Friday, July 11, 2008

Too Little, Too Late

Sudan crime against humanity charges long overdue, but who will enfore it?

In a development that has been a longer time coming than the second coming of Christ, United Nations officials have announed that the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court will lay charges of crimes against humanity and genocide against Omar al-Bashir, the president of Sudan.

On Monday, the prosecutor will finally present evidence of the crimes in question -- a mere six years after the genocide began -- and name some suspects.

Yet the question naturally remains regarding who will actually enforce these charges and take the suspects into custody.

However, the Sudanese government has already announed they will not cooperate with the ICC. They've also insisted that they will not retaliate for the action against any peacekeepers stationed in the region, an act the United States has warned them against.

But with the African Union unable to effect any kind of peaceful deescalation in the conflict, NATO already engaged in Afghanistan, the United States engaged in Iraq and China -- remaining one of the principle investors in the Darfur oilfield -- seems to be more than content to twiddle their thumbs while the atrocities continue unabated.

In lieu of a voluntary handover of Al-Bashir, the only way to proceed would be with a regime change in the Sudan -- particularly if Al-Bashir is tried and convicted en absentia, as may inevitably be the case.

Yet in the current state of the world today, there is simply no one available to effect such a regime change, and Sudan would unfortunately find itself too far down the list of global priorities.

The current debacle in the Sudan could have been stopped a long time ago if only the ICC had moved at some point within the last six years.

The charges laid against Omar al-Bashir are too little, too late.

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