Human Rights and Human Wrongs

What are human rights and human wrongs? Are they so black and white?

This questions arises as the last Labour government has been severely criticised for propping up Gaddafi’s government by negotiating deals with them. Had they not dealt with him, Libya would now be in possession of nuclear warfare. Surely this is far more dangerous than selling him civilian arms? Or is it?

My thoughts on this are that there are no black and white answers. It is easy to criticise, but what would we have done in Tony Blair’s situation? I would like to think that we would have got rid of a brute such as Gaddafi and support the implementation of a democratic regime. However, we only need to look at Iraq to see that such intervention has not led to a happy ever after story. Years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, the country is still in turmoil.

What is humanly right is that the uprisings are led by the people of the country and not by foreign intervention. I do believe this is why Egypt was so successful and why Libya will be successful. Gaddafi once said that “one man’s terrorist and another man’s freedom fighter”. He saw himself as a freedom fighter against the wills of the West. Now his own people are fighting for their freedom. The people’s bravery in standing up for themselves against such brutality is a credit to them. What is humanly right is the world’s condemnation for Gaddafi. We are witnessing the sheer impact of his violence on our tv screens 24 hours a day and it is this, the world’s media that are making politicians around the world stand up and listen.

What is humanly wrong is to persecute one’s own people and to oppress a nation with fear. What is wrong is for the West to stand by and let it happen. Finally, sanctions are being imposed. Years to late for my liking, but at least these sanctions are now in place. What is wrong is to lay blame. Hindsight is a wonderful place and often in life as in politics, deals are done to ensure damage limitation.

In a world full of human rights and human wrongs, maybe finally, the Middle East can have more Human Rights.

What do you think? Please feel free to share your views.


3 Comments to “Human Rights and Human Wrongs”

  1. Hi Bunty

    Gaddafi has been in power for more than 30 years so I think it’s a little unfair to blame the last Labour government for propping him up.

    Western governments will always bolster dictators and totalitarian rule as long as it gives us cheap oil, access to their markets for job creation and to help our budget deficit through arms sales. Gaddafi and his family have been brutes for a very long time not just in recent days.

    While the uprisings are impressive and I agree that it is always best for civilian populations to initiate it themselves, I do think that the uprisings are timely because western governments do not have the spare capital to finance these regimes. Indians fought for independence themselves but it has been argued that after World War 2 Britain could no longer afford to keep India under its rule anyway.
    I think it is still early days in Egypt and hope that its population keeps the momentum and that the military is honourable enough to allow fair elections and accept a civilian government.


    • Hi Bubbly,

      I quite agree that it is unfair to blame the last Labour government for propping up Gaddafi. However, the news has blamed him and used Tony Blair as a scapegoat for blame. The dealings in the Middle East are complex and not black and white. Therefore arises the question what are human rights and human wrongs.

      The West has enabled a dictatorship to rule Libya for 40 years despite repeated terrorist acts so that they can have access to everything you have said. Recent reports have also indicated that Gadaffi has been instrumental in providing our services with knowledge on other terrorist groups as well as internal military and resource capabilities.

      However, the only way that things will change is when the people of a country say no, not when we in the West say no. Irag and Afghanistan are great examples of what happens when we in the West say no and believe that we know what is and isn’t right for another nation.

      After seeing delusional Gaddafi in his interview last night, I sincerely hope that the people win this battle and rid this man once and for all.


  2. Agreed. I just love the tories referring to Blair’s relationship with Gaddafi in their interviews. I would be interested to know how many current and former tories have interests in oil and arms companies that are involved in dealing with Libya and the other Middle Eastern states. You can go back to the 80s and start with David Mellor…

    I find it embarrassing that our government is expressing shock that Gadaffi is killing his own people, when we propped him up in the first place. I just hope that Chavez sorts the mess out – at the moment Gadaffi has nowhere to go, so he has to fight.

    The Middle East is changing, and I hope for the better. I am interested to know what is happening in Saudi Arabia – is everyone asleep? Or too rich to care about changing the status quo? Or can the women only demonstrate their anger at the sexism in their society if they have a permission slip from their fathers or husbands?

    And what of the discussion to have a no-fly zone, Gadaffi to face allegations of committing war crimes etc .. we did not do this to help the Chechnyans or Chinese or does being a permanent member of the Security Council give Russia and China a Free Pass to kill their nationals at will? One rule for you; one rule for us…

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