International “Law”, the UN & Libya.
Let’s face it, the only country which COULD help the Libyan insurgents in any meaningful way is the USA. But Obama won’t go without a UN resolution, Which Russia will veto, and he’s shown precious little interest in the issue. Britain & France could conceivably mount a half-arsed no fly zone. We could impose some form of trade embargo against the Libyan regime using the handful of remaining Jets or brace of warships our countries still possess, or arm the Rebels & provide some covert military support: sending the SAS and the Foreign Legion into the North-African desert where they were both born. But they won’t do even that without a UN resolution. And do you honestly think Barak Obama will support Britain & France, former colonial powers, taking action in Africa? France is absolutely correct to recognise the insurgents council as the legitimate Government of Libya, but this demonstrates another truth. France only chooses the morally right side, when they are about to lose, horribly.
To wage war without a UN resolution is “illegal”, and therefore we have outsourced out foreign policy, our ability to make timely war on tyrants, to the lawyers. International law is now a joke – with the vile totalitarianism of China & the amoral, oligarchic Russia sitting in the colon of the security council like an impacted turd preventing any coalition of democracies from taking action to support an uprising against dictators, anywhere in the world. Giving nasty totalitarians a veto over the actions of democracies is constipating our efforts to spread democracy, or indeed do the right thing, anywhere, ever.
Meanwhile, Qadhafi demonstrates to tyrants, including those in Moscow & Beijing that exemplary violence against insurgents will go unpunished and that the west is powerless. Hamstrung by a legal regime based on a corrupt, flawed organisation which can never reach agreement in this multi polar world. The window of opportunity to get rid of this capricious clown in Tripoli is closing, fast and is now measured in hours and days, not the weeks it takes to get a UN resolution.
If you are an “international lawyer”, or think that there is some higher court than the electorate to which the leaders of sovereign democracies are subject, the blood of Libyan insurgents is on your hands. You may bleat about ‘Iraq’ but it’s Colin Powell’s fear of “international law” which prevented the coalition supporting the Marsh Arabs (who now basically no longer exist as a people) when they rose up against Saddam Hussein. Iraq II may have demonstrated the futility of imposing democracy un-asked-for, but that is NOT what happened in Southern Iraq in 1991 and it is NOT what is happening now in Libya.
War is risky, but it is the right of sovereign democracies to wage it against tyranny, and the job, it seems of international lawyers to prevent it & thereby support the self-serving (even more amoral and self-serving than ours) foreign policy of Russia & China which is to actively support vile dictators (with whom it’s easier to do business than businesses operating under the rule of law) and loot their countries of resources. Supporters of international Law give, in effect, a Chinese & Russian veto on Western foreign policy. Russia and China are NOT so encumbered, knowing that the west are not going to go to war in support of, say Gerogia. Supporters of international law, and the Chinese/Russian veto, are every bit as responsible for what is going to happen to the people of Benghazi when it falls to the regime as the Libyan soldiers pulling the trigger. Indeed, more so. Most Libyan soldiers don’t really have a choice.
The Libyan insurgents are crying out, begging for our help, yet the Lawyers are saying “Russia says no, so we can’t go”. If the idea of a free Libya is going to be killed, let it at least take the bloodstained UN and the idea that “international law” is in any way binding, with it. I hope the cameras are rolling when Qadhafi’s tanks roll in, so those Lawyers can see clearly happening what the west COULD have prevented. Not that those cold-blooded reptiles will give a shit.
In the mean-time all I can do is hang my head in shame at what my country has become & weep for the lost opportunity for the Libyan people for whom this is not 1989, it’s 1956.
Well said, correct, correct, correct. International law is used as a cover for a total lack of moral courage.
Watch this Sky News clip and weep, especially at the children.
The important difference between the marsh arabs and the libyans is that the marsh arabs had been given to understand they would get support from the US and instead were left dangling in the wind, and were cruelly slaughtered by the evil bastard Saddam Hussein.
THe uprising in libya is entirely home grown – I think that on balance armed intervention by western states would be a mistake. What I would like to see would the formation of an international column "friends of Libya" say, formed of young men (Egypt and Tunisia are full of them) putting their money where their mouth is and ging help their brothers.
The idea of recognising the government of a breakaway state is fraught with danger (pace yugoslavia), but I have to say my first thought when this broke out was that that was probably the way in, provided that government actually askedfor some limited intervention, hopefully not involving boots on the ground but providing arms and training and airsupport to prevent a genocidal revenge (which is what we are likely to see after this unless Gadaffi goes) and that for me is the least bad outcome of all this.
But agreed, the UN is bollocks the EU's "EiAS" idem, and the concept of international law is a figleaf for moral cowardice, and political laziness.
But as libertarians should we not celebrate government inaction?
We are not the world's police men. There is tyranny and injustice across the globe but we only care when the trouble spot is also an oil producer.
We may have outsourced foreign policy but at some point we need to recognise that what goes on in other parts of the world is out of our control. And rightly so.
The British empire is no more. Get over it.
The fact that the UN elected Libya to their human rights panel a few years back says all that needs to be said about that benighted organisation.
All it effectively does is ensures that the action only occurs when it is too late or unnecessary. As soon as something is controversial whether in Sudan (China), Libya (Russia), Iraq (France) it gets veto. Some would argue – although I disagree – that Israel (the US) should be included in this group.
"For evil to triumph, it is enough that the good do nothing"
Time to abolish the UN.
WV: graive. Very appropriate
Anon 9.41; quite right, but that didn't stop the sainted Tony sending troops to Afghanistan and Iraq.
I can quite understand Saint Barry's reluctance to get involved. The last time the US got involved in a "police action" it didn't end too well for them.
But with the eyes of the world now on Japan, the Libyans will be pretty much left to sort themselves out.
You have to wonder if the US has decided to throw the Libyan rebels to the dogs as a warning to the anti-interventionists.
We need a UN type body that has membership open only to legitimate democracies. The current UN is a joke.