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Zhivvy

Following the middle east

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Hi Mummy!

OK, lets think this one out here....a perspective is a point of view, which is indeed a way of regarding things....and you regard the situation from a point or a place of neutrality, because you live in a neutral country-Ireland.

 

Hows that?

 

What I mean spicy, is that I have no allegiance to either side of the conflict going on in Libya.  I've no allegiance to Libya, nor to the UK, USA, France, Canada, Italy, Denmark or Qatar.  Nor do I have any allegiance to the countries who are vocal on the situation - The Arab League, Turkey, Russia, China or India.  So my point of view is unbiased.  It's neutral. :-)

 

Lets see, whats next....

 

OK, how can a christian country nuke others and still call itself christian?

 

Well, I think that the people who made that decision, had to live with their decision and their consequences for the rest of their lives, and I don't know how they could sleep at night.

 

I don't want to be lumped in with them.

 

Don't get me wrong.  I am not lumping you in with "them".  I have no problem with the people who live in the U.S.A.  My best friend is a US citizen.  (We have arguments all the time - and still have deep respect for each other).  I might come across as anti-American but I am far from it.  As I said before, I'm anti-American war campaigns.

 

Thanks for being my teacher, Mummy...thanks for taking a moment and trying to help me understand.

 

You walk beside me and teach me.

 

I think you are really sweet Spicy.  We all teach each other.  And we all have our own points of view and we all should be respected for our points of view. :-)

Like this poem:

 

"Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend." -
  --  
Albert Camus

 

I love it.  Thanks for sharing!

 

 

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[quote name='nazhira wrote:


mummy wrote:

nazhira']LOL. Case closed !!!! I like about you, that you have all the data, really giving information !!!! Hope you are doing well in my dear 2nd country, Ireland !!!!

 

All well over here with me Naz.  The country itself is struggling.  Taxes are up, employment is down, and banks are still being given money and taking money from us (both through tax and upping interest rates).  But sure that is a subject I could talk about for years!
tongue.gif

 

Same thing happend to my country. But with new goverment things are really changing. The problem is support the adjustmet policy, we've done the same in the past and it's the worst thing to do. That's the important thing about being a free country. We didn't apply to ALCA, and it's an issue that US goverment don't like ( I'm talking about the goverment, not the people, please, don't missquote me ). I talked about this a lot refering to the "Breathe" lyrics meaning. The economic system is ridiculous. You are right, we can talk about for ages, but there's a way out. The whole problem is IMF. If you want I can send you some info about what Argentina managed with the crisis.

Who are the ALCA?

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Again, you misquote me: I said "campaigns" not "campaign" which would indicate that I wasn't specifically referring to a particular war. Laugh out loud! You see what I mean? Reading simply doesn't matter to some.

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Free Trade Area of the Americas

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

 

The Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) (Spanish: Ãrea de Libre Comercio de las Américas (ALCA), French: Zone de libre-échange des Amériques (ZLÉA), Portuguese: Ãrea de Livre Comércio das Américas (ALCA), Dutch: Vrijhandelszone van Amerika) was a proposed agreement to eliminate or reduce the trade barriers among all countries in the Americas but Cuba. In the last round of negotiations, trade ministers from 34 countries met in Miami, Florida, United States, in November 2003 to discuss the proposal. [3] The proposed agreement was an extension of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between Canada, Mexico and the United States. Opposing the proposal were Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Dominica, Nicaragua and Honduras (all of which entered the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas in response), and Argentina, Chile and Brazil.

Discussions have faltered over similar points as the Doha Development Round of World Trade Organization (WTO) talks; developed nations seek expanded trade in services and increased intellectual property rights, while less developed nations seek an end to agricultural subsidies and free trade in agricultural goods. Similar to the WTO talks, Brazil has taken a leadership role among the less developed nations, while the United States has taken a similar role for the developed nations.

Contents [hide]

1 Overview

2 Membership

3 History pre-1994

4 Historical opposition

4.1 Distrust on United States of America’s policy

4.2 Distrust of multinational companies

4.3 Protectionism and Free Trade

5 Current Support and opposition

6 Current status

7 Agreements

7.1 Previous agreements

7.2 Current agreements

7.3 Proposed agreements

8 Security pacts

9 See also

10 References

11 External links

12 Articles and papers

[edit]Overview

 

Talks towards the establishment of the Free Trade Area of the Americas began with the Summit of the Americas in Miami on December 11, 1994, but the FTAA came to public attention during the Quebec City Summit of the Americas, held in Canada in 2001, a meeting targeted by massive anti-corporatization and anti-globalization protests. The Miami negotiations in 2003 met similar protests, though perhaps not as large. The last summit was held at Mar del Plata, Argentina, in November 2005, but no agreement on FTAA was reached. 26 of the 34 countries present at the negotiations pledged to meet again in 2006 to resume negotiations, but no such meeting took place.

