Monday, 21 March 2011

Counted Back

"Mission completed and all our planes  returned safely," said Colonel Gabetta ,  commander of the 37th Stormo at Trapani; the Tornado Ecr of the 50th Stormo di Piacenza are back safely too, as well as the refuelling planes from the 6/o Stormo di Ghedi

Watching the military spokesperson for the British forces engaged in instituting the No-Fly zone and inhibiting military attacks on civilians in Libya,  I was quite struck by the lack of reaction on the part of the BBC interviewer when assured that all British planes had returned safely.  He just turned to a frowning woman in a bad coat and plastic necklace who tried to tell us what could have been explained so much better by the properly-qualified, and properly dressed, Major-General.


Sackerson said...

I fear there will be a price to pay, apart from that paid by the poor mothers' sons incinerated in their tanks by "Coalition" forces.

hatfield girl said...

I'm not a pacifist, S. Neither would I wish any use of force, never mind military force. I have never been close to its use before either. Nor did my parents and grandparents say much about their experiences in the Second world war, although their lives must have been coloured by it always. Even less did my father-in-law speak of his experiences on the Russian front; once, when we were speaking of the best moments of our lives and his was: "When I gave the order to fire, under Badoglio, upon the German positions", the table froze. But ever courteous he left it there.

Here, Gadaffi has threatened all civilian targets, promised to turn the Mediterranean into a battlefield. There are decent women and men in Libya bravely ready to face him at even closer quarters, and then to form their country's government in peace and democracy.

Inexperienced in all this, I choose the side of those who protect civilian lives. If it takes what it is taking, so be it. No civilians have been killed by the Allies' efforts. 8000 Libyan civilians have been killed by the Gadaffi regime in the last weeks, and 60 million Italian civilians threatened.

Sackerson said...

Quite. But who rattled the hornet's nest in the first place, and why? Some might think it's to do with sweet, light crude, others may say it's to divert the public from the contemplation of the indecisiveness of US and UK leaders in matters closer to home; alternatively, He Who Must Not Be Named has a theory about hegemonic extension:

I have absolutely no brief for the Colonel, but we did nothing about the General in Spain, nor (we are given to understand) did we do anything to promote the 1974 Carnation Revolution in Portugal that forced out the Communists, nor are we doing anything about the President in Zimbabwe.

If what I suspect is true, some Western hands are already filthy with the blood of Libyans on both sides.

Sackerson said...

"Britain is staying on the front foot, with Defence Secretary Liam Fox saying yesterday he would sanction a ‘bunker buster’ attack on the Libyan leader’s lair as long as casualties could be avoided.

"Dr Fox vowed to destroy the Libyan dictator’s entire military infrastructure as senior officials privately admitted they want to engineer regime change.

"Read more:"

BBC News:

"Gen Sir David Richards said that was "not allowed" under the UN resolution authorising military action to protect civilians in Libya."

People are dying in a country that (I suspect) has been subverted from outside, and our ministers don't know the brief they've been given, and arguably may not even know international law in respect of the assassination of a country's leader:

hatfield girl said...

Gadaffi has declared the Mediterranean a battlefield, and all of Italy a target, S. 'Traitors' he called the Italians. Traitors to what, one wonders. The Berlusconi government is fragmenting under the Allied implementation of Resolution 1973, but I doubt readers would be interested in the ins and outs of that.

The involvement of the UK government in all this is iffy, and militarily strictly unnecessary, though all hands to the pumps, and welcome, from the point of view here.

But Italy must stand and fight now. There is no going back after declarations like Gadaffi's. And Russia could mind its manners too.

As well, it's horrific being asked "Might you prefer to go to London?" No, I wouldn't; and I don't want to take up stances either. And I don't want to be asked. I want the Libyans to live in a normal, democratic, be it ever so corrupt world, and not be killed by their 'government' because they would like to elect a different government. And I would like terrorist 'Leaders' who have killed people all over Europe to be put on trial. And those who have attempted their rehabilitation, like Blair and Brown and Mandelson put on trial too.