The Risks Britain Runs in Libya

The Evening Standard (London, England), August 24, 2011 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

The Risks Britain Runs in Libya


IN 2004 I was one of 52 former diplomats to sign a letter to the then PM strongly critical of many aspects of our government's role in Iraq.

Different in some ways, the Iraq and Libyan situations are similar in others, such as our reckless defiance of the UN Charter. The attack on Iraq was never authorised by the UN Security Council. The initial military intervention in Libya was authorised by UN resolution 1973 but we ignored that resolution's primary demand for an immediate ceasefire, and its requirement that outside military force should be used only to protect civilians. After intervening to protect Benghazi, we brazenly supported the rebels militarily to bring about regime change, contrary to resolution 1973 and international law.

As in Iraq, through our intervention we have assumed a potentially expensive responsibility to help sort out the post-civil war mess, probably including sending ground troops. Any Libyan government we help create will risk being regarded throughout the Middle East as a Western puppet. Even if military intervention for a limited purpose was justified, Britain had no obligation to participate, given our disproportionate role in Afghanistan and our parlous budgetary situation. We can't afford our libraries but apparently we can spend millions on directing bombs at a small country that posed no threat to us.

Sir Brian Barder LET'S avoid too much cynicism: Libya is unlikely to collapse six months after the rebels' victory.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

The Risks Britain Runs in Libya
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?