Foreign Policy Blogs

South Africa As Regional Broker

Over at the Council on Foreign relations website Francis Kornegay, a senior researcher at the Center for Policy Studies in Johannesburg, and Tom Wheeler, a research fellow at the South African Institute of International Affairs, discuss whether South Africa is living up to its responsibility as Africa's leader in an edifying exchange.

Meanwhile other observers debate whether or not Thabo Mbeki will move from silent diplomacy in his new role as SADC's chosen mediator between Mugabe's ZANU-PF and the opposition movement.  The general consensus hopes that he will. And of course silent, or at least quiet diplomacy does not have to be ineffective. But the quiet has to be backed by sternness. Optimists can consider Theodore Roosevelt's famous admonishment to “speak softly and carry a big stick” with regard to diplomacy. The next couple of months will be telling.