Libyan No-Fly Zone

Open Letter to Julia Gillard, Prime Minister of Australia

Dear Julia,

The peaceful Libyan who made this video:


weeks ago, still doesn't have a no-fly zone to protect him from Gaddafi's thugs. Both the Arab League and the Libyan rebels:


are clearly asking for a no-fly zone to be imposed on Libya. Note that if you simply recognize the new transitional council as the legitimate representative of the Libyan people, it won't even be an act of war.

It would be good if we could establish a general principle here. A major threat to newly-established democracies is the dreaded military coup. To counter this possibility, it would seem to make sense to have a general principle that in the event of any coup, an ad-hoc coalition is immediately created. The coalition's first priority is to make contact with many different military groupings in the country, e.g. by dropping satellite phones on about 50 different bases in the country with instructions to "call us if you are against the coup". The hope is that out of the different groupings, there will be some/many/most commanders that are loyal to the democracy rather than an unknown dictatorship. These pro-democracy allies can then be supported from the air as they begin to retake the country on their own (ie ideally not even special forces would be sent to assist in calling in air strikes).

Due to years/centuries of misinformation/bad press, the coalition should ideally not include Israel, USA or the previous colonial power. So in the specific case of Libya, that means the Italians should not be involved, but France and UK are perfectly fine.

Ideally there should be some "emergency contact" numbers that would allow an anti-coup/rebel base to immediately declare itself as an "interim national council" that can be recognized immediately such that flying planes into the other country's airspace is not actually an act of war.

Note that there is some prior art to this - in 1989 a Philippines coup attempt was quickly put down simply by US aircraft making an appearance at the request of the Philippines president.

Also, with regard to the cost of the operation, these wars of liberation should be considered an extension of foreign aid. The current foreign aid that is given is usually thankless, and often counter-productive, and almost always squandered. This new form of foreign aid should have highest priority.

Back to the specific case of Libya - I am humbly asking you to provide air cover for the Libyan rebels so that they don't get slaughtered from the air. Note that our armed forces are already paid for, and since we're not in a major war with anyone currently, our aircraft are not needed for any other theater of war.

Can we please set aside all domestic disputes until the good, peaceful people of Libya are free? Could you please confirm that it should take only a few hours for our planes to fly to rebel-controlled territory in eastern Libya?

Yours sincerely,
Paul Edwards
citizen of Australia

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