14 Oct Now That’s What I Call Engagement: Sudan Seeks to Hire Washington Lobbyists
The Washington Post reports that a prominent Democratic fundraiser and close ally of Senator John Kerry (chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee) is seeking to be permitted to lobby on behalf of the current Sudanese government. This may seem a little weird, and even morally distasteful, but it is another logical consequence of the engagement strategy. As the hopeful lobbyist is quoted as saying:
“The Obama administration is talking about engagement, and we believe in that,” Crowe said in an interview. “If we can make a difference, we will. But if we get into this and determine we can’t, we’ll walk away.”
Even more fascinating.. the idea of getting Sudan a lobbyist came from Senator Kerry’s office, which sought out the lobbyist and convinced him to apply to represent Sudan.
This is another sign of where the Sudan policy is heading, and I think this, on the whole, is probably the least worst approach (although I don’t get why Sudan needs a lobbyist). Still, I also find it fascinating that no one, not even the Post article, bothers to mention that the government of Sudan is still run by someone sought by the ICC for war crimes. I guess that doesn’t matter much, even to the famously self-consciously multilateralist Obama Administration.