In previous negotiations, the United States has pushed for a single comprehensive agreement to reduce trade barriers for goods, while increasing intellectual property protection. Specific intellectual property protections could include Digital Millennium Copyright Act-style copyright protections, similar to the U.S.-Australia Free Trade Agreement. Another protection would likely restrict the reimportation or cross-importation of pharmaceuticals, similar to the proposed agreement between the U.S. and Canada.

Brazil has proposed a measured, three-track approach that calls for a series of bilateral agreements to reduce specific tariffs on goods, and a hemispheric pact on rules of origin and dispute resolution processes. Brazil seeks to omit the more controversial issues from the agreement, leaving them to the WTO.

The location of the FTAA Secretariat was to have been determined in 2005. The contending cities are: Atlanta, Chicago, Galveston, Houston and Miami in the United States; Cancún and Puebla in Mexico; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Panama City, Panama; and Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. The U.S. city of Colorado Springs also submitted its candidacy in the early days but subsequently withdrew. [4] Miami, Panama City and Puebla served successively as interim secretariat headquarters during the negotiation process. As of November 2007, only Miami in the United States and Port of Spain in Trinidad appear to be actively vying for the secretariat headquarters.[5][6][1][2][3]

The failure of the Mar del Plata summit to set out a comprehensive agenda to keep FTAA alive has meant that there is little chance for a comprehensive trade agreement in the foreseeable future.

[edit]Membership

 

The following countries have shown interest at some point in becoming members of the Free Trade Area of the Americas [7]:

Antigua and Barbuda

Argentina (retracted)

Bahamas

Barbados

Belize

Brazil (retracted)

Canada

Chile (retracted)

Colombia

Costa Rica

Dominica

Dominican Republic

El Salvador

Grenada

Guatemala

Guyana

Haiti

Honduras (retracted)

Jamaica

Mexico

Panama

Paraguay

Peru

Saint Kitts and Nevis

Saint Lucia

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Suriname

Trinidad and Tobago

United States

Uruguay

[edit]History pre-1994

 

In the 1960s there were several modest and humble attempts at regional integration in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. The approach of these regional initiatives was to lower tariffs internally while maintaining high trade barriers against non-members. Regional initiatives included the 1960 Latin American Free Trade Association (LAFTA), the 1960 Central American Common Market (CACM), the 1965 Caribbean Free Trade Association (CARIFTA), and the 1969 Andean Pact.

Many North American countries experienced a debt crisis in the 1980s, such as Mexico in 1982. These debt crises contributed to a "lost decade" in terms of economic growth, the adoption of numerous stabilization and structural adjustment programs with the IMF, and a widespread re-evaluation of interventionist, protectionist and inward-looking development strategies. In 1984 the U.S. unilaterally lowered its tariffs against many states in the Caribbean Basin, as part of its Caribbean Basin Initiative.

Many Latin American countries took non-discriminatory steps towards trade liberalization in the late 1980s (lowering tariffs against all countries, not just selected ones). This was done partly to follow through on GATT (now the WTO) commitments, but also unilaterally as a domestic policy choice or at the urging of the IMF, the World Bank, the IDB, and USAID. Average tariff levels fell to about 20% in the region by the end of the 1980s.

Another wave of regional trade agreements took place in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In 1989 the AP agreed to move towards freer trade within the region, as did CACM and the Caribbean Community (Caricom) in 1990. The Southern Cone Common Market (Mercosur) notably including Brazil was established in 1991 with similar plans for freer regional trade.

Canada and U.S. entered into the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in 1989, and the beginning of negotiations towards free trade between Mexico and the U.S. were announced the next year in 1990. These negotiations were soon expanded to include Mexico in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Several Latin American countries approached the U.S. after the announcement, seeking to negotiate their own bilateral free trade agreements with the U.S., but the U.S. refused to negotiate more bilateral PTAs in the region until NAFTA was implemented. Instead, in June 1990 U.S. President George H. W. Bush announced the Enterprise for the Americas Initiative with the goal of achieving hemispheric free trade by 2000.

In 1994 NAFTA came into force and the 1988–1994 Uruguay Round of General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) negotiations were completed. The goal of hemispheric free trade, which had been renamed the FTAA, was postponed until 2005 primarily at the request of Canada and the U.S.

[edit]Historical opposition

 

[edit]Distrust on United States of America’s policy

One of the major difficulties to develop a free trade in the Americas, is the distrust Latino-Americans have on United States of America. This comes from historical pronunciations of presidents of United States of America. One which has been referred to in several books, was by President William Howard Taft, in 1912:

“ The day is not far distant when three Stars and Stripes at three equidistant points will mark our territory: one at the North Pole, another at the Panama Canal, and the third at the South Pole. The whole hemisphere will be ours in fact as, by virtue of our superiority of race, it already is ours morally. â€

Also when Taft was secretary of war under the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt explained that foreign policy

“ may well be made to include active intervention to secure for our merchandise and our capitalism opportunity for profitable investment. â€

One way to regain trust on American’s policy would be through a similar presidential public statement addressing those previous pronunciations to invalidate them.

