Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Sudan Policy

The other day I posted a list of articles on Sudan that I deemed must reads. In it I said that I would post an analyses on what we can do regarding the Darfur situation.

Answer: not much.

Unfortunately, short of an invasion, we can't really accomplish a complete halt to the massacres. The US, UN and EU are threatening sanctions against the Islamist regime in Khartoum. France, yet again, opposes any kind of sanctions to be imposed by the UN. The BBC link also includes this snippet:
France led opposition to US moves at the UN over Iraq. As was the case in Iraq, France also has significant oil interests in Sudan.

Mr Muselier [Junior French Foreign Minister] also dismissed claims of "ethnic cleansing" or genocide in Darfur.
Surprise, surprise. Look, I agree with Mr. Muselier in that sanctions won't really do much of anything to stop the genocide, if anything, Sudan may increase and/or widen its genocide campaign (see, Iraq after GW1) and the sanctions will serve to further entrench the regime itself. The only way I can see the killing be put to an end is a military intervention.

The United States will have to lead any future humanitarian mission and that looks doubtful due to the overstreched nature of the US military. Neither Presidential Candidate has said much regarding it and even if action could be taken, it being a election year and the race so close, Bush doesn't want to do any kind of major action. However, Britain and Australia have pledged about 7,000 troops if needed and that is very admirable. But without us in the lead, those troops won't be going anywhere. I also think the Sudan case can be applied directly to Iran. The lack of international motivation to stop an ongoing genocide that might kill between 500,000 and a million people, despite the ghosts of Rwanda floating around in the media, shows that there will not be broad international support for any sort of action against the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Assuming all of this, what else is there to do?