Friday, April 29, 2011

THE WEST'S SENSELESS INCURSION IN LIBYA(PART1)




I have heard many pundits in international relation; journalism and social commentators analyze the current situation in Libya though most of them exhibited gross ignorance in their delivery.
Libyan soldiers are constantly referred to as Gaddafi’s forces and not Libyan forces, is it that Gaddafi just recruited them in the wake of the crisis? and the West seem to have given the Benghazi rebels legitimacy in their attack. The number of rebels protesting in Libya can no way be more than the entire population of Libya; they cannot even represent 30% of the entire Libyan population yet the West is making the world believe majority of the Libyans are in favor of the so called protest.

Libya for a long time has been the main threat against U.S hegemony in Africa. Gaddafi is one of the leaders in Africa pushing for the unionization and oneness of the African continent as a strong force against western influence and machination and this has put the West against Gaddafi and has always accused Gaddafi of rejecting democratic reforms. In as much as I believe in democracy, I always say democracy is not defined by what is practiced in the west.
The system of governance in Libya is totally different from most Arab countries with some level of liberalism in the grassroots. They rule themselves with a maximum level of control from Gaddafi as the leader. The people exercise their authority through the peoples committees, people’s congress, unions and the general’s people’s congress. Elections are direct and all voting consists of a show of hands or a division into yea or nay camps congress membership are open to all Libyan citizens eighteen years of age or older in good legal and political standing.
Thus, the residents of each zone elect their own peoples committee; similarly the residents of each branch or municipality elect their own basic people’s congress (BPC). The members of the BPC then elect a chairman and a five-member branch or municipal peoples committees and representatives of the peoples committees for unions, professional association and student unions.

In reality, the revolutionary committees severely limit the democratic process by closely supervising committees and congress elections at the branch and municipal levels of governments. Revolutionary committees scrutinize the professional and revolutionary credentials of all candidates for the basic people’s congress, professional people’s congress and the municipal general people’s committee. Only approved candidates actually stand for election. This is a rule by the people with a wide form of transparency.
In 2007, Saif Al Islam Al Gaddafi proposed some for of political reforms in Libya and this began the privatization of about 100 state enterprises not because their system is totally bad but it was to conform to modern systems in other countries and to also to attract other trade partners across the world. But the imperialist countries especially, UK and US who have been looking for a chance to force Gaddafi out, capitalized on the situation in Libya with the support of some ignorant Libyans who think what is going on in some Arab states is justification to replicate it in Libya forgetting the conditions in these countries are totally different from theirs.

Why has the US and UK refuse military intervention in Yemen? Is it because the have no oil? Saudi Arabia a strong US ally stopped its own people from demonstrating with some death and serious injuries recorded, the World didn’t hear much about that. Did we hear the US say much about that? No! The same Saudi Arabia sent military equipments and vehicles to Bahrain to help them deal with the demonstrators claiming the demonstrators were people associated with Al-Qaeda and other extremist Muslims who are bent on destabilizing the country, the same thing Qaddafi complained of but Saudi Arabia supported France, UK and US to launch a senseless attack on Libya. (THE REASON WHY SAUDI IS SUPPORTING BAHRAIN IS BASED ON ETHNIC SENTIMENTS WHICH WILL BE DISCUSSED LATTER) Qatar, the personal play ground of the Al-Thani family is the biggest advocate for war in Libya. I recommend that Qatar take a strong dosage of the same medicine it wants to spread elsewhere. Perhaps the monarchy believes it can use Libya as a diversion so Qataris won’t start asking questions about why the Al-Thanis have run the country since the 19th century. The hypocrisy promoted by the West could drive the whole world insane.

In their quest to impose a no-fly zone and protect so called civilians, ended up killing more civilians than what they accused Qaddafi for. The air raids clearly go against the original goal of protecting civilians in Libya. There has been a long history of western countries having double standards.
Libya is a sovereign country and no country no matter their population, military might. Economic might etc has the right to impose it’s will on the people of another country or dictate the pace of their political, economic or social setting for them.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

