Monday, October 24, 2011
Multimodal Essay Rough Draft Kathryn McDermott
Involvement in Libya
Two of my very close friends, Sarra and Muhamed are both Middle Eastern but both live here in the United States. Muhamed visits his homeland every year, but recently it has been tough for him to make the trip knowing that his life would be in danger where he comes from. Libya is currently in a national war, trying to get their leader, Moammar Gaddafi, out of power. The Libyan citizens are being torn to shreds, shot at, and are not living a good life. The United Nations heard this news and decided they needed to step in to help. However, it has not been so much a group effort, but more so the United States taking action alone. The question that now arises is if we are doing our job and benefiting Libya? Or are we causing more harm than good?
The first step to understanding whether our country is helping or harming the war is to apprehend the war itself. The Libyan government, especially Gaddafi, is causing the war in Libya. First of all, Gaddafi runs Libya in a dictatorship manor, everything the country does revolves around him, and no civilian dares to question his authority. The civilians are revolting against their leader as much as possible by protesting and rioting. However, Gaddafi is stopping the rebels using authority and force; ending uprisings, killing protestors, and going as far as threatening to cancel scholarships of his people choosing to study in the United States. This video shows protestors and the police involvement.
Now that the background is clear, it is time to look further into the United Nations position in the war, and what other countries are doing to help. In March 2011, the UN authorized the use of force to protect Libyan citizens. The United States took initiative as soon as possible by setting goals to accomplish in Libya. Hillary Clinton wasted no time and said "Now is the time to stop this unacceptable bloodshed". Former ambassador and Director of National Intelligence, John Negroponte, stated that the U.S. had two main goals, to protect citizens, and get Gaddafi out of power. However, President Barak Obama said otherwise in his speech; he mentioned the unacceptable bloodshed and violence, and protecting the citizens, but never mentions Gaddafi himself.Obama said that his major priority is to protect American soldiers who are in Libya, rather than protecting the Libyans or working towards getting Gaddafi out of power. So the United States was unclear with their intentions, but made it understood that the country was sending troops and wanted to help. The U.S. was not the only country involved though, the International Committee of the Red Cross donated medical supplies to hospitals and worked to move needed equipment to nearby hospitals (Dean, Kendall-Raynor). By sending those supplies and providing the necessary care, ICRC greatly helped the wounded citizens and also injured soldiers who were there to help. Even after all of the help and support, Gaddafi's actions remained unknown and unpredictable.
So are troops helping or hurting the country? I think what the UN is doing is beneficial for the war in Libya, bringing it closer to an end rather than reversing the situation.
To be continued....