Friday, June 3, 2011

Libya Clarification

This piece on what Harper needs to say about Libya rubs a sore-spot for me.  It poses regime change and civilian protection as entirely separate enterprises.  Yes, one can slice and slice to come up with distinctions, but the reality has always been that the only enduring way to protect Libya's rebellious civilians from the government is to change who runs it.  Since only gullible intellectuals can possibly imagine Qaddafi as being a credible guarantor of any agreement, how could the civilians of Libya be protected with Qaddafi still in place?  With UN/NATO occupation of the rebellious zones?  Um, the UN resolution prohibits that.  And NATO has no troops or patience for that.

So, this is a very artificial distinction that might make sense to politicians who want to hedge or criticize, but civilian protection logically and realistically implies regime change of some kind. 

If you can imagine a situation where there is no regime change and the civilians can be sustainably guaranteed their own security, please let me know how that would work. 

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