President-elect Barack Obama's appointment of Susan A. Rice as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations is a promising move, according to George A. Lopez, Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., Professor of Peace Studies at Notre Dame's Kroc Institute.
“Rice brings significant experience in Africa, where the vast majority of U.N. peacekeeping missions and U.N. sanctions missions are in operation,” Lopez said.
“It is significant that she has critiqued the organization for inaction on Darfur,” he said, “but, as a former under-secretary of state, she also knows well that the U.N. can only proceed as far as the big powers will permit it.
“Of greatest importance is that, in this appointment, President-elect Obama has begun to repair the heavily damaged U.S.-U.N. relationship. Obama has stated that the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. will again hold Cabinet rank, undoing the demotion rendered by President Bush. In addition, the U.S. mission will be an active and helpful partner in restoring the multilateral tool of U.S. policy that has been so undermined and neglected in the past eight years. As energetic an ambassador as Rice will be, she fits this task well.”
A member of the Notre Dame faculty since 1986, Lopez is a leading scholar of repression and human rights violations, ethics and the use of force, and economic sanctions. He also serves as an advisor to the U.N. Security Council, the European Union, and governments, foundations and organizations involved in human rights, international affairs and peace research.
By Michael Garvey, Notre Dame News & Information
Contact: George Lopez, 574-631-6972, firstname.lastname@example.org