[edit]Distrust of multinational companies

The major concern for both, business favouring free trade and people opposing free trade, is the strong distrust on multinational companies on developing countries as a result of multiple historical events where multinational companies and governments supporting them have played a major role on generating injustice, suffering, and dead.

The USA marine commander Smedley D.Butler, who headed many expeditions, describe its activities in his memoir book Maverick Marine: General Smedley D. Butler and the Contradictions of American Military History:

“ I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else. If a nation comes over here to fight, then we'll fight. The trouble with America is that when the dollar only earns 6 percent over here, then it gets restless and goes overseas to get 100 percent. Then the flag follows the dollar and the soldiers follow the flag.

I wouldn't go to war again as I have done to protect some lousy investment of the bankers. There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights. War for any other reason is simply a racket.

There isn't a trick in the racketeering bag that the military gang is blind to. It has its "finger men" to point out enemies, its "muscle men" to destroy enemies, its "brain men" to plan war preparations, and a "Big Boss" Super-Nationalistic-Capitalism.

It may seem odd for me, a military man to adopt such a comparison. Truthfulness compels me to. I spent thirty- three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country's most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high class muscle-man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the Bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.

I suspected I was just part of a racket at the time. Now I am sure of it. Like all the members of the military profession, I never had a thought of my own until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service.

I helped make Mexico, especially Tampico, safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested.

During those years, I had, as the boys in the back room would say, a swell racket. Looking back on it, I feel that I could have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.

â€

A long list of examples can be mentioned where both North American and British companies have used its influential powers and its home government powers to bend hosting countries decisions in their favour. In some cases military threats have been used if such nations do not abide by their rules, and in other cases coups have been developed to take down governments creating civil wars and suffering that still can be felt. Some of the most known cases are:

Banana massacre was the killing of United Fruit Company’s workers that occurred on December 6, 1928 in the town of Ciénaga near Santa Marta, Colombia. An unknown number of workers died[4] after the Colombian government sent military forces to end a month-long strike organized by the workers' union in order to secure better working conditions. Minor Keith, UFC's president, used to say We have sea ports, railways, lands, buildings, fountains... dollar flows, English is spoken and our flag is up. The government of United States had threatened with a marine invasion if Colombian government did not act to protect this USA corporation’s interests.

Argentina was, one of the historical battle scenarios between England and U.S. Oil companies. The agreements to set prices did not prevent Shell and Standard Oil from playing on this country by sometimes violent means: The Argentine Congress was preparing to vote on the oil nationalization law, the September 6, 1930, when the nationalist leader Hipólito Irigoyen was brought down from the presidency by the military coup by José Félix Uriburu. Ramón Castillo's government fell in June 1943 when he was about to sign an agreement that supported the extraction of oil by American capital. In September 1955, Juan Perón went into exile when Congress was about to approve a grant to the California Oil Co. Arturo Frondizi triggered several sharp military crises in August 1959 by announcing the call for tenders offered to extract oil. Frondizi made several concessions that benefit U.S. companies, and British interests were not unrelated to his fall in March 1962. Arturo Illia invalidated the franchises and for that was taken down in 1966. The following year, Juan Carlos Ongania passed a hydrocarbons law that favoured U.S. interests in this national battle.

Oil has not only caused coups in Latin America; it also sparked the Paraguayan Chaco War (1932-1935), among the poorest peoples of South America, "War of the naked soldiersâ€, Zavaleta called this mutual slaughter between Bolivia and Paraguay. On May 30, 1934, the Louisiana senator, Huey Long, rocked U.S. with a fierce speech in which he denounced Rockefeller’s Standard Oil of New Jersey for provoking the conflict and for funding the Bolivian army to seize the Paraguayan Chaco, necessary to build a pipeline from Bolivia toward the river presumably oil-rich: "These criminals have gone further and have hired murderers", he said. The Paraguayans were marching to the slaughter, for their part, driven by Shell as they moved northward; the soldiers were discovering the holes made by the Standard Oil on the war stage.

The overthrow of Iran's President Mohammed Mossadegh in 1953 because of fight between USA companies and British companies for controlling oil business.

The overthrow of Guatemala's democratically-elected President Jacobo Ãrbenz in 1954 by Dwight Eisenhower and his Secretary of State John Foster Dulles for its intent to expropriate four hundred thousand acres from the United Fruit Company and nationalizing some others. Allen Dulles, CIA director and brother Foster Dulles, had a long lasting business relationship with the United Fruit Company.

