Tuesday, April 12, 2011

We Are Not Being Told The Truth About Libya

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Johann Hari

Johann Hari

Most of us have a low feeling that we are not being told the real reasons for the war in Libya. David Cameron's instinctive response to the Arab revolutions was to jump on a plane and tour the palaces of the region's dictators selling them the most high-tech weapons of repression available. Nicholas Sarkozy's instinctive response to the Arab revolutions was to offer urgent aid to the Tunisian tyrant in crushing his people. Barack Obama's instinctive response to the Arab revolutions was to refuse to trim the billions in aid going to Hosni Mubarak and his murderous secret police, and for his Vice-President to declare: "I would not refer to him as a dictator."

This isn't the distant past. This is a few months ago. Yet now we are told that these people have turned into the armed wing of Amnesty International. They are bombing Libya because they can't bear for innocent people to be tyrannized, by the tyrants they were arming and funding for years. As Obama put it: "Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different." There was a time, a decade ago, when I took this rhetoric at face value. But I can't now, because I have looked too deeply into the real actions behind the honeyed words.

The best guide through this confusion is to look at two other wars our government is currently deeply involved in -- because they show that the claims made for this bombing campaign can't be true.