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UN Accused of Firing on Civilians in DRC, Cruz on If He Sees a Gun

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 14 When Brazilian general Carlos Dos Santos Cruz, previously in charge of shooting at civilians in Cite Soleil in Haiti, was sent to Eastern Congo by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and UN Peacekeeping's Herve Ladsous, Inner City Press predicted the same would happen.

  And now, already, it has. Even according to its own Radio Okapi, the MONUSCO mission stands accused of shooting at civilians. Will there be an investigation? Seems not. Okapi quotes, approvingly it seems, Dos Santos Cruz that any civilians with a gun will be treated like a combatant.

  These type of cowboy rules of engagement, combined with the slightest misperception, lead to shootings like in Florida, or Amadou Diallo in The Bronx long before it. Is this the UN?

Ban on Sunday is in Paris with Ladsous, the fourth Frenchman in a row to head UN Peacekeeping, taking in the colonial Bastille Day parade. Even in French Google, Ladsous has not appeared like July 5 that is, he has had nothing to say, in any language, about the killing in Darfur of seven UN peacekeepers from Tanzania.

  Ladsous' new cowboy Lucky Luke? -- rules of engagement are blamed by some well placed in UN Peacekeeping as being dangerous to those in the field.

  But Ladsous refuses Press questions about them, video compilation here. Where are his friendly scribes, to transcribe and transmit his spin on Darfur without asking any real questions? Watch this site.

Footnote: After his flight to Paris, Ban Ki-moon's first readout was with a president, of Croatia, mentioning the Peacebuilding Commission. Looking back at a photo of Sarkozy's 2008 Bastille Day reviewing stand, with Mubarak on it, one wonders who there today will be gone next year....


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