In 1954, Brazilian a dictator Getúlio Vargas, known by the nickname of “The Father of the Poor†killed himself. Great pressure has been put on him from USA for him deciding to sell iron to [[Poland and Czechoslovakia. Three years later, the Hanna Mining Corporation bought more than half the shares of Minas Gerais gold mines. Huge pressure was then exercised on the new Brazilian government, in particular on Vargas' successor, president Janio Quadros: not only Hanna’s director, lawyers and advisers were also high level member of the Brazilian Government, but also George Humphrey, Hanna's president, was Treasury Secretary of the USA and director of the Eximbank. When Quadros attempted to restore Minas Gerais to Brazilian Treasury, the military, directly supported by USA, took down Quadros in March, 1964. Dictator Castello Branco took over and Hanna’s men took positions as ministers and Vice-president of Brazil. Immediately after, Castello Branco gave Hanna one more business to profit from: the iron mines in Paraopeba, and 49% of the Carajás mines to US Steel.[5]

In 1964, in Bolivia, military dictator René Barrientos, opened up concession to foreign investment by blood, killing miners, in particular for giving the Phillips Brothers mining right on the Matilde mine with highly pure content of silver, lead and zinc, and paying the Bolivian state only 1.5% on sells. Latter, in the 1970s, General Juan José Torres hoped to retain civilian support by moving to the left and nationalized back the waste-processing operation of the Catavi tin mines and the Matilde zinc mine, and he ordered the “Peace†Corps, a United States program, out of Bolivia.

The CIA played a role in the defeat the 1964 democratically-elected president Cheddi Jagan in British Guyana. The minerals had much to do with the fall of the socialist government of Jagan. This Guyana was the fourth largest producer of bauxite in the third place among Latin American producers of manganese. The new regime ensured the interests of the Arkansas-based company Aluminum Company of America in Guyana were at no risk: the company could continue taking bauxite, and sold it itself to the same price as 1938, although since then the price had multiplied aluminum.[6]

The overthrow in 1973 of the Chilean democratically-elected President Salvador Allende for nationalizing, among others, the copper mines[7], law unanimously approved by the parliament, and to impose by force and blood the Chicago economic model on Chile. Uncountable of massacres and human right abuses followed when as dictator General Augusto Pinochet took over power.

For more details on this topic, see Covert United States foreign regime change actions.

This distrust on multinational corporations and how they lead USA government trades and actions had been the main cause for the opposition to the free trade in the Americas.

[edit]Protectionism and Free Trade

Eduardo Galeano in his book Open Veins of Latin America explains that among the factors that contributed to the rapid grown of industry in United States of America has been the strong protectionist laws and protectionist measures put in place to protect the its industry and market inside to country and strong protection of their international companies in the international stage. Once USA internal protectionism produced grate results and its industry rose powerful in the world stage, USA has been looking for free trades to open up even more the possibilities for its corporation knowing that they are strong enough to compete or take over those weak ones in developing countries. Recent Free Trade Agreements has always considered national protection of any economy sectors as unfair competition.

Galeano quotes an statement from the president of the United States Ulysses S. Grant given around 1865:

“ For centuries England has relied on protectionism, it has taken it to its extremes and it has obtained satisfactory results. No doubt it owes its present strength in this system. After two centuries England has found it convenient to adopt free trade because it thinks protectionism can offer no additional advantage. Very well, then, gentlemen, my knowledge of my country leads me to believe that in two hundred years, when America has obtain all protectionism has to offer, it will also adopt free trade. â€

[edit]Current Support and opposition

 

 

This section does not cite any references or sources.

Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (May 2010)

Huge movements[quantify] have opposed the FTAA at every stage of its development. A coalition of senior citizens, labor groups, environmentalists, human rights advocates and peace advocates as well as concerned citizens have protested both major meetings of the FTAA.

A vocal critic of the FTAA is Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez, who has described it as an "annexation plan" and a "tool of imperialism" for the exploitation of Latin America[citation needed]. As a counterproposal to this initiative, Chávez has promoted the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (Alternativa Bolivariana para las Américas, ALBA), vaguely based on the model of the European Union, which makes emphasis on energy and infrastructure agreements that are gradually extended to other areas finally to include the total economic, political and military integration of the member states.

Also, Evo Morales of Bolivia has referred to the US-backed Free Trade Area of the Americas, as "an agreement to legalize the colonization of the Americas."

On the other hand, the presidents of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, and Argentina, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, have stated that they do not oppose the FTAA but they do demand that the agreement provide for the elimination of US agriculture subsidies, the provision of effective access to foreign markets and further consideration towards the needs and sensibilities of its members.

One of the most contentious issues of the treaty proposed by the United States is with concerns to patents and copyrights. Critics claim that if the measures proposed by the US were implemented and applied this would prevent scientific research in Latin America, causing as a consequence more inequalities and technological dependence from the developed countries. On the issue of patents, some critics of the FTAA, such as Canadian activist Maude Barlow, have accused the US of attempting to patent Latin America-made inventions.[citation needed] On the left-wing Council of Canadians web site, Barlow wrote: "This agreement sets enforceable global rules on patents, copyrights and trademark. It has gone far beyond its initial scope of protecting original inventions or cultural products and now permits the practice of patenting plants and animal forms as well as seeds. It promotes the private rights of corporations over local communities and their genetic heritage and traditional medicines." [8]

On the weekend of April 20, 2001, the 3rd Summit of the Americas was a summit held in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. This international meeting was a round of negotiations regarding a proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas.

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Sorry, it's long and maybe for another thread.

 

The thing is everything is about the power over resources, the money, the system, the laws, wars, everything. I don't see good intentions, only interests. We, the citizens, the normal people, we are the only ones who have the good intentions and feelings about what happens in the world.

