South Sudan’s Missing $10 Billion


South Sudan’s leaders have stolen at least $10 billion in oil revenues shared with them by Sudan in the past 7 years. With somewhere between $12 to $17 billion turned over to South Sudan, Africa’s newest “government”, during this time frame some say estimates of only $10 billion stolen is to conservative.

South Sudan has about 8 million people so the oil revenues amount to somewhere between $1,500 to $2000 per man, woman and child in a country where everyday hundreds if not thousands die from hunger and disease.

Where has the $10 billion gone? In some cases directly into London City bank accounts, never having made it into South Sudan’s official treasury. In one instance the South Sudanese Minister of Finance managed to have $300 million “disappear” at one time.

And what has South Sudan to show for its $12 billion+ share of the oil revenues? Almost no infrastructure, few schools, fewer medical facilities and millions suffering from malnutrition and sickness.

The South Sudanese leadership can’t even claim to have spent the money on their military for they have little in the way of modern armament, never mind all the claims of Israeli arms sales to them.

The Sudan Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA), if you can call it that, for years was revolting over unpaid salaries, resulting in the USA stepping in and providing over $100 million a year to pay its salaries since the last major mutiny in 2009.

The SPLA itself is an ethnic or tribal based military force with little centralized control. Ethnic minorities make up the companies, brigades or even divisions that are based in their own tribal territories. When tribal conflicts over land and water rights break out the local militias quickly call in their “big brothers” in the SPLA and local conflicts become inter-SPLA warfare.

Many times the local commanders are at odds with the largest, ethnically Nok based units and do not coordinate their actions with them.

In other words there are serious doubts whether South Sudan’s President Salva Kir actually controls South Sudan’s army. The latest attack on Heglig, recognized internationally as part of Sudan may not have been initiated by Salva Kir but by the local SPLA commander.

Since convincing South Sudan to stop all oil production in late January 2012 (see “US Plan To Destabilize Sudan”) the USA has continued its history of broken promises and blackmail against both parties and failed to deliver the aid it was secretly promising to South Sudan if it implemented the USA’s plan to evict China from Sudan’s oil fields and, in killing two birds with one stone, destablizing or even bringing down the Bashir government in Sudan by depriving it of it main source of income.

After three months without any oil income at all South Sudan President Salva Kir had to take an emergency trip to China hat in hand to try and keep his government afloat, returning with a Chinese promise of some $8 billion in aid. Hopefully he has learned not to trust the USA, though one should not hold ones breath in this regard.

The World Bank has also signed a several hundred million dollar “loan” agreement with a very smug looking South Sudanese robber baron a.k.a. Finance Minister though no one has bothered asking how with their oil fields shut down, their only source of income, South Sudan will be able to repay the World Bank.

With George Clooney and Angelina Jolie accusing Sudan’s government of everything from food aid blockades to genocide coupled with the Phony Kony/Silent Children 2012 pr blitz  (the people of north Uganda, the region the program claimed to be portraying, threw stones at the screen when it was shown there) western attention has been diverted from the real reason for the suffering in South Sudan due to the massive theft of almost all of the countries income.

While the USA certainly has a hidden hand behind the recent fighting between South Sudan and Sudan, hunger, disease and the missing $10 billion may very well be behind South Sudan’s recent military offensive against Sudan. As the saying goes “patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels”, what better way to distract your people from hunger, disease and Grand Theft International than starting a war with your erstwhile partner.

One thing is for sure and that is that South Sudan has more than its share of scoundrels and that the USA has more dirty tricks up its sleeve for the people of the region.

Thomas C. Mountain is the only independent western journalist in the Horn of Africa, living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006. He can be reached at thomascmountain at yahoo dot com.

November 24, 2015
Dave Lindorff
An Invisible US Hand Leading to War? Turkey’s Downing of a Russian Jet was an Act of Madness
Mike Whitney
Turkey Downs Russian Fighter to Draw NATO and US Deeper into Syrian Quagmire
Walter Clemens
Who Created This Monster?
Patrick Graham
Bombing ISIS Will Not Work
Lida Maxwell
Who Gets to Demand Safety?
Eric Draitser
Refugees as Weapons in a Propaganda War
David Rosen
Trump’s Enemies List: a Trial Balloon for More Repression?
Chris Gilbert
“Why Socialism?” Revisited: Reflections Inspired by Einstein’s Article
Eric Mann
Playing Politics While the Planet Sizzles
Charles Davis
NSA Spies on Venezuela’s Oil Company
Michael Barker
Democracy vs. Political Policing
Barry Lando
Shocked by Trump? Churchill Wanted to “Collar Them All”
Cal Winslow
When Workers Fight: the National Union of Healthcare Workers Wins Battle with Kaiser
Norman Pollack
Where Does It End?: Left Political Correctness
David Macaray
Companies Continue to Profit by Playing Dumb
Binoy Kampmark
Animals in Conflict: Diesel, Dobrynya and Sentimental Security
Dave Welsh
Defiant Haiti: “We Won’t Let You Steal These Elections!”
November 23, 2015
Vijay Prashad
The Doctrine of 9/11 Anti-Immigration
John Wight
After Paris: Hypocrisy and Mendacity Writ Large
Joseph G. Ramsey
No Excuses, No Exceptions: the Moral Imperative to Offer Refuge
Patrick Cockburn
ISIS Thrives on the Disunity of Its Enemies
Andrew Moss
The Message of Montgomery: 60 Years Later
Jim Green
James Hansen’s Nuclear Fantasies
Robert Koehler
The Absence of History in the Aftermath of Paris
Dave Lindorff
The US Media and Propaganda
Dave Randle
France and Martial Law
Gilbert Mercier
If We Are at War, Let’s Bring Back the Draft!
Alexey Malashenko
Putin’s Syrian Gambit
Binoy Kampmark
Closing the Door: US Politics and the Refugee Debate
Julian Vigo
A Brief Genealogy of Disappearance and Murder
John R. Hall
Stuck in the Middle With You
Barbara Nimri Aziz
McDonalds at 96th Street
David Rovics
At the Center of Rebellion: the Life and Music of Armand
Weekend Edition
November 20-22, 2015
Jason Hirthler
Paris and the Soldiers of the Caliphate: More War, More Blowback
Sam Husseini
The Left and Right Must Stop the Establishment’s Perpetual War Machine
Mike Whitney
Hillary’s War Whoop
Pepe Escobar
In the Fight Against ISIS, Russia Ain’t Taking No Prisoners
Ajamu Baraka
The Paris Attacks and the White Lives Matter Movement
Andrew Levine
The Clintons are Coming, the Clintons are Coming!
Linda Pentz Gunter
Let’s Call Them What They Are: Climate Liars
Nur Arafeh
Strangling the Palestinian Economy
Paul Street
Verging on Plutocracy? Getting Real About the Unelected Dictatorship
Patrick Howlett-Martin
The Paris Attacks: a Chronicle Foretold
Vijay Prashad
Rebuilding Syria With BRICS and Mortar
Brian Cloughley
Why US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is the Biggest Threat to World Peace