Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, September 19th, 2018

Libya and the West’s “Humanitarian Imperialism”

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Libya and the West’s “Humanitarian Imperialism”

As the endgame in Libya draws closer, the world is bracing itself for the post-Qaddafi Libya, wherein business opportunities and oil and construction contracts await those who have been and are quick enough to cultivate closer links with the Libyan National Transitional Council. Well, one is sadly disappointed to see young masses caught in euphoria and excitement at the prospect of the ouster of another dictator, oblivious to the fact that the civil war in Libya has more been a handiwork of foreign aggression than genuine, indigenous yearning for change.

If it was not for the NATO's overt bombing sorties and covert intelligence operations to arm and aid the rebels (most of them bona-fide Al-Qaeda affiliates), chances were extremely high that the armed uprising against Qaddafi would have been crushed in its very early stages by the dictator's forces. Among all the popular uprisings of the Arab Spring that engulfed many countries, Libya is a case that stands apart.

While other revolutions in other Arab countries have been born out of genuine popular backlash against decades-old political, social and economic stagnation brought about by repressive and unresponsive dictatorships, the so-called revolution in Libya has been a result of a new version of West's and NATO's imperialist venture; welcome to the brave new world of "humanitarian imperialism".

If you are gullible enough to buy the West's cock and bull story of "protecting civilians", then i have a bridge in the heart of Kabul that would sell to you at a good price. In the dog-eat-dog world of cut-throat competition; in the higher echelons of military-corporate-finance power world of Western democracies, no one has the heart neither the time nor resources to waste on "protecting" some civilians who happen to be at the receiving end of the bullets of a blood-thirsty dictator somewhere in the North of Africa.

If Libya's main export was cauliflower and lady's finger instead of oil, you could be sure no one would bother even if tens of thousands were slaughtered by Qaddafi's army. During the same week that the NATO was finalizing the plans for its aerial bombardments of Qaddafi's forces, hundreds of people were killed in the African nation of Ivory Coast. Right now, as the cost of the Libya war to the U.S. alone exceeds $896 million according to ABC News, tens of thousands are dying a slow death in Somalia's famine.

Right now, as more than 40 million Americans go hungry every day and night according to American government's statistics, gazillions of dollars are being spent by the American government on erecting a global military super structure that traverses the width and breadth of the whole planet. Right now, as more than hundred billion dollars a year are being spent on the war against the Taliban in Afghanistan, very few programs that promise to change the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan such as the National Solidarity Program go unfunded and abandoned due to shortage of money. Ask why Afghanistan's situation is worsening? These are bitter truth that have to be said and amplified.

The Libyan intervention is the next installment in pursuit of Western plans for a "Greater Middle East". Resorting to "Regime Change", whether by use of force or kind stoking of fires under the belly of dictators, is part and parcel of Western plans for overthrowing those nationalist dictators that are hostile to neo-liberal economic impositions of the West.

My criticism of the Western intervention in Libya is not intended to be tantamount to supporting blood-thirsty dictators such as Muammar Qaddafi. Muammar Qaddafi and his oppressive rule of 42 years based on spreading fear and terror, killing and murdering of dissidents and the innocent stands condemned before the conscience of the history and the people. What is highly objectionable and must be condemned is the West's runaway militarism in order to deal with the world's challenges.

If the war in Libya teaches us anything, it is that the West's increasing militarism and preference to use force on the global stage particularly after 2001 is still dangerously marching ahead. What is condemnable is that sovereign nations are being increasingly set up for military occupations on the flimsiest of pretexts. If the war against Libya - which has so clearly been a war of aggression - has been carried out with so much ease, you can be sure that tomorrow another nation and country will become the target.

Freeing peoples and nations from the yoke of dictators' oppressive rule is not a bad thing per se; what is deeply disturbing is that it is being done with impunity and in blatant violation of international laws and the U.N. Mandate (the U.N. Security Council's resolution only allowed for protecting of civilians and not assisting the Libyan rebels and a regime change!).

If today Libya has been set up for illegal covert and overt intervention, tomorrow it will be Syria, Iran and the list goes on. What is urgently required is that humanitarian interventions be governed and supervised in strict accordance with the international laws in force. The world and the international community cannot afford to allow a number of militarist countries to trample under their feet international laws and the U.N. system in the name of "protecting civilians".

After Qaddafi, Libya, as has been the original objective of the Western agenda, will be dismantled and privatized. Libya was one of the few oil-rich countries that was not integrated into the Western economic system and economic neo-liberalism.

The revenues of its petro-dollars, under Qaddafi, was not laundered back into Western banks and the Western oil multi-nationals could not impose their will on Qaddafi's government. It was not part of the neo-liberal system and therefore, it should have been targeted, its wealth privatized and plundered and as a consequence, majority of its people impoverished. Sad days are awaiting the Libyan people.

Mehdi Rezaie is the permanent writer of the Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at outlook afghanistan@gmail.com

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