The project to counter genocide and crimes against humanity.
The Enough Project supports peace and an end to mass atrocities in Africa’s deadliest conflict zones. Together with its investigative partner, The Sentry, Enough counters armed groups, violent kleptocratic regimes, and their commercial partners that are sustained and enriched by corruption, criminal activity, and the trafficking of natural resources. By helping to create consequences for the major perpetrators and facilitators of atrocities and corruption, Enough seeks to build leverage in support of peace and good governance. Enough conducts research in conflict zones, engages governments and the private sector on potential policy solutions, and mobilizes public campaigns focused on peace, human rights, and breaking the links between war and illicit profit.
Enough’s team (including our Sentry staff) involves former government and United Nations officials, policy analysts, country experts, investigative journalists, financial forensic investigators, field researchers, editors, lawyers, student activists, as well as advocacy, development, operations and communications professionals. Enough is headquartered in Washington D.C., with staff and contractors – some public and some not – based in Africa, Washington, New York, San Francisco, London, and Brussels.
Over the past three decades, the area stretching from central Africa to the Horn has been the deadliest war zone in the world. Millions of people have perished or been displaced. Conventional crisis response tools alone—diplomatic negotiations, peacekeeping forces, grassroots peacebuilding, legal prosecutions, and humanitarian aid—have not yielded significant progress toward peace and human rights in this zone of extreme instability. These deadly conflicts—including those in Sudan, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Somalia, and the Central African Republic (CAR)—are stoked, sustained, and enabled by individuals and entities pursuing significant enrichment through illicit means. State armies and rebels have used and continue to use extreme violence to control natural resources, run smuggling networks, repress independent or opposition voices, and maintain power. Armed groups finance themselves through acts of violence and other crimes, including the widespread pillage of natural resources and theft of other state assets with networks that extend to Dubai, Hong Kong, New York, London, and other global trade hubs and financial centers. A new approach is needed to directly address the underlying problem – recognizing that these are not “failed states,” as some have termed them, but rather they are states that have been hijacked by violent kleptocratic networks in ways that are highly lucrative for powerful corrupt leaders and their regional and international facilitators.
As long as conflict is profitable, it will remain harder to end. Peace will have a chance only when the critical pillars of the war economy are addressed.” – John Prendergast
In response to a lack of organized public constituency to respond to deadly conflicts and mass atrocities in East and Central Africa, Gayle Smith and John Prendergast created the Enough Project in 2007. Gayle and John initially combined the high quality field research and high level advocacy of the International Crisis Group, where John was working, with the state of the art communications and advocacy strategies being honed by the Center for American Progress (CAP), where Gayle worked. Enough focused during much of its first decade on support for enhanced peace processes, more effective civilian protection strategies, and more robust efforts at accountability.
However, many of the wars in this deadly zone of interlinked conflict in East and Central Africa have been for years resistant to conventional approaches to international crisis response. So Enough had to take a step back and reevaluate its priorities. Our revitalized agenda is focused on the political economy of conflict, in particular the violent kleptocratic regimes that we believe are at the heart of the persistence of these conflicts and the massive corruption that enriches the leaders and their international collaborators. As part of that pivot, we hard-launched The Sentry in September 2016. Our next decade will prioritize making war criminals and their kleptocratic networks pay for destroying their countries, and using policy instruments that target the illicit financial flows of these war criminals as a means of providing real leverage to revitalized peace processes and strategic human rights advocacy.