George Clooney and John Pendergast Exposing Criminal Corruption in South Sudan – The Sentry.
In South Sudan, the current President and Former Vice President are working with oligarchs “They are stealing to hold power and they are holding power to steal.”
Just today, a very important global issue is being addressed by John Pendergast a well respected reporter and human rights activist who has joined forces with George Clooney, an American actor who has always been very sensitive to the ills of criminal corruption that has taken place in those countries in Africa.
Clooney and Pendergast have put together an investigative team, an organization called The Sentry. A private sector attempt to follow the money; to build a team of financial forensic investigators who are burrowing into these systems of corruption that allow in a number of countries in Eastern central Africa which are the deadliest war zones in the world. That allow literally billions of dollars to be off shored through banks, into real estate and other companies in the international financial systems.
“They (John and George) asked themselves, “Well, where are their vulnerabilities?” Their vulnerabilities are in their wallets. George said, “You can’t shame them, but you can take their money and that changes everything.” The international institutions that do follow money for national security issues for terrorism and for nuclear proliferation issues and things like that, they’ve got their hands full right now. The last thing they are going to be doing is chasing assets in Eastern central Africa.”
“So we set up our own team of people who do that kind of work. Ex officials from the FBI and treasury and other kinds of entities. We put dossiers together and hand them over to agencies, law enforcement and regulatory agencies that can actually take action against this criminal assets. What we’re really talking about is the use of that money and the need to collect that money, manifesting itself in incredible amounts of violence, rape, starvation and murder. The tools of atrocities with absolutely no regard for citizenry of these countries.“
No regard for life, the treasured lives of every citizen who deserves that money to change their lives. The money belongs to the people of South Sudan.
Bottom line, war crimes shouldn’t pay. What Clooney wants is for the US and other countries to use the same tools in South Sudan they use against terrorists and rogue regimes. Sanctions freezing the key players out of the international financial system. As advocates our job is to keep pushing on all parties like the UN, Justice Department, the Treasury Department, the Executive Branch knowing it is a long slow process but it is a process we can succeed with.
Where there is rampant criminal corruption, the most important reason to shut down offshore financial accounts is to put these public leaders who are oligarchs out of office and power in these affected African countries. Terrorists groups like ISIS (who now controls Libya) could spread to the South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, etc. There is vulnerability in criminally corrupted countries where terrorists like ISIS could potentially pair themselves with oligarchs in Africa; then they would potentially grow and spread like red ants in their cells waiting to take action against the entire world.
This is extremely important to address this issue because of the threat of ISIS growing all over Africa, that would be astronomically threatening and irredeemable.
As Americans we should care. In every failed state in Africa this leaves an open vacuum for destructive influences like ISIS that can absolutely come home to roost for us. Their power in numbers is the very threat to the whole world.
George and John are addressing and talking about the massive criminal corruption that leads to violence, rape, murder, and starvation in South Sudan by the current President Salva Kiir Mayardit and the previous ousted Riek Machar, the former Vice President of South Sudan who was an opposition leader in a civil war that has killed thousands upon thousands. Now he has left the country, chased out by Salva Kiir Mayardit. These South Sudan leaders are looting South Sudan’s wealth living in lavish beautiful homes, cars, every tangible asset. It’s hidden wealth among the worst corrupted leaders.
The ousted Riek Machar tried to sell off the country’s oil to a Russian arms dealer in return for deadly weapons. They are stealing money from their own people. Using money to fund militias. Killing one another trying to seize power. Using that power to procure military and oil contracts. Most of it is oil revenue and military contracts. They are stealing by saying, “I’m going to offer you a military contract and you’re going to give me an insane kickback.” In some ways “You’re stealing to hold power and you’re holding power to steal.”
These South Sudan leaders are stealing the rich mineral deposits, gas, oil, diamonds, and gold mines that belong to the people of South Sudan. None of these country’s leaders has shown the integrity, respect, maturity and empathy to take these country’s assets and build homes, schools, children’s parks, hospitals, libraries, and everything else that the people of South Sudan are entitled to and deserve. Those beautiful people to share, prosper, and live in peace.
I applaud and respect John Pendergast and George Clooney’s enormous focus and effort to bring this kind of criminal corruption to an open forum and seriously understand the consequences if not taken seriously or action. To put away these so called leaders with a wealthy livelihood and put them in jail. Then collect the money put in secure trust funds and start building the homes, schools, playgrounds, hospitals, doctor’s offices, libraries, an infrastructure for the people to live their lives in peace and happiness.