It has often been said that morality and politics don't mix. One of the meaningless achievements of President Obama is the "Atrocities Prevention Board." President Obama launched this board a year ago, claiming it would be a serious innovation in the fight to stop genocide and crimes against humanity.
Now the administration has relaxed sanctions against Khartoum, the capital of the Sudanese government under President Omar Bashir, and will host a Sudanese delegation in Washington. But all along, the world has largely been impotent in stopping the Darfur genocide and atrocities in Sudan's Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile. Aside from ineffective sanctions, the world has largely stood by while the mass killings and rapes continue.
Aside from certain high-profile celebrities such as George Clooney, the average American looks to government to take action against the genocidal Khartoum regime. On this score, the Obama administration has been a failure. By hosting the Sudanese delegation, the Obama administration confers a legitimacy upon the Khartoum regime that it doesn't deserve. Lt. Gen. Bashir has been indicted by the International Criminal Court for his role in the Darfur genocide. Heading the delegation will be Bashir adviser Nafie Ali Nafie, a prominent participant in the mass killings.
We've seen how ineffective sanctions have been against North Korea and Iran. They have failed to stop those countries' nuclear programs. Sanctions have not stopped the Darfur genocide or the atrocities in the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile. In the face of the most horrible human rights abuses, whether in Syria, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uzbekistan or other places, the rest of the world is largely a bystander and often an enabler.
The last thing the Obama administration should be doing is hosting representatives of a genocidal regime. One hundred and seven Holocaust and genocide scholars around the world have signed a petition urging Mr. Obama to cancel any such meeting.
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