"I see no evidence of serious sticks. Put yourself in President Bashir’s shoes. It may still be in his interest to plan a genocidal strategy in the coming months if that will enable him to keep the oil. Even privately, we haven’t laid out strong enough disincentives."
What a surprise! Obama has made a name for himself throughout the world as a president who talks quietly, using teleprompters, and carries no stick at all -- in discussions with Russia, China, North Korea, Iran, Myanmar. Only when the talk focuses on U.S. ally Israel are there calls from the left to "break bones" (see Roger Cohen's recent "A Test of Israel's Character" (http://jgcaesarea.blogspot.com/2010/09/cohens-test-of-israels-character-bon.html)).
Remarkable how Kristof acknowledges how the Bush administration knew how to talk with bullying murderer Bashir.
However, nothing can be achieved in Sudan without also acknowledging the true racial overtones of this conflict, which Kristof does not disclose to his readers. This is a country where hundreds of thousands of black animists, i.e. non-Muslims, in the south have already been slaughtered by Arabs from the north with the support of oil-hungry China and the tyrannical Islamic Republic of Iran.
A flaccid, irresolute Obama administration is suddenly going to rein in China and Iran? I wouldn't bet on it. After all, it's much easier and more politically correct today to beat up on tiny democratic Israel.
Thanks, Nicholas, for this mendacious display of would-be candor.