As I type, Al-Jazeera is reporting that non- Arab African Mercenaries have been executed in Benghazi, and eight others are being held as prisoners, others have fallen back to the airport. The ‘security services’ are busy looting shops and banks.
Much of Libya is still based on clan/tribal lines which explains why Gaddafi relied on repression supported by his own clan. After forty-two years, support amongst his own clan has evaporated.
Western governments, who are largely concerned about their oil supplies and not creating another Islamic state, have been supporting a kleptocracy to ‘induce stability’, to the detriment of Libyan Citizens.
With violent suppression now occurring in Libya, there is natural concern by Libertarians about the fate of those just wishing to live free from oppression in this and other countries in the region where there have been mass uprisings.
Our philosophy is founded on the value and sovereignty of the Individual over the System, State or Potentate, so this should be no surprise except to those who conveniently wish to label us as “selfish” or “socio paths” in what is often a basic case of psychological projection. How does the desire to end the suffering abroad square with the Non-Aggression Principle and a non-interventionist, Jeffersonian foreign policy?
Wars of aggression or even intervention are not acceptable. The military is there to defend the nation and its citizens from aggression. Even if the UK were “invited” by some group or spokesperson, that spokesperson or group does NOT speak for all. They cannot speak for all, it is just not possible. Even if speaking for a vast majority was acceptable, a “peace keeping force” becomes a target for one faction or the other which does not see it will gain power through majority voting and wishes to mug its way to the top table or, worse, gain the keys to the palace and its fleet of Mercedes.
The Libertarian State’s hands are tied and rightly so. It is not about what can be done, but what should be done or, in this case, should not. The State has no right to interfere. What a Libertarian government can do is not buy goods and services from regimes – regimes, mind – that oppress people and to conduct its diplomatic relationships accordingly, but the Libertarian State will be small and not throwing its weight about. A general blockade or boycott enforced by law is out of the question; also, we believe in free trade and there is no justifiable reason why a company must be punished purely for its being established and operating out of a country under the thrall of an oppressive regime or in a country in a state of chaos.
Even private companies should not be blocked out of hand from supplying a Libertarian Government, only State run organisations might be considered for removal. Established tendering conditions should already contain such provisions as the ability for the source country to uphold and enforce property and contract law. However, a Libertarian country is not a government, but its individual people. When you come down to it, the individual is what matters. Individuals can boycott and spread the word as long as no force or coercion is used.
Individuals can decide to offer themselves to assist in any fight for freedom. It is of no concern to the Libertarian Government, for it does not own the people. If they put themselves in harm’s way abroad, they must accept that the military cannot be expected to extract them or make retribution. Further, should the State still have valid reciprocal and bi-lateral agreements, then there is the prospect of extradition and accountability. However, in the cases we have seen recently, no such bi-lateral agreement would exist due to the most obvious reasons such as, in some but not all cases, the death penalty, torture, lack of due process, inequality before the law etc. Individuals can also decide which group to fund and take full responsibility for the outcome of those decisions.
A Libertarian Government has trust in the general good sense and decency of the British population and we expect them to respond faster and more sincerely than any administration would, could or should. In N. Africa, they are escaping from the Ringmaster and his whip. Will they replace him with another ringmaster, a succession of increasingly arrogant and abusive Farmers – as we appear to have been saddled with – or will they be lucky and manage to retain their personal sovereignty beyond the fleeting moments after deposing and hire and appoint housekeepers who work for them, not the other way around?
While property and contract law enforced by a State is not a measure per se, the Government is buying on behalf of another – the taxpayers – and so must exercise some responsibility, which is different from that of individuals who may wish to trade this off against price and/or availability as is their choice.