Back in the Spring and Summer of 2011, the humanitarian interventionists inside the Obama Administration were riding high. President Obama put American military force behind the overthrow of Qaddafi in Libya, on the grounds of preventing a humanitarian disaster in Benghazi. When Congress balked at the idea that he had brought the nation to war without even seeking tacit Congressional approval, President Obama issued an executive order creating an Atrocities Prevention Board inside the White House. Under the guise of preventing potential future atrocities, the President asserted the authority to wage preventive war. Several months later, he used a visit to the Holocaust Museum to announce the appointment of Samantha Power, a former protege of hedge-fund billionaire George Soros who never met a regime that she did not wish to change on "humanitarian" grounds as the head of the APB.
Since those halcyon days, things have gone rapidly downhill for the Obama gang promoting R2P ("Responsibility to Protect"). The Benghazi "victims" of Qaddafi's alleged atrocities turned out to be a nasty bunch of Al Qaeda afficionados or outright members. The massive stockpiles of arms accumulated by Qaddafi during his decades in power went flying off in every direction, fueling murderous jihadist insurgencies throughout Africa; and no small quantity of those weapons wound up in the hands of the Syrian rebels -- who themselves are riddled with Al Qaeda factions (the Nusra Front recently announced a marriage with Al Qaeda in Iraq).
It is now becoming more and more clear that the humanitarian interventions are to the liberal left what the neoconservatives are to the conservative right: faith-based interventionists who believe that the United States has a "moral" obligation to change regimes all over the globe if they don't neatly fit into the Western democratic camp. In an earlier time, during the heyday of the British Empire, such messianic interventionism was called for what it was: "The White Man's Burden." In today's politically correct world, the use of such direct language is out of the question. But the essence of the policy is identical, whether coming from the mouth of a humanitarian interventionist or a neocon.
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