Is 'humanitarian intervention' a facade for Western imperialism?

"Pacifism is a very good idea; unfortunately, it doesn't work," insists Bernard Kouchner, the former French foreign minister, co-founder of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and staunch advocate of humanitarian intervention.

But can a military campaign ever be strictly humanitarian? Or is the defence of human rights just a facade for imperialist agendas?

Kouchner is one of the architects of the concept of the right to interfere and has always argued that the West has a responsibility to protect human life, regardless of international borders.

Joining the discussion are Lindsey German, convenor of the Stop the War Coalition Barak Seener, Royal United Services Institute Hamza Hamouchene president of the Algerian Solidarity Campaign

Timeline: 100 years of endless UK war 1914-2014

In the 100 years since 1914 and the 'war to end all wars', Britain has been continuously at war somewhere in the world. Music by Vincent Burke: On Remembrance Day

Lyrics

On Remembrance Day
When the army prays
And the flags go up
To remind us that they do it for us

On Remembrance Day
By the flower display
Where the church explains
How the heroes keep the villians away

There I’ll tell it to the careless wind
I’ll tell you when the good guys win

On Remembrance Day
I should stay away
From the BBC
Where they tell you how a real man should be

And the children watch
As the vicar walks around with a cross
'Cause to love is fine
If you do it at a sensible time

Yeah, I’ll tell it to the careless wind
I’ll tell you when the good guys win
Yeah, I’ll save it for the next of kin
On Remembrance Day
On Remembrance Day
On Remembrance Day

 

Source: Vincent Burke

Stop the War Coalition 86 Durham Road London N7 7DT email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 020 7561 4830