For the fourth time in six months, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick is in Sudan, trying to pressure the government and tribal militias to stop the killing in the Darfur region, but he warned the United States can’t “clean it up.”

Zoellick has been to Sudan more than he’s been to any other country this year and, he points out, even more than he’s been to New York. And he’s brought along some White House firepower: top presidential policy adviser Michael Gerson is here with him. But in a blunt speech at Khartoum University, Zoellick warned that neither the U.S. nor the international community can come to the rescue.

“It’s a tribal war,” Zoellick said. “And frankly I don’t think foreign forces want to get in the middle of a tribal war of Sudanese.”

“I don’t think we can clean it up because it’s not just a question of ending violence, it’s a question of creating the context for peace,” Zoellick said. ~ABC News

Thank goodness for some common sense in this administration! If only Mr. Zoellick’s phrase (“we can’t clean it up”) were used more often in response to cries for U.S. intervention.