Monday, June 27, 2011

Khartoum: "Take your carrot and shove it!"(Updated - I was wrong)

Alex Thurston on Christian Science Monitor (with some editing by me):

Yesterday President Barack Obama released a statement praising a peace
agreement in Abyei, another Sudanese border region, and condemning the
violence in Southern Kordofan.....

"...With a ceasefire in Southern Kordofan, alongside the agreement to deploy peacekeepers to Abyei, we can get the peace process back on track. But without these actions, the roadmap for better relations with the Government of Sudan cannot be carried forward, which will only deepen Sudan’s isolation in the international community....."

This statement highlights one of the biggest potential leverage points Washington has with Khartoum: the “carrot” of normalized relations. Yet as author Bec Hamilton wrote on Twitter, the perceived value of this “carrot” may be disappearing: “That’s no longer leverage since Khartoum doesn’t believe it will ever happen (and they are probably right).”
Read the rest of the post, he raises an interesting question at the end of it.

Setting aside my disdain of Khartoum's current military policy, I think that they have every right to no longer trust those American carrots. I've previously discussed the failings of enticing Khartoum with the prospects of removing it from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List. Insignificant Block also has a post covering more examples of American Carrots that lie.

The track record of the carrots is basically; the US asks Khartoum to do something and promises to normalise relation if Khartoum completed the task. Khartoum does that thing. The US doesn't normalise relations and decides to up the ante on what it wants from Khartoum. While Im totally in support of getting your carrot's worth, there really is only so far you can push it.
With US carrots becoming more and more redundant, China's role has become more significant than ever. That is why I don't think this is a fantastic idea:
"The United States should press China to rescind its invitation for Bashir to visit China and dispatch a senior administration official to develop joint diplomacy in support of a peace deal, including pressures and incentives to leverage that agreement."

Guess who? Yup.....webune .....Prendergraaaaaaaaaaast!!!!

At this point, if China is willing to do what it can to bring an end to this conflict it can't risk associating itself with the US camp.


He also reiterated that the successful experience of Sino-Sudanese relations should be attributed to mutual respect and non-intervention in each other's internal affairs.

"China does not intervene in the internal affairs of others. The success of Sino-Sudanese cooperation has encouraged African countries to search for their real and loyal partner."(China Daily)

Oh how naïve I was to think China would act otherwise.

OK...New plan. Give Prendergrast, Clooney, the Machine Gun Preacher and Ninja in Afghanistan anti-air missels to shoot down Bashir's plane on the way back.

Tomorrow: Sticks.....can that also be shoved?

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