When the west intervened on behalf of the rebels fighting the Colonel Gaddafi regime in Libya, many observers believed the country would have true democracy and security once Gaddafi was removed from power. The likes of David Cameron, Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy were heralded as the saviours of Libya. What a long time ago that now feels, as Libya is now a failed state with the government struggling to keep hold of security as different armed militia struggle for dominance of the country where Islamic State is but one of the participants in the ongoing carnage. There is no chance of the UK, US and France going back in for round 2 any time soon.
In Iraq, 2003, Bush and Blair brought down the Saddam regime and like Libya democracy was going to break out and all would be rosey in the garden. Well it has not quite worked out like that, from day one here was an organised resistance to the western occupation, some by Baathists and others inspired if not directly by Al-Qaeda. As we have seen since Iraq was handed back to the Iraqis the insurgency against the Baghdad government has become a Sunni-Shia clash and Al-Qaeda in Iraq became Islamic State with all the resultant violence that has flowed from that.
Since then of course, the west and participating Arab nations have formed a coalition to bomb IS and other rebels from the air not only in Iraq but Syria too where the coalition forces unofficially are siding with Assad in their fight with IS and groups like Nusra Front. Meanwhile, the coalition is helping the Baghdad government stave off Islamic State advances with the help of Iran.
As bad as Gaddafi and Saddam were, they helped keep their countries under control and yes they were brutal but like a champagne top, they helped keep the fizz inside. But with the removal of those tops all the liquid has erupted out and thus we have the failed states of Libya and Iraq.
With Gaddafi gone we now have floods of boat people arriving in southern Europe to create a headache for the EU and with Saddam gone too we now have Islamic State so surely this must mean as much as we hate dictators when we intervene and overthrow them what comes next is unpredictable and in some cases harmful to our interests. #Terrorism