A net-home for those in Maine who believe that Richardson ought to be the next president of the United States. So, why Richardson? Read this posting, "Why Maine Needs Bill Richardson" Just a disclaimer... This site is designed and maintained by a volunteer. For the official info on Richardson and to join his campaign, see his official site
Sunday, January 21, 2007
That being said, he has promised to outwork anybody. Richardson excels in retail politics -- meeting people, shaking hands, parades, all of those things we expect from our politicians here in Maine. It is great for people elected by the people to like people. And he really likes people. Plus he is a positive person. I agree with his analysis that the focus should be on what the candidate can accomplish and not on ripping apart opponents. I especially agree on that approach during primaries. There is no need for allies to tearing down each other.
He is a negotiator. He has negotiated successfully with some of the most fierce people in the world. When he talks of a diplomatic solution in Iraq, he is the one who could actually do it. As he said about diplomacy and energy and working within a balanced budget, etc.; a lot of people talk about these issues, but he has actually done it.
So, the campaign is real now. Let's start working!
Saturday, January 20, 2007
Thursday, January 11, 2007
In addition to the 60 day cease-fire -- which was agreed upon not just by the government, but by all the rebel forces as well, Richardson got the President to agree to include the militia -- which is vitally important. He also garnered an agreement that the horrible rapes and gender violence would start to be investigated and prosecuted. This is a huge part of the humanitarian horror faced by those in Darfur. Another important aspect of the agreement was that he got the president to loosen red tape for humanitarian groups and journalists.
What I found most amazing about this call was the Governor's humility. When complimented on this huge accomplishment, the Governor modestly said that he just tries to connect with and appeal to the pragmatic interests of the bad guys. Instead of merely focusing on the agreements, he said we ought to learn more about Darfur and the tragedy facing the people there. While there are huge tragedies throughout the world, this part of the world needs more attention. He called it the worst humanitarian crisis of the world.
Taking Richardson's suggestion, I would encourage all who read this to check out SaveDarfur.org. Learn about the crisis. Donate time, money, and/or energy.
For myself, I have to reiterate that we need this guy! He accomplished so much in the past four days -- as a private citizen. I can't even imagine how much he could do diplomatically sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office.
"I strongly oppose any plan to increase American troop levels in Iraq. Sending more American troops will not make us safer. It will only add to the sectarian violence that is already tearing Iraq apart. ... The only surge we need in Iraq is a diplomatic one. We need to withdraw American troops from Iraq this year, redeploy our men and women to Afghanistan and other international terrorism hotspots and reinvigorate our diplomacy throughout the Middle East." Gov. Bill Richardson.
Who better to help us with a diplomatic surge than the man who just negotiated a cease fire in Darfur?
Governor Bill Richardson, we need you as President!
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
SaveDarfur.org has a post called "Cease-Fire Agreement Offers a Moment of Opportunity for Political Settlement in Worsening Darfur Cri" that's worth checking out...
Cease-Fire Agreement Offers a Moment of Opportunity for Political Settlement in Worsening Darfur Crisis On Save Darfur Coalition trip, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson Gets Commitment For Cease-Fire and Improved Humanitarian Aid and Media Access To…
This is a major accomplishment!
New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson Gets Commitment for
60-Day Cease-Fire in Darfur Region of Sudan
KHARTOUM, SUDAN – New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson today announced that he has secured a commitment from Sudanese President Omer Hassan Al Bashir to agree to a 60-day cessation of hostilities in the Darfur region to allow for a new political process under the Darfur Peace Agreement and the auspices of the African Union and the United Nations. Governor Richardson also spoke this week with rebel leaders who said they would agree to a cease-fire. If all parties follow through with the cease-fire, the A.U. and the U.N. will convene a Peace Summit on March 15 under the framework of the peace agreement.
Governor Richardson also secured the following commitments from President Al Bashir:
• Agreed not to have the National military aircraft painted in white markings
normally reserved for international organizations.
• Agreed that government forces would attempt to improve security conditions
in all areas of Darfur with special emphasis on El Geneina, and would provide
protection to food and other humanitarian convoys.
• Agreed to expedite procedures for entry visas for all humanitarian aid workers
as well as goods. He also agreed to terminate the requirement of exit visas for
humanitarian aid workers.
• Agreed to allow and facilitate travel by journalists from all over the world to
• Governor Richardson and President Al Bashir reiterated that gender-based
violence and such crimes must be condemned and prosecuted regardless of
which party or organization was responsible. President Bashir said he would
welcome a significant contribution of female members to the AU/UN hybrid
operations. In addition the Justice Minister offered analyze and extend
existing efforts to support Sudanese women against all gender-based
Joint Press Statement on the conclusion of the visit by Governor Bill Richardson to the Sudan
7th – 10th January 2006
H.E Bill Richardson Governor of New Mexico accompanied by a delegation sponsored by and including members of the Save Darfur Coalition, the leading United States-based Darfur peace advocacy organization, conducted a visit to Sudan to discuss ways to secure peace in the Darfur region of Sudan and the protection of all civilians and other non-combatants. The Governor and the delegation visited EI Fasher and Nayala in Darfur, for meetings with internally displaced persons in Darfur, rebel groups that are signatories to the (DPA) as well as those which are not as of yet, international agencies, the United Nations, and humanitarian aid as well as the Wali of North Darfur and the Deputy Wali of Southern Darfur States and held meetings in Khartoum with H.E President Omer Hassan Al Bashir,Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Mr. Ali Ahmed Karti and a number of high ranking Sudanese officials.
