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Humