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Do you support international intervention in Libya?

BBC Africa HYS Team | 13:43 UK time, Tuesday, 1 March 2011


US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the US is leaving all its options on the table in dealing with Libya. Mrs Clinton did not discuss military options but she said that if Colonel  Muammar Gadaffi remained in power then the US would consider a range of options.

 The European Union has imposed sanctions including an arms embargo, the freezing of assets and a travel ban on Col Gaddafi.

Do you support international intervention in Libya?  If not, why not? If so what form should that take? Does Africa have a role to play? Should Libyans be left to resolve the unrest ? If you have any questions about the current situation in Libya, or would like to discuss what's going on LIVE on air on Tuesday 1st March  at 1600 GMT, please include a telephone number. It will not be published.



  • Comment number 1.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

    do not invade, please negotiate. please

  • Comment number 3.

    Absolutely! It is time for Moammar Gadhafi to realize that his "Third Universal Theory" was a dysfunctional type of government that functioned like a social "pressure cooker." Now that cooker has blown its lid off, and Libya is making its turn toward the "Standard Universal Theory" - popular consent. After all, the Greek historian Herodotus predicted that 2.500 years ago: "Tyrants and despots don't last forever," he said. But Gadhafi's egomania became so over-bloated during his unchallenged 42 years of rule that he became delusional. Now he is living in a state of complete disbelief, and he cannot understand that his despotic rule is evaporating under the boiling anger of his people.

  • Comment number 4.

    Why should people intervene in the Libyan crisis when Gaddafi has been the brain behind so many uprisings and civil wars in Africa especially my native land Liberia? Town trap is not made for rat alone. Snake may one day pass that route and get caught in it.

  • Comment number 5.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 6.

    The USA and the Western world must stop their hypocrisies and think about their carnage being caused in Iraq and Afghanistan where they are killing innocent children, old people and innocent people in the name of democracy. They behave like PEACE MAKERS of the world but are not better than other dictators in some countries.

    The Security council just adopted sanctions and asked Kaddafi to be tried for atrocities in Libya but I will ask them here why they did not refer Ex- Pm. John Blair & George Bush to the same court for their crimes in Iraq & Afghanistan.

    The people of Libya must solve their problems are

  • Comment number 7.

    What the international community can do is empower the Libyan people to act properly and powerfully against the Gadafi regime. A military intervention will give the regime advantage to brutalize their people more and more. The UN, EU and United States should try to create a disconnect between Gadafi and those foreigners he is using against his people.

    Dorbor M. Akoi, in Monrovia, Liberia

  • Comment number 8.

    Absolutely. Gadaffi is not the type to concede defeat, he is a man that has lived by the sword through out his life, and so it is, he must see the sword on his way out. He was responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands of innocent people in both Sierra Leone and Liberia for over ten years; the spirit of the dead is now hunting his soul. I strongly support intervention because the world has become too complex a place to live, and those elements that strongly stand out as an obstacle and a menace to a normal way of life should be confronted and castigated. The Libyan people have been in political bondage for over fourty years, this is "the oppurtunity" to get rid of this desert dictator, and set the people free. This man is truely dilusional.

  • Comment number 9.

    I firmly believe that the world should intervene quickly. The world stood by for a long time in the cases of Rwanda, Dar fur, Bosnia, etc. We should have learned from prior mistakes. The world cannot stand idle while a heartless dictator terrorizes defenseless people whose only fault is to seek freedom. He is no different than Siyad Barre of Somalia and Sadam Husein of Iraq and would use tribalism to justify the destruction of Libya -- and in the process lead to his death and the death of his children!!!

  • Comment number 10.

    What is happening in Libya and other Arab countries serves as a serious warning to other sit-tight African leaders and indeed all other continents that it may take four decades to build and consolidate dictatorship but less than a month to destroy it.Meanwhile, the world can not afford to fold its hands and watch Libya go in flames. Gadafi and his cohorts must be arrested immediately and taken to The Hague to answer some questions on Crime against humanity. Nsukka, Enugu state. Nigeria.

  • Comment number 11.

    Let's first be clear about one thing: African governments should focus on alleviating their peoples' misery. In any event, I'm not sure how effective such an intervention would be, given our record in places like Somalia, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Darfur. Moreover, Libya has never considered itself an African country: its people have always considered themselves Arab (and therefore racially superior). And while this is obviously not a reason against intervention per se, it would make them unlikely to receive us with roses even if we could/should intervene. Indeed, there are serious questions to do with what we'd hope to achieve - would we, for example, be hoping to bring about democracy and economic development when we don't have democracy ourselves ("elections" notwithstanding) and can't even provide our kids with a half-decent education or adequate nutrition?

    Regarding the West, it always amazes me that grave human rights violations only ever seem to provoke their moral outrage when not committed by Israel or any of its other client states (e.g. Saudi Arabia). I'm sure the Libyan people need help; but this should be solely on their own terms.

  • Comment number 12.

    The support and intervention of the international community in bringing peace and stability in Libya is critical. The goal should be to bring a peaceful ending to the current crisis through negotiation and dialogue. The international community should use high level diplomatic negotiation and other peaceful means at its disposal to: (i) stop the killing and suffering of innocent people including African refugees who are now trapped between loyal troops and anti-government protestors, (ii) prevent further human right abuses and bloodsheds and, (iii) prevent Libya and the region as a whole from descending to civil war and the state of anarchy. Africa, through the AU, must explore possibilities to partner with bilateral and UN agencies to protect and rescue African refugees who are now trapped in Libya and in neighboring countries.

  • Comment number 13.

    No, because it will complicate the situation. If it has left to Libyans, of course, they will pay a price, but it will soon come to an end.

  • Comment number 14.

    No I don't. Western and European countries should leave African countries to their own devices. Africa's other countries must get involved and find the solution. The USA is in so much debt, they really can't afford to be getting involved in another countries affairs - again. If there were problems like this in Europe, their neighbours woul help sort it out. Africa should do the same.

  • Comment number 15.

    We should keep our noses out. What gives us the right to decide who should run coutries, we should not act as the worlds policeman. We should have learnt our lesson fom Iraq where a much more brutal regime was in power who had killed their own countrymen, we helped to replaced that regime and made things ten times worse with hundreds of thousands killed. There is a reason why most of the world hates the British and its because we keep involving ourselves in other peoples affairs as we think we know better than them. We were responsible for over a million deaths when India was given independence, and we helped to cause the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.
    Other countries have a more legitimate reason for getting involved in Libya than we have. Italy because it was the colonial power, and the rest of the arab states because Libya is one of their owm. It's not as if they don't have the resources, as we sold them a lot of military equipment. The truth is that they have much more sense than we have.

  • Comment number 16.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 17.

    "Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him---.”
    The evil that men do lives after them; so let it be with Gadhafi.
    Military intervention was used in Freetown for Sierra Leonean to regain their basic human right. The Libyans should be given their right now
    Benson’ Sierra Leonean living in the USA

  • Comment number 18.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 19.

    There is no supports for millitary interventions in libya.please international community,leave Gadhafi alone to deal with those rebels.I know there's still the ideology of colonial rule in the world.the westheners fight in the interest of something

  • Comment number 20.

    of couse i do cause you cant be killing people like flies

  • Comment number 21.

    I think the Libyans can solve their problems themselves, i'm not against technical support for the Anti gaddhafi sect but it shouldn't involve an invasion by foreign powers. Also, the support shld be minimal because i believe the foreign powers are just after Libya for oil.if libya had no oil, they wouldnt have been the issue now. Why didnt they intervene when Liberia had issues then, because they had no resources of commercial value to the west. Arab countries should rally round their own, since Libya never identifies with Africa anyways.

  • Comment number 22.

    its really needed but i think west are not going to protect people but the oil, and if they did that man will kill his people like animals

  • Comment number 23.

    I do not support intervention in Libya.

  • Comment number 24.

    When sign language is used deaf persons understand better,African leaders understand the language of the guns better any other languages ie sanctions,freezing of assets & their accounts but rather i prefer the use of barrels of guns to sanctions and freezings of assets for what?.Would freezing assets and sanctions stop them to cling to power?
    UN and AU are useless organisations and composed of puppets,generally they are confused, and to me, they are the ones fuelling crisis in african continent!

    The only option in africa is military intervention only whether people are going to die ,already many have died so what is the essence of saying sanctions?
    Obama stand up and take steps to rescue your people from dictators!!1

  • Comment number 25.