Both sides agreed that ending the conflict in Darfur is Sudan's and the international
community’s highest priority. Peace, they agreed, can only come through a political
settlement that is joined in by and addresses the needs of all parties, on the basis of the Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) of 5 May 2006 reiterating their support for preserving Sudan's territorial integrity and the importance of respect for Sudan's sovereignty. Both sides agreed that there was a compelling need for a comprehensive cease-fire to launch a political process based on the DPA that would lead to a durable end to the conflict as soon as possible. Both agreed to a 60-day cessation of hostilities by all parties within the framework of the DPA, accompanied by a start in African Union/United Nations diplomatic efforts, within the framework of the DPA, to begin narrowing the gaps between the non-signatories, including government approval of a field commanders' conference attended by the African Union and United Nations. This would be followed at the appropriate moment by an African Union/United Nations – sponsored peace summit, again in the framework of the DPA, no later than 15 March 2007.
Simultaneously, both agreed that the UN needed to expedite as quickly as possible the provision of UN personnel agreed in Addis Ababa and further specified in Abuja in November 2006. President Bashir re-affirmed his commitment to continue to facilitate the deployment of UN personnel and equipment consistent with his agreement with the Secretary General of the UN on Phases II and III, including the eventual conclusions of the Tripartite Committee as stipulated in the DPA.
The two sides noted that Governor Richardson had secured a commitment from
commanders of the Justice and Equality Movement and of the Non-Signatory Front
to participate in a process including a 60-day cease fire agreement within the
framework of the DPA. Governor Richardson and Save Darfur Coalition expressed
their grave concern to all parties with whom they met about continuing and
increasing attacks on civilians and other non-combatants.
They reiterated that gender-based violence and such crimes must be condemned and prosecuted regardless of which party or organization was responsible, noting that Governor Richardson and the Save Darfur Coalition emphasized the need in all their meetings for implementing mechanisms to ensure that "zero tolerance" policies towards gender-based violence be applied in practice, quickly and robustly. Governor Richardson noted with appreciation President Bashir's commitment to welcome a significant contribution of female members to the AU/UN hybrid operations. Both sides expressed their grave concern at allegations of gender based violence by United Nations personnel in South Sudan.
Governor Richardson and the delegation also met with the Under-Secretary of Justice, the Rapporteur of the Advisory Council for Human Rights and Dr. Attigatt who presented a briefing on Sudanese Government efforts to institutionalize protections for women. The Governor and the delegation accepted the offer to work with the Ministry to analyze and extend existing efforts to support Sudanese women against all gender-based violence.
President Bashir and Governor Richardson also agreed that more light needs to be
shed on the full situation in Darfur. President Bashir agreed to allow and facilitate
travel by journalists from all over the world to Darfur. The two sides underscored the need to disarm all armed groups, including the Janjaweed, pursuant to the provision of the DPA, and further agreed not to have the National military aircraft painted in white markings normally reserved for international organizations.
President Bashir agreed that government forces would attempt to improve security
conditions in all areas of Darfur with special emphasis on El Geneina, and would
provide protection to food and other humanitarian convoys. They also agreed that
humanitarian aid agencies have greatly assisted the Government and people of Sudan by providing much needed emergency and development aid in Darfur and other parts of Sudan. President Bashir agreed to expedite procedures for entry visas for all humanitarian aid workers as well as goods. He also agreed to terminate the requirement of exit visas for humanitarian aid workers. President Bashir noted with satisfaction the strong statements by the Save Darfur Coalition to rebel commanders condemning attacks by their members on humanitarian aid operations and agreed to initiate an ongoing dialogue with the Save Darfur Coalition aimed at ending the violence in Darfur and on achieving a political solution to the crises.
The two sides agreed to apprise African Union Special Envoy Salim Ahmed Salim and United Nations Special Envoy Jan Eliasson of these developments, so that the African Union and United Nations will facilitate the commanders meeting and launch the political discussion and to maintain regular communication assessing progress on these important initiatives to identify areas of difficulty on which further engagement may be necessary to ensure rapid progress and durable outcomes.
Both sides agreed that an improvement of relations is in the mutual interest of both
Saturday, January 6, 2007
Right now, I am anxiously awaiting Governor Richardson to decide to be our next president. I hope an announcement will be made soon. Despite the large field, he is the best person for the job -- especially with his foreign policy experience. I have posted before that he was asked to go to Sudan. Well, I just read, he is going to go there to try to help out in Darfur. The article is here.
Best New Year wishes to all!