Question 1

It ‘s not surprising but it is exasperating that Obama is now laying gifts at the feet of Omar Hassan al-Bashir, the blood-soaked criminal who rules over the Sudan.

Jonathan Tobin writes:

Now the chief liberal icon of the moment [Barack Obama] has taken his philosophy of “engagement” with dictators to the next level by a policy of outreach to the government that the United States has accused of genocide in Darfur. On Monday, after months of internal arguments about the best way to deal with Sudan, the administration announced it would reward the country’s murderous dictator, President Omar Hassan al-Bashir — a man currently under indictment by the International Criminal Court for his role in directing the murder of hundreds of thousands of people — with economic incentives to try and bribe him to stop behaving in such a beastly fashion.

The idea of appeasing al-Bashir was enough to give even the Obama cheerleading squad at the New York Times editorial page pause; it demurred from its usual unflinching support to express a degree of skepticism about the idea that lifting sanctions will change the behavior of this rogue regime or cause it to no longer grant safe haven for terrorists. While this switch from sanctions to engagement fits in with the Obama foreign-policy template, can the same people who were appalled by Bush’s failure to act be persuaded that al-Bashir can be charmed into abandoning genocide?

What needs to be done is the total destruction of  the Janjaweed – the Arab Muslim terrorist bands who are killing, torturing, raping, and despoiling their non-Arab Muslim compatriots – and the execution of al-Bashir.

The question is, should America do it ?

It goes without saying that the actual leader America has now would never consider doing anything of the sort, but what is the answer in principle?

Should America use force abroad only where American interests need defending?

Or does the single superpower in the world, one that possesses the economic and military strength to intervene effectively and has a tradition of aiding other peoples in critical times, have a perpetual moral responsibility to save and protect the victims of tyrannous oppression?

Or at least to prevent genocide?

Or is the defense of freedom always in America’s interest?

Posted under Africa, Arab States, Commentary, Defense, Diplomacy, Islam, Muslims, Pacifism, Terrorism, United States, War by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, October 21, 2009

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  • Hawk2

    US foreign policy should be grounded in two essential considerations, and only these two:
    1. Profitable trade
    2. National security

    With these in mind, the only recent war that must be seen to have had no justification whatsoever is President Clinton’s war in the Balkans. It did nothing for trade. It gained America nothing. It was not worth what it cost. What is worse, its rationale was the protection of Muslim rebels, at a time when Islam was fast becoming the major enemy of the Western world.

    Oil is a very good reason to go to war. It satisfies both considerations. If the US had gone to war to seize the Saudi Arabian oilfields in 1974 when the price of oil was hyped as an attack on the US economy, it would have been right to do so.

    If the wars against Saddam Hussein were waged for oil, they were necessary and worth what they cost. Also if they were waged to protect America from WMD, they were necessary and worth what they cost. If, on the other hand, they were waged to protect Kuwait from conquest, or Iraqis from tyranny, they were unnecessary and not worth what they cost.

    The war against the Taliban/al-Qaeda was justified by 9/11. But having soundly beaten the Taliban, the US should have withdrawn, leaving a clear message that if the US were struck again the Taliban would be beaten again. Staying on to build schools and clinics which the Taliban will demolish is senseless, and not worth what it costs. There is no saving the Afghans from themselves: from corruption, the subjugation of women, the growing of opium.

    As to the argument that it is always in the interests of the US to protect freedom in the wider world, that is true, but the threat to freedom must be a real one. It was why America was right to go to Europe’s aid in the in the First and Second World Wars. It may be a reason for America to go to war again. America’s own freedom was under threat then as it is now, this time by the creeping colonization of Europe by Islam. ‘Spreading democracy’ – another reason given for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – does not guarantee the spread of freedom. Germany was a democracy when Hitler came to power by being democratically elected. Zalaya was democratically elected in Honduras, and was deposed because he was trying to establish his dictatorship. But the State Department insists that he should be reinstated. This is staggeringly stupid if not treacherous. The preservation of freedom on the South American continent wherever it exists is plainly essential to US security. Hostile regimes in the hemisphere are a serious threat, as Hugo Chavez proves by his alliance with would-be-nuclear-armed Iran.