Worthwhile African Initiative


International organizations do so very many stupid things that it's worth recognizing them when they sidestep the occasional disaster. Like this:

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir has again been bypassed in his bid to become chairman of the African Union because of the conflict in Darfur. Mr Bashir had been due to take on the role but it has instead been given to Ghana's President John Kufuor.

George Clooney's shuttle diplomacy pays off! Sudan had been promised the presidency years ago; this is as big a sign of its waning respect in Africa as Venezuela's failed UN Security Council bid was a sign of international skepticism about Chavez. The build-up to the decision inspired this odd comment by The New Republic owner Martin Peretz.

The only hope is that the countries of black Africa will finally rebel against the minority of Muslim and Arab states in the north of the continent (there are 53 member-states in the A.U.) and rescue Africa from warring Islam. But this would take a decision from South Africa, and no one is certain that there is that will in Pretoria.

Reports don't say which countries were most important in denying Sudan the job, but they do point this out.

Chad had threatened to leave the AU if Mr Bashir became its leader, while Amnesty International warned that the body's credibility would be damaged.

Chad is, of course, 51 percent Muslim. This is the kind of talk a pundit should avoid if he's running from a blogolanche of bigotry charges.