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View Diary: Libya's elected congress to take power today (25 comments)

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  •  Foreign intervention is a hit or miss (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    InAntalya

    it does not always work (specifically foreign-military intervention). Take the example of Kosovo. Noam Chomsky writes:

    “At least this much seems clear. NATO chose to reject diplomatic options that were not exhausted, and to launch a military campaign that had terrible consequences for Kosovar Albanians, as anticipated. Other consequences are of little concern in the West, including the devastation of the civilian economy of Serbia by military operations that severely violate the laws of war. Though the matter was brought to the War Crimes Tribunal long ago, it is hard to imagine that it will be seriously addressed. For similar reasons, there is little likelihood that the Tribunal will pay attention to its 150-page “Indictment Operation Storm: A Prima Facie Case,” reviewing the war crimes committed by Croatian forces that drove some 200,000 Serbs from Krajina in August 1995 with crucial U.S. involvement that elicited “almost total lack of interest in the U.S. press and in the U.S. Congress,” New York Times Balkans correspondent David Binder observes.”
    http://www.chomsky.info/....
    Military intervention has the potential for failure and to cause more harm than good.
    •  Libya was a very specfic except to the rule that (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sagesource, joe from Lowell, Woody

      Western military intervention is a disaster. IMHO.

      First, and most importantly, the Libyans cut a deal for air support only, no boots on the ground, and they made it stick.

      With no troops in Libya, NATO has not been able to control the post war narrative as they would have liked. If they had gotten in NATO ground troops,  or even UN "peace keepers" we would have been looking at a very difference situation.

      Second, I think certain contradictions in NATO came to the fore. Obama hung back, so FR & UK took the lead, they were out to prove they could do it without US. For this and because everybody was talking about civilian causalities, NATO was on its best behavior and really did go to unusual (for them) lengths to avoid civilian casualties (less than a hundred by most accounts) Which shows what they can do with smart weapons and careful planning when they actually give a fuck.

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Wed Aug 08, 2012 at 11:28:28 AM PDT

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    •  Details matter. Outcomes are not random. (3+ / 0-)

      Whether an intervention will do more harm than good, or vice-versa, is not purely a roll of the dice.

      The positive outcome of the Libya operation, and the difference between it and Iraq or Vietnam, was not dumb luck.  We need to look very carefully at what happened and learn lessons from it, to understand when to intervene, and just as importantly, how.

      One such lesson: the Europeans imposed some very strict rules of engagement on the pilots, much stricter than Americans flying combat sorties.  When the civilians of a city (Misrata) that is being bombed from the air by NATO are complaining that they aren't dropping enough bombs, that's a pretty good indication that it's not a United States Air Force general running things.  In the long run, though, it's clear that the NATO command was right to be exceptionally cautious.

      Art is the handmaid of human good.

      by joe from Lowell on Wed Aug 08, 2012 at 12:20:03 PM PDT

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      •  The Canadian fighters returned with their (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joe from Lowell

        payloads more than half the time because they were not sure. They ended up getting secondary, less risky targets to chose if the first was a no-go.

        •  ...and that is exactly what John McCain... (0+ / 0-)

          was complaining about when he said that we weren't using "the full extend of American air power," and called for - I can't even believe he said this - the use of AC-130 gunships and Apache helicopters.

          Those things fire 105 mm unguided artillery rounds and 1000 round-per-second automatic fire explosive 20mm shells, and he was urging their use to strike Gadhaffi artillery and rocket launchers in urban areas.  That man is nuts.

          Art is the handmaid of human good.

          by joe from Lowell on Thu Aug 09, 2012 at 07:40:39 AM PDT

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          •  If the Americans were going after the rebels (0+ / 0-)

            here's what it would look like. Very few were calling what happened in Iraq/Afghanistan a massacre.

            Here they are in action. Listen to the "sound of freedom"....

            •  Here's what I called it: (0+ / 0-)

              Also:

              I started Linux Users Los Angeles [Lula] eight years ago when Linux was a baby and needed all the friends it could get. I saw in Linux and it's “free as in 'beer', and free as in 'speech' philosophy a tool with vast potential for the liberation of humanity.

              I have been the president of LULA for all of those years and have helped it grow and strive. My one regret is that more and more it has become an insular collection of geeks that can get along just fine without me.

              I need someone to chair the next Lula meeting. I have made requests to a number of leading members but so far no one has said they can do it.

              I won’t be there because I will be showing my new video 'Oops: A Tragedy Of Errors  - News Clips From The Iraq War' to the LA Answer Coalition. I personally feel this is more important because most likely while the two groups are having their simultaneous meetings the United States of America will be committing mass murder in Fallouja.

              The U.S. Marines are doing it now. And Linux is their little helper. Linux was embedded with the troops before the media ever knew what the word meant.  There is no cease-fire. We keep helicopters, drones and aircraft over Fallouja 24/7. U.S. Marine snipers shoot anything that moves. Hospitals are bombed, ambulances are shot up. Children are shot in the back. Men who try to leave Fallouja are turned back

              Cease-Fire American Style

              “But the cease-fire allows the Marines to carry out defensive operations within the city, which they define as, among other things, allowing fire on insurgents who display weapons, break the curfew or move their forces toward U.S. troops.” LA Times, 4/17/04 p. A6.

