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War Fatigue Kills UK Appetite for War

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TEHRAN, March 7 (ICANA) – The British people are so desperately war fatigue that they would not be able to afford the costs of another war both financially and humanly, this time, in Libya.
Monday, March 07, 2011 10:06:01 AM
War Fatigue Kills UK Appetite for War

The pain and the cost of the British government's adventurism in Iraq and Afghanistan have drained the public and political will for military intervention in the North African country.

Although, the British Prime Minister David Cameron tried this week to persuade the political establishment of his country to prepare for an attack on Libya if the status quo persists and escalates into an all-out crisis, he even failed to convince his own party, let alone the Liberal Democrats with whom he has made a government alliance and the Labour party, which is in the opposition camp.

Britain at large does not have the stomach for a military intervention; in addition, the US government is also reluctant to get involved.

There is little enthusiasm even for enforcing a no-fly zone over the Libyan skies. When the British Prime Minister suggested that planning was under way for such a measure at the least, he was quickly slapped down by the officials at the US defense apparatus ­Pentagon who urged caution.

They pointed out that enforcing a no-fly zone requires that they first bomb Libya's air defences, which would be an act of war.

Now, why there is such a widespread reluctance to act, even though they know the Libyan dictator may have some chemical weapons at his disposal and may use any way to kill his own people. The reason, according to experts, lies in the costly mess the UK and US governments have created by invading Iraq and Afghanistan.

In Afghanistan, there is no guarantee that the conflict will end at all satisfactorily, because it certainly would not end in victory over the Taliban.

While the fight in the southern Afghan province of Helmand is taking toll on the British troops, there is no appetite at all for a fight in the desert of Libya.

Furthermore, David Cameron should have learned a lesson from a report commissioned by the Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee on the Afghan adventurism that he was provided recently. The report said that 10 years into the war, the military operation is not backed by appropriate political leadership.

It said Britain's rationale for continued involvement in the Afghan war was not convincing and Cameron's announcement to withdraw troops by 2015 was poorly explained.

So, it is, in some ways, the unfortunate and dangerous consequence of those two conflicts that has presented David Cameron and the US President Barak Obama with a dilemma.

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