There are things in this world which seem to be inextricably linked; peanut butter and jelly, fish and chips, beer and pretzels, salt and pepper, and the United Nations and hypocrisy. You simply can`t have one without the other. Here is one more piece of proof to back up that assertion (from Reuters):
Annan urges action to end ‘hell on earth’ in Darfur
N’DJAMENA: UN Secretary General Kofi Annan called for immediate action on Wednesday to end what he termed a near hell on earth in Sudan’s western Darfur region. But African leaders warned against sending non-African troops to Darfur, where the United Nations estimates a two-year conflict between Sudan’s government and rebels has killed at least 70,000 people and driven some 2 million from their homes. Annan backed a call by US President George W Bush’s administration for a travel and assets freeze on those violating a ceasefire in Darfur. He said the UN Security Council should consider a full range of options — targeted sanctions, stronger peacekeeping efforts, new measures to protect civilians and pressure on all sides for a lasting political solution in the western region. “While the United Nations may not be able to take humanity to heaven, it must act to save humanity from hell,” Annan said at a meeting called to review a report submitted earlier this month by a UN-appointed commission on Darfur. reuters
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This is perhaps the most disgusting and self-serving display of pseudo-self-righteousness I have ever witnessed. Annan had every opportunity to do something about Darfur. He should have pushed, nay-demanded, that the U.N. declare the situation in the Sudan a case of genocide. The United States pushed for this declaration so that some sort of concrete action could be taken against the murdering Janjaweed, but, as always, timidity ruled the day and Kofi was AWOL. If he really did care about the horror in Darfur he would have done everything in his power to obtain a declaration of genocide, and would have pushed for a U.N. resolution authorizing the use of force. Unfortunately for the dead and dying Mr. Annan was occupied criticizing the United States and counting his ill-gotten Oil For Food money.
There has been plenty of time for the United Nations to analyze the situation and formulate some sort of plan of action. There is a strong counterrevolutionary movement inside the Sudan itself-especially in the south (although there has been a recent cease-fire). The French have a sizable presence in Chad which could be brought into action, the African League is more than willing to contribute troops and assistance, certainly our new friends in Eastern Europe would be glad to assist. Why has no action been taken?
The U.N. does not want to take action because the Sudan is an Islamic State which harbored Osama Bin-Laden for years, and which would be exporting Jihad if it hadn`t been mired in a nasty civil war. If the U.N. were to intervene against the Janjaweed killers, it would be forced to acknowledge that Gen. Al-Bashir and the revolutionary Islamic government was behind the genocide, which would force the United Nations into accepting President Bush`s policy of regime change for state sponsors of terrorism. Kofi simply can`t afford to do this if he wants to assert the U.N.`s authority over international affairs. If Annan caves to U.S. policy here, he fears he will be forever perceived as playing yes man to America. He wants the World to view the United Nations as the leader, and the U.S. in submission. That is why he (and all his cadre) were so bitter about the Iraqi invasion; we went over his head.
Some sort of action simply must be taken here; it is unwise to allow the Sudan to fester. Over two million people have died or been displaced in the Sudanese Civil War. The Egyptian government has been hanging on by it`s fingernails (the Wahabiists may soon control Egypt), and the Sudan sits at Egypts back door. The Sudan can cause enormous trouble for us in east Africa as well, and the current regime has made no bones about it`s desire to export revolution. The Sudan has all the ingridients to become another Afghanistan. Clearly, the Bush Doctrine demands action.
That action does not necessitate direct U.S. military involvement. I had a lengthy e-mail argument a while back with the ever brilliant Jed Babbin about this matter. He thinks any
U.S. intervention would be a mistake, because he thinks this will distract our attention and resources from more dangerous places (Iran) and he doesn`t believe we will affect lasting change. (About that last part he is probably right but, if the nation is to be ruled by thugs and tyrants, I would rather they be neutral thugs and tyrants rather than our enemies.) Mr. Babbin certainly has a solid argument. He pointed out that the United Nations would behave in exactly the manner they have; in short, do nothing and oppose any action by us. Further, he argues, we have no direct national interest there. That is where I disagree; I think the Sudan is vital to the stability of the entire region, and I think we ignore it at our peril. Once Al-Bashir and the Jihadists consolidate power they will follow the Iranian model and no amount of aspirin factory bombing will change that. I believe we should use a regional approach, backing the rebel forces with African League aid and U.S. air support. (The Sudan is ideal for an aerial attack-it is a flat desert plain.) With Libya running scared, the Sudan is the last bastion of Islamic radicalism in Africa; we can drive the Jihadists off the continent. The British, under ``Chinese`` Gordon were able to control the Sudanese with a 19th century military; certainly a modern army should have a much easier time of defeating what is essentially the same military the British fought.
The problem, however, is that the United States is simply too busy elsewhere to deal with the Sudan adequately, and the U.N. is far too corrupt and undependable. Considering the atrocious behavior of U.N. ``peacekeepers`` in Africa of late (rape,sexual abuse and slavery,etc.) the Darfurians may prefer to take their chances with the Janjaweed.