    There is no Muslim in the Arab World that has lived without hatred of America and its European allies! But it's time now to tell who their friends is who is not! First and foremost all the up rises that going on in the Arab World are not just because of American or European influence but due to their own cause! Let us intervene and save lives and we live to hated for the truth! The longer we prolong the those demonstrations where innocent live are being lost the more unfriendly we are proving to be our beloved brothers and sisters in Libya! I know God will judge our innocence where we take an immediate action!

  • Comment number 26.

    The International community should use Military intervention in Libya at any posible cost to turn the country to a Democratic state so as bring peace and stability.

    There is no meaningful development in any developing country, without Democracy, any development done in a dictatorship rule will one day be demolist by anti-dictators. most of us think that libya is developed but today the same development is being hip by rocket louncher bullet and fire. Then let us go in for democracy wold wide

    Gahdafi will step down if only harder pressures are impose on him, the international community should not see and allow any brutal dictatorship on innocent civilians.

  • Comment number 27.

    What is happening in Libya and other countries in the Arab world is quite unfortunate that International intervention is the best thing to support. However, this should be done in good faith to ensure that peace prevails. It will rather be questionable if the International community uses force on Libya yet the same was not done when Israel killed Thousands of people in Gaza. All what am trying to say is that the super power nations or/ and the UN Security Council should learn to deal with situations impartially.

  • Comment number 28.

    Obviously yes. The support of international community is welcome to resolved instances of these nature. Maximum ruler needs to be told that tenure elongation is not an option, but the choice of the people, good governance free of despotism and avarice.

  • Comment number 29.

    I do not support Intervention in Libya for a variety of reasons.

    Also, The US has been harping for the last few days about the International Criminal Court. BUT, the US does not recognise the ICC nor signed the treaty. Shameless Hypocrites!

  • Comment number 30.

    Intervention at this time is necessary. Qaddafi will stop at nothing to continue being Libya`s leader. I listened to most of his speeches lately and they barely make sense. This guy has a mental problem of grandiose scale! We dont need no dictators in Africa no more.

  • Comment number 31.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 32.

    I do not support international inetrvention because in the past this has been done based on falsehood especially the case of Iraq that it had WMDs. The trend is not good. You cannot continue to solve evil with evil. The UN must condemn the actions of the Rebels fighting a legitimate government of Col Gaddafi. We are seing double standards here. UN must always and at all times promote dialogue instead of support armed rebellion. The economy of Lybia is very good and until now, I have not heard of Col Gaddafi killing his own people. He has done so well infact better than most of the western countries propagating false propaganda about him. Yes 41 years in power is too much but that can be challanged through Democracy not anarchy. The UN is setting a very sad precedency and of caurse exibiting hate for a regime. I am sure Gaddafi will also let go and prevent an escalation of the conflict. The UN should stop threatening Gaddafi with being brought to book while he is still in power. It will only make him fight to his bitter end. Who will suffer? What will suffer? Please UN mediate.

  • Comment number 33.

    I don't support any International intervention in Libya except peaceful resolution or tickling the issue without using any force. I think if International community is puttying human beings or its really concerning about Africa it shouldn't report Libyan issue to heaven. Look at Somalia,is almost three decades has no central government. Ivor coast is the worse, the government run free and fair election but refuse to hand over to elected president.am not saying I support Qaddafi to remain in office, but I really against the use of force to a powerful leader like Qaddafi.

  • Comment number 34.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 35.

    There should be no international military intervention without the UN Security Council authorization. Use of force in international relations is prohibited, as a rule. There are only few exceptions in UN Charter and customary law as well, such as legitimate self-defence and 'intervention on invitation'.
    To justify military action as a self-defence, a state (or group of states as in the case of Iraq in 1991) should prove that there is an 'imminent threat' for international peace and security. Does Libyan civil war creates such a threat ? It's an internal issue, whether we like it or not. At least on current stage.
    With an 'intervention on invitation' (which is a customary international law institution) it's even more complicated because, generally, only a legitimate government is entitled to make such an invitation. I don't really think that intervention on Mr. Qaddafi's invitation would work the way we would like it to work ...
    Some sould say that there is also a 'humanitarian intervention' but it's really controversial doctrine and there's no general, worldwide opinio iuris supporting it. Usually humanitarian issues are not the sole reason for intervention and there are other, political or economic reasons. At the same time, there is very low international support for inetrvention in really dramatic humanitarian crises such as Rwanda (1994), DRC civil war (1998 - 2003 and current atrocities).
    In fact, even humanitarian intervention should be based on the UN SC authorizing rezolution.
    That's my point: even if international community wants to intervene to protect Libyan population and guarantee peacful transition of power, it should get the UN SC authorization. And it would be better to send in african states' troops. And the possible intervention should be prepared in cooperation with the African Union of the League of Arab States. There is international law, ladies and gentleman, and we should obey it's rules.

