Peter Reynolds

The life and times of Peter Reynolds

The Moral Imperative

with 13 comments

When innocent men, women and children are being slaughtered and we have the ability to intervene then we are obliged to do so.  Anyone who stands against that, who quibbles over the difficulties and the consequences is a coward.  This is an absolute.

If a man stands in front of you and puts a gun to the head of a child you must stop him.  I don’t care whether his name is Gaddafi, Mugabe, Bush, Cameron or James Bond.   There are times when a line must be drawn.  A position that must be held, at any cost.

Our dreadful tolerance of the atrocities in Bahrain and of the violent repression in Saudi Arabia cannot be an excuse for failing to act in Libya.  Why do we maintain any military if we are not prepared to use it for defence against evil?

We must reject, even despise, those that stand in the way of doing, simply, what is right.

Written by Peter Reynolds

March 21, 2011 at 11:26 pm

13 Responses

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  1. I agree Peter, there was a bloodbath on the way and given what little info we, the public, are actually provided with, it seems it was the right thing to do. In the same vein it was not the right thing to wait so long as it played into Gadaffi’s hands perfectly. Either help or don’t but don’t let a situation get to that stage without doing anything.

    The real shame is that ‘we’ only take notice when our nation stands to lose out. Why not help in Rwanda, Sudan, Darfur, Bahrain or the Ivory Coast… oh yes, their oil output doesn’t effect us anywhere near as much… If only ‘we’ would do what is really ‘right’ more often and not only what is right for ‘us’ or a politicians legacy…


    March 22, 2011 at 12:29 am

  2. I keep wavering on this, Peter. NOT because I think this atrocious Gaddafi is worth a light – I don’t. I hope they get him ASAP. Target him and take him out, legal or not.

    BUT if they don’t do that soon, I have concerns over where it’s all going to lead, especially with the USA about to take a back seat. Also, since following closely what has happened to Tony Blair after Iraq – which, imho, was also the right thing to do (finally stopping Saddam’s murder of his own people over THIRTY years) – I’m frankly cheesed off with how the west is treated for intervening. And not just badly treated by the Arab world, where whatever we do it’s wrong.

    Here in Britain and elsewhere in the rest of the “liberal” west our interventions are always seen as having some ulterior motive – oil, NWO, pro-America, anti-Arab, anti-Muslim, pro-Israel – you know the rest.

    I suppose it’s just as well I didn’t have to make the decision over Libya. Though, I’m sure in Cameron’s position I’d have done the same, as I would have done in Blair’s position. It wasn’t long ago that Cameron was playing to the gallery, saying Britain’s foreign policy would be different under him. Doesn’t look like it now, and as Blairite I know I should be pleased.

    “Humanitarian interventionism” is the mantra today, though little thanks go to Tony Blair who suggested it in 1999, and the UN Charter was then adapted to include his “responsibilty to intervene” in 2005.

    So it all still leaves me with an uneasy feeling. I even find myself sounding at times like the mad liberal lefties – doing the whatabouteries.


    March 22, 2011 at 1:21 am

  3. Well said Peter. Too often will we sit back when action is needed. The only shame is that this is as much about 22% of the worlds oil reserve as it is about humanity.
    I’m not religious per say, I believe in mother nature but, we should all pray for the souls of the poor Libyan people. My their salvation be swift and with as little bloodshed as possible. Peace.


    March 22, 2011 at 8:30 am

  4. Yes, we comment about Hitler and the Holocaust; and yet the same things are still going on 60 years later but just in different ways.

    So if we went to war over the issues raised by Hitler’s behaviour and invasions; and we genuinely want world peace and stop oppression; then in the words of the Bible we have to “Fight the good fight” (not that I am religious).

    The Debt Collector

    March 22, 2011 at 10:36 am

  5. The moral imperative does exist, but not in this case. There is no moral imperative that moved the Gulf council, the Arab league, who by large has the same unrest to face and is facing it already in Bahrain, Saudi, Yemen, Saudi, Iran, etc. etc.
    Bombing Gaza does not activate the same responses and democracy is being used as a ruse.

