United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan has demanded that the people of the Sudan all play nice together within the next 48 hours or he's going to be quite miffed about the whole affair. Secretary of State Colin Powell agrees that the Sudanese should play nice and thinks that everyone should be equally upset that this isn't happening. (Read the story here.)
This concerns me for several reasons. First of all, there's plenty of large scale violence in Africa and if the U.S. or U.N. wants to get all excited about it they should really be more uniform about it. The United States does have a tendency to try to get involved selectively. What do the Sudanese have that the U.S. wants?
Secondly, the article sites a problem with Arab militias getting involved. That sounds like a possible terrorist threat, at least that's how the Bush administration might put it. Now that we've started to move out of Iraq, there's plenty of war ability left and it'd be a shame not to use it. We could move lots of troops into the Sudan to stop possible terrorists and to provide humanitarian relief to the locals. That'll worry you, or should.
Third, it is a chance for the U.N. and U.S. to get on each other's good side by working together. That could be a good or bad thing depending on the long-term results. I think it's a good idea for the U.S. to play nice with the rest of the world. I also believe the U.S. must act in its own best interest even if the rest of the world doesn't like it. Still, this has the potential to work things out nicely.
Most importantly, I do feel for the average Sudanese person who, like everyone else, just wants to live, work, and die peacefully after a good life. If a tiny group is preventing the larger group from living properly, I think it's important that we help arm the majority and let them kill that little group (it's best that such matters be handled internally even if they get a little help.)
So, reporters and military folks, gear up for your new African adventure. I'm sure you'll enjoy it. I checked the CIA World Fact Book. Though the North is still desert like, it's more tropical in the south. There's still no real food production and it's prone to drought and dust storms. Though there are a few other languages, most everybody speaks Arabic. The overall result, you'll have no trouble making the adjustment from Iraq to Sudan.
Have fun! I'll watch you on the news.
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