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Again, you misquote me: I said "campaigns" not "campaign" which would indicate that I wasn't specifically referring to a particular war. Laugh out loud! You see what I mean? Reading simply doesn't matter to some.

Mummy, you have spent a good part of this thread associating your views of American military efforts with the Libyan campaign.  Why are you being so disingenuous?

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[quote name='security_in_anonymity wrote:


mummy']Again, you misquote me: I said "campaigns" not "campaign" which would indicate that I wasn't specifically referring to a particular war. Laugh out loud! You see what I mean? Reading simply doesn't matter to some.

Mummy, you have spent a good part of this thread associating your views of American military efforts with the Libyan campaign.  Why are you being so disingenuous?

Jesus!  You are either stupid or you are very good at pretending to be.

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Fears grow of humanitarian crisis in besieged Libyan city

Washington Post

unresst-978.jpg

Aid organizations scrambled Wednesday to prepare for large-scale relief operations in Libya, as fears grew of a potential humanitarian crisis in a key city besieged by government forces.

International military forces on Wednesday stepped up attacks on government troops in Misurata, 131 miles east of Tripoli. The airstrikes seemed to bring a temporary respite from the fighting that had raged for six days between forces loyal to Moammar Gaddafi and rebels, as pro-government tanks retreated from the city center.

But after nightfall, the tanks returned and resumed their attacks, according to a doctor at the city’s main hospital. “They are shelling everywhere,†he said by telephone.

Patients were being treated on the floor, and medical supplies were falling short. Fuel for the generator was running low, and water had been cut off, said the doctor, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he feared retaliation by Libyan forces.

Humanitarian agencies and the U.S. government have been stockpiling supplies in eastern Libya and in nearby countries in case of emergency. “I am now worried about a humanitarian crisis in Misurata,†said Mark Ward, a top official with the U.S. Agency for International Development.

Wednesday’s military action occurred as the Obama administration tried to shore up domestic backing for its role in the Libya operation and to counter criticisms that the president had been either too cautious or too aggressive.

In a call with reporters, Democratic Sens. Carl Levin (Mich.), Jack Reed (R.I.) and Richard J. Durbin (Ill.)predicted strong bipartisan support for the U.S. role when Congress reconvenes next week. Durbin said that President Obama had chosen a “very wise course, reminiscent of President George H. W. Bush . . . who built international cooperation†before initiating military action against Iraqi forces in Kuwait in 1991.

But House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) sent a letter to Obama on Wednesday saying that he and other lawmakers were troubled that “U.S. military resources were committed to war without clearly defining for the American people, the Congress, and our troops what the mission in Libya is and what America’s role is in achieving that mission.â€

Complex environment

The allied air attacks since Saturday have only deepened the stalemate in Libya. U.S. and allied warplanes on Wednesday aimed their attacks on Gaddafi’s ground forces in Misurata and other key cities but were constrained by fears that strikes in heavily built-up areas could cause civilian deaths.

“It’s an extremely complex and difficult environment,†said U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Gerard Hueber, the chief of staff for the coalition.

U.S. military officials have repeatedly called on Gaddafi’s forces to pull back from populated areas so that food, water and fuel can flow in. “Humanitarian assistance must be allowed to reach the people of Libya,†Hueber said.

International aid organizations have been unable to deliver relief goods to Misurata and other contested towns. Asked whether the U.S. military might play a role in distributing emergency relief, one American official said, “All options are on the table.†He declined to comment further.

In recent days, the World Food Program and International Committee of the Red Cross have moved nearly 2,000 tons of food and other relief supplies into parts of eastern Libya that are under the control of rebel forces. The U.S. government has paid for some of that food and has provided nongovernmental groups in Libya with medical supplies sufficient to treat 40,000 people, officials said.

Abeer Etefa, a spokeswoman with the World Food Program, said the group was planning emergency operations to feed 600,000 Libyans over the next three months.

She said access to food “is becoming increasingly difficult†because of store closures in contested areas. Her agency said this week that in some areas, the price of flour had doubled, the cost of rice had risen 88 percent and the price of vegetable oil had jumped 58 percent.

“If the situation continues like that, it will be very worrisome, simply because this is a country that depends on food imports,†said Etefa, speaking from the Libyan-Egyptian border.

Aid agencies are able to bring supplies into eastern Libya by truck from Egypt or through the rebel-controlled port of Benghazi. But the Libyan government has not allowed aid workers to move freely in areas it controls, making it difficult to assess the extent of the crisis, officials said.

An Obama administration official said there were unconfirmed reports of about 80,000 people displaced inside Libya by the fighting. “That number is likely higher,†said the official, who was not authorized to comment on the record.

In Brussels, NATO ambassadors continued to discuss a plan for the United States to relinquish command of the Libya mission to a broader coalition. The plan, agreed to by President Obama and his British and French counterparts, would turn military control of the operation over to NATO, with operational headquarters at the Naples-based Allied Joint Forces Command.

