Selective Nature of US/UN Intervention

By Sasha Simic
Letters at The Guardian

Israel bombed Gaza at the end of 2008 in a brutal action which killed 1,300 people and destroyed 20,000 buildings, there was no question of the US allowing the UN to impose a no-fly zone over Gaza to protect its people, 50% of which are children. Those who support the UN security council’s authorisation of a no-fly zone over Libya (Britain, France and US line up for air strikes against Gaddafi, 18 March) need to reflect on the selective nature of UN intervention throughout the world and in the Middle East in particular.

The UN will not be intervening in the Libyan revolution to protect civilians from Gaddafi’s brutality. It will go in to further the interests of the world’s major powers in the region. It will be an imperialist action, not a humanitarian one. After the bloodshed it produced in Serbia, Iraq and Afghanistan, the doctrine of “humanitarian military intervention” should be discredited beyond rehabilitation. The west is a major source of the problems of the Middle East and north Africa. It’s not part of the solution, even when its troops wear blue helmets.

• Over many years the UK and other western states have sold billions of dollars’ worth of weapons, including highly sophisticated fighter aircraft to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states. So if these states now have all these expensive and powerful weapons, why cannot they operate the no-fly zone without the help of the west? If they can’t, what was the point of spending all these billions on weapon systems that they can’t use?

Colin Day
Shoreham-by-Sea, West Sussex

• We have no business intervening in the Libyan uprising. Imagine how we would feel if there was an armed uprising in part of the UK, for example Northern Ireland, and the Libyan government intervened to arm the rebels!

Shane Lynch
St Albans, Hertfordshire

• Why, when the coalition government is launching a comprehensive attack on public services and the most vulnerable in our society, can money still be found for war?

Irene Short
Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire


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