  • Comment number 36.

    No i do not support military intervention in Libya rather i think the anti Qaddafi fighters must be supported by all means possible.Any military intervention will aggravate situation.

  • Comment number 37.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 38.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 39.

    Col:Gadafi plus go, the pipo hv spoken, emulate your friend hosni mubaraki, he stepped down on moral grounds.

  • Comment number 40.

    international intervention is very necessary. our brothers in Libya are dying. they need help even from above. to me i think the support they have had so far is not enough. let international organizations do more.

  • Comment number 41.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 42.

    Why are the british yet again getting involved in the Arab world, they do not want our intervention,have we not learned that from Iraq? We should keep our noses out for a change

  • Comment number 43.

    There Is More Than 90% Need For A Humanitarian Military Intervention In Libya. Innocent Children, Handicaps, Homeles, Olds are dieing in their numbers and the super bodies seat back, wasting time with dialogue etc. I think something be done fast because we are dealing with a lunatic who wil stop at nothing if not quenched and tried.!

  • Comment number 44.

    If Gaddafhi is to be believed, he will likely "bury" many supporters of the revolution, which could constitute what some would describe as a "genocide". Thus, the question of "resettlement" is now more urgent than ever.

    If neither the Western powers, NATO, the EU or the Sino-Russian powers can agree on some type of intervention, it stands to reason that Gaddafhi will "bury" all who are thought to oppose him.

    Such an act should reasonably be anticipated as a mass-murder. Only by resettling those possibly-at-risk can the international community effectively prevent a genocide, without interfering militarily on the ground.

    If foreign intervention proves politically unacceptable, then the permanent resettlement of those persons at risk of state-perpetrated violence is the only acceptable alternative from a humanitarian standpoint.

  • Comment number 45.

    I will strongly wish for the western countries to stop mendling into other countries issues.They want to arm the rebels instead of them finding ways to tell the rebels to lay down their arms and for the power that be to fasten up the process of transition.They should be carefull.

  • Comment number 46.

    I do not support US intervention in Libya,cause they want to support rebels to unseat a seating government all in the name of democracy.Whose interest are they protecting or is it OIL interest,we should not be blind to their games.A good example is IRAG.

  • Comment number 47.

  • Comment number 48.

    If someone is killing is own family members , what is the community supposed to do? Just standby and let killing continue and then latter appears at the funeral? This is hypocrisy at highest level. International intervention is rightly deserved as it has served to stop killing of unprotected civilians from their mad leaders. International intervention in Libya, should serve as a warning to other dictators in the world. Watch out the long arm of the international community is at bay, bravo USA, UN, Qatar, NATO and Sarkozy.

  • Comment number 49.

    As an update to my previous comments, I watched the unedifying specatacle of a Sky-TV News reporter in Brega, trying to justify why the Coalition or Nato, did not uphold the No-Fly zone, by shooting down some rebel aircraft which took off on a mission on Thursday. We must take it for granted that Nato was actually capable of shooting down these aircraft. Is it the case, that the No-Fly zone only operates one way?

    It must be clear to the world now, that the West picked upon Libya because it bears a grudge against Gadaffi. I ask the question once again, why have they not intervened in Syria, the Yemen and now, the Ivory Coast where the slaughter of citizens is also taking place?

  • Comment number 50.

    for real, we need to be independent and that means -free to own our own please, leave african states

  • Comment number 51.

    I don't think I support any intervention in Libya.This is because the whole thing is clothed with hipocrisy, selfishness and double standards.The reason being that the forces are only there to protect their own interests and nothing else. Why do we say this? B[Personal details removed by Moderator]ecause the mission was to go in there and protect the civilians and not to support the so called rebels who call themselves protestors.