    The EU is split in its response, some countries prefer to invest 400 Billion in a future that is guided by sustainable energy supplies and policies, a project that will bring sustainable jobs to the Magreb, not pander to the abstraction of oil and failed past policies that have kept these same dictators in power who now jump on the backs of Ghaddafi.
    Why have we not enpowered Egypt or Saudi or Kuwait to do the Job, they are armed with our best weapons and could have made the effort?
    OAP’s and children service here in Norfolk will have to suffer some more so the mad dog Osborne can spend some more on missiles, a fact.
    This war is one of junkies fighting for the last fixes, it also porolongs Europes energy unsustainable dependencies.
    Hypocrisy looms large and there is no morals, we have already broken UN SCR 1973, our SAS is assisting targetting on the ground, explicitly prohibited by same resolution.
    Unless we are told what the exit strategy is I find this sort of Hurray henry responses from Tories distastefull and ill advised.


    March 22, 2011 at 11:16 am

    • Well it’s quite clear then Ingo, while you pontificate on cheap political points, Gaddafi can get on with the massacre of women and children with no interference from you.

      I don’t think you understand what a moral imperative means.

      Peter Reynolds

      March 22, 2011 at 11:43 am

      • I do Peter, but the hypocrisy of the west is remarkable, don’t you think? Libya’s democracy is good and to be supported, even if that means breaking UNSCR 1973 and all its points, whilst in Bahrain democracy is no good.

        Bahrain’s shia’s are being used to goad Iran, Saudi stoohes are doing US work.
        Now the no fly zone is established and arms are being provided for every sheep farmer in eastern Libya, they are trained by Egyptians and by our ground troops, both of these actions are against UN resolution 1973, so what you are calling moral imperative is turning out to be as despicable as Nresolution 1440 in support of kiling innocent civilians in Iraq.

        NATO bombs have injured and maimed many civilians in Sirte, and only hypocrits call breaking their own UN resolution, more than twice, a moral imperative.

        Whilst you are desperately trying to make out that you are well disposed to comment on issues that are not part of your single issue concern, you will find that people will judge you for your views.

        Morals don’t come into it, its planned dear boy, planned yonks back.


        April 4, 2011 at 12:09 pm

  6. We will stir up the Muslims extremists in our midst, and escalate the conflict, terror bombing and Muslim fanaticism. Your view is dangerously naive.


    March 22, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    • Complicating the issue and finding excuses for inaction is cowardice.

      Peter Reynolds

      March 22, 2011 at 2:44 pm

      • What you call cowardice these people call waking up.
        It becoming clear now that this revolution of the have nots vs. the have’s will spread to more than just Arab countries.
        Obama is not only a stooge of Israel he is also an accomplished liar, the pre requisite for any US politicians.
        I agree with Attila, fully.


        April 5, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    • Yes, i think this will draw yet more hatred toward our people but, what can you do. To do the right thing takes courage and sacrifice.

      If i saw a women being mugged i’d help her despite he fact that these days I’d probably get myself stabbed.

      I could not not help her. More fool me maybe but if we all thought your way Attilla then, we’d really all be screwed.


      March 22, 2011 at 3:49 pm

  7. The irony is the west are now destroying weapons that we only sold to him recently.

    Just goes to prove money, oil & power corrupt all governments moral stances.

    Ho, hum – at £300,000 each those cruise missiles are a wonderfull use of tax payers money – they have already wasted enough to stop the NHS cuts.

    Where to fight despots next? Saudi, Yemen, Zimbabwai, Westminster?

    Riots in the UK are coming and will bring the whole rotten stack of cards down.

    Mr Bimble

    March 22, 2011 at 6:10 pm

  8. While I agree with you, Peter, I can understand why people would be reluctant to rush in. One needs only look at our record of interventions to see that there have been disasters where (however good the intentions) what we left behind was worse than what went before. I know KTBFPM will disagree but I think Iraq is an example of that, as is Kosovo, and it remains to be seen what happens to Afghanistan. The other problem is that we have a habit of supporting vicious dictators as long as they’re of use to us, then hanging then out to dry. We installed the Shah on Iran in place of a democratic government. When he was toppled, we armed Saddam and encouraged him to attack Iran. That worked well. Then we poured money into support for al-Qaida and the Taliban so they could fight the USSR. That worked REALLY well.

    I’m not blaming Blair or any other individual for all this: the Foreign Office seems institutionally unable to make moral judgments or to look beyond Britain’s immediate advantage. Those in the FO who rock the boat end up elsewhere.

    So however clear-cut these things seem to us, to our givernment they have a distinct tang of deja vu, not to say deja buggered up.

    I’m on the side of democracy, even if as in Gaza and Israel that means a bunch of dogmatic killers. People get the governments they deserve: at least, they SHOULD.


    April 27, 2011 at 2:52 am

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