Loud but simplistic criticism of the war

on . Posted in English texts


The voices protesting the passivity of the international community toward the ongoing slaughter in Lebanon are multiplying.

In this country, every now and again, an opinion maker will ask, "Where is the international community hiding at this crucial time?"

But no one clarifies what this international community actually is and what it should be doing. As usual, we condemn the absence of a non-existent element. After all, the international community is not an entity. It is made up of people with different beliefs and governments with different interests. It would be ideal if there was a global desire - and the means - to stop all injustices. But then we would be talking about a mechanism of "global governance" that would also be criticized.

In view of the current global state of affairs, only NATO can successfully intervene between warring factions and only under certain conditions. Unfortunately, United Nations forces are only mobilized once hostilities have ceased and their presence is symbolic. We saw this when UN forces failed to intervene in two fatal attacks on Greek Cypriots by Turkish Cypriots on the island a decade ago.

But is the establishment of a NATO force along the Israeli-Lebanese border a viable proposal for lasting peace? The alliance comprises member states with varying opinions. For example, Greece's army would be highly unlikely to send forces to a war zone. Also, the repercussions of a military force's involvement in a war zone are unpredictable. If a platoon were to get involved in a bloody clash, this could result in a general conflict between NATO and Hezbollah or - less likely - NATO and Israel.

KATHIMERINI English Edition, 26/07/2006