Expected development from Obama's views of Sudan and Darfur:
Until he reached the White House, Barack Obama repeatedly insisted that the United States apply more pressure on Sudan so as to avoid a humanitarian catastrophe in Darfur and elsewhere.
Yet, as president, Mr. Obama and his aides have caved, leaving Sudan gloating at American weakness. Western monitors, Sudanese journalists and local civil society groups have all found this month’s Sudanese elections to be deeply flawed — yet Mr. Obama’s special envoy for Sudan, Maj. Gen. Scott Gration, pre-emptively defended the elections, saying they would be “as free and as fair as possible.” The White House showed only a hint more backbone with a hurried reference this week to “an essential step” with “serious irregularities.”
The fact that Nicholas Kristof is surprised that Obama is behaving differently as a president than as candidate especially when it comes to an oil rich country like Sudan whose natural resources are coveted by China, France, and other European countries, shows that he doesn't know much about the realities on the ground in many African countries. The fact is that when it comes to natural resources, realpolitik will always supersedes good sentiments and human rights. The cat was let out the bag when Carter landed in Khartoum to supervise an election that all the main opposition parties boycotted.