July 20, 2005


In Sudan, cautious hope for peace: Secretary of State Rice Wednesday visits a Sudan that has a new coalition government, a Darfur pact, and rising oil exports. (Abraham McLaughlin, 7/20/05, The Christian Science Monitor)

When US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice alights from her plane in Sudan Wednesday, she'll look out across the dusty metropolis of the capital, Khartoum, onto a distinctly different national landscape from what her predecessor, Colin Powell, saw when he visited 13 months ago.

Since then, Sudan has elected a national unity government, penned a peace agreement with rebels in Sudan's troubled Darfur region, increased its flow of oil, and reinforced its status as a valuable partner in the US fight against global terrorism.

Ms. Rice's visit represents an acknowledgment of these changes - and that Khartoum is beginning to be "welcomed back into the civilized world, so to speak," says John Ashworth, a longtime Sudan observer with ties to South African church groups active in Sudan.

Like East Timor, where the impetus similarly came from the Christian Right, Sudan has been managed about as well as any humanitarian crisis can be.

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 20, 2005 2:34 PM
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