is Hanged by the Falsehood Short Rope
The 14th anniversary of the bombing of Sudan’s Shifa Pharmaceutical Plant has passed amid total silence of the Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs; perhaps the esteemed Ministry is yet busy “eating cake of the happy Eid”.
When you visit the site of bombing of the plant, you do not only see debris and wreckage of stone, steel sheets, remains of Tomahawk missiles and burned missiles but a sea of facts. The pharmaceutical factory was an investment of the Sudanese private sector in which the state held no shares at all. The plant was established by engineer Bashir Hassan Bashir, a businessman (60%), in partnership with Babood for Navigation and Trade Enterprises (40%).
The plant was opened in March 1997 in presence of the President of the Republic, several ambassadors and diplomats and representatives of the regional and international organizations accredited to the Sudan.
In March 1998, the sale of the plant to the businessman Salah Idriss (Ghanawa Company) was completed. This is the fact, contrary to the statement issued by the Umma Party led by Al-Imam Sadiq Al-Mahdi on 12th August 1998 which claimed that the Shifa plant and many other facilities elsewhere were suspicious and that Bin Ladin was among those who had encouraged the establishment of several suspicious facilities in the Sudan. That was published by the London-based Assharq Alawsat newspapers on 22nd August 1998.
Shifa was Africa’s biggest and most modern pharmaceutical plant that had promoted the country’s capacity towards realizing self-sufficiency in many drugs.
Since the facility was a symbol of development of pharmaceutical industry in Sudan, it was visited by many guests including President of the Republic of Niger and his Health Minister, Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Director of the International Health Organization of the East Mediterranean region Dr. Hassan Al Jazaeri, Manager of Nairobi-based Preferential Trade Bank, ambassador of the Republic of Germany, British Ambassador who visited the plant at least twice, Director of Chad’s Medical Supplies, members of Arab Doctors Union who took part in several specialized conferences in Khartoum.
This fact, the fact of the story of the Shifa Plant, refutes the statements and news that reinforce claims of Zionists in Bill Clinton Administration that the plant was tightly guarded and kept in total secrecy.
It is also a fact that refutes statements by the “opposition alliance”. Mohamed Mutasim, the Spokesperson for Mohamed Osman Al-Mirghani on Shifa bombing, said, “What happened in Khartoum on the evening of Thursday 20th August 1998 vindicates the opposition which has been raising the alarm over the danger of this plant since years”. That was published by the London-based Assharq Alawsat newspaper appeared on Saturday 22nd August 1998.
Also, on Monday 24th August 1998, the London-based Al Quds Alarabi newspaper quoted its sources in Bahrain as saying that the Spokesperson of the Opposition Alliance, Farouq Abu Eissa, was behind the charges concerning the existence of a line within Shifa Plant proliferating chemical weapons.
The fact discovered by the guests of the country who visited the plant contradicted the statement of the “opposition alliance”. Lt. Gen. Abdul Rahman Saeed, made statement after the bombing of the plant to the effect that “what happened was normal and the opposition is in possession of information and documents confirming that the plant was proliferating chemical weapons”. Gen. Saeed, chairman of the legitimate leadership and deputy chairman of the joint military command of the opposition added “we have many times raised the issue and published in the newspapers all the details about the plant since three years. He said “the Sudanese citizens have no benefit in the establishment of such suspicious plant which does not serve their interest. What do we expect other than bombing of such facilities? The Sudanese know it was suspicious. Where does the product of this plant go if it was really producing medicines”
It is to be noted that the Shifa Plant had signed a contract with the United Nations to export medicine.
The facts that discovered by the guests who visited the plant and the facts that the Preferential Trade Bank Kenya funded the construction of Plant and the fact that the Plant had signed a contract with the UN to export medicine, refutes the statements made by the opposition alliance.
On 25th August 1998, the London-based Al Quds newspaper reported AFP as saying that communist Al-Tijani Al Tayeb (79) said the Shifa Plant was a military installation.
These facts also clash with Sadiq Al Mahdi statement that the Sudanese government was responsible for the destruction of the Shifa Plant, indicating the existence of many other sites, apart from Shifa, which are suspicious, in various areas in the Sudan, Al Quds Alarabi, 25th August 1998, reported AFP as saying.
The opposition members did not know from where the machines of the Shifa Plant were imported or who had supervised their design and installation or whether the Plant was serving the Sudanese citizen or otherwise. However, facts were disclosed in full to the world before and after the bombing of the factory.
On 23rd August 1993, the British Sunday Times, reported Mr. Nil Patrick, head of the Middle East programme at the Royal United Services Institute as saying “there is massive suspicious involving US claims about the Plant”.
On 26th August 1998, the Guardian reported that European ambassadors in Khartoum like the Sudanese government wondered why the Plant was bombed.
Foreign diplomats did not believe US claims, wrote the Financial Times on 29th August 1998.
In Turkey, the largely read Huriyyat (freedoms) newspaper stated that President Bill Clinton bombed Sudan with Monica missiles.
The Radical newspaper linked between Shifa bombing and what was on Monica’s blue dress, between the Plant and the necktie presented by Monica to President Clinton.
On Saturday 22nd August 1998, the Washington Post reported American Muslims’ wrath over raid on Sudan.
Shifa Plant Export official, who was standing in front of foreign media at the site of bombing, swallowed a capsule produced by the Plant and asked “where is the nerve gas”. That was recorded by journalist R. Franchiski and broadcast by the CNN.
But within the National Alliance, the matter was completely different. The entire world on one side and the opposition alliance was on the other side.
On 22nd August 1998, the London-based Al Sharq Alawsat reported the reactions of the opposition alliance to the US bombing of the Plant. Lt. Gen. Saeed said “the Sudanese citizens do not benefit from the establishment of such suspicious facilities which do not serve their interests”.
“What do we expect apart from bombing of such facilities. The Sudanese know very well it was a suspicious site. Where does the output of the Plant go if it is a pharmaceutical plant” he added.
“The strike directed by the US was normal”, another opposition member said” according to Assharq Alawsat of 22nd August 1998.
After the destruction of the Plant, the opposition, the opposition instigated President Clinton to complete his favour by bombing Giad Industrial Complex and may be oil facilities. On 30th August 1999, Sudan was just a year away from start of oil export.
When US raid did not continue to bomb Giad and oil facilities, the opposition alliance made four attempts to blow up oil pipeline.
On 30th August 1998, The Observer reported after the bombing that US credibility was crumpling. The opposition alliance was also falling apart “hanged by the short rope of lies”
Why don't we revisit the credibility of the opposition alliance?
By Al-Intibaha 29th August 2012, Abdul Mahmoud Al Kurunki , 31/08/2012