Western intervention

I can’t help but feel uneasy at the western intervention currently happening in Libya.  On the one hand, it was spiraling out of control: the “rebels” (uhm, shouldn’t we call them freedom fighters?) were apparently being defeated, there were high numbers of casualties, and chronic chaos. Also, Gaddafi announced he would burn/kill/bomb everyone in Benghazi. A lot of people, myself included, wanted intervention simply because we were sure that Gaddafi was crazy enough to kill every single Libyan.

But there are so many problems with intervention.

  1. Why the fuck did it take the UN/West so long to make a decision? Were they just trying to look like they were doing something, hoping that in the end they wouldn’t have to?
  2. OR did certain countries want to intervene all along (read: France, US) but were being held back by the mega-bureaucracy that is the UN, as well as countries who did not want to intervene (Germany)?
  3. No surprise at the Arab countries not doing anything and then agreeing to Western intervention right away. Then again they have a lot of issues to deal with right now.
  4. Why isn’t the “international community” (read: West) bombing Ivory Coast, Yemen, Syria, etc? Are they not worth the $20 million missiles? Or are they friends of the West? Why Libya, why ONLY Libya?
  5. Oil? But Libya accounts for 2% of oil production. Then again, the chaos so far has caused oil prices to rise, so they do have influence.
  6. Problems with the UN resolution: allows for “all necessary measures” – uhm, what? So basically the West can do what it wants? Uh-oh. That never ends well.
  7. “Ask yourself why the countries that are rushing to “save” Libyans manoeuvered to give Israel maximum time to slaughter Lebanese in 2006.”

A friend of mine put this on facebook:

I want the assault on the Libyan people to end but I can’t trust this violent intervention. The long history of Western interference andhegemony in the region, makes the British, French and American political and strategic motivation for attacking Libya dubious at best.

This sums up perfectly how I feel. Western intervention will ALWAYS be questionable. Why aren’t they intervening in Ivory Coast? Yemen? Bahrain? WHY? Why didn’t they intervene in Rwanda? WHY LIBYA?

Supporting a war just because you can’t think what else to do, doesn’t make the war right, or wise to rush into (avinunu, twitter).

We were all so desperate to make sure Gaddafi didn’t slaughter Benghazi that we literally begged the West/UN (what’s the difference really) to intervene, without thinking of the possible disastrous consequences. Think about it guys: we have just ASKED the West to BOMB a fellow African/Arab country and to take ALL necessary measures to ensure that the leader is ousted.

Why exactly are we trusting the West?

There’s a mortal danger in allowing “The West” to reinforce its arbitrary power to make laws and enforce selectively for the whole world (avinunu, twitter).

Thoughts?

Also, I’d recommend this video: Jon Stewart.

 

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18 thoughts on “Western intervention

  1. Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. I don’t believe anyone has the right to decide when another person will die. I don’t believe violence is the solution. It only escalates the matter. This kind of thing is to my mind evidence pointing to the idea that all earthly governments are from the devil.

  2. I’m very uncomfortable with this. I realize that when the freedom fighters (high five) got their tanks rolling after some army commanders joined them, it was going to be a war. However, there are many other wars with only one side armed (Yemen, Bahrain, Sudan (hopefully today will put us in this mix) ) so it’s MORE than clear that the intentions have nothing to do with caring about the people – but as someone on twitter or facebook (too much time spend crisscrossing between social media)
    We oil care oil about oil the oil people oil of oil Libya, oil.

    • LOL @ high five…love it!
      I think western intervention always taints a revolution/uprising. But at the same time, we wanted to save Benghazi…it was a tough choice. Who knows what will happen now :s

  3. I am leery of this as well. Much as I like helping people (seriously!), I agree with your questions about why Libya and not OTHER nations needing help. And I’ve also struggle greatly with Arabs asking the West for help after the history we have there. I hope it ends well. :-/

  4. I left a facebook comment, but when I went back to it it was deleted. Too controversial, maybe? I dunno, I was just saying I don’t know yet what to think.

    Here is what I do know:

    1. We are being told that many middle eastern nations agree with the U.S., and now the U.S. is pressuring them to get involved so this doesn’t become another hatefest of the U.S.
    That is what the media is running on at the moment, it is making sure we think our gov’t is trying to do the right thing, and that we are getting involved for humanitarian purposes, because Gaddafi is a quote “mad man” that will slaughter his entire people.

    What I see outside of the “commercial” media:

    Gas prices are rising, to the point where Obama is questioning whether or not we should be tapping into our “emergency oil reserve” that is meant only for the hardest of times. It is predicted that gas will hover at $5/gallon over the summer.

    Even though oil in Libya is only 2%, it is hitting us at the gas pumps, and I think that has something to do with this whole “intervention.”

    Is the overall reasoning for flying over Libya a humanitarian one? Well, can you say bombs and humanitarian in the same sentence without laughing? I guess I still am unsure. And that is the problem, we are all unsure because we don’t know all the facts, and the show goes on without us.

    • “We are being told that many middle eastern nations agree with the U.S., and now the U.S. is pressuring them to get involved so this doesn’t become another hatefest of the U.S.”

      Yes, Arab nations agree – but they are all dictatorships. Many, many Arabs are against the intervention, even though their countries gave their approval.

