So things are a little worrying in your blog author’s family life recently. Enjoy life friends, as my aunt recently said, “Things can turn on a dime”. When the mysteries of life upend your status quo, I think everybody gets a little crazy in their view of the world. Accordingly, I’m going to once again indulge in another round of reckless intervention discussion. I guess I’m just interested lately in what kind of world we will live come 2090.
Please keep in mind a few things. I know intervention is a bad word used by smart people (them) to label dumb people (me) as out of touch with reality. So a couple of caveats. This isn’t about Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, or Syria. This is about humanitarian intervention to stop the bleeding; genocide where the different parties are generally not somebody’s puppet-proxy-pawn. I know how complicated and hard all of this is, but if we don’t start somewhere then we are just admiring the problem. Just admiring the problem equals the ultimate failure of our race’s hopes and dreams for a bright future.
Now a few readers, who probably won’t be back, (by a few I mean two; we’re, ah, we’re new here) expressed mild disagreement (they were polite) via separate correspondence that they did not approve of a UN force that undertakes the task of having people “gets shot”. I think their interpretation of my idea was a UN force along the lines of the paramilitary troops shown in Elite Squad (my example) where folks are shot without trials, plastic bag interrogations occur, and generally the enforcers do what enforcers do. Well, to be honest, that’s at least partially what I had in mind.
Look, I’m not a determinist flake like a Jared Diamond, but I do think that folks are fairly well shaped by where they grow up. A machete wielding psychopath in CAR might have turned out a fairly decent guy had he grown up under rich bankers in London. Unfortunately for him, his path was somewhat different. But in the end, as adults, we all make our own choices. I’m sorry if your life was/is shit, but if you’re engaged in genocide, you either get to stop, or get shot. Sorry.
What am I really after though? Clearly there is enough poverty, destitution, and awfulness in our planet to overwhelm the UN’s ability to purchase, let alone expend, bullets. The UN genocide response force discussed in my previous post (we’ll call them Team Arcturus) is not going to be able to shoot every single weapon wielding ethnic janitor. I’m after the deterrence that comes from the initial round of UN sanctioned violence. Now deterrence is a generally underrated concept (for most people it means nukes only), yet we employ it across our lives every day. Ask your friendly neighborhood speed trap.
After Team Arcturus is employed two or three times, the word will get out to those who are intent on cleaning out a portion of the human race. “Hey, the UN is interested, Team Arcturus will be here tomorrow. Those assholes don’t play. Let’s put away the blades, gasoline, and piano wire before we all get fucking shot.” When people start to understand that we (the international community) mean business, that we will do what we say, then the level of viciousness might (every situation is different; and my idea may suck) inherently decrease.
The trick is of course actually doing what you say. Right now the UN is generally ignored because it is in the business of saying a lot, but virtually doing & accomplishing nothing. This is directly traceable to the design flaws in its organization, but it is what it is. Would we have to rework the way the UN is run before we could create and employ Team Arcturus? Maybe, but the recent UN combat operation against M23 near Goma is a good example of how such an action could occur under the existing UN construct. This would not solve extremely hard situations like Syria, but at least would assist the human race in troubleshooting CAR or South Sudan or Western Burma.
Final answer to world peace? No. Initial answer to stop genocide and improve overall quality of human life? Maybe. Let’s roll the dice.
Team Arcturus; Armored Infantryman; Circa 2090
“I get used only once a decade, because everybody knows what I do when I’m used.”