Monday, June 29, 2009

Darfur--All We Get Is Words

Well, I intended to write quite a bit more on my vacation, but you'd be surprised how busy family can keep you.

I gotta say, as frustrated as I am with Barack Obama, being the pro-lifer that I am, I try to give him the benefit of the doubt. But as fate would have it, I'm committed to another cause that is also getting frustrated with Obama.

Anyone remember Darfur in Sudan? Now 2.7 million people have been forced out of their homes, and hundreds of thousands have been killed at the hands of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir. (Click here to learn more.)

I was hopeful back during election season that whoever became president would actually do something about this. This is one issue where I was happy with Obama (as well as John McCain and Hillary Clinton, since they all agreed). As you can see in the video, Obama certainly gave us the right words.

Edit: I didn't like hearing that video come on every time I loaded my blog, so I took it off. You can view the video here.

But where's the action? Now I'm getting letters from Jerry Fowler, President of the Save Darfur Coalition, telling me that "no long-term strategy for easing the suffering of the people of Darfur" has been made.

So I'm signing a letter that the Save Darfur Coalition has drafted to President Obama, saying that the US needs to send a clear message to Sudan, giving them two simple options:

"One: If Sudan permits immediate and unimpeded humanitarian access, secures peace in Darfur and South Sudan by fully implementing the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, and removes its President indicted for war crimes, a clear process toward normalization of relations and rejoicing the community of nations can begin.

Two: If President Bashir and his party are defiant and continue to undermine peace, a series of escalating costs will ensue, including diplomatic isolation, targeted economic sanctions, an effective and expanded arms embargo and, if necessary to stop massive loss of civilian life, eventual targeted military action."

I think Fowler's plan is pretty sound. Now all I'm wondering is whether Obama has the dedication to this issue to push this plan through.

Could the president's overall attitude towards foreign relations be stifling his actions on this issue? Maybe his propensity to shy away from anything that remotely smacks of George W. Bush style interventionism is keeping him from stopping this genocide.

I don't know what the deal is. But I just can't sit around and not say anything when hundreds of thousands have died, and millions are in dire straits.

I hate sounding like a public service announcement, but, if you care about this like I do, go to to learn what you can do.

1 comment:

  1. It's so much easier to just be an isolated, insulated American who stops to read the latest stories about Michael Jackson, but doesn't seek out the real news about the atrocities in Darfur. Out of sight, out of mind. I foolishly assumed that the Obama administration was going to take tangible steps to improve the situation there. I am saddened to hear that they are stalling. Thank you for bringing this up. I will go to

    I don't imagine the situation in Burma is any better these days either. And Iran, what a travesty!


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