Benjamin Studebaker

Yet Another Attempt to Make the World a Better Place by Writing Things

Tag: Libya

France Goes to War

French President François Hollande has decided that France is going into Mali.  The nation of Mali has, in the last year, descended into civil war. The war in Mali has received relatively little mainstream media coverage and many westerners are, to our collective shame, unaware of what has been going on there and the role their own governments have played in creating the war. Today I would like to examine the Malian Civil War, its causes, the present state of affairs, and the ethics of intervening in it.

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Fox News, War on Men, and Benghazi

It has been a rough news cycle for the Fox network, with two recent stories, neither of which would quite, on its own, merit a response on my part but which, taken together, are sufficient to constitute a piece. The first, a recent piece written by Fox’s Suzanne Venker, entitled “The War on Men“, made the accusation that the feminist movement has made marriage less desirable for men by changing the nature of women in our society. The second, an interview conducted with Thomas Ricks, an award-winning military journalist, was cut short when Ricks gave an answer the network was displeased with. Rather than engage in prototypical left-wing Fox bashing, which you can find all over the internet and do not need this blog for, I will attempt to rationally dissect the two pieces in question to find where Fox’s problem lies, if indeed it lies anywhere. Read the rest of this entry »

Is the Alliance with Israel in the US National Interest?

One of the long-standing assumptions of American foreign policy is that the United States’ alliance with Israel is a high priority and, consequently, Israel must be defended. Today I’d like to look at where this assumption originates from, whether or not it still has applicability, and what are the consequences that arise from it for the United States in terms of the national interest.

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Obama at the UN

Barack Obama addressed the United Nations yesterday on the subject of Middle East policy. In the meantime, Mitt Romney continued to criticise the Obama administration on the same issue. Today I would like to discuss the remarks of each, and point out one key flaw at the heart of both men’s policies.

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9/11, Chris Stevens, and Proportionate Response

Late last night in Benghazi, US ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens was killed by a mob angered by a film called Innocence of Muslims, promoted by the famous American pastor Terry Jones, notorious for his burning of the Quran, the Muslim holy book. The film mocks Islam and Muhammad. Having viewed the trailer, it is clear that the film is not only quite intellectually vacuous, but the acting and production values are all very poor. It is the sort of piece that reflects more poorly on its creators than it does on those it cricitises. Yet, for all this, an embassy was stormed and an American ambassador killed, and on the anniversary of the September 11th attacks, of all days. There is a lesson in all of this–proportionality. That is today’s topic.

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