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Total number of comments: 10 (since 2013-11-28 16:32:51)


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  • Questions for Glenn Greenwald on Libya and the end of NATO
    • Perhaps you do see that the only reason Britain has a claim over the Falklands is that at the time and even today, they had/have the more powerful military. That was my point about imperialism.

      Argentina always disputed Britain's claim.

      Is it you position that might makes right?

      By the way it is roughly 7900 miles from Britain to the Falklands. How is that for projecting power back in the 1830's? Got to give them credit. We live in a world where all too often might does make right.

      Is that your "facts?"

      By the way, Spain has some issues with Gibraltar.

      And Kirchner was 29 and a student at the time of the Falkland war so your initial comment is a minimum lacking context.

      By the way, your shallow dismissal of Chavez and Ortega is troublesome.

      Other than those few points, thanks for the comment.

    • Mr Harkell,
      You may have inadvertently made my point that the British have a history of imperialism and backing that up with military might. Those tendencies die hard.
      You might want to read up a bit about the Falklands... a quick look at the map to see the proximity to Britain vs Argentina makes one consider who has a more rational claim. While the British claimed the Falklands in the 1830's it was and continues to be, over the objections of Argentina. That early claim could not have been disputed by Argentina given British naval power... ring any bells?
      Might made right in this case.
      You might also not that Kirchner was not in power in 1982 nor has she taken a stand on whether or not troops should have been dispatched to claim their territory back from England in 1982.
      What is your specific issue with Chavez or Ortega?
      You seem to have a clear view of the good guys v bad guys and sticking to it irrespective of the facts.

    • A quick reminder that the U.S. dominated UNSC and U.S. controlled NATO are not representative of the entire world, here in South America the U.S. involvement is viewed as more of the same U.S. imperialism.
      Cristina Kirchner took the British to task basically calling them out for their imperialistic tendencies: link to

    • Professor Cole's position was always shaky at best. He now clings desperately to NATO and the UNSC vote although he fails to mention that a third of the members abstained under heavy U.S. pressure.

      He also fails to mention that much of the world is against our military actions in Libya.

      To be honest, he should admit this military action relies ultimately on the military might of the U.S. (thanks to roughly a trillion dollar defense budget all counted), to provide the logistics and technology necessary to be effective.

      Now he seems to be saying that NATO which is overwhelming funded and dominated by the U.S. would dare to dream of undertaking this military action on their own. A military action without an end in sight.

      Face it, much of the world views this latest military escapade as more of the same orchestrated by basically the same countries.

      I think Professor Cole's only solid ground if he has any, is to take refuge in the idea that it was the right thing to do from a humanitarian perspective and stop trying to convince his readers otherwise.

      I quickly became skeptical of Professor Cole's arguments when he called the UNSC vote the "Gold Standard" for military action.It was a coffee-spewing moment.

      Professor Cole's latest arguments are unusually desperate. In essence, NATO made us do it. And after the UNSC voted 10-0 with five countries abstaining, and much of the world against it, we are still on solid legal footing.

      Please, bring back the logical, insightful, and educational Professor Cole.

  • An Open Letter to the Left on Libya
    • For several days this statement written on has hung over me like a dark cloud: "United Nations Security Council resolution, the gold standard for military intervention" Today it suddenly came to me,the real Juan Cole would never make such a statement. "Gold Standard..,???" This explains the aggressive,unleash the U.S. war machine stance in recent posts.

      Who kidnapped Juan Cole? And who is this imposter?

    • P.S.
      For a well constructed counter-argument, read Glenn Greenwald
      link to

    • You obviously make some strong points. I do consider myself on the Left and oppose this military intervention.

      We know the limits of air attacks, that slippery slope seems almost designed to lead to boots on the ground. Maybe you should start a pool now. How many doubt that we will have combat forces on the ground in Libya?

      You speak of the morality. Being among the Left, I can't forget the number of U.S. children that live in poverty and go to bed hungry. We know our 600-one trillion dollar military budget that allows for this show of military might comes at their cost. Right now our Congress is cutting funds that would directly impact the needy. Let's not forget all of the costs inherent in battleships, aircraft carriers and support personnel committed to just this one military engagement. Yes we need to make hard choices each and every time.

      Contrary to your assertion ("the abstentions of Russia and China do not deprive the resolution of legitimacy or the force of law; only a veto could have done that.") there were five abstentions, Brazil, China, Germany, India and Russia. Maybe you could address the problems and intricacies that led to a third of the security council abstaining. You must know the U.S. maneuvered that result (the abstensions). At a minimum such a high percentage has got to indicate a problem.

      Here in South America, there is almost universal rejection of this action. Again, the idea that the whole world is behind military attacks on Libya because the UNSC voted (10 voted) for this action is wildly distorted. I am not forgetting the Arab League support although that seems tepid at best.
      One last point which I know will be contentious but undermines this UNSC vote again which you seem to hinge most of your pro-attack Libya argument on, is that can you imagine a successful UNSC vote on Gaza. What country has the power to get the U.S. to abstain? Let's take away the veto and see what kind of votes emerge from the UNSC. As it currently stands the UNSC is hardly a dependable gauge.

      For me, this military intervention does not pass the smell test.

  • All Hell Breaks Loose in the Middle East
    • Professor Cole, I am surprised and disappointed that you have seemingly jumped on the neocon bandwagon that asserts that the U.S. should wield its military might throughout the world. Your militaristic position on Libya seems wildly out of character.
      Bob Herbert made a portion of the case I would make: link to
      for why we must stop now.
      There is no limit to the countries and atrocities the U.S. could be militarily involved with to potentially solve or alleviate human disasters. We no longer have the resources or the knowledge of where we can be effective.
      We must admit to our limitations.

      Given your present position on Libya, I humorously wonder if you thought we should have initiated drone attacks on the camel riders attacking demonstrators in Egypt.

  • Top Ten Accomplishments of the UN No-Fly Zone
    • I think Glenn Greenwald frames most of the right questions:
      link to

      "But my real question for Judis (and those who voice the same accusations against Libya intervention opponents) is this: do you support military intervention to protect protesters in Yemen, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and other U.S. allies from suppression, or to stop the still-horrendous suffering in the Sudan, or to prevent the worsening humanitarian crisis in the Ivory Coast? Did you advocate military intervention to protect protesters in Iran and Egypt, or to stop the Israeli slaughter of hundreds of trapped innocent civilians in Gaza and Lebanon or its brutal and growing occupation of the West Bank?

      If not, doesn't that necessarily mean -- using this same reasoning -- that you're indifferent to the suffering of all of those people, willing to stand idly by while innocents are slaughtered, to leave in place brutal tyrants who terrorize their own population or those in neighboring countries? Or, in those instances where you oppose military intervention despite widespread suffering, do you grant yourself the prerogative of weighing other factors: such as the finitude of resources, doubt about whether U.S. military action will hurt rather than help the situation, cynicism about the true motives of the U.S. government in intervening, how intervention will affect other priorities, the civilian deaths that will inevitably occur at our hands, the precedents that such intervention will set for future crises, and the moral justification of invading foreign countries?"
      You are on a slippery slope...

    • Where next Professor Cole? Your latest top 10 trumpets the military might that 600 billion per year buys but doesn't speak to the limitations.
      How many similar engagements do you think are warranted. Maybe you want to name the top 10 countries in the recent past or present the U.S. should strike militarily. Maybe a top five? What is your threshold?
      I take it you believe this military engagement will have a happy ending...

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