Monday, March 12, 2012

Guy Verhofstadt Pushing Stop Kony

Guy Verhofstadt  released a press statement today stating:
"Guy Verhofstadt, President of the ALDE (Liberal faction in the European parliament), is pleased to see a citizen initiative on this matter picking up such speed. "The Kony case is long lasting, and should have been resolved years ago. I very much support the Kony 2012 initiative to raise the issue worldwide and to ask for political action."
A statement that aims to defend his own foreign policy legacy in Africa. prime-minister Guy Verhofstadt's governments foreign policy in the great lakes region since 1999 has been to support Museveni and Kagame and to ignore the opposition parties. As Michael Deibert wrote today:
"The problem with Invisible Children's whitewashing of the role of the government of Uganda's president Yoweri Museveni in the violence of Central Africa is that it gives Museveni and company a free pass, and added ammunition with which to bludgeon virtually any domestic opposition, such as Kizza Besigye and the Forum for Democratic Change.
U.S. President Bill Clinton professed that he was "helping" in the Democratic Republic of Congo in the 1990s and his help ended up with over 6 million people losing their lives."
Verhofstadt's position on Rwanda gave a certain enlightened visionary aura to his non-Christian democratic coalition. The supposed mistakes made by previous Belgian governments were coincidentally all made by Christian Democrats, very convenient offcourse. His Rwanda and Congo political positions seem inspired by internal political calculations.

Guy Verhofstadt's strong intervenionist foreign policy positions are not uncontroversial. Dutch historian Arend-Jan Boekestijn, former Dutch MP of the conservative liberal VVD (which is member of ALDE in the European parliament) disagrees with him on intervention in Syria. Arend-Jan Boekestijn is against intervention in Syria for which he promptly got attacked on twitter for "wanting genocice in Syria".

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