When is humanitarian intervention justified?
Consider the United States’ recent record of military intervention: Beirut in 1982, Grenada in 1983, Somalia in 1992, Haiti in 1994, failing to intervene in Rwanda in 1994, Kosovo in 1999, failing to intervene in Darfur in 2003, Libya in 2011, failing to intervene in Syria in 2012. If countries like the U.S. do recognize some obligation to protect innocent victims of genocidal and non-genocidal violence, then why do we commonly witness such discrepancies with the allocation of humanitarian aid? Conflicts continue in South Sudan, Syria, the DRC, Venezuela, Ukraine, and so forth, and yet in many such instances assistance from the international community is not forthcoming.
Given what you have read about the U.N. R2P initiative and the various possible consequences of intervention (see, e.g., Kuperman 2008 and Cunningham 2010), when is implementing the Responsibility to Protect morally and/or politically justified? Choose one contemporary conflict—whether it has recently ended or is still on-going—and explain why you believe that the international community is right or is wrong in intervening. This will require you to give some background about the possible causes of violence that raise humanitarian concerns, and also to explain which form(s) of intervention (political, economic, military), if any, are justified in the case you choose.