Sunday, January 08, 2006

Policy Adrift on Darfur

What should be done about the situation in Sudan? I was extremely disheartened by Congress's decision to ignore Secretary Rice's request for an emergency appropriation of $50 million for the African Union Mission in Sudan. Was there some doubt to whether Secretary Rice spoke for the administration as she claimed? Apparently. Nonetheless, I still believe that bolstering the African Union mission is the best course of action in the short term, and that pressure on the White House and Congress will make it happen.

Senators Brownback and Obama recently authored an op-ed (ht Eugene) for the Washington Post calling on the administration to "help transform the African Union protection force into a sizable, effective multinational force." I can't strongly disagree with their suggestion that ultimately UN or NATO leadership will be required to restore the peace in Darfur, and this must be planned for, but I think the critical task right now is to strengthen the existing mission. This can be easily accomplished. It will have real ameliorating effects. Not doing so is inexcusable.

Some months ago I took the Darfur Pledge, but in all candor, I have not lived up to my promise to contact the White House on a daily basis. My next step will be a hand written letter. The postal address is:

President Bush

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

Washington, DC 20500

posted by Fido the Yak at 3:47 AM.


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