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View Full Version : The Left, Bosnia, Kosovo, and Haiti


Mike B.
6th February 2004, 06:23 AM
Hello all,

This came up in another thread, but I wish to look further into it.

There seem to be many on the left, on this forum, who opposed military intervention into Haiti, Bosnia, and Kosovo in the 1990s, or at least they say they did.

Some of the usual reasons are given (No UN mandate, civilian deaths, etc.)

Has the left's position become that virtually all military intervention is wrong even to stop genocide?

I don't buy working through the UN will stop it. Look what happened with the Dutch contingent of UN troops in Yugoslavia. They sat there and let a whole village get wiped out because they were under orders not to fire. It seems only when NATO bombs started to drop that the genocide stopped. All the blue helmets in the world will do nothing unless backed up by real force.

It seems that some are turning doing nothing while genocide is happening right next door into a virtuous position and a more moral one.

In 1993 Clinton overthrew a right wing military juanta in Haiti that had overthrown a democratically elected leftist government. Haiti poses no threat to the US and has zero WMD. Was Clinton wrong?

The left in America was for intervention starting with Woodrow Wilson and it was the right that was neo-isolationist. (This is a simplification, but it still generally holds.) Has that changed?

As I recall in the UK, when John Major was PM, Paddy Ashdown of the Liberal Democrats would attack him from the left for not doing more about Bosnia. Has that changed in the left of the UK?

Before the customary screaming of "strawman" begins, please try to answer my questions. If I have mis-represented people I am sorry and tell me where I was wrong.