              So these are the “cease-fire” rules of engagement. Let’s even allow that as we are bringing them democracy, all Iraqi’s lose any right to bear arms on pain summary execution. And it’s a given that even though we don’t yet control Fallouja, we intend to enforce a curfew by shooting on sight. But please tell me Mr. United States Marine how can you tell whether it’s an unarmed insurgent or an innocent civilian that is breaking the curfew? And since you have the city completely encircled, how can the citizens of Fallouja move at all without moving towards U.S. troops? I guess they can hop up and down and call it 'Freedom'.

              Read the paper. Read between the lines.

              “Sniping experts – there are several here with the Marines – say there may not have been such a “target-rich” battlefield since the World War II battle for Stalingrad.” LA Times again.  So if from behind the riflescope Fallouja looks like Stalingrad while the Nazi’s lay siege to it, who does that make the U.S. Marine look like that uses the sniper rifle?

              21 year old Marine says of Fallouja “It’s a sniper’s dream” LA. Times again.

              Despicable, just despicable!

              “The US Marines have undertaken to subdue Fallujah, west of Baghdad, apparently without regard for civilian casualties.”  The Independent, 4/15/04

              Cease-fire American style just means they aren’t using the artillery; they aren’t dropping cluster bombs and using Gatling guns from AC-130 gunships. Yet.

              Hachim Hassani, an Internet entrepreneur from Culver City and member of the Iraqi Governing Council has been in Fallouja all week trying to negotiate a peace. [I wonder if he ever came to a Lula meeting.]  He’s afraid the Americans are just letting him hold the meetings so they can say they tried everything before the slaughter. LA Times, 4/15/04, A9. His fears are justified.

              The truth is that Bush and his Crew were as wrong about the Iraqi people Greeting Us as Liberators as they were about Weapons of Mass Destruction. But that doesn’t mean we can just pick up and leave from where we aren’t wanted.

              There’s no WMD and there’s no more Saddam Hussein but the whole of Iraq is in revolt against the occupation. Don’t believe the story that it is only 6,000 or so of Sadr's Mahdi Army and “a couple thousand”  “terrorist” “foreign fighters” and “Baathist Loyalist” in Fallouja that somehow have our well armed force of over 130,000 so over extended that leaves are cancelled. Don’t believe the lies! See what the new game plan is.

              If they Don’t Want Us To Liberate them, We Can Rule Through Terror

              Even if we can’t get their telephone system back up and running a year after we bombed it into oblivion, we can rule Iraq through fear and terror. So to get the situation under control before the U.S. presidential elections somebody has to be made an example of. And that somebody is Fallouja, a city of 300,000 people.

              The CentCom media blitz about the four contractors killed in Fallouja is just the cover story to prepare the American public to accept the mass murder they have decided is necessary. They say they just want the terrorist who killed and mutilated the bodies of the four armed civilian contractors, i.e. mercenary soldiers. This is a damn lie.

              The Iraqi's who killed and those that mutilated are two separate groups. The four mercenaries were killed by resistance fighters and left on the field. Others mutilated the bodies. Not that anything can justify such behavior, but it could be more easily understood had the press reported on the massacre of 15 Iraqis by the new sheriff in town, the U.S. Marines, on that very same street the week before.

              The Marines say they just want a handful of 'bad guys' and for this so far they have killed over 600 including at least 46 children under 5. But wait. The real slaughter has not yet begun.

              Today the 'cease-fire' still holds but we Americans are an impatient lot. The Marines warn that this situation can't go on much longer. Soon negotiations will break down and the Marines will be 'forced' to go in, guns a blazing.  And they will do it with your tax dollars and your technology and your acquiescence. You will meet and discuss “Setting up a compile cluster with distcc” at 7:00PM Tuesday.  It will be morning in Fallouja. They’ll be picking up their dead again.

              A lot of people have been making comparisons between Iraq and Vietnam as of late. According to Robert F. McNamara, who as Secretary of Defense from 1960 to 1967 was in a good position to know, 3,400,000 people died in the Vietnam War.  So this is the question the comparison poses for me:

              How many this time? How many this time?

              I once had high hopes for Linux. I felt sure it could make a real contribution to the success of humanity, now more and more I have my doubts. I have a real and growing fear that if the Mr. Smith’s of Linux have their way, in the future they will look back and say “Wasn’t it nice that so many smart people worked to hard for free to forge their own chains.”

              I feel that Lula no longer reflects the vision I have had for it and has in fact belittled itself as an organization for change and progress. I cannot attend Tuesday night's meeting, in fact I would be a shamed to in view of what our country is doing in Iraq. Therefore I am resigning as the president of Linux Users Los Angeles effective 7:00PM April 20, 2004.

              Rights and the Mailing List

              Rights. You have rights. But you have responsibilities too. And you have no right to sit on your ass while your country commits atrocities.

              Today we remember the Holocaust. The real shame of the Germans was that they allowed a bad leader to hijack the very considerable resources of their country to do some really horrible things while they when on with user group meetings and such as usual.

              Clay Claiborne
              April 19, 2004

              Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

              by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 09, 2012 at 11:39:25 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

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