A Menagerie of Outspoken Opinions on Science, World Politics, and Geek Culture

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Let's See What Danforth Does

I spent a couple hours yesterday evening - and most of my lunch hour today - doing research that was intended to lead to a letter to Senators Bob Graham (D) and Bill Nelson (D) of Florida (ed. note - I had originally written "Senator Connie Mack (R)" instead of Bill Nelson ... a little wishful thinking there! Appologies.). The thrust of the letter was to be aimed at the blatant pro-Arab / anti-Israel stance of the UN, the questionable wisdom of spending US tax dollars to support such bigotry, and the UN's general ineffectiveness at dealing with genuine human rights abuses (such as the one taking place currently in Sudan). I certainly wasn't expecting the good Senators to rush to the floor and loudly condemn the UN and Sudan at my behest ... but I was looking forward to getting a response that might outline what, if anything, is being done about all this.

Well, I ended up answering my own question. At least in part. The man that President Bush recently appointed as the US Ambassador to the UN is John Claggett Danforth. Danforth was a Senator himself for almost 20 years, and in 2001 was sent to Sudan as a Special Envoy for Peace. The man is also a firm supporter of Israel. So the ambassador that is replacing Negroponte has extensive experience with domestic policy, an understanding of Sudan, and a record of standing behind Israel.

In spite of my deep skepticism of all things UNish, Danforth looks to me like someone who might actually do some good over there. Shit, if he can stem the tide of ridiculous anti-Semitic general assembly resolutions just a bit and get the Thugocracy of Sudan off the UN Human Rights Commission I'll fly to New York and buy the guy a beer myself. The letter is on indefinite hold; let's see what Danforth does.

Meanwhile, Powell had some words for Bashir concerning the Darfur crisis. More of the same regardless? I'm betting so, but let's stay tuned.