Home / Culture and Society / Obama Speaks Out on Libya, the United Nations Begins Dialogue.

Obama Speaks Out on Libya, the United Nations Begins Dialogue.

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The people of Libya, perhaps inspired by the freedom fighters who recently removed an oppressive government in Egypt, began their revolution last week as a “Day of Rage.” Since then, the anger and dedication to remove Libyan “Superman” Gadhafi have escalated to the point where now hundreds of thousands of the people of Libya are rioting in the streets in a show of defiance and are calling for the removal of the long endured Gadhafi regime.

The world we know has been shaken with revolution. Students, adults, families, throughout the nations of Northern Africa and the Near East are determined to achieve freedom and democracy. In many instances, as in Egypt, seated governments have resisted the impulse to forcefully quell these demonstrators. This has not been the case in Libya. Pro-government forces have distributed weapons, called in outside pro-government enforcers, and have sent  standing armies to fire into crowds, bomb and conflagrate, and to put a halt to protesting citizens at any expense. Speaking in the Libyan capital city of Tripoli’s Green Square on Thursday, Muammar Gadhafi told a throng of loyalists that he will continue to arm his supporters to fight opposition forces, and that “all the weapon stores will be opened.”

In an article printed in the Tripoli Post, Today, Saturday, February 26, our American President Obama, standing  shoulder to shoulder with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, made an initial response to the Libyan crisis. Obama said, “The suffering and bloodshed is outrageous and unacceptable…this violence must stop.” The president was forceful, “The Libyan Government must be held accountable. The entire world is watching.” He accused the government of Libya of violating international norms, and “Every standard of common decency.” Obama said that human rights, the right to free speech, freedom of peaceful assembly, and the right to determine one’s own destiny, are not negotiable.

The president said his highest priority is protection of American citizens in the trouble stricken area. Obama blamed “al-Gadhafi” for the carnage. President Obama said he was gratified and encouraged by the strong positions taken by the United Nations Security Council, the European Union, the Arab League, the African Union, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and other international organizations.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says that at least a thousand people have died in the Libyan struggle. United Nations Security Council members are meeting and communicating electronically to discuss the next options. United Kingdom Prime Minister David Cameron has been in conference with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan, Germany’s Angela Merkel and Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi. Britain and France on Thursday were developing a resolution to impose an arms embargo on Libya. Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan, in opposition to the majority, says that political unity may be difficult to achieve, and further says that he will oppose sanctions.

The American position at the Security Council is that the allies should work together to quell the violence without military intervention. French President Nicolas Sarkozy says “It’s time for Gadhafi to go.” Even as Gadhafi was pledging in Green Square to open weapon stores, Libya’s ambassador to the United Nations, Ambassador Shalgham, pleaded for the Security Council to act and “save Libya.” Libya’s Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations, Ibrahim Dabbashi, said yesterday he expects “thousands” more fatalities.

By Friday, February 26, the United States had closed its embassy in Tripoli and imposed, with the United Nations, unilateral sanctions against Libya. The United Nations Security Council was moving forward to impose further international sanctions, including an arms embargo, and an asset freeze and travel ban against Gadhafi, his relatives and key members of his government. Diplomats from the United States, France, Germany and Britain were calling for the International Criminal Court to investigate possible crimes by Gadhafi and Libya against humanity.

Simultaneously, the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Erdogan, accused the international community of being more concerned with oil concerns than with “conscience, justice, laws and universal human values.” Libyan Ambassador Mohammed Shalgham continued his break with the Libyan government, and said “I tell you, my brother Gadhafi, leave the Libyans alone!”

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said, “Colonel Gadhafi has lost the confidence of his people. His legitimacy has been reduced to zero.” “Colonel Gadhafi, he said, “is becoming increasingly erratic …and even more bizarre. He [Gadhafi] accuses the protestors of being on drugs.” “The United States,” Carney said, “Has few contacts deep inside the Libyan government, and little personal sway with its leadership.” He said that responses and sanctions “take time to put in place.”

The United Nations Security Council responds to  threats against peace by recommendations to the parties in an effort to reach agreement by peaceful means. When a dispute leads to fighting, the council’s first concern is to bring  an end as soon as possible. On many occasions, the council has issued cease-fire directives which have been instrumental in preventing wider hostilities. The council also sends United Nations peace-keeping forces to help reduce tensions in troubled areas, keep opposing forces apart, and create conditions of calm in which peaceful settlements may be sought. The council may decide on enforcement measures, economic sanctions such as trade embargoes or collective military action.

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About John Lake

John Lake had a long and successful career in legitimate and musical theater. He moved up into work behind the camera at top motion pictures. He has done a smattering of radio, and television John joined the Blogcritics field of writers owing to a passion for the liberal press, himself speaking out about the political front, and liberal issues. Now the retired Mr. Lake has entered the field of motion picture, television, and video game (now a daily gamer!) critique. His writing is always innovative and immensely readable!
  • John Lake

    A poor man with strange ways of thinking may be insane, or at least, inept. A rich and powerful man, with similar thought patterns ranges between eccentric, and most interesting.
    And, as to the other point, I agree that Ruvi has been very good in recent days.

  • LynnfromBC

    Ruvy I have enjoyed your satire since I have been writing here. Point taken John. You both might enjoy the first paragraph of this Mideast Views Article.

  • This is all very amusing. The maniac who ran Libya for 40 years is being sacked by the “international community”. The British have removed the immunity of Khaddafi, the Swiss have frozen his money.

    Poor Muammar! If only his Muslim father had allowed him to be raised in the faith of his Jewish mother, he could be living on a pension in Israel now!

    Muammar, who has had life high on the hog for 4 decades, is about to get tossed into the trashbin of history. And he is likely to suffer a fate similar to Mussolini – being hung on butcher hooks. Blame it all on Muammar’s daddy – and his mother for marrying a Muslim. Of course, maybe she didn’t have a choice…. In Muslim societies, women rarely do.

  • John Lake

    “Simultaneously, the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Erdogan, accused the international community of being more concerned with oil concerns than with “conscience, justice, laws and universal human values.”
    In spite of prevailing sentiment for freedom in the world, order is important, and oil control is important.

  • LynnfromBC

    Inspite of the sentiments from Recep, I suspect some big red flags are going up in Turkey(pun intended)over oil. They have huge investments in Libya and are oil dependent on all sides.

    Currently the US wants a pipeline from the south and the Russians want to pipe from the north. Everyone wants to avoid Iran. Libya’s current state really complicates the issue money wise for Turkey. Showing a humanitarian face to the UN could score some points with the major players.

    As for Gadaffi and his family, there is really no sense in beating a dead horse. His daughter has been ousted as the UN’s goodwill ambassador for Libya, Seif appears content to let his father hang himself (figuratively speaking), and there is simply no cure for dementia. The drugs and drink he is rambling about are likely distortions of his own experience. There are probably drugs in his own Nescafe. Unless, of course he is acting a parody of his good friend Idi Amin.