Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Picking the President: Human Rights and Darfur

On the issue of human rights, Sen. Clinton was one of the strongest advocates for U.S. involvement in Kosovo during her husband’s administration, and in general has argued for more U.S. involvement in humanitarian issues like primary school education in Africa. She also favors greater U.S. involvement in the crisis in Darfur, though she has stopped short of calling for U.S. ground troops to be deployed to Sudan, arguing instead for the use of NATO forces to secure a no-fly zone in the region.

Sen. McCain has made a point to emphasize the importance of democracy to places like Latin America and Africa, and argues that the “greatest honor is to serve the cause of human dignity.” Sen. McCain has called for much greater U.S. involvement in the Darfur conflict, including pressuring the EU for greater economic sanctions, the UN for more peacekeepers, and the use of its own logistical and intelligence equipment to aid the conflict resolution process.

Sen. Obama argues for great U.S. involvement in Darfur – while stopping short of calling for U.S. ground troops to be deployed to the region, he prefers a strong diplomatic approach combined with U.S. pressure on the UN to deploy a peacekeeping force of at least 20,000 to the region. He has also pledged to double U.S. foreign investment in programs to supply clean water, safe food, shelter, and education to the world’s poor, especially in Africa, where he says the U.S. should focus beyond simply the Darfur situation.

Point to Obama. What he proposes is exactly what we should be doing in Darfur, and we should shed a little more light on other problems in Africa.

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