- Capitalism and Alternatives -

War and Reason.

Posted by: Red Deathy ( Socialist party, UK ) on April 20, 1999 at 17:02:38:

We must be careful, on all sides, when discussing this war, not to neglect reason, and thus fall into naked prejudice on either side, with that in mind, may I present something of a reasoned analysis:

Lets start with some basic principles:
1:The basis of NATO intervention is in alleged accordance with the international Decralation of human rights, i.e. they claim humanitarian intervention- however.
2:the US's track record does not give them much of a basis for humanitarian intervention- Arming Suharto, the Khmer Rouge, refusing to clear up bombs in Laos dropped by the US in the seventies, and killing people today, their continued support for Turkey dispite the treatement of the Kurds, the parrallel situation in Israel with the Palestinians, etc. We could throw in most of central America- but, as some rejoinder, perhaps this is the first time, perhaps they now are genuinely engaged in humitarianism. Well...
3:If that were so, we must square it with some other factors- an escalation of the ethnic cleansing was a for-seeable consequence, and yet NATO tactics were not geared towards atttacking the forces in Kosova, and there was no, even secret preparation to manage refugees. NATO's primary aim has been to secure teh capitulation of Milosovich, and this contnues to be the aim, despite its failure to stop the flood of refugees. This is either gross incompetence, or it is cynical mendacity. But we can't talk to these people, they wouldn't deal, so...
4:Noticeably the Isreali peacetalks with the Palestinians are seriously bogged down, and despite US impatience, I see no rush to bomb Isreal. Further, we discover, as my link for SDF's post shows, that Serbia actually voted in its parliament to accept most of the peace deal, but wanted to alter the sections on NATO peacekeepers to look at alternative international options. NATO wouldn't accept anything less, in fact, Rambouillet was not talks, it was an ultimatum- the argument was clear, and made in public, secure the backing of the Kosvars (whom we can't bomb into submission) and then threaten Serbia with bombing. it was an imposition, not talks. but, but, something had to be done.
5:This is politicians logic, as follows:

Serbian atrocities in Kosova are appalling.
We must do something.
Bombing Serbia is something.
therefore we must bomb Serbia.

Not quite logical. Further, who gave NATO the right to do this something? Why was not the UN asked to endorce military action, and by ot Consulting the UN, isn't NATO in breech of its own constitution?

6:Wars are expensive, dangerous, and wasteful, most countries will not enter a war unless some interest were threatened, specifically since we can see that the Humintarian justifications for the war are so weak, we must assume a western interest somewhere.

Now, imagine in your home town, that a gang was terrorising a local ethnic group, brutually torturing them, etc. And then, the Mafia stepped in, and decided to sort them out, and did so, with the full knowledge and expectation of undermining and replacing the authority of proper law. Further, what if the Thugs in question were actually mafia employees anyway, that had got out of line? And the Mafia's intervention were intended to put them back into line, but not to remove them- would you support it?

What the Serbs are doing is terrible, but we cannot rely on an impulsive desire to 'do something' this situation is the result of years of western policy in the Region we need to step back and think about this.

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