Sudan: Buying Time
The political geometry of Sudan defies resolution. No sooner had a framework been agreed for the provisional settlement of the North-South conflict in 2002 than the war in Darfur blew away all conventional wisdom about how the country could achieve peace and stability. The twin challenges of deciding whether Sudan is one country or two, and seeking a more inclusive and democratic system of government, combine to create an equation with no solution. For decades, Sudan’s leaders have tried to manage the unmanageable by alternating doomed revolutionary projects with simply buying time. The latter””in which tactical crisis management drives out strategic problem solving””has been the order of the day for the last decade. Today, the ruling party hopes that oil money will sufficiently change the game for them literally to purchase a solution.