Ranj Alaaldin writes:
On Monday, the South African president, Jacob Zuma, once again went to Tripoli in an attempt to broker a peace deal between Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and the opposition forces. As expected, he failed.
But mediation or ceasefire initiatives such as South Africa’s, and others encouraged elsewhere, have something wrong with them: they offer Gaddafi a lifeline at a point when he is facing an increase in defections and significant opposition progress on the battlefield, and when he is becoming increasingly isolated internationally – as shown last week when Russia shifted its position by calling on him to stand down.
It is clear that the west, in the form of the Nato-led coalition, has a strategy in Libya and it is working. It should be left alone.
Three key components have comprised this strategy, the explicit objective of which has been to end Gaddafi’s reign of terror and the heart of which has been to ensure the Libyan uprising remains a Libyan-dominated enterprise, and not a western one.
I am very heartened by the suggested success of the policies outlined in this (full) article. They should become the working model for all future Responsibility to Protect UN operations. The only failure was the slow start to the Nato intervention caused by the self interests of Qhadafi’s friends around the world and the blindness to reality of people who supported doctrinaire pacifist fantasies against the prevention of genocidal government actions. If the No-fly zone had been implemented earlier, while the regime was stumbling and disorganised, the whole campaign to remove Qhadafi would have been successful by now. Avoiding this example of diplomatic disorganisation in future humanitarian actions is a must do.
The attempts at intervention by members of the African Union are, at best, no more that transparent attempts to whitewash the ghastly record of democratic failure in the continent. In the worst case they are the operation of selfish policies to shore up brother despots.