Dismal, Desultory Declarations of War
December 27, 2005: The government clarified the ground rules for its war with Sudan. Chad would not invade Sudan, but would pursue Chadian rebels into Sudan. Chad would like it if the Sudanese army would stay out of the way. At the moment, Sudan is dealing with rebel movements in the west (where the spat with Chad is taking place), in the south (where a shaky peace is in effect) and the east (where a sort of truce is in place.) The African Union is trying to negotiate an end to this latest war. But the cause of it all is within Chad, where factions battle the dictator. Chad now has oil wealth, and that always brings out the competitive spirit.
December 23, 2005: The "state of belligerence" has been upgraded to a "state of war." This means Chad will feel free to send more troops into Sudan to pursue Chadian rebels. The combat zone is a desert. The forces available to both sides consist largely of guys, armed with rifles and machine-guns, rolling around in trucks. There is some air power, but useful largely for scouting.
December 22, 2005: The government announced a "state of belligerence" with neighboring Sudan. This is one step short of war. Sudan is believed behind attacks by Chadian rebels, using bases inside Sudan.