Political decision-making and oversight would be supplied by a larger group of partners, most likely made up of NATO’s North Atlantic Council and representatives from non-NATO countries participating in the military mission, including Arab states. U.S. and European officials said they hoped for agreement on the plan by the end of the week.

Meanwhile, Britain said it would host an international conference in London on Tuesday for all countries involved in the Libya situation, including those not contributing military assets. In addition to discussing implementation of United Nations resolutions on Libya, Foreign Secretary William Hague said the gathering would “consider the humanitarian needs of the Libyan people and identify ways to support the people of Libya in their aspirations for a better future.â€

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle-east/fears-grow-of-libyan-humanitarian-crisis/2011/03/23/ABJA8PLB_story.html

 

 

 

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thank you for posting this sia.

 

this is very good.

 

we need to stick to information and facts and the discussing of such.

 

this does bring us back on point-good job.

 

please, lets stay on the topic everyone and not devolve into name calling any more, ok?

 

peace & love

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From Aljazeera:

Turkey fears the repercussions of civilian casualties, said Al Jazeera's Laurence Lee, reporting from Brussels.

Such an incident is far from unavoidable, and the lessons of Kosovo hover in the background: On April 14, 1999, NATO aircraft repeatedly bombed a convoy of refugees, many of them riding on tractors, killing 73 civilians and wounding 36 others on the road between the towns of Djakovica and Decane. NATO pilots had apparently mistaken the convoy for a military one or had believed there were military vehicles in it.

"Now try and imagine what would happen if Turkey, as a member of NATO, was involved in a campaign over Libya and a similar a similar situation happened to a convoy of civilians outside Benghazi or Ajdabiya," Lee said. "That's exactly why they're concerned."

Notice the word "believed". The word "believe" is found numerous times in UNSCR 1973. See clauses 13, 18 and 21.

 

The difference between knowing and believing is the difference between killing soldiers and killing civilians, respectively.

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From Aljazeera:

Turkey fears the repercussions of civilian casualties, said Al Jazeera's Laurence Lee, reporting from Brussels.

Such an incident is far from unavoidable, and the lessons of Kosovo hover in the background: On April 14, 1999, NATO aircraft repeatedly bombed a convoy of refugees, many of them riding on tractors, killing 73 civilians and wounding 36 others on the road between the towns of Djakovica and Decane. NATO pilots had apparently mistaken the convoy for a military one or had believed there were military vehicles in it.

"Now try and imagine what would happen if Turkey, as a member of NATO, was involved in a campaign over Libya and a similar a similar situation happened to a convoy of civilians outside Benghazi or Ajdabiya," Lee said. "That's exactly why they're concerned."

Notice the word "believed". The word "believe" is found numerous times in UNSCR 1973. See clauses 13, 18 and 21.

 

The difference between knowing and believing is the difference between killing soldiers and killing civilians, respectively.

oh, this just made me cry.

 

war is hell. pure hell.

 

even the peace keepers screw up, even if that is not their intention.

 

those 73 were precious human souls.

 

somebodys mother, father, sister, brother....

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[quote name='xtraspicy62 wrote:


mummy']

Turkey fears the repercussions of civilian casualties, said Al Jazeera's Laurence Lee, reporting from Brussels.

Such an incident is far from unavoidable, and the lessons of Kosovo hover in the background: On April 14, 1999, NATO aircraft repeatedly bombed a convoy of refugees, many of them riding on tractors, killing 73 civilians and wounding 36 others on the road between the towns of Djakovica and Decane. NATO pilots had apparently mistaken the convoy for a military one or had
believed
there were military vehicles in it.

"Now try and imagine what would happen if Turkey, as a member of NATO, was involved in a campaign over Libya and a similar a similar situation happened to a convoy of civilians outside Benghazi or Ajdabiya," Lee said. "That's exactly why they're concerned."

Notice the word "believed". The word "believe" is found numerous times in
. See clauses 13, 18 and 21.

 

The difference between
knowing
and
believing
is the difference between 
killing soldiers
and
killing civilians,
respectively.

oh, this just made me cry.

 

war is hell. pure hell.

 

even the peace keepers screw up, even if that is not their intention.

 

those 73 were precious human souls.

 

somebodys mother, father, sister, brother....

 

Spicy, it is for this reason I am against war.  No such thing as a good soldier.  S/he is a soldier ....  a soul dier .... a soul killer.  The people they kill, no matter the reason, leaves such emptiness and deep grief for those left behind.

Have you heard of the Just War Doctrine?  It's doctrine, according to Catholicism, that a war can be just and right and does not break the 5th Commandment (you shall not kill) as long as the following 4 requirements are met:

1. The damage inflicted by the aggressor on the nation or community of nations must be lasting, grave, and certain;
2. All other means of putting an end to it must have been shown to be impractical or ineffective;
3. there must be serious prospects of success;
4. the use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated. The power of modern means of destruction weighs very heavily in evaluating this condition.

I think you can determine for yourself whether the war in Libya is just or not.

