At the State Department this morning, Hillary Clinton laid out the results of the Obama administration’s long-awaited Sudan policy review.
I’ll have more on the content of the policy shortly. My initial reaction is that the thrust is quite good (i.e. greater support for the peacekeeping mission in Darfur and a concerted effort at implementation of the north-south peace accord). At the same time, I think we should probably reserve judgment on the effectiveness of this policy until we see some evidence that it is working. (You can read it for yourself here and Obama’s statement here.)
In the meantime, I would note that as important as the content of the review were the optics of the roll-out this morning. Standing behind Clinton were Susan Rice and Sudan Special envoy Scott Gration. These two represent competing ends of the Sudan policy spectrum, with Gration favoring engagement and an incentives-based approach with the Sudanese government and Rice taking a more hard-line stand against the utility of working with Khartoum. This morning, however, the two were standing side-by-side in a show of symbolic unity around the administration’s new Sudan policy.
Expect a few more posts on this today. I am about to hop on a call to see how the activist community is responding.