One of the biggest arguments I had with a good friend recently was on how to treat sovereignty of countries. They believed that societies should be left to evolve and achieve balance on their own without external influence even from more civilized societies and even if the members of the society are being treated inhumanely by their leaders. Now being a beneficiary of western education, something I value very much and having lived through a regime of a dictator who ruled Kenya for 24 years never ready to quit it is obvious that I didn’t agree with them. Today Koffi Annan heads to Syria for talks with Assad. Koffi Annan who is the special envoy for UN and the Arab League over the almost one year old crisis is expected to mediate between the Syrian opposition and the president.
But is it still okay to talk to Assad? Well it’s not going to be first time that diplomacy has been attempted with Assad and yet the death toll is approaching 10,000. That’s 10,000 human lives sacrificed because one man wants to stay in power? What a shame for our civilization. How do the talks and the sanctions help? Sanctions have very little effect when it comes to leaders determined to stay on. There are many dictatorships that have survived sanctions before.
China and Russia remain to be a stumbling block in change. While they position themselves as respecting countries’ sovereignty their whole point is just to stand against America and other western countries on influencing regime change no matter how inhuman the said regime is. They’ve vetoed two UN resolutions calling for Assad to step down. They also stood against action in Libya and against Kenyan post-election violence being referred to the ICC. What an embarrassment Russia and China is. But their action this time over Syria is actually not favored by the Arab region. They’re messing up their own diplomatic ties.
In Zimbabwe we have a leader who is 88 years old, been in power forever and is even blocking a change in the constitution that is overall good for the nation. Reason being that the new constitution would stop him from vying for the presidency again. This is a leader who has caused great economic woes to his people and his rule saw the Zimbabwean dollar inflate by humorously high levels of up to 231 million %. At the height of inflation 80% of the population was living on less than a Euro a day and 50% was malnourished. When did it become okay to stand back and watch in the name of respecting sovereignty while millions of people are tortured so one man can stay president?
John McCain a U.S republican senator for Arizona has come out boldly in support of air strikes on Syria. Many politicians have tried to dissociate themselves from him because military action is not very popular among American voters right now. It’s true that air strikes will definitely result in loss of innocent life so this may not be a good option. However, when Assad decided it was okay to sacrifice thousands of lives to stay president he became a terrorist. If Osama could be sought and killed in his hideout without casualties then Assad whose location is well known should be easier to deal with. I say let’s take the bastard out. Let’s respect our fellow humans’ lives. Talking to Assad will not take us anywhere. It didn’t work with Ghadaffi, it didn’t work with Bashir, it didn’t work with Gbagbo.
I say strike, influence, change. We are all humans, the reason we appear to be of different cultures is because of the silly boundaries we’ve created. The boundaries have resulted in the Arabs treating their women like second class citizens while elsewhere they’re empowered and free living their full potential. It has resulted in parts of Africa starving to death while other parts of the world die of obesity. It has led to leaders torturing their people and shutting them up making themselves gods while in other parts simple mistakes by leaders end their rule because its people’s voice is powerful enough to execute that change, and they have the freedom to do so.
What’s the point of boundaries, sovereignty, citizenships? How do they help us move forward as a species? Despite being the most evolved species we still live in packs like wolves. We are one society: humans. The sooner we recognize that the better off we’ll be. For we’ll no longer let the neighbor torture others and declare sovereignty. Sovereignty my ass.