Saturday, March 19, 2011

Setting A Dangerous Precedent

With 112 missiles fired in the opening hours of this police action by a new UN Coalition against Libya, one might be feeling a little bit like its 1999. In that year a NATO Coalition attacked Serbia in response to that government’s retaliation against the subversive Kosovo Liberation Army. A three month campaign ensued that weakened the Milosevic regime and prevented—theoretically—an “ethnic cleansing” by Serbia of its’ Albanian people. No direct invasion, just an air campaign that can paralyze the victim, rendering them susceptible to domestic insurrection or any future ground assault that might be needed.
At the time of the Kosovo conflict it was a devious move by a thus far non-interventionist NATO.  Clearly    the voice of this suffering minority mattered more than others in that these sovereign nations saw fit to apply strict military discipline to a nation and leader suspected of committing genocide. Today we are engaging Libya in the same way, only this time it is to “protect civilians”. By a revealing “twist” on the logic of this particular “crusade”, the Darfur region of Sudan is just a few thousand miles from Libya and is directly south of Egypt. The people of Darfur have been pleading for years for someone to help them as the Sudanese government continues to employ Janjaweed death squads and massacres to intimidate the population. Estimates of the total casualties since the Darfur rebellion began in 2003 are 200-400,000.
In other words, the stated aim of the current coalition is obviously prejudiced and self-serving. On one hand the UN gets to kill some people while scaring the crap out of Quaddafi, and on the other the oil companies and their investors not only have their stash protected, but they get bonus dollars made off of the conflict due to the increase in oil prices. We haven’t even begun to discuss the obvious currency effects that can be played for additional profit! Why does the United Nations have a right—or even a mission—to arbitrarily intervene in matters where civilian lives are at risk? If we go by such a measure, how is the non-intervention in Darfur justified? Even as NATO jets were sending innocent civilians to their deaths to protect them, the US and Britain were maintaining their own “no-fly zone” over Iraq, an exercise that provided their pilots the opportunity to attack anything moving and let the politicians sort it out.
Of course, the aggression is mutual in Libya. There is a civil war going on, just like in Sudan. Only this time, the UN has decided to add aggression to aggression rather than mediate a cessation between both sides and promote a solution. If civilian casualties are a serious concern of the UN, so much so as to single out one aggressor over another, why are the repeated drone missile strikes by the US against civilians in NW Pakistan and Afghanistan “off the table”? Why do the Columbian military and the Israeli military not suffer reprisal from the UN when they are clearly killing their own civilians?
Consider yourselves warned—once again the UN has demonstrated   the amazing power of selective memory and selective response. Any weak, unliked, or uncooperative nation could face the wrath of the manipulated United Nations, and equally the arcane Security Council of the Allied Powers of World War Two. If I were Iran, I would be sitting most uncomfortably.
As it is, we can expect further violence out of Israel and the Occupied Territories as well as outright crackdowns and wipe-outs in other Middle East nations. Not only do we have the Libyan attack on the TV, we have the nuclear crisis in Japan, the descent of Charlie Sheen, the ruin of the world economy, and eventually a war of epic proportions.
How so, this war?
Many African and Middle East nations are finding a more just and respectable association with China than they had with the West. Sooner or later the events in the Middle East are going to invite a response from China, and when that happens, China will have seized the richest oil areas on Earth and made itself—with relative ease—the new Superpower. That’s what happens when a bankrupt system of debt crushes the global economy. Wealth evaporates, governments collapse, and the world becomes a different place.
It’s been a while since such a change. Maybe 1989-90, only this time on a larger scale. These days, it seems like the entire world is just boiling under the surface, waiting to explode.

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