The slaughter unseen

The global community is intervening in certain geopolitical hotspots where a humanitarian crisis looms. But there’s a place that’s hidden in plain sight where massacre is an everyday occurrence, and it goes unnoticed by the power elite.

A friend of mine made this comment today: “I think Gaddafi did atrocious things to his citizens, and I’m always for the protection of life. However, I would respect our Commander in Chief more, and I think the world would too, if he did not support the mass slaughter that takes place in our country everyday.”

Excellent point. She was referring to President Obama’s speech Monday night on the Libyan crisis, and to one specific line. But read in full, it’s all remarkable when read in another context: the regard for human life.

Here’s a thought experiement. First, let’s snip:

But when our interests and values are at stake, we have a responsibility to act…

Moammar Gaddafi. He has denied his people freedom…and terrorized innocent people…

In cities and towns across the country, Libyans took to the streets to claim their basic human rights. As one Libyan said, “For the first time we finally have hope that our nightmare of 40 years will soon be over.” …

Innocent people were targeted for killing…

And given the costs and risks of intervention, we must always measure our interests against the need for action. But that cannot be an argument for never acting on behalf of what’s right…

To brush aside America’s responsibility as a leader and – more profoundly – our responsibilities to our fellow human beings under such circumstances would have been a betrayal of who we are. Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different. And as President, I refused to wait for the images of slaughter and mass graves before taking action…

This voice is just one of many in a region where a new generation is refusing to be denied their rights and opportunities any longer.

Now, let’s read that with regard for every single human life, everywhere, at all stages. And for the people who take action every day to save them.

Thank you, God Bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America.

And may God help us, and be merciful on us, all.