Reasons for Hope

July 1, 2004

To all those depressed after reading my post “We Cannot Save Everyone, But We Must Save Everyone We Can”, I offer the following reasons for hope:

1) Khartoum vows to rein in militias

Given that past promises by the Sudanese government to rein in the Janjaweed militia in Darfur have gone unfulfilled, it’d be foolish to believe that Secretary Powell’s visit will magically cause an instant stop to the Janjaweed and immediate full access of humanitarian aid workers to the region. (Heck, the onset of the rainy season is going to prevent the latter even if everyone involved suddenly felt exceedingly charitable to his or her fellow human beings. Worse, a refugee crisis of a million souls is an invitation to pestilence even in the best of circumstances.) However, the first step to stopping genocide is to stop averting our gaze from it. Powell—the first high level US official to visit Sudan in decades—personally visited a refugee camp. He personally bore witness. It’s a real start.

2) Crackdown on key Karadzic allies.

Hearty hearts able to bear harshly dashed hopes should pay special attention to the seemingly buried lead in the very last line:

On Tuesday, the chief UN war crimes prosecutor for former Yugoslavia, Carla del Ponte, said she expected Mr Karadzic to be arrested “very soon”, but refused to explain her optimism.

[UPDATE – July 1, 10:53 AM: Kevin Drum highlights good links for both current Karadzic developments and the history of the tragedy/farce that has been the international community’s pursuit of him.]

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