Friday, March 18, 2011

Well Strike A Light

Last week I speculated that Cameronian foreign policy had given us the worst of both worlds, alienating Gaddafi but not injuring him, and had doubts about Aussie blogger and balance-sheet whizz John Hempton's view that the French were determined to protect their oil interests :

"Now he's (Hempton - LT) making me think again. Could it be that Cameron and Sarkozy have a cunning plan ? It would run contrary to Cameron's current performance, but the past is not necessarily a guide to the future and I suppose it's just theoretically possible. I'd like it to be true, but I think I'm entering into the realms of fantasy, as Captain Mainwaring would say."

As Angela Merkel and the EU machinery, led by one Cathy Ashton, led a chorus of disapproval, and the great and good told us that Russia and China would veto the idea anyway, the whole thing seemed unlikely (in any sense) to get off the ground.


"Well, the prime minister went out on a limb with Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president. They were so isolated at last week's European Council in Brussels that an adviser to Cathy Ashton, the EU high representative for foreign affairs, said those in favour of military intervention were guilty of "headline grabbing desperation".

A week, as the old Harold Wilson cliché goes, is a long time in politics. And so six days after the German chancellor Angela Merkel blocked any mention of a no-fly zone from the EU summit communiqué, the UN has authorised one."

Well I never. It's a whole new ball game from here on in, with plenty of possibility for chaos and confusion even should Gaddafi now lose. He's capable of owt. The resolution permits "all necessary measures" to impose a no-fly zone, protect civilian areas and impose a ceasefire on Kadhafi's military. I'd have thought that could include strikes on his ground forces.

I don't think we'll be seeing similar action in Bahrain. And here's a handy map of Libya's oil infrastructure.


Foxy Brown said...

The egomaniacal Gaddafi will indeed strike a light to all those vast acres of oil fields à la Saddam Hussein.

JuliaM said...

I'm getting a horrible feeling of deja vu...

Anonymous said...

Reading reports of life in the liberated areas closely, stories of black African "mercenaries" or "Ghaddafi loyalists" being lynched and having their bodies paraded through the streets are sometimes allowed to slip out. (There was a story in the WSJ yesterday which mentioned the mysterious disappearance of 20 prisoners as a consequence of an unfortunate degree of popular over-excitement).

A similar degree of discretion has been accorded to stories of Indian and Bangladeshi refugees being driven out of the "Libyan only" refugee camps.

Anonymous said...

libya begs for colonialism

Anonymous said...

RE 1st anon.

Part of the rebels discontent seems to be due to mass immigration being used to undermine their standard of living and in the case of these foreign mercenaries used to oppress them directly.

Luckily none of these factors are in any way comparable to our own situation.