- Adrian Hong
- New York, NY
- United States
Managing Director, Pegasus Strategies
This conversation is closed.
Is it possible for governments to intervene in human rights and humanitarian crises when there is no direct interest to do so?
Interventions usually involve a nation somehow already tied to the crisis zone - the US in Haiti, for example, by virtue of proximity, or groups that share ethnic, political or religious linkages. Granted, often governments send aid and responders to earthquake zones and other disaster areas, but the level of response is not approaching "intervention."
Could there be a circumstance in the future where one nation intervenes in another purely on principle and moral grounds? The interventions of World War I and II were often based on a nation's own security and alliances, and thus, involved some self-interest. What if the second nation does not invite them in - the situation of the Burmese government refusing international aid after Cyclone Nargis, or the North Korean government refusing to allow NGOs to travel freely to areas of greatest need, even when amidst famine costing up to a million lives. And do nations, particularly democracies, have an obligation to subvert dictatorships or totalitarian regimes, regardless of where they're based? Or ought nations simply "live and let live"?