When The Peace Cannot Be Kept

Humanitarian intervention is dead if the U.N. and the West are run out of Sierra Leone

Africa is a place where the West prefers to salve its conscience on the cheap. On the one hand, we feel a genuine moral pang when slaughter rages there. On the other, we are not willing to die ourselves to stop it. And sometimes a third factor makes the dilemma still more intractable: a warlord with absolutely no interest in peace. The result is Sierra Leone.

The shambles there now--a false peace broken, power-mad rebels imperiling a U.N. mission as they reignite a vicious civil war--defies the international community's good intentions. Many are rushing to tack another "failure" to the list...

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