EGYPT, THE REVOLT AND THE WEST





Allowing Egyptians choose their own leaders and making them believe in that very process will put Egypt on a high pedestal as the most populous Arab country with credible electoral system and good democracy.
There are now hundreds of thousand of Egyptians demanding fair elections as against a president mobilizing a bullying state apparatus against the crowed seeking freedom.
The moral imperative is clearly that he leaves office immediately. Repressions by forces loyal to him have rather worsened an already tensed situation and has exposed his real taste for dictatorship.
Washington’s influence over Egypt vastly outweighs London’s that is why Obama has come under intense domestic and international pressure to direct the outcome of events in Cairo but has remained reticent for reason very obvious that he may not want
the world to know the extent of influence the US has over Egypt and still pursuing more. The Suez Canal is a major trade root for the West, Egypt also buys almost all of it’s wheat from the US. Not forgetting the supplier o crude and the supplier of gas to Israel, a major ally of US etc.
There are mainly two divided thought or school of thoughts. One sees the event in Cairo as a dangerous instability in a tricky part of the world where crucially a radical Islam is a factor. A preferred comparison is with is with the Iranian revolution of 1979 when popular demands for democracy was hijacked by religious fanatics being Muslims. Therefore the main opposition in Egypt or the Muslim Brotherhood as Muslims, is feared by the West as a threat to their interest be it trade or real politic. Then Mubarak looks like a secular and a long-standing ally who should not be allowed to please a fickle mob at least not in the absence of clear alternative which we saw in Tahrir square where pro-Mubarak supporters and the demonstraters clashing to make the situation look more of a section of the citizens wanting him to go and another wanting him to stay. It could delay Mubarak’s exit whiles measures taken to either make the future successor his ally and time to fold up and probably clear all evidence that could be used against him in future.

In contrast the other school of thoughts sees the development as a the beginning to ending dictatorship in the Arab world and therefore the West should embrace the popular revolt with exuberance and consign Mr. Mubarak to the dustbin of history, haven’t served his need.
Looking at the situation, it will be a wrong move for Egypt to hold an early election for a successor and it will again be a wrong move if Mr. Baradei becomes the successor. The reason that, the situation will mean a win for El Baradei not necessarily because he took a front line in the revolt but because, as the main opposition leader, the incumbent considers him an enemy in the political arena and therefore would not like him to be the president. Probably, someone from his party or the smaller opposition parties.
There is plenty in the Muslim brotherhood’s past doctrines and rhetoric to cause alarm and therefore the fear of the West; it is more unless an ideological relation to Al-Qaeda which makes it more dangerous for Egypt in case it controls power.
Nevertheless the Muslim brotherhood stands clean in terms of who started or organized the protests. It did not organized mass protests, nor has dictated their demands. The crowds are clearly not the vanguard of some fanatical religious uprising. People should understand that it was started by ordinary Egyptians who wanted a better life and are demanding the obvious political change. Mubarak and the West are not in a hurry to replace a repressive secular regime with a repressive conservative one anyway.

I totally see it unreasonable the fact that the West thinks putting trust in leaders such as Hosni Mubarak is a mark of strategic caution. I think it’s a reckless gamble of future instability. I also think the approach of trusting people to choose their own leaders which in itself is a gamble is a better chance of preserving the West’s moral authority or influence and retaining some popular goodwill in the Arab world.
Ben Ali of Tunisia is gone but there is still chaos, who will oversee a smooth transition there? A big question!
As it looks now, Mubarak should be allowed to oversee a smooth electoral reform and transition with the watch of organizational bodies and countries that matter and appreciated by all at the end of the day.

Monday, August 9, 2010

THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT AND UMAR AL-BASHIR



With close attention and self appraisal of the international criminal court, I have no doubt in my mind that the ICC has achieved a lot of successes.
I may hold that view of seeing mostly, African leader’s parading their corridors but that does not also make me doubts the deeds of the African leaders who taste their jurisdiction and come out guilty.
The conflict of Darfur evolved in February 2003 when Darfur rebels attacked military post in El-Fasher, complaining of neglect and marginalization by the Khartuom government. This reason has been a major source of political conflict in Africa. The response of this attack was swift and brutal mainly targeting civilians whose ethnicity showed they were supportive of the rebels groups. The Khartoum government allegedly financed band of Arab nomads who have often clashed with African farmers over pasture and grazing in Darfur.

