Saturday, March 19, 2011

No to military intervention

It's all too easy to get carried away with the compelling narrative about the need to protect civilians from a bloodthirsty dictator and his goons.

However, as the Stop the War Coalition point out ( that's not what a western military intervention is all about. As Jeremy Corbyn asked - and David Cameron didn't answer, where's the protection for civilians in Bahrain or Yemen (

Where is the international concern about strife in the Ivory Coast? Where, for that matter, was the UN Security Council when Israel bombarded Gaza?

The point of these questions is not to say that there should, necessarily, be western intervention anywhere else - nor to say that because the world powers often ignore suffering and injustice they should do so consistently.

The point is that the "international community" in the persons of the leaders of the Western nations in particular acts to protect the interests of an economic system, and of the multinational corporations which are central to that system. Those interests aren't the interests of the people of Libya, any more than they are the interests of working class people in the UK.

David Cameron may be able to rely upon the jingoism of the liberal interventionists on the Opposition front bench, but socialists in the workers' movement need to express opposition to western military involvement in Libya - or elsewhere.

Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange


Chris H said...

Some good points about why we shouldn't be rushing headlong into military action. I'd also add that I still don't see exactly who the 'sides' are in the Libyan conflict. Qadaffi is obvious but the 'armed protesters'? Hmm.

Robert said...

It is funny to see Blair kissing Gaddafi's on the cheek and to day read his bit in the times, boy he has a nerve.

But the excuse about why gaddifi is now evil and a few years ago he was a great diplomat for his people.

I can still see the young Police officer laying on the street in London covered by a bit of sheet with blood coming through.

I sat in front of the TV watching Lockerbie, but of course if your leader of a country then the country comes first and your bank balance comes a close second.

yes by all means protect the civilians and stop selling them arms, as that great idiot Peter hain said on News Night yes but what about our arms trade the 10,000 who work in the UK.

You have to love New labour or is that Newer labour.

The problem for me is whom are we protecting the Libyan leaders for the so called goodies are not exactly without a blemish are they, what will we get in a few more years time another general running the country.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chris H,
would these be the 'armed protestors' who were gunned down by Gaddafi's thugs when they protested peacefully? Interesting piece on Despatch's this week.

Seems you're getting support from the Libyan Embassy for your sterling work Jon.
Dave Draycott