Pariah States & Sanctions in the Middle East: Iraq, Libya, Sudan

Pariah States & Sanctions in the Middle East: Iraq, Libya, Sudan

Pariah States & Sanctions in the Middle East: Iraq, Libya, Sudan

Pariah States & Sanctions in the Middle East: Iraq, Libya, Sudan

Synopsis

UN sanctions have become an increasingly popular weapon in the political armoury of the international community - a supposedly effective means, short of war, of bringing a transgressor state back in line. Tim Niblock challenges this view in a dispassionate analysis of the political, economic and psychological impact of sanctions on the Middle East's pariah states.

Excerpt

This book constitutes an objective attempt to examine the rationale, impact, and effects of UN sanctions imposed on Iraq, Libya, and Sudan. I must confess, however, that the motivations for the study have been a mixture of anger and shame. Those who make regular visits to Iraq, and to a lesser extent Libya, cannot fail to be appalled by the misery under which the peoples of those richly resourced countries have been living. And though Western governments may seek to blame the countries'leaders, the reality is that economic sanctions have inflicted immense damage on populations—all in retaliation for acts over which they have had no influence or control. Responsibility for sanctions policy lies squarely with the Western powers that have guided UN Security Council resolutions. There is, moreover, no justification in terms of any higher ends. As this book shows, sanctions do not enhance the stability of the international order when applied over a prolonged period. To experience the goodwill that people in the countries concerned continue to show to visitors from outside, and to know that their agony is caused by the policies pursued by one's own government, creates the sense of shame.

The three countries covered in this book have all been subject to differing sanctions regimes, with differing backgrounds and effects. Informed readers will come to the analysis with more knowledge of the background to sanctions in some cases than in others. The intense media coverage of events in Iraq in 1990 and 1991, for example, means that those events are well known; thus a detailed rehashing of them should be unnecessary. No attempt has been made, therefore, to impose a common format on the analysis of the three cases. Each part has been structured to convey the dynamics that I wish to highlight and to avoid detailing material that has been amply covered elsewhere.

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