Military Intervention That Worked
To jaded First-World citizens who have lost faith that their
countries will intervene in violent regions for any reason other
than oil, look to Sierra Leone.
Sierra Leone’s recent election on May 14th — its first since 1996
— passed peacefully, The Economist reports, in large part
because British troops intervened in the country two years ago and
helped subdue a raging civil war. In particular, British military
force suppressed the brutal Revolutionary United Front (RUF), a
group of rebels that in the past has cut off the hands of Sierra
Leoneans attempting to vote.
Why intervene? Forget oil or the fear that poverty-stricken
countries might breed terrorists. The Economist argues it was the
sheer violence of the civil war that made intervention so urgent.
‘A rabble of drugged-up teenagers with Kalashnikovs were
terrorising an entire country, raping, looting and skinning their
victims alive,’ The Economist reports. ‘A few professional soldiers
were able to stop them in a matter of months. Sierra Leoneans now
have a chance to rebuild their lives.’
Sierra Leoneans are now free to vote for the candidate of their
choice, with far less worry about losing their lives in the
process. Those without hands, The Economist states, ‘will vote by
stamping a big toe-print on the ballot paper.’