U.S. set to enter another war

Today, the United Nations Security Council voted 10-0 (with Russia, China, Germany, India, and Brazil abstaining) to authorize the creation of a no-fly zone over Libya, a country locked into a civil war after troops began firing on protesters who came out as part of the mass awakening that spread across the Arab world starting in Tunisia.

The resulting rebel movement found its stronghold in Cyrenaica, the eastern half of the country.  They have set up a National Transitional Council in the chief Cyrenaican city of Benghazi.  This council has been recognized by France, Portugal, the UK, and the Arab Council, which was the body which forwarded the proposal to authorize a no-fly zone to the Security Council.

While a no-fly zone sounds innocuous enough, it is an active military intervention that will involve bombing raids on Gaddafi’s anti-aircraft positions and there is always a threat that the conflict could escalate beyond what the Security Council authorized.


About Meng Bomin

Real name Benjamin Main, I am a graduate of Grinnell College with a degree in Biological Chemistry.
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7 Responses to U.S. set to enter another war

  1. Hail says:

    You called it.

    Barack Hussein Obama endorses military action to stop Gadhafi.

    …Headline seen on news,yahoo.com Friday afternoon. (Actually the first two words are my creative contribution).

  2. Infidel753 says:

    At this point, the risks of inaction are probably greater than the risks of action. If Qaddhafi wins, the result will be hideous atrocities, a wave of refugees, and perhaps the stalling of the wave of revolution which has begun to sweep the Arabic-speaking world.

    Despite the solipsistic US media painting this as a US move, France has taken the lead at every stage. It’s far more the US going along with France’s preferred course than vice versa.

  3. Hail says:

    If the Rebels win, a Utopian society will instantly flower in Libya?
    Or will they be perhaps even ruthless than the moderate Gaddafi has become?

    Unless, of course, NATO occupies Libya and installs a puppet, “to protect civilians”…

    Thanks a lot, Obama and Sarkozy, a pair of tin pot imperialists attacking a dictator.

  4. Meng Bomin says:

    There are several reasons to be uneasy about the decision to intervene here. For one, there’s an extreme selectivity in focus. Gaddafi’s an easy man to paint as a monster and many still hold a grudge over the Lockerbie bombing. But Libya’s not the only country where protesters are being violently put down by a dictatorship. Recently, Saudi troops violently put down protesters in Bahrain. You will hear very little complaint from the U.S. over this because Bahrain happens to host our 5th fleet, which may be a difficult arrangement to maintain. Another country that’s been recently ignored as a potential target for intervention is the Ivory Coast (or Côte d’Ivoire, for those more partial to the French/official name), where the President refused to step down after losing an election. It’s a bit hard to see why Libya deserves the attention it’s getting while the other two are ignored.

    Another reason that I am not comfortable with this intervention is that there isn’t much indication that it will be particularly helpful in reducing the violence. In fact, it’s not hard to imagine scenarios where it helps prolong and deepen the violence and indeed scenarios where Gaddafi maintains power.

    It’s easy to see where the impetus for intervention comes from. We have a country where events can easily be viewed through the narrative of a popular uprising against a brutal despot who’s run his country into the ground. The rebels were sweeping across the country, but suddenly, the tide turned in the despot’s favor, in part because of his superior military. Following that narrative, an outside observer might want to find a way to help the rebels from being finished off, which seems to me to be what this no-fly zone is.

    Now, it is true that the U.S. hasn’t been the one pushing the hardest on this, but the U.S. did play a role in the diplomatic process and there are now U.S. fighter jets over Libya, even if the operation is led by France. I’m a U.S. citizen, so I decided to put an emphasis on the U.S. decision, which stands out, particularly because of our continued involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  5. Infidel753 says:

    If the Rebels win, a Utopian society will instantly flower in Libya?

    Huh? I never said or implied that. I said the results of Qaddhafi winning would be horrific, as is amply shown by his behavior so far.

    Or will they be perhaps even ruthless than the moderate Gaddafi has become?

    There’s not a scintilla of evidence to suggest that — nor is Qaddhafi “moderate” in anything except foreign policy.

    It’s not certain that Qaddhafi’s overthrow would lead to secular democracy, but it’s possible, and we should encourage that possibility. Qaddhafi winning, which would have been the probable outcome without the intervention, would be an unequivocal disaster.

  6. Hail says:

    Infidel753 wrote: “Qaddhafi winning…would be an unequivocal disaster.”

    I fail to see how what happens there affects us in such stark terms.

    But apathy is not what is called for, anger at B.H.Obama and his cronies for starting this war is. Why choose sides in a civil war that we do not understand? What could be more senseless? How inept and foolishly-clumsy is this man with three Islamic names? (Note: That is one more Islamic name than Gaddafi himself has!).

  7. Hail says:

    Meng Bomin wrote:
    It’s a bit hard to see why Libya deserves the attention it’s getting while the other two are ignored.

    Mr. Goldberg’s War (from Steve Sailer).

    In brief:
    1.) B.H.Obama and co. need a whipping boy.
    2.) Ivory Coast is totally off the radar screen, and our Arab oil client-statelets are off the table for other reasons.
    3.) Libya is a villain, relatively easy to shove around, and now is the time to do it (Arab uprisings of past two months, open rebellion in Libya).

    Noam Chomsky identified this practice, used by modern and postmodern imperial powers, back 20, 30 years ago. What is needed by a decadent imperial power (as we in the USA are, whether want to admit it or not) to prop itself up, are cheap, easy, lopsided, “feel-good” military victories. Actions like the Falklands War, Desert Storm, and even small actions like the Granda Invasion of ’83. Clinton arbitrarily took up the Islamic cause in Yugoslavia and beat the Serbs into submission on two occasions (Bosnia and Kosovo), and that was another prime example. Libya could be seen as B.H.Obama’s “Kosovo”.

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