The fact is, their enthusiasm to free up the oil in Libya could easily lead to all-out war. It plays into Gaddafi’s hands having the west bomb his country, and the Arab propaganda machine both there and throughout the Middle East can easily sway the troops in the region to go to war with the American and British ‘infidels’
Yes, it is appropriate to protect civilians from violent rulers who simply seek power over their subjects for their own profit. It is also important to resource the downtrodden with political and social tools so that they are empowered to initiate democratic processes in their own country. Once Gaddafi’s weapons are neutralised, that would have to be the next step. But how? Will the predominantly western powers succeed in ensuring the Arabs take control of their own country, or will there be even more infidels ensconced on Muslim soil?
What is most disappointing is that the American and British policemen didn’t support firepower from Arab countries to do the military work needed in Libya. Gaddafi would have had trouble arguing a case for violation of Libyan territory if the Arabs were involved in freeing their own. It is now essential that Britain and America hand over the political decision-making to the Arabs just as soon as Gaddafi has had his toys dismantled.
Anyone who knows anything about personal empowerment or personal self-improvement knows that the energy for change must come from within. This is true both on a national as well as an individual level. It is essential for the spiritual freedom that the Libyans seek that they are able to take full control of their own cause, and create a free and just society which escapes the control and hardships they’ve endured for over four decades. In Libya as elsewhere, authoritarian and totalitarian rule is no longer acceptable in an age when individual self-expression and self-actualization is expanding elsewhere around the world. This will be a challenge for the Libyan people when those controlled by religion step up to become a Gadaffi replacement, whilst others recognise the country could be simply swapping dictators as has happened in Iran.
The rebels in Libya must fight their own battles once Gaddafi’s firepower is neutralised, otherwise the west will be accused by the likes of Gaddafi (and many others) of creating wars for their own ends. Which of course they are indeed doing, because bringing stability to world oil production and prices is a strong western motivation for all that has happened so far.
All we need now is for some of the anti-American and anti-British countries to complain of this escalation – and there are many that could do that – and the world could see a very complex scenario developing where the rebels become a pawn in a much larger game over which they have little say or control. Right now, the UN should be helping Libyans sort out a constitution and determine how the political democracy will unfold. This must be a transparent process beyond reproach, and must be seen by all in the Middle East as empowering the average Libyan man and woman on the street.
Now that the west has challenged Gaddafi as a result of his own people calling ‘enough’, they don’t want to get it wrong by supporting unpopular interests as they’ve done so often in the past – in both Iran and Iraq for example. There they were responsible for supporting – indeed creating – dictatorships because they underestimated the impact of meddling in affairs they knew little about.
Hopefully, someone with common sense is advising Obama, Cameron, Sarkozy and company how not to stuff up yet again. I could offer them relationship counselling, where they could explore why it is they so often stuff up with their Muslim neighbours. But counselling only works for people who are seeking to do better, and who recognise they have something to learn. That might be asking too much.
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Jeff Saunders is a freelance writer and author who has taught personal development and trained others in this field for over twenty years. He’s a counsellor, psychotherapist and life coach in private practice, and has trained counsellors, teachers and business people in the fields of communication, personal or professional development, and couples relationships. He’s written numerous articles for magazines on relationships and personal development, usually with a spiritual focus.
You can visit www.jefferysaunders.com for numerous articles on personal and spiritual development, and for access to his book The 12 Choices of Winners as a paper (334 pages) or e-book. There’s even an e-book created from the 187 cartoons and key quotes in the main book. Visit www.couplescounselling4u.co.nz for articles about successful relationships and ways to change relationship dynamics.