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Submitted by Barry Finger on Tue, 22/03/2011 - 12:42

There are times in which democratic resistance movements come to a provisional, but practical agreement with imperialism on an enemy of my enemy basis. World War II was one of them and socialists recognized that. This is another. I fully appreciate David's concern that "humanitarian imperialism" is a figleaf for other purposes and cannot and should not be taken as face value. These reasons have been properly aired in the course of the exchange on the AWL site. If it were the case that imperialist aid to the Libyan democratic resistance would threaten the broader Arab revolution the way that helping Belgium, as Lenin put it, was impossible without strangling Turkey and Austria, then David's point would be perfectly valid. I think the resistance understands this also, which is why they are adamant in refusing to support imperialist troops on the ground. It would have been preferable if the Arab revolution had consolidated itself sufficiently to offer the Libyans an international brigade to topple Qaddafi. Short of that, the resistance is simply outgunned.

Socialists, including those on this website, did not call for this intervention. And properly so. But the resistance did and they defined the terms under which they would accept it. The practical question for socialists now is which alternative--- the defeat of the Libyan resistance or the defeat of Qaddafi with the aid of imperialism-- poses a greater threat to the Arab democratic revolution. There is simply no third alternative.

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