  • Comment number 52.

    It was right for International Community to participate in Libya because most African leaders are headed by Dictators, in addition most of African leaders have been very shy about Libya due to funding they have been getting from Libya, and now way Africa would have participated yet most presidents have the same burden, I credit the International Community for participating but it should act swiftly to save lives of many instead of listening to the incumbent.The International Community should in addition compare lives of those who died with that of the incumbent, we all have same lives and the Dictator should be kicked out very quickly. Libya is going to be a good lesson to most countries in Africa.

  • Comment number 53.

    I don,t think U.N are helping matters rather coursing more pains i believe the people of Libya know what they want so the U.N & A.U [Personal details removed by Moderator]should step aside. Long live Africa.

  • Comment number 54.

    Not at all. The west will want it's fair share for the so-called 'intervention'. Lybia has the black Gold - that's what they're after. Also, the lybian leader was backed by the US for years, receiving money and you name it. But when he no longer wanted to dance to their tune and do as they said, the US got a bit angry... and the rest is now history. Lybia does not need the west to intefer, they can handle their own business. The west is only ever concerned and gets involved in such situation when they know there's something in for them.
    Lets see if this gets posted.

  • Comment number 55.

    I do not US intervention in Libya because they are not just protecting they people - what they must do- but they want to kill Khadafi. This shows how much Africa is not free. I do not like Khadafi but African peope must be free to solve they own problem. The African Union must be disolve because it has no us.

  • Comment number 56.

    Kofi Annan in the Financial Times this weekend has criticised the West's approach to the Libyan Crisis. At last a prominent individual has spoken words of reason. Protecting Benghazi was essential in Annan’s view, particularly after what Gaddafi had indicated that he would do, but the rest of their strategy Annan is less than happy with. I totally agree with Kofi and have argued in a paper I’ve written that Benghazi should have been a harsh warning to Gaddafi not the starting pistol for on-going bombing of Gaddafi forces. Resolution 1973 is quite clear. It is all about protecting civilians not protecting an armed rebel force.[Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 57.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 58.

    I must say to some degree that I support the intervension.But to my surprise the wrong method was rather being used.I think what is going on now will only help the problem at hand to escalate.The right method could have been the use of diplomacy and other non violent means of resolving conflict as two wrong can not make a correct.

  • Comment number 59.

    Am I in the position to make a judgement on this? Well, now perhaps yes. But just barely. This sort of judgement requires one to be well-informed, critically thinking and unbiased as much as possible. So, what is the information that I have now?
    1. Before hostilities started, Libya was home to 1.5 millions economic migrants - from Egypt, Tunisia, Bangladesh, but also former USSR republics. This does not support "brutal regime" version. I am aware of a number of brutal regimes in recent history - none of them can boast to be such an attractive place for immigration.
    2. Rebels in Lybia do not seem to represent majotiry of Lybian people. If this would be the case, regime would have been down some time ago.
    3. According to BBC reporting, rebels (i) plant landmines; (ii) deploy underage children, 12-16 yrs old, as soldiers; (iii) most importantly, are encountering opposition from armed civilians similar to themselves.
    4. Would number of civilian casualties have been larger without intervention? Or, on the contrary, intrervention has actually lead to an increased number of casualties?
    5. Destruction of property and wealth of Libyan people is staggering. It is quite likely that it will take country a decade or more to recover (if at all). Will future generations of Libyans hail or curse these rebels?
    6. Expectations about this campaign that were openly expressed at its beginning did not realise - were plainly wrong. Perhaps, decision to engage in this campaign was ill-informed?
    Well, there are a number of other observations, too. The Robinson Crusoe's tabular format would have been better for decision-making here. In any case I have my bias - I do not like those things called revolutions. Let Crusoe make unbiased judgement.

  • Comment number 60.

    Libya has its own set of actions depending on the way uprising befall the nation. i therefore don't see why the international intervation would be so much of great interest in such a free nation. we are meant to believe that the international community is looking for other things that are neither clear to us nor to them. I would therefore advice that Libya be left alone and if the international comunity would want to help they should give advice and and encourage peace talks but not war against one man. other innocent people are dying on his account which is ill bad and its evil how will you charge others for killing innocent blood when you are the lead in doing so???


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