 

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The USA marine commander Smedley D.Butler, who headed many expeditions, describe its activities in his memoir book Maverick Marine: General Smedley D. Butler and the Contradictions of American Military History:

“ I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else. If a nation comes over here to fight, then we'll fight. The trouble with America is that when the dollar only earns 6 percent over here, then it gets restless and goes overseas to get 100 percent. Then the flag follows the dollar and the soldiers follow the flag.

I wouldn't go to war again as I have done to protect some lousy investment of the bankers. There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights. War for any other reason is simply a racket.

There isn't a trick in the racketeering bag that the military gang is blind to. It has its "finger men" to point out enemies, its "muscle men" to destroy enemies, its "brain men" to plan war preparations, and a "Big Boss" Super-Nationalistic-Capitalism.

It may seem odd for me, a military man to adopt such a comparison. Truthfulness compels me to. I spent thirty- three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country's most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high class muscle-man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the Bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.

I suspected I was just part of a racket at the time. Now I am sure of it. Like all the members of the military profession, I never had a thought of my own until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service.

I helped make Mexico, especially Tampico, safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested.

During those years, I had, as the boys in the back room would say, a swell racket. Looking back on it, I feel that I could have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.

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The challenge of Libya

Where will it end?

The Americans, the Europeans and the Arabs must all hold their nerve

20110326_ldp001.jpg

THE spectacle of American, British and French missiles pulverising an Arab and Muslim country at the dead of night arouses a sense of foreboding. Such ventures have too often begun with good intentions and naive overconfidence, as oil-rich despots see their armour crumple and burn beneath superior Western technology. Within weeks, though, vainglory turns into a costly and bloody quagmire.

Yet nobody could accuse Barack Obama and his allies, chiefly Britain’s David Cameron and France’s Nicolas Sarkozy, of overconfidence in attacking Libya on March 19th. It is hard to think of a military enterprise that has been conceived in so much doubt and anxiety. What if Muammar Qaddafi sits out the raids in his bunker? What if Libya is partitioned? What if, chastened by news footage of dead women and children in a Tripoli market, the coalition starts to fall apart? What if many of the eastern Libyans whom the outside world is protecting turn out to sympathise with al-Qaeda? What if they go on to behave as murderously as the colonel and his paid killers?

The answers to those questions start with the case for intervening in Libya. Western sceptics complain that they have “no dog in this fightâ€. Libyans, they say, should be left to submit to the colonel or kill him off, as best they can.

That view is too parochial. Colonel Qaddafi is the Arab world’s most violent despot. In one day in 1996 his men killed 1,270 prisoners in a Tripoli jail. He has backed terrorism and assassinated dissidents. Western leaders were right to have given him a chance to turn a new leaf after 2003, when he renounced his nuclear programme. But when peaceful protesters marched for change a few weeks ago he shot them—seemingly with relish. Whatever the course of the coming weeks and months, do not forget that the colonel and his sons had vowed to slaughter the people of Tobruk and Benghazi, house by house. In the narrowest of senses, a mission that many said was pointless and too late has already chalked up one success.

Moreover, what happens in Libya, for good or ill, will affect its more hopeful neighbours, Egypt and Tunisia. Farther afield, even Syria is beginning to stir and its government may be tempted to be as ruthless as Libya’s (see article). If violence prevails in Libya, the momentum for peaceful change across the Middle East may drain away, as both autocrats and protesters elsewhere in the Arab world conclude that violence is after all an essential tool for getting their way.

Be practical, as well as principled

The sceptics’ second retort is that the West is guilty of hypocrisy. As it inveighs against Colonel Qaddafi, its Saudi allies have helped snuff out the flame of democracy in the Gulf state of Bahrain. And surely the West should stop propping up the Yemeni dictator, Ali Abdullah Saleh, whose forces have just shot dead dozens of protesters?

Here practicality—some would say realpolitik—comes into play, sometimes frustratingly. The violence in Bahrain is on a vastly smaller scale than that in Libya; and the West is locked into a military alliance with both Bahrain—home to America’s Fifth Fleet—and its royal family’s protector, Saudi Arabia. To take on Bahrain’s rulers would be to endanger that alliance—and they have run a more open society than Libya anyway. As for Yemen, it is an ungovernable snakepit, home to rival tribes, secessionists and a local branch of al-Qaeda. Nobody in his right mind would intervene there. Neither Bahrain or Yemen is susceptible to an air campaign as Libya is, with its long stretches of desert that expose Colonel Qaddafi’s advancing tanks. You intervene when you can, not to be consistent.

The sceptics’ third complaint is that the West has entered this campaign without defining the mission. That is both unfair and true. It is unfair because dictators do not work to a diplomatic timetable. Colonel Qaddafi’s rapid advance to Benghazi meant that the outside world had to intervene within days or not at all. But it is true that there has been some indecisiveness—principally from Mr Obama. That helped forge a broader coalition, but the West now has its work cut out. It must urgently decide who is in charge, clarify the powers granted by the Security Council resolution enabling Libya’s civilians to be protected by “all necessary means†and, most important of all, determine what the campaign’s aims should be.

