Sunday 3 April 2011

Why we shouldn't push more arms on Libya.

Libya is awash with weapons. The EU has been allowing the Libyan government to spend vast amounts on its military over the last 9 years. Gaddafi  has bought weapons from Britain, France and Italy voraciously.

So, what is the solution offered by an increasing number of EU states to the stalemate developing in Libya? Send in more arms. The new Eastern government can spend its new found oil wealth on more weapons. They can offset the cost of bigger and better weapons on future oil sales.

The African Union is urging talks, as is the Arab League, and the 'ALBA' block of South America. A push for some dialogue rather than more bloodshed, is the preferred option for most of the rest of the world. But not the Western nations. We seem to think that 'more weapons' is the only way to solve most problems.

As the civil war becomes more entrenched, we must ask ourselves whether military solutions are the only way to sort out a nations affairs. If we arm one side, in the hope that they will take the fight to Sirte and to Tripoli, do we really think that Gaddafi will role over and die, and that most people will simply desert? No, more thousands will die, Gaddafi will eventually die, and a weakened new nation will be indebted financially to the EU.

There must be better ways of tackling a mess the West created, than simply sending in more guns and pitching the Libyan people against themselves? Where is our diplomatic imagination?

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