November 17, 2004


Bush Pushes for Progress in Sudan Talks (AP, Nov 16, 2004)

President Bush (news - web sites) talked by telephone Tuesday with leaders in Sudan, pushing for progress in peace talks to end a 21-year civil war in southern Sudan.

Bush urged President Omar el-Bashir to push ahead to an agreement on the north-south conflict. The American president also stressed the need to resolve the separate conflict in Darfur region, which has pitted western rebels against Arab militias and government troops and caught up nearly 2 million civilians in the conflict.

Bush also talked with U.S.-educated southern rebel leader John Garang about the conflict between his Sudan People's Liberation Army and the government over control of the southern provinces of Africa's largest country.

That conflict, which began in 1983, has different ethnic and other roots from the clashes in Darfur, but Garang has said a peace agreement to end the southern war could serve as a model for solving the Darfur conflict. [...]

Garang and Sudan's vice president, Ali Osman Taha, are to meet Dec. 11 to work out final details of how to implement a comprehensive peace agreement that John Danforth, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, helped broker when he was the Bush administration's special representative to Sudan.

While pundits wonder if the appointment of Condi Rice will bring a focus on Africa.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 17, 2004 9:12 PM

Nobel, shnobel.

The Nobel Peace Prize is tarnished, but still slightly prestigious, and comes with a nice bit o' cash...

However, once one has been President of the United States of America, it's more or less another bauble, and no ex-President is pawning his watch for food.

Carter has a Nobel Peace Prize, but he's still regarded as the least competent living ex-President, and the one with the least successful administration.
Nobody's planning to rename a state or the Moon after Carter.

Meanwhile, Reagan, a "warmonger", is remembered even by his enemies and detractors as a man who changed the world.
That might, POSSIBLY, also be Bush's fate.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at November 17, 2004 10:34 PM

Just as it was with Ronald Reagan's presidency, it will take the intelligenschmucks an additional 20 years to "get" the Bush presidency. Or 40 years, if that is how long it is before the media get whiff of his impending death . . .

May he live to be 100 and skydiving on Mars.

Posted by: george in seattle at November 17, 2004 10:55 PM

Another lesson to be learned from the African situation is the inapplicability of concepts like "sovereignty" to places that aren't even geographical expressions. The civilized world dropped its burden and turned its back on its neighbors by constructing a myth that places like the Sudan could function as though they were nation-states.

Posted by: Lou Gots at November 18, 2004 4:47 AM

I'm with Michael on the Nobel Peace Prize. Totally silly and juvenile goal for a President, or Secretary of State to set for themselves. Just as likely they would give it to Bin Laden, Stalin, Hitler, or whoever.

Henry Kissinger made a big deal of getting one, so after 30 years who cares about his prize. Most of Kissinger's policies had to be reversed by Reagan in order to achieve actual peace with the Soviets and Carter, well don't get me started.

Posted by: h-man at November 18, 2004 6:59 AM

The high point in Jimmy Carter's career is Habitat for Humanity.

That's the high point. There are too many lower points to mention with your limited bandwidth.

Posted by: John J. Coupal at November 18, 2004 7:13 AM

I do believe that I detect a bit of snark in oj's headline.

It would be nice, I think, for Norway to award the NPP to Bush just so he could decline because the peace prize is no prize considering the quality of previous winners.

Posted by: Uncle Bill at November 18, 2004 12:55 PM