The New York Times, being an establishment paper, unsurprisingly backs Barack Obama’s military intervention in Libya.
Much more revealing, however, is this interview with Samantha Power, a senior director on the National Security Council.
I truly wonder if she believes the words she’s telling Politico:
Obama “has used his pulpit and a number of speeches … to kind of clear the brush that had gathered around the norms in previous years, rehabilitating some of the principles and cleaning up some of the associations,” she said, referring to international values of democracy and human rights.
“The words ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’ have come to acquire meaning and content that Barack Obama and his administration provided,” she said.
“His success in rehabilitating those norms or providing that ocntent has actually made it easier for other governments to stand with us,” she said. She didn’t refer directly to the coalition now battling the Libyan government.
One of the key elements of this “clearing of the brush,” she said, had been “recognizing that human rights had to begin at home, and that his task and the Administration’s task was to strenghten the power of our example.”
She cited Obama’s torture bank, his “return to the Geneva Conventions, and his push to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center.
“He also renounced the imposition of democracy by military force,” she said.
Power also made the case that the American decision to return to the United Nations Human Rights Council — a venue disliked by the U.S. for its focus on criticism of Israel — has paid off in the Libya crisis with the Council’s expulsion of Libya.
There are really few examples where the Obama administration has seriously changed policies from the Bush years. Look at Palestine, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, warrant-less wire-tapping in the US, continuation of Guanatanamo Bay and military commissions for “terror suspects”, no accountability for torture and the list goes on.
Judge Obama on his actions not pretty words.