I recently read an article about a seemingly double standard on the continent of Africa. Unfortunately, I must agree. Just think about it; Egypt and Libya are not the only African nations having an internal conflict.
The United States and its allies have intervened militarily, and ostensibly, for humanitarian reasons in order to prevent further bloodshed in both these countries. These countries just happen to be north of the Sahara Desert and these people tend to look different from the people living below the Sahara Desert such as in the Ivory Coast, Ghana and the Congo.
The Ivory Coast, a nation below the Sahara with more than 22 million people, is a nation currently in turmoil because the former president Laurent Ghagbo, who lost his reelection in November 2010, refuses to relinquish control. Many people have been wounded, including a group of unarmed women, marching to protest Ghagbo’s power grab, who were fired upon by an army tank. An estimated 500,000 have been displaced, and 90,000 more have fled the country. Does not the humanitarian policy extend south of the Sahara? Is there a double standard?
Libyan leader Col. Muammar Gaddafi and President Ghagbo, they are both blood thirsty tyrants. Ghagbo’s forces began attacking people of neighboring countries whose governments refuse to recognize his unlawful, dictatorial regime. He has ordered the United Nations and French peacekeepers to leave the country and by imposing his own no-fly zone; he refused to let planes from the world body and France land.
President-Elect Alassane Quattara is equally determined to take control, and is ready to bring peace to the Ivory Coast. Without military assistance, the International Red Cross predicts the atrocities will far exceed the killings in Libya, a country with a population of 7 million.
The United Nations, the United States, the African Union and the European Union all recognize Quattara as the winner of the November election. I earnestly hope that the United States and its allies will intervene as they are currently doing in Libya. Also, this would be a response to critics regarding a possible double standard
My wife believes it has nothing to do with humanitarianism; it has to do with the price of oil, which is in North Africa.
Written by Leon Modeste