Crisis in the middle east

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Rome_Leader
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Post by Rome_Leader » 31 Mar 2011, 18:18

Sorry, I didn't mean as if to say going into Iraq was because of 9/11, obviously they had naught to do with it. But I mean like, I sort of understand the rationale behind going in there, taking out Saddam, and targeting terror as a whole based on a fear of terrorism and following a policy much like during the Cold War, when efforts were made to snuff out communism at every turn. The Korean and Vietnam Wars were all justified due to intervening to save the countries from communist rule, and while I don't know if I agree with that, if you look at it from a modern perspective, replacing 'communist' with 'terrorist', then I understand why the Americans felt a need to go into Iraq. They were just following their policies from the Cold War that corrupt government they see as a threat must be met with aggression.
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matt
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Post by matt » 01 Apr 2011, 20:17

The whole thing is peculiar - in the sense that it all seems to be happening at once, like a row of dominoes, and in the selective involvement of the UN/NATO/US etc. It would be interesting to know what provoked the uprising in Tunisia in the first place.

If the reason for getting involved in Libya is to protect Libyan civilians from their government, why are the British, French and Americans not intervening in Yemen or the Ivory Coast? As soon as you pick and choose when it comes to military matters it can become very complicated.

This is why the various reasons for invading Iraq given by British and American politicians annoyed me so much. If it was really about disarming a dangerous lunatic then why not North Korea? If it was about removing a dictator then why not Zimbabwe?

Saddam had no links to Al-Qaeda. But that aside, the whole concept of a 'war on terror' is abstract, vague and dangerous and seems to have led to stereotypical attitudes, narrow-mindedness and absolutism ('you're either with us or against us' policies). Violence begets more violence. The goal of terrorism is to cause terror, and frankly people like the EDL and Sarah Palin scare me more than any religious extremist group.

The 'spreading democracy' bollocks only became the official policy when it became clear that the weapons never existed. And even that is a bit rich considering Bush's own electoral record. I'm not suggesting that Iraq was a utopia before US and British involvement but it is hard to see how the war has been of real benefit to the Iraqi people.

Returning to the present, another issue is the exit strategy. If/when Gaddafi goes, how soon will the foreign troops be leaving Libya?

For a revolution or regime change to resemble democracy it needs to come from the people. That's why Egypt and Tunisia have a better chance than Iraq and Afghanistan of achieving long-term peace - it was Egyptians and Tunisians who brought about change, with no intervention from foreign powers. It's also why Bush and his cronies deserve no credit for the events of the last few weeks.
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Rome_Leader
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Post by Rome_Leader » 01 Apr 2011, 22:46

Great point, Matt. No one knows specifically why the US/world decided to choose Libya to get involved with when so many other nations are in peril. Maybe it's Gaddafi himself, and things they know about him and his motives that they don't. Maybe it really is an 'eeny, meeny, miny, moe' kinda thing. Or maybe they stand to gain something from it they wouldn't elsewhere. Not sure we'll ever know for sure.

A glaring example of inaction is Sudan. Nobody gives a sh*t about genocide over there, yet it is incredibly rampant, and no other nation has stepped in to stick up for the civillians over there. Probably because Sudan is a very poor country, with next to no resources/oil, whereas Libya has plenty of oil.
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styale18
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Post by styale18 » 01 Apr 2011, 23:51

thats also a great point. no one cares abut the genocide. my uncle works in the un at sudan so he often tells me about the struggles of the sudanese people.

LiveTheDream
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Post by LiveTheDream » 02 Apr 2011, 09:55

Rome_Leader wrote:Great point, Matt. No one knows specifically why the US/world decided to choose Libya to get involved with when so many other nations are in peril. Maybe it's Gaddafi himself, and things they know about him and his motives that they don't. Maybe it really is an 'eeny, meeny, miny, moe' kinda thing. Or maybe they stand to gain something from it they wouldn't elsewhere. Not sure we'll ever know for sure.

A glaring example of inaction is Sudan. Nobody gives a sh*t about genocide over there, yet it is incredibly rampant, and no other nation has stepped in to stick up for the civillians over there. Probably because Sudan is a very poor country, with next to no resources/oil, whereas Libya has plenty of oil.
Sadly that is probably a major influence on their decision to step in. Self interest and all that... :( I've just started a paper at Uni on International Relations, so this stuff is coming up quite a bit in lectures. From an academic perspective it is really interesting to look at, but at the same time it's pretty gobsmacking when you realise some of the things that go on in the world :(

Didn't they try to bump off Gaddafi a few years ago?
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ScottyBoy
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Post by ScottyBoy » 02 Apr 2011, 10:27

Libya, Iraq, Afganistan etc are civilised, semi/fully developed countries, by going in and removing the dictator the country can be rebuilt to some level that is in the USA and friends best interests.

A line is drawn at poor African countries because your correct no one in power truely gives a sh*t about them. Places like Sudan, Sierra Leone, Rwanda have massive humanitarian problems other than murderous Governments and militias.

If you go in to those countries the US etc would have the responsibility to sort out things such as huge scale poverty and backward infrastructure. This is incredibly costly and where does it stop, if you go beyond the norm to help one poor African country why not the next.

Anyone can can tell you that poverty doesnt equal big profits and as much as people like to think they give i'd love to meet the President that gets elected with a policy of raising taxes to pay for the poverty striken countries of the world. I dont think so either.
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