With the military and these nomads of Sudan, they formed the junjaweed fighters. They have destroyed villages, raped many innocent victims and have killed many estimated at about 300,000 and more than 2 million displaced.
The International criminal court has accursed Bashir of masterminding and implementing such heinous crimes and therefore his indictment. I am in total support with Luis Moreno Ocampo, the ICC prosecutor on Bashir’s case in requesting the arrest warrant in July last year. He said Bashir bore individual criminal responsibility for events in Darfur. I think president Bashir in his capacity as president, could have stopped such conflict or even mitigate it to save us all the escalation we are presently striving hard to abate and resolve. I think Bashir motives were to use counter insurgency to defeat those ethnic groups whose members challenged his power and not necessarily a rebellion. Which is purely political? I know African leaders go an extra mile of staying in power, but the extent to which Mr. Bashir has gone live me with no choice of equating him to Idi Amin Dada. The charges prefered against him are nothing more than right. Five counts of war against humanity: murder, extermination, forcible transfer, torture and rape. The two counts of war crimes were for directing attacks on civilian population and pillaging. Mr. Al Bashir approached this by describing the avert warrant as a western plot to hinder Sudan’s development which in my view is not the case at all. I do not know the western influence over Sudan and its interest but it is clear that Al Bashir decided to use that as a defense because he already has anti-western allies supporting him. He has managed to win the affection of Arab majority and this has given him a little amount of security. 65yeas Al Bashir has held power for more than 20years and because he is looking grips on power, decided to use such inhuman and barbaric way to stay in power. I am not surprised Salva Kir, the leader of southern Sudan is opting for Sudan to be divided into two.


During the trial of former Yugoslavian leader Slobodan Milosevic, I was too young to understand and naively supported him because I liked his name. I later found out how horrible he dealt with his country and has seen Al Bashir;s case as a triple more worse than that.

I am totally at a shock when the African union pressed for a postponement of the charges to allow Bashir a final chance to end the Darfur conflict. Yes, the conflict must end, but what about the atrocities he has committed? If the AU thinks Al-Bashir is the only person who can stop the conflict, then offcourse it means he has a lot of questions to answer and has a part to play that is why they think he can stop it. And if that is the case, Bashir has indeed committed crimes against humanity and needs to be punished. I do not see any reason why the AU should delay this. The families of those murdered are seeking justice and justice delayed is justice denied.

When Bashir visited Chad recently, nothing of an arrest was seen I think no African country will try to arrest Bashir. On the lighter side, I think no African country would like to be called a betrayer of the African continent. But that shouldn’t be the case, there are innocent people starving and dyeing because of some actions and inactions of one man and such person needs to face the law.
I don’t know why majority of African leaders including some Arab nations fear the warrant win destabilize the conflict in Darfur and threaten the fragile peace deal that ended deeds of civil war between southern and northern Sudan. In my view, the situation will be worse if we keep the very person causing and fueling the conflict, thus if we all agree he is to bear which in this case in quite obvious.
China which buys two thirds of Sudan’s oil, offered support for the African and Arab positions and urged the court to drop the warrant. Could that mean something? From same private debate I had with friends, it could mean, countries that have interest in Sudan especially it’s oil will not like anything to come between them and their interest after most of them have built a good relation with Al-Bashir
.
Nothing can stop me from asking how and why Bashir could stay in power for more than 20 years. I know this is common with African leaders but it beats my imagination how he could win such elections, or may be the people he is alleged to be brutalizing are the minority and therefore their votes could be negligible in bringing him down in election. Most of the African leaders that sought to stay in power have however ended up tarnishing their image and for that matter Africa, after ending up with extreme brutalities and murder either directly or under their watch.

Some people hold the views that, the International Criminal Court which maybe controlled by some strong Western powers are trying to excess pressure on Africa for full control. And if that maybe the case, won’t it be better to perceive to be controlled by the west for peace and less hunger than for us to be in ‘such’ and the west still casting a shadow control? I ask!
And I beg to ask, if “Head of state immunity no longer is a bar to prosecuting heads of state who commit war crimes and crimes against humanity during their time in office” which I agree could we say that should have extended to former US President George W. Bush over claims officials from his former administration may have engaged in torture by using coercive interrogation techniques on terror suspects.
Al Bashir who is always throwing mud at the west, I learnt have approached a number of UK public relation firms to try and give him a positive image after his image has been dented by his own deeds. In my research for popular UK PR firms I came across chime plc, managed by Lord Bell, Margaret Thatcher’s former advisor which earned almost half of it’s £67m income last year from foreign contracts, Portland PR – managed by Tim Allen, Tony Blair’s former deputy press sec. and Bell Pottinger one of the firms approached by Bashir. I guess UK is part of the west.

