Gaza Genocide Exposes Fraud of U.S.-led NATO’s Humanitarian Wars

Finian Cunningham, Strategic Culture Foundation, March 17, 2024 —

Twenty-five years ago, the United States and the NATO military alliance launched an illegal war on former Yugoslavia.

It was a watershed event that led to a series of US-led NATO wars around the world over the next quarter century until today – all on the basis of some lofty principle about “defending” human rights or democracy.

In the former Yugoslavia, the 10-week aerial bombing campaign that began on March 24, 1999, caused hundreds of civilian deaths and destroyed the infrastructure of what was then a well-developed socialist country.

The rationale for the military intervention was declared to be a “humanitarian” one – allegedly to protect civilians in a civil war.

International lawyer and author Dan Kovalik says that the “humanitarian” pretext for the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia was a sham.

The real objective, he says, was for the United States and its Western imperialist partners to create a precedent for systematically violating international law.

Kovalik is the author of the book ‘No More War: How the West Violates International Law by Using Humanitarian Intervention to Advance Economic and Strategic Interests’.

The NATO bombing of former Yugoslavia did not have legal authorization from the United Nations Security Council. It was a unilateral action more accurately defined as an illegal aggression – a war crime.

Kovalik notes that the historical period was a crucial one. During the 1990s, the United States was reconfiguring its imperial power in the post-Cold War era (1945-90). With the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991, Washington was proclaimed to be the sole superpower. He says that the United States wanted to establish its prerogative in the post-Cold War world of using its military power and that of its NATO partners wherever and whenever it needed for the purpose of advancing its strategic interests.

The US-led aggression against Yugoslavia was thus an opening to a new world order for American and NATO military power to be used at will in total disregard of international law and the United Nations Charter that had been drawn up in 1945 to prevent the kind of aggression that Nazi Germany had waged.

In short, it was a reinvention of imperialism dressed in a cloak of virtue.

Following Yugoslavia, which was balkanized as a result of the NATO aggression, the United States and its military partners embarked on a 25-year orgy of illegal wars and covert interventions. Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, Syria, and other places in the Middle East and Africa. Endless wars costing the Western public trillions of dollars and fomenting a litany of socio-economic problems from mass migration to mass poverty – all of these wars have been engaged in by successive US presidents, including Democrat incumbent Joe Biden and his Republican rival Donald Trump.

The current war in Ukraine – the biggest since World War Two – can be attributed to NATO’s relentless expansion towards Russia’s borders over the past 25 years. Washington and its Western partners claim to be defending democracy, human rights and international law in Ukraine against alleged Russian aggression. This Western narrative ignores the reality that the US and its NATO partners have militarized a NeoNazi regime in Ukraine for at least eight years before the current conflict erupted on February 24, 2022.

Daniel Kovalik concludes with a devastating argument: if the United States and its NATO allies are so concerned by humanitarian principles and democracy then why are they not intervening to stop the genocide in Gaza against Palestinians? Over 30,000 people – mainly women and children – have been killed by Israeli military offensive. Far from intervening to protect civilians from Israeli slaughter and starvation, the United States and its NATO partners are fully complicit in supporting Israeli war crimes – militarily, politically and diplomatically.

Western “humanitarian intervention” so readily embarked on elsewhere is exposed as a grotesque fraud to cover for US imperialist crimes.

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