Nowhere Man 2
Q: What's the worst thing you can do with a gun?
A: Point it at someone when you have no intention to use it.
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan asked the United States this week to consider sending troops to Haiti to support a U.N. peacekeeping mission beset by mounting armed challenges to its authority, according to senior U.N. officials. ... He expressed hope that the United States would participate in a planned U.N. rapid reaction force, authorized by the Security Council earlier this month, that would have the firepower to intimidate armed gangs threatening the country's fragile political transition. Officials said that similar requests are being considered for other countries, including Canada and France. "We want scarier troops," one senior U.N. official said.
Annan told Rice that the Haitians "respect the U.S. military," according to a senior U.N. diplomat familiar with the closed-door meeting. Annan added that the United Nations may make a formal request for troops later, the diplomat said.
There are no suggestions by the Secretary General that the weapons carried the current Brazilian force are inoperative. So far as anyone can tell, their ordnance works just fine. So logically, what Kofi Annan really wants is someone, like the Americans, to relieve him of the onus of ordering someone to pull the trigger, though perhaps he hopes that the American reputation for 'scariness' will make that unnecessary. It's not as if the Brazilians have been totally helpless. The Post article continues.
In Port-Au-Prince on Wednesday, hundreds of U.N. peacekeepers raided a slum filled with gangs loyal to Aristide, killing six gunmen. The largely Brazilian force suffered no casualties during the eight-hour offensive. About 300 soldiers participated in the operation. Troops detained 13 suspected criminals and turned them over to Haitian police.
So Secretary Rice suggested to Kofi Annan that if he wanted scarier troops she would be more than glad to help him get the French and Canadians.
The plea from Annan comes weeks after Rice questioned the need for U.S. military intervention in Haiti, saying that it would be a "mistake" to abandon confidence in the ability of the Brazilian-led peacekeeping force to do the job. Rice provided Annan with no pledges of military support, officials said, but offered to help persuade France and Canada to contribute to the mission.
Not that there would be much wrong with Canadian or French weapons either. The post Nowhere Man argued that the worst form of demagoguery consisted in promising what you had no intention to deliver. Like 'Safe Havens' for Kosovars, safety for Rwandans, justice for the Darfur or an unswerving commitment to catch Mohammed Farah Aideed while withdrawing the armor and heavy weapons necessary to do it in the first place. Unable to deliver not because the peacekeeper's weapons are malfunctioning but because no one wants to take responsibility for using them. If America has any utility at all to transnational liberals it is as a garbage collector and checkwriter for all the dreams it peddles.