26 May 2011
Muammar Gaddafi has been in power in Libya since 1969. He was 27 years old when he deposed the King.
Now I don't know about you, but when I heard that a feeling of awe overcame me. A 27-year-old man had the power and support to lead a revolution and overthrow the first and only leader of the North African country. That is pretty impressive.
Don't get me wrong by no means am I saying that I support Muammar Gaddafi, or his actions, but you have to admit- that's a big feat for a 27-year-old.
Although it now seems the people of Libya have tired of Colonel Gaddafi and desire change. Anti-government protests in Libya began in February 2011, following similar protests in Egypt, Tunisia and Bahrain.
The Libyan government, and pro-Gaddafi troops responded violently to pro-democracy movements and attacked protestors. This has now, three months later, escalated into a full-scale civil war.
In an attempt to stop the killing of civilians the United Nations Security Council approved a resolution that authorised military action against Libya including air strikes, missile attacks and a no-fly zone.
Since the resolution was approved some of the world's most powerful forces have led the attacks we hear of every day in western media. Britain, France and the U.S have all been involved in NATO air and sea attacks on pro-Gaddafi forces.
Western forces have sent a number of 'advisors' to help train Libyan rebel fighters against the Gaddafi regime.
The United States has sent $25million worth of 'non-lethal equipment', including vehicles, medical supplies, protective vests, uniforms and radios to Libyan rebel forces. They claim this will assist with the protection of civilian lives. Britain has proposed similar actions.
Does this further entangle the US, in the Libyan civil war?
I would have to say it does, and this story is starting to sound a lot like one that I've heard before. It shadows the beginnings of Afghanistan and even Vietnam. As the former leader of the British Liberal Democrats, Sir Menzies Campbell points out, 'Vietnam began with an American president sending military advisers.'
This ground-level involvement of allied forces may just be the first chapter in a long story of western involvement in Libya.
But the question remains, how many more will follow? Will the west continue to send 'advisors' and equipment? And if so, how long will it be before allied troops are sent into direct encounters with pro-Gaddafi forces?
British Defence Secretary, Liam Fox, was quoted saying the Libyan situation was 'not that different from what's happening in Afghanistan.'
Let's have a look at Afghanistan. In the beginning British Special Forces and US soldiers were sent to the middle-eastern country to work with Afghani soldiers to oust the Taliban regime. Ten years on, western forces are still prominent in Afghanistan, and many people say that the troops are positioned in 'permanent bases'.
The west's ongoing finance and assistance for the leaderless rebels in Libya, mimicks a modern day version of 'White Man's Burden'. Similar to that we have seen in Afghanistan and Vietnam before that.
Yes, the allied forces are aiming to save the lives of innocent civilians. However, there is also the argument that western involvement has only escalated the conflict. There is no going back now. What began as a people's revolution is now a civil war, and who knows how much further it will go.
While defending the rights and lives of Libyan civilians, have western nations worsened the plight of these very people?
The International Criminal Court has now issued an arrest warrant against Gaddafi, for crimes against humanity. If there is one thing we know about Colonel Gaddafi, it is that he doesn't give up easily. He has now been in power in Libya for 42 years and I doubt that three months of protesting, fighting and an international arrest warrant will cause him to give up anytime soon.
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HARRY, NY (3 October 2012 6:31PM) wrote:
That's really very interesting about Iran and Israel being on the same side against Qaddafi. But not really surprising given that the Iranian Revolution was a Also not surprising given Iranian complicity in the drug trade from Afghanistan into Turkey and thence Europe. It's a typical PressTV story in the run-up to the NATO destruction of Libya. I increasingly don't trust Ahmadinejad or the ayatollahs. The antics in front of the UN appear very much staged as an elaborate false opposition. Not to mention their ludicrous naval patrols off the US coast.He calls the 911 attacks "mysterious". Big deal. Does he name names?Every intel agency on the face of the planet knows which Zionist Upper East Side plutocrats and thinktank gophers are behind the attacks. Even the intelligence agencies of Kiribati and Tuvalu, no doubt.The more I see what vipers Qaddafi is up against, the more respect I have for the man.
Steph, Sydney (31 May 2011 1:23PM) wrote:
I couldnt agree more, a great insight to this issue.
Emma, Queensland (31 May 2011 1:22PM) wrote:
Nice job. Spot on!
Daryl Millard, France (28 May 2011 1:07AM) wrote:
I do think that foreign intervention here has increased the risk to civilians as it always does. Like you i'm not sure if Gaddafi was such a bad leader in his time but I'm not living in Libya. Its funny how The major powers only get involved when there is something of value in that country (oil). Where there has been other examples of civil wars where no intervention was seen (African nations) and the risk to civilians was greater. Hopefully it can be resolved quickly.
Alexandra Boukouvalas, Sydney (28 May 2011 12:24AM) wrote:
Spot on. It seems pretty clear that recent US attempts at intervening in foreign disputes have come to problematic fruition. When the UN gave its sanctions and the US, Britain and France took action I heaved a naive sigh of relief – the good guys had come to save the victim. How could the forces of one African nation stand up to the most powerful nations in the world? However, like the situations in Iraq and Afghanistan, it appears that peace is even farther away than before.