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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 9/10/15

Responsibility to Protect? What Happened to That?

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Syrian refugees' camp
Syrian refugees' camp
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When President Obama got the Security Council in the UN to turn a blind eye to the destruction of Libya. and when he uses NATO as his military arm to remove Gaddafi from power and reduce that country's infrastructure to ruins, he used a phrase "Responsibility to Protect". Seemingly, we were protecting those that were fighting against the regime there so in that Arab Spring, they could have a real chance at democracy and throw away the shackles of oppression.

The World seemed to go along with it and certainly the Citizens of this nation did too. Hardly a word was said when we bombed the Libyan army and air force, their power plants and water supply infrastructure. It seems that the participating NATO air forces has a ball getting real time practice waging war from the safety of the Mediterranean Sea, launching from American aircraft carriers, and coming back to hot chow and a comfortable bunk.

What could go wrong? After all, the despot in Libya was a "bad guy". Right? The brave fighters in Libya were only trying to practice self-determination and throw off the yokes of oppression. This was a good fight and the American President said we had a "Responsibility to Protect" the people of Libya from a menacing dictator.

The result of that has become what we are all seeing today. Libya has been decimated, run by tribal fiefdoms, and it's people are starving and trying to stay out of the clutches of the mad men that are running this now failed state. Our Embassy in Benghazi was torched, out Ambassador killed, and arms that we supplied are now entering Syria to arm ISIS.

Just who did we "protect"? Today, Libyans are jumping into the sea trying to make it to any European nation that will have them. France, our cheerleader during the Libyan revolution, and the UK, our partner in crime, don't seem to want anything to do with the Libyan people now. Germany, one of the NATO countries that refused to join the free-for-all. Is one of the only nation that is welcoming refugees under their version of a "responsibility to protect" (as called for under the Geneva Conventions). I find this ironic.

We are now helping to"protect" Ukraine and the Eastern Europeans from a renewed Russia that seems to be thriving, even under crippling US sanctions. Are are also'"protecting" Iraq from ISIS, even though many Sunni tribes in Iraq are welcoming them.Again, I find this to be ironic. after all, didn't we free the Iraqi's from a violent dictator too?

Meanwhile, our wonderful allies in Saudi Arabia, when they are not chopping off heads at a greater rate than ISIS, is bombing the Houthi's in Yemen with US supplied aircraft and munitions like cluster bombs.

So, who is it that is responsible for all the refugees from the Middle East that are now swarming into Europe? What about our governments noble claims of wanting to "protect" those in mortal danger?

The real truth is that we don't really want to protect anyone. If we did, we would be helping the refugees from the Middle East that we helped to create. We would start by being a nation that abides by the Geneva Conventions and let other nations work ou their own problems and helping to create some kind of stability in the World. We have made a mess of things, that much is apparent. Maybe if we tried to rebuild our own cities and quit trying to wage war all over the globe, America might once again be that bright light on the hill.

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Tim Gatto is Ret. US Army and has been writing against the Duopoly for the last decade. He has two books on Amazon, Kimchee Days or Stoned Colds Warriors and Complicity to Contempt.

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