If I decide to delve deeper, I may pre-judge Al Bashir and subject myself to psychological impatience, anxiety and suspense in waiting for the judgment which might never come or obviously will take some amount of time. But I think our African leaders should come to the realization that, the safeguard of peace lies within their power and if stepping down from power seems the only way, why not? And Africans should also come to the terms of neo-colonialism and the hawks of western establishment, which may push individuals and groups in undermining our beloved individual countries and that matter Africa.

We need to leverage our own interest in all of our natural resources which seems to have caused a lot of conflicts. Like the Niger Delta, Angola, Congo etc.
But within such, anybody who commits crime against his fellow African should face the very law that binds us all.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

THE UN AND THE SECRETARY GENERAL. A FAILURE OR SUCCESS


Years after the creation of the UN to replace the defunct League of Nations, there is continuous debate among its member states on the successes and failures of the this noble organization this in itself should not create doubts in the minds of the world that it has completely failed to make the world a peaceful place. In its core mandate it has strived hard to avoid another world war which is one of the greatest successes so far. Of course so many experts in mediation and security has failed in bringing peace to areas assigned to them,the intricacies of how they failed cannot be relegated.

A former UN secretary general, Trygvie lie one called the office of secretary general of the UN the most impossible job in the world. I think Trygvie Lie knew what he was talking about. The UN is charged with some tasks of extraordinary difficulty. In the performance of his work, he obviously cannot make every one happy. Each faction may expect support for its own position and becomes disappointed when fails to get them. Obviously, the secretary general must remain scrupulously neutral and avoid any words or action that may taint him as an impartial mediator.
I think the job seems impossible because it pendulums between frustration and satisfaction. Thus, no matter the decision taken, one party may feel unsatisfied. Frustration sets in when the incumbent [ ] would like to do much more than obtaining rules permit and satisfaction when the whole idea of peace is established and may be his office enables him to intervene to good effect and contribute to the solution of international problems. The scope opens to the secretary-general in the fulfillment of his talks are both broad and narrow. It is broad in that his functions are defined so vaguely that he can act wherever he considers it in the interest of peace and co-operation to do. It is narrow because the secretary-general must be very mindful of the inter play of forces among governments and his role as honest broker. If he is seen to be swaying in one direction, it may impair his credibility as a broker of peace or manager of crisis.

Many have accused secretary generals in the aspect of delay and reluctance. But I beg to differ; I think the secretary generally should negotiate only at the request of the parties to the dispute. Nothing is wise and nothing would be less wise than for him to force himself upon a situation. In any case where would be the other party if only one party agrees to a negotiation.The only measure he can put in place to reduce delay is to talk to both parties separately, the need to sit down for negotiation and it should be done within the shortest possible time in other to avoid escalation of already tensed up situation or a crisis.
Considering the additional countries to the UN and the military and economic might other countries have achieved over the past decades, the UN has transformed from a more powerful to not necessarily a less powerful organization. This is a stage where countries can defy the orders of the UN irrespective of the wrong it has committed or perceived to have committed especially countries that were known to be weak countries.

This position has become so fragile that, the person in that position is seen as a person who obviously shouldn’t fail in his dealings. It does not solely lie on the Sec. Gen when it comes to action. Be it military or economic, but the unfortunate thing is, he bears the wrath of the world when actions fail or is taken against.
Moreover there are big wig countries that may influence his judgment or frustrate his actions. People often call him a stooge of the western allies and that cannot be totally ignored, whether it is a perception or reality its one big problem the UN has to deal with unless off course they see it as an irrelevant aspect of achieving peace or putting confidence in the hearts of many. One may be compelled to join thinkers who think he is a stooge considering the way events normally unravel. I don’t think the West has ever failed in working with its positions on matters concerning world peace, U can say they run the UN but the question one needs to ask inwardly is who finances the UN or bears the chunk? When it comes to aid, which does it on fall on most? If these are questions are answered well, many people will understand the reason for their domination and control. I have always admired the alacrity at which the US responds to crisis in terms of aid be it the Middle East or Africa.
As it is, no member sate can be compelled to pay its contribution to the regular budget although its voting rights may be suspended under the charter if it fails behind for more than two years. Voluntary contribution to finance the numerous extra budgetary programs may depend entirely on the generosity with which each state responds to the secretary general’s appeal, and it has always seen west to respond to such, therefore if the West is seen to be controlling the secretary general or the UN, it becomes very difficult to criticize.