A fight that needs a general

America wants to cede overall control as soon as it has carried out the bulk of the initial bombing. Although to some extent Mr Obama is again shrinking from leadership, it probably makes sense. The mission will look less American: it will force the Europeans to be responsible for a cause they championed; and in NATO there is a body that can take operational control.

The difficult decision is whether Colonel Qaddafi’s removal, dead or alive, should be an explicit aim of the enforcers. The UN resolution makes no mention of such a thing, though many Western and Arab leaders have said they want the colonel to go. As commander-in-chief of security forces that have already killed hundreds of civilians since peaceful protests started a month ago, he is arguably a legitimate target. But it would be far better if his own people dealt with him, handed him over to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, or chased him into exile, rather than let him be singled out by his Western enemies for elimination.

Leaving the Libyans to do that unaided is admittedly a risk, but the odds are on the rebels’ side. Once Colonel Qaddafi cannot pound cities such as Benghazi with impunity, opposition across the country will grow again. Isolated and economically strangled, the colonel and his regime would be lucky to survive indefinitely. Even if Libya were temporarily partitioned, the West could keep up the no-fly zone with minimal effort. Gradually, the noose would tighten around the colonel, especially as the anti-Qaddafi east holds most of Libya’s oil.

Libya is not Iraq. The West has learned through bitter experience to avoid the grievous mistakes it made from the outset of that venture. For one thing, the current mission is indisputably legal. For another, it has, at least for now, the backing of Libya’s own people and—even allowing for some wobbles from Turkey and the Arab League—of most Arab and Muslim countries. Libya’s population is a quarter the size of Iraq’s, and the country should be easier to control: almost all its people, a more homogeneous lot albeit with sharp tribal loyalties, live along the Mediterranean coastal strip. If Colonel Qaddafi’s state crumbles, the West should not seek to disband his army or the upper echelons of his administration, as it foolishly did in Iraq. The opposition’s interim national council contains secular liberals, Islamists, Muslim Brothers, tribal figures and recent defectors from the camp of Colonel Qaddafi. The West should recognise the council as a transitional government, provided that it promises to hold multiparty elections. Above all, there must be no military occupation by outsiders. It is tempting to put time-limits on such a venture, but that would be futile.

Success in Libya is not guaranteed—how could it be? It is a violent country that may well succumb to more violence, and will not become a democracy any time soon. But its people deserve to be spared the dictator’s gun and be given a chance of a better future.

 

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spicy there is nothing like a good debate. And if nothing else this is a great debate :)

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If this is true, it's disgusting:

 

A distraught Libyan woman has told journalists in Tripoli how she was raped by government troops, before being bundled away by officials.

 

Iman al-Obeidi sought out foreign reporters in the capital's Rixos hotel on Saturday morning, weeping and claiming that troops had detained her at a checkpoint, tied her up, abused her and then led her away to be gang-raped.

 

As al-Obeidi spoke she was tackled by hotel staff and government minders dragged her out of the hotel.

 

Her story could not be independently verified, but the incident is being reported as an indication of the crackdown on dissenters ordered by Muammar Gaddafi, the Libyan leader.

 

At a hastily arranged press conference following the incident, Moussa Ibrahim, a government spokesman, said investigators had told him that the woman was drunk and possibly mentally challenged.

 

Anita McNaught, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Tripoli, said: "The government initially suggested that she was drunk ... but when they [officials] came back to the journalists later to reassure them that she was being well cared for ... they did describe this as a case of rape."

 

Before she was dragged out of the hotel, al-Obeidi was able to tell journalists that she was detained by a number of troops at a Tripoli checkpoint on Wednesday.

 

She said they were drinking whiskey and handcuffed her and that 15 men later raped her.

 

"They tied me up ... they even defecated and urinated on me," she said. "The Gaddafi militiamen violated my honor."

 

Victim intimidated

 

Al-Obeidi, who appeared in her 30s, wore a black robe and a floral scarf around her neck.

 

She had scratches on her face and bruises on her body. She said neighbours in the area where she was detained had helped her escape.

 

She said that she was targeted by the troops because she is from the eastern city of Benghazi, the stronghold of rebel fighters battling Gaddafi.

 

The Associated Press news agency reported that waiters called her a traitor and told her to shut up.

 

She retorted: "Easterners - we're all Libyan brothers, we are supposed to be treated the same, but this is what the Gaddafi militiamen did to me, they violated my honor."

 

Government minders attacked al-Obeidi and pushed out of the way journalists who tried to protect her, smashing some of the journalists' equipment.

 

Media restrictions

 

Eventually the minders overpowered the woman and led her outside, shoving her into a car that sped away.

 

The woman shouted that she was certain she would be thrown in jail and begged photographers to take her picture, raising her robe to show them her bruised body.

 

A minder tried to cover her mouth with his hand to keep her from talking.

 

"Look at what happens - Gaddafi's militiamen kidnap women at gunpoint, and rape them ... they rape them," she screamed.

 

Government minders in Tripoli have sought to keep a tight rein on what journalists there see and who they talk to

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