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Oct 14, 2007

“The Good guys” or “Allied Democracies Group”

Some time ago on the ALS website “Thoughts on Freedom” a debate raged for some time on the possibility of eliminating Mugabe and proposing a number of measures including privately funded options. After some time I came up with: -

“Remember when POL POT was still recognized by the international community as the governing authority in Cambodia, despite having been overthrown and virtually an outlaw in his own country, because the UN didn’t approve of the invasion of that country.

Who wept for this toad and his henchmen apart from the UN and left wing intellectuals?

States tend to support this course, in the name of stability as they fear the consequences if their own legitimacy is called into question.

No international recognition or protection should be afforded to governments which rule by terrorizing their own people no matter how they came to power in the first place, and no manner of throwing them out should be illegal, as long as the rights of the population of those countries are respected afterwards.

Having said this, some rules would have to be established, so it wouldn’t simply be a matter of what Tom Lehrer described as: -
They have to be protected, all their rights respected,

Till someone we like can be elected.”

Recently John Humphries posted an item “Military Foreign Aid Con Work” I had cause to raise it again and suggested the following;

I am as I said skeptical of the ability of the UN, and there were reports of deep psychological scarring among forces from Kosovo as result of inability to carry out their mission owing to the conditions placed on them.

I believe we should have some sort of alliance with like-minded countries to deal with these situations with terms of engagement, command and control residing with those countries, not the UN. It gets back to my good guys argument.

“Before this could be done, a whole new set of principles would have to be set in place, to set the circumstances under which such action could occur, the manner of carrying it out, and ensuring the independence of the subject country after the process.

Mere furtherance of the ‘police’ country’s political, economic, or territorial interests would not be a reason to violate the independence of another.

These principles would never find their way through the convoluted processes of the U.N. and would have to be done as a treaty of sorts by what we shall call for want of a better term, “The Worlds Good Guys”.”

This was taken up by Nicholas Grey with: - “Re: The World’s Good Guys. What we need is someone to start an Allied Democracies group, where membership would not be automatic- applying nations would need to let in inspectors to assure that the people were free to vote for whom they chose, and counting of votes was free and fair and noncorrupt. 

Nations like the US, with their dubious ‘Chads’ might not get in, (Nicholas is a cynic) but they’d only want to dominate it anyway! Allied Democracies would automatically extend most favored trading nation to each other, and hold military exercises together.

All that trading would promote growth, inducing other nations to become true democracies. The UN would then become a talk-shop for tyrannies, and fall out of favor, or could refashion itself. Win-Win all round!”

My reply was, “I can’t fault that idea; I like it, although I would probably opt for constitutional guarantees on a minimum standard of liberty rather than the electoral stuff. The important thing is not so much how the politicians get there, as what they can do to you when they are there.

I accept though that fairness in elections tends to go hand in glove with higher standards of freedom, but is not a guarantee. I think that if elections are free and fair, those politicians in government are more loath to pass draconian legislation, as they have to consider the possibility that the other side may get in and use it on them.”

I believe this could be a viable proposition along the following lines: -

(1) The above organization be of nations with a high standard of liberty and human rights.

(2) An agreed format for the requirement for intervention be declared.

(3) A mutual defense pact be formed among those countries.

(4) The nations within the organization strip tyrant nations of their recognition.

(5) Sanctions by the member nations in combination with (4) above be used in preference to military intervention.

(6) After removal of recognition a “third party” nation that is affected by the subject nation may take unilateral action, however must guarantee that the rights of the population of the subject nation afterwards or face action itself.

(7) The UN would be supported only when they are acting in a proper manner.

This pretty much concludes the points, at least those I can think of at the moment, but I feel there will be others.


  1. I'm not a cynic but this all sounds rather abstract to me.

    We've got the building blocks for "The Good guys” or “Allied Democracies Group” in NATO and SEATO but I'm not sure if you'll ever drum up enough enthusiasm for becoming the world's police force - especially among the Europeans.

  2. It is a bit abstract but that is because I mainly did it to develop some ideas and hopefully get some input from others.

    I am not really thinking of a world police force, however where things get out of hand such as the Balkans did, and Zimbabwe is, not to forget Burma, there comes a point where the public demand action.

    Quite a few people over here are upset that we declined to send troops to Sudan, even though we are stretched to the limit at the moment as I feel your forces are. We seem to have troops scattered all over the world at present.

    My feeling is that to send troops to Sudan under the control of the UN would be asking for trouble and would require sufficient force and support to fight their way out if the UN let them down.