      Definitely not a humanitarian intervention – they never are. It’s about oil, like you said.

      By the way, your comments are both still there. For some reason I can’t see them in Google Chrome but I can in other browsers. I wouldn’t delete your comments =)

  5. I’m glad to read your thoughts on this.

    I honestly have no idea why we’re getting involved. I’m glad, I think, because Libyans generally do seem to want it. But I know governments never do things like this without there being some interest in it for them. I don’t know enough to really understand what the reason might be.

    Are the situations in Yemen, Ivory Coast etc just as bad as Libya? We certainly seem to hear more about Libya, and I know Avaaz has petitioned for a no-fly zone, so could pressure from the public at least be a part of it?

    • “I’m glad, I think, because Libyans generally do seem to want it. But I know governments never do things like this without there being some interest in it for them.”

      That’s exactly how I feel :S

      Yes, we hear more about Libya, due to media bias. Just like when there were protests happening in Egypt and Algeria, we only heard about Egypt. Ivory Coast and Yemen are both very bad situations. 50 demonstrators shot in cold blood just 3 days ago. But what do Yemen and IC have? What did Rwanda have?

  6. The truth is that there is nothing that the Western World, especially the USA, can do that will be satisfactory for some people. Whatever they do, whenever they do it, they are always up to no good; there is always some ulterior motive behind their acts. I bet even if they had left Libya alone, they would still be criticized anyway.

    “Are the situations in Yemen, Ivory Coast etc just as bad as Libya? We certainly seem to hear more about Libya, and I know Avaaz has petitioned for a no-fly zone, so could pressure from the public at least be a part of it?”

    I think those are very good questions, Sarah. But actually, even if the UN helped those other countries, it still won’t escape the suspicion of some other ulterior motive for its act anyway. When there is disfavour in the heart, no amount of good can be done to cancel out the negative suspicions.

    • “The truth is that there is nothing that the Western World, especially the USA, can do that will be satisfactory for some people.”

      I’m assuming you mean me here. Yes, I admit it. Until the west no longer exploits the rest of the world, their acts will be questionable. I mean come on dude, colonialism is not even 50 years old. Right after it ended, neo-colonialism began. You don’t have to see the world that way, but I do, and so do many other Africans. And this is Africa being bombed (oops, liberated) so don’t we have the right to express how we feel about it?

      Also, we don’t need to look far back into history to see what the US has been doing in terms of “intervening” “helping” “enabling freedom” etc. Afghanistan? A mess. Iraq? An illegal mess. So yes, Libya is questionable.

      Did I say the West should definitely not have intervened? No. I was expressing my discomfort, as many other people did as well. It’s a tough situation.

      Thank God for people like Jon Stewart, who are actually western, and still have the courage to question what their government and military is doing. This is not a case of only Arabs/Muslims/Africans being “tough on the West.”

      • Sara,

        I don’t know why I am always misunderstood whenever I comment here. I am not disputing the fact that the USA’s acts, whatever they are, are “questionable”. And I’m not against your expression of doubts/how you feel. By all mean, express your doubts as much as you wish. That is your right. Besides, I’m not a big fan of the USA too. I’m not disputing and I’m supporting it.

        I was merely pointing out that to some people—not necessarily you alone—no matter what the USA does, it can never be satisfactory. There will always be suspicion of ulterior motive. Whether or not they do indeed have ulterior motive, I don’t have anything to say.

  7. “There’s a mortal danger in allowing “The West” to reinforce its arbitrary power to make laws and enforce selectively for the whole world”

    That is a valid comment to make from the comforts of your home, I’m sure. “The West” as you put it has limited resources too. And even in the case of Libya, they delayed the intervention, perhaps amongst others trying not to spend their resources if they can help it. I doubt that “The West” can afford to rain their bombs on so many other countries.

    Why Libya? I have no idea why Libya specifically. But would you rather “The West” do nothing and just watch a nutcase continue killing his people?

    • LOL. Wow. So you think the West did not want to intervene because it has no money? Then why Iraq? Why talk about Iran? Please!!

      “But would you rather “The West” do nothing and just watch a nutcase continue killing his people?”

      Nope, and I never said that 🙂
      But you said you don’t know why Libya. Well thinking about it. It’s an important question. Why is it okay for a nutcase to kill their people in Ivory Coast, in Yemen, in Rwanda? But not Libya. Is it cause the west could only afford to help ONE country and it chose Libya out of a hat? Lol.

      • “LOL. Wow. So you think the West did not want to intervene because it has no money?”

        Not at all, I don’t think that was the main reason why the West did not want to intervene was because it has no money. Read my comment again, please. I said, perhaps “AMONGST OTHERS” (reasons), limited resources was one of the reasons. The USA for example, as of the last time I read, was up to about 13 trillion in deficit. I’d say that’s a lot of deficit; I’d say that amounts to having very limited resources. Wars are very expensive affairs. I’m saying it could be a factor. I’m not saying that is the only factor.

        Why indeed? Well, I don’t have the answer, really. Funny isn’t it? But one thing is certain. If tomorrow the USA withdraws its attacks on Libya and then starts bombing Yemen instead, I bet you would still be miserable, huh? LOL

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