Mar 29, 2011

On Libya & the no-fly zone

So I've seen a couple video quite critical of the UN intervention in Libya, claiming that the no-fly zone is just another implementation of American Imperialism in their step-by-step attempt to take control over Libya and its oil.

For those of you who haven't read any news for a while, there's been a major uprising in Lybia against the current leader Muammar Gaddafi and his regime, with the protesters asking for new leadership and democratic elections. Gaddafi's reaction to the protest was not only to start shooting at the demonstrators, but also to surround the cities with tanks and artillery and bomb the shit out of unarmed civilians from both land and air.

In response to Gaddafi's attacks, earlier this month, as part of the Resolution 1973, the UN approved a no-fly zone, which basically prevents libyan military aircrafts from attacking civilian targets. This action was solicited and supported by Libya's deputy ambassador to the United Nations Ibrahim Dabbashi, as well as by the libyan protesters and civilians (though this cannot really be demonstrated).

So why would people oppose the no-fly zone you ask ? In my opinion, because some people are so set against American Imperialism that they decided to characterize this action as such (regardless of the the fact that it was France who initiated the no-fly zone in the first place). They claim that there are no humanitarian reasons behind this action, that the only concern here is Libya's oil supply, and that launching missiles at Libya is in no way helping its people.

While in principle I do agree that "humanitarian bombing" is at least suspicious, if not self-contradictory, I also have to acknowledge that you cannot establish a no-fly zone without military intervention. In order to prevent further attacks on civilians, you HAVE TO take down the military targets on the ground. There's just no way around it. If you think there is an alternative to that, I would sure like to know it.

Something else that comes up constantly is the question "Why Libya?". Why isn't there an intervention in Darfur or Bahrain or Yemen, etc, where the people are also oppressed and there are violent protests and people are getting shot at too.

This reminds me of the Green Revolution in Iran, where the same people were questioning why the media is paying so much attention to Iran and "why not to Egypt, or Libya?" - as they were saying at that time. And if I have to, I might as well start digging up through the pile of comments and videos that have been made since then to demonstrate my point.

While I can very much admit that I am not the most educated person in foreign policies, I can still understand that a UN intervention to Darfur for instance, would be impossible for one obvious reason: Russia. I can also admit that there is vested interest in Libya, which produces about 2% of the world's oil. And yes, it pisses me off too that these political games are basically deciding who should be helped and who should be left ignored. What's happening throughout Middle East with the current uprisings clearly shows that people want change and they are willing to fight for it, even if that means literally fighting against bullets.

But while it is tragic that unarmed protesters are being shot at, there is a difference from that - to entire cities being shelled and surrounded by artillery and people being bombed, like it's been happening in Libya. These people cannot fight the government on their own. If there is also a vested interest for UN to intervene, I still think it's preferable to NOT doing anything and leaving them defenseless.

I think the argument against the intervention in Libya that annoys me the most is "oh, but people don't have it that bad there! They're fine! They even have free education and medical care and such." This is SUCH complete and utter bullshit! In my own country, we also had free education and medical care under the communist dictatorship. We also had no freedom. We couldn't get in and out of the country at will, we didn't have access to information (we had only one TV station and one radio station which basically broad-casted only what the government wanted us to know), we were freezing in the winter because the heat was getting turned off, we were reading at candle-light in the evening because the lights were shut down to save electricity, our homes were not safe because at any point the Security could burst in and interrogate us and search our places with no warning and without having to provide any reason. Anyone who said something that *might be interpreted as speaking against the government* was interrogated and most of the times incarcerated. Anyone who clearly spoke against the government was being shot.

I'm sorry for the digression but it simply infuriates me how narrow-minded can people be sometimes. How can they so ignorantly say that "Libyans are not really that oppressed, ya know" when they NEVER experienced that kind of oppression themselves, when they were born and raised with freedoms and rights that they are now taking for granted and they cannot even imagine living in a world without them. A world where you are so intolerably abused that you prefer to fight against bullets.

In my own country, we had no help. It was almost a "miracle" that the army (who was shooting at people and running them over with tanks) finally took the protester's side and helped them bring Ceausescu down. I was 8 years old when both my parents were facing the tanks because they wanted me to have the liberty to vote on who my leaders will be and to be able to speak my mind without fear of being shot. Muammar Gaddafi is a mass murdering tyrant who's been ruling Libya by force for 42 fucking years. These people cannot fight on their own against bombs.

So no, I don't oppose the no-fly zone. Which doesn't mean that I support imperialism or that I am pro-war (I spoke against the Iraq war numerous times) or that I believe the UN is God's gift to the Middle East or whatever fucking bullshit propaganda you're trying to make me part of.

If you oppose the no-fly zone, my question to you is what's your alternative ? And no, just giving arguments against my arguments will not be sufficient. I want to know what's YOUR proposed solution.

That's about it.

Mar 22, 2011

Criticizing Islam

Video I had to private from YouTube because audio got disable due to the music I used. Google is lame like that. I have been given permission to use the pictures and names at the end.

Council of Ex-Muslims Forum HERE .

Their YouTube Channel , please subscribe HERE .

The article about Pakistani Muslims leaving Islam HERE .

My blog post about respecting the dead HERE .