Rhymes With Orange

According to this article, Libya, a new member of the UN Security Council, wasn't sure whether or not killing seminary students counted as an act of terrorism.

Are you kidding me? Libya is on the UN Security Council?


Spaceman Spiff said...

A couple things:
1) Doesn't pretty much every member in good standing who's been there long enough get to rotate to the non-permanent security council spot?

2) I guess if as the article says he wasn't linked to a military group, it's possible (though I suppose unlikely) that this was more like the V. Tech or NIU shootings, which I don't think we would readily describe as terrorism.

So there might be a legitimate reason for disagreement, and throwing the terrorism label on it immediately just because he was Palestinian and the students were Jewish doesn't seem wise.

Speaker for the Dead said...

Libya was removed from the United States' list of terror-sponsoring states in 2006, which is not that long ago. I'm not sure whether or not that counts as "good standing."

And again, I'm not sure about the details of the attack in Jerusalem. My point was two-fold:

1. It's probably not a coincidence that Libya was the only country to dispute the terrorism label. Indonesia, a predominantly Muslim country (and the home to Jemaah Islamiyah), did not contest the label. So I'm not sure that we can ascribe Libya's reluctance to objectivity.

2. Do you really want the world to be run in such a manner that Libya, in technical good standing or no, has such power?

Spaceman Spiff said...

I'm sure that whatever the requirements are, Libya meets them, and that is enough, I think.

1) It could be as you say that the reason they were the only ones was to object was a bad one, but it could also be possible that everyone else is jumping to a politically correct and expedient conclusion. It is worth figuring out, and such debate should never be out of bounds.

2) What power? The power to block resolutions? I have to confess, that just doesn't scare me very much. Being on the UN Security Council just doesn't seem to carry the weight you want to assign to it.

On the other hand, living in a world where George W. has such power as he does... that is scary.

Speaker for the Dead said...

0. Any institution in which Libya can "meet the requirements" is tragically flawed. (I love zeroth points.)

1. I don't mind such debate at all. But Libya should not be part of the decision-making process.

2. The UN Security Council has almost no power as of now. The UN itself is basically impotent. But nationalism is an aging -ism, and people are becoming more and more excited about global government. So eventually, it might mean something. And the US has caught a lot of flak for going against the UN, so what it says does have some significance. Trust me, I'm not saying the UN is powerful at all.

4. Why do people hate George W. Bush?

Spaceman Spiff said...

0. Meh. I dunno about that.

1. Again, I'm not sure. Being in favor if inalienable rights and not in favor of censorship, I'm inclined to disagree.

2. Well, in that case, we're in agreement, and the amount of power that Libya has is next to none, which is not terribly scary.

4. Well, I don't hate the guy. But as for reasons, I'll skip the Iraq war discussion and just mention two pieces of legislation: "No Child Left Behind" and "the Patriot Act."

Speaker for the Dead said...

By the way, I'm not stupid, I just HATE the number 3. :P

1. No one said anything about censorship, just making sure their voice has no power. And must I remind you again that inalienable rights are a ridiculous, humanistic, Enlightenment notion that are one of the main fuels behind secular humanism?

Spaceman Spiff said...

Well, to single out a nation contrary to the rules of the UN based on... well, what it is you want to base the exclusion on I can't tell, but anyway based on something aside from what applies to everyone else... well that seems bad.

And, obviously, I'm not really sure I buy your critique of inalienable rights. It's a pretty [Judeo-]Christian idea if you ask me, and a good idea besides. I don't quite understand the problem you have with it, although I suspect it's a misunderstanding of who exactly these rights are inalienable by.

My hunch is you think it is a claim that even God can't "alienate" these rights, but I think a fairer reading of the founding fathers would be that they are not alienable by other people (excepting in the case of someone abusing their rights in a way that alienates another person's rights). Afterall, they did claim it was God who endowed them with "life", and they probably believed it was God could rightfully take it away.

Speaker for the Dead said...

Tell you what, I'll write a post soon about America's unhealthy obsession with rights.

I'll just say that your hunch is basically right.