Tag: Libya

The EU’s policy towards migrants…

The European Union’s top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, has recently stated the following about migrants crossing the Mediterranean: “be sent back against their will,”. The EU also claims to be coming up with a plan to destroy the boats that smugglers are using in addition to developing a quota system based upon factors such as a member states’: population, economy, and the number of refugees/migrants previously accepted. Some countries approve the idea of a quota system, while Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban quipped the quota system as: “a crazy idea“.

Federica Mogherini, the high representative of the European Union for foreign affairs, speaks to reporters after a security council meeting at United Nations headquarters, Monday, May 11, 2015. The European Union's top diplomat has assured the U.N. Security Council that under a proposed EU maritime operation against the growing wave of migrant smuggling,
Federica Mogherini, the high representative of the European Union for foreign affairs, speaks to reporters after a security council meeting at United Nations headquarters, Monday, May 11, 2015. The European Union’s top diplomat has assured the U.N. Security Council that under a proposed EU maritime operation against the growing wave of migrant smuggling, “no refugee or migrant intercepted at sea will be sent back against their will.” (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Libya has balked at the idea of military action by the EU, and may even oppose any military action taken near its territory. Given that Libya is already embroiled in a civil war, I’m not really certain how far they would be willing to go to stop some smuggler boats from being destroyed. Libya doesn’t really seem like it’s in a position to demand, or stop any action that may be taken by the EU. But then again, European military strength has pretty feeble for decades, so who knows?

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The number of migrants crossing and dying to reach Europe has been steadily rising recently, and the EU’s recent announcement about turning no one back will probably recede the tide. If the nations of the EU aren’t willing to turn anyone back, why not just build a bridge across the Strait of Gibraltar? I thought that a lot of European countries had economic woes (25% unemployment in Greece, 22.5% in Spain, 12.8% in Italy…), but they must have something to spare if no one is being turned back. I wonder how many more will get on the Europe Express?

Migrants rest under the heli-pad of the NGO Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) ship Phoenix as their rubber dinghy is burnt and sunk after their group of 104 sub-Saharan Africans was rescued some 25 miles off the Libyan coast in this October 4, 2014 file photo. As many as 900 people may have died in Sunday's disaster off the coast of Libya. That would be the highest death toll in recent times among migrants, who are trafficked in the tens of thousands in rickety vessels across the Mediterranean. The mass deaths have caused shock in Europe, where a decision to scale back naval operations last year seems to have increased the risks for migrants without reducing their numbers. The European Union has proposed doubling the size of its Mediterranean search and rescue operations in response to the crisis.  REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi/Files   MALTA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN MALTA PICTURE 08 OF 28 FOR WIDER IMAGE STORY 'ISLE LANDERS' SEARCH 'DARRIN ISLE' FOR ALL IMAGES
Migrants rest under the heli-pad of the NGO Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) ship Phoenix as their rubber dinghy is burnt and sunk after their group of 104 sub-Saharan Africans was rescued some 25 miles off the Libyan coast in this October 4, 2014 file photo. As many as 900 people may have died in Sunday’s disaster off the coast of Libya. That would be the highest death toll in recent times among migrants, who are trafficked in the tens of thousands in rickety vessels across the Mediterranean. The mass deaths have caused shock in Europe, where a decision to scale back naval operations last year seems to have increased the risks for migrants without reducing their numbers. The European Union has proposed doubling the size of its Mediterranean search and rescue operations in response to the crisis. REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi/Files MALTA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN MALTA
PICTURE 08 OF 28 FOR WIDER IMAGE STORY ‘ISLE LANDERS’
SEARCH ‘DARRIN ISLE’ FOR ALL IMAGES

Yahoo News!-Migrants will not be turned back against will:EU top diplomat

BBC News-Mediterranean migrant crisis:EU refugee quotas to be proposed

CNN-EU asks U.N. to sanction military action against migrant boats in North Africa

Fruits of the “Arab Spring”

I recently happened to stumble upon a video depicting just how successful the Arab Spring that President Obama was a big proponent of, is going. The video depicts Salafis in Tunisia and what they believe in. Just watch how much they want to live in peace and stand in awe of how they want to be in a prosperous, free republic.

By really any measure, Tunisia has had the least violent revolution and amount of bloodshed. The Tunisians live in a constitutional republic now. Compared to pretty much everyone around them, Tunisia is doing pretty well. If we turn our attention over to Libya the government that was formed after Gaddafi was removed from power no longer controls the two main cities of Benghazi and Tripoli. A civil war rages on and the body count continues to rise in Libya, probably safe to say that Libya is a failed state. But hey, the internationally recognized government is trying. One of the interesting things I should point out is that the Pentagon did more to try and stop the U.S. from entering the war in Libya than the State Department under Hillary Clinton did. The Washington Times piece on this aspect of the story is well worth your time. As we can all see, the 110 Tomahawks fired at Libya were for a good cause. I guess Hillary would respond to this criticism by saying something like “What difference does it make“.

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We can then focus on Egypt for a few minutes, where President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton thought supporting (and still do actually) the Muslim Brotherhood was a fabulous idea. If you work at the New York Times, you even think working with the Muslim Brotherhood, who considers the United States an enemy, to be a great policy idea. Mohammed Morsi was elected president of Egypt, for a short time anyway. After millions of Egyptians decided to march in the streets and suffer under the Muslim Brotherhood no more, he was deposed and al-Sisi was elected as president. At least the Muslim Brotherhood is no longer in power and Egypt is avoiding the type of war that Libya, Syria, and Iraq are dealing with. The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) translated some of the Egyptian Government’s thoughts on U.S. State Department officials entertaining meetings with the Muslim Brotherhood. The Egyptians couldn’t be happier that this is actually be allowed to happen. On a side note, President al-Sisi is one of many Arab leaders who doesn’t trust President Obama and is looking towards Russia for support. Is this how leading from behind works?

Russia's President Putin and his Egyptian counterpart Sisi attend a welcoming ceremony onboard guided missile cruiser Moskva at Sochi meal-reuters

We could also talk about how a certain genius came up with “red lines”, said he was going to get involved in the Syrian civil war, and then (thankfully) backed off. I wonder if progressives count that as a foreign policy victory? As we all know, Iraq and Syria are still in the middle of a war that doesn’t seem to be ending anytime soon. Both the Syrian and Iraqi governments are nominally supported by Iran now, which is always a good thing right? Is it even proper to say that Iraq and Syria are countries anymore? I wonder how many people genuinely believe that the Arab Spring is working out well? Perhaps it’s also time for some progressives to take Obama for peace bumper stickers off of their car. If we’re not really going to finish a war why fight at all? What’s the point in risking American lives if the current administration isn’t going to take it seriously? I suppose that Iraq is doing as splendid as Yemen right now, a real foreign policy victory. I also wonder if I should believe that no American soldiers are in danger in Iraq?

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The Economist put together this map showcasing the condition of various Arab states. Doesn’t look promising does it? One thing not reflected upon the map is how the Yemeni government was toppled. If any information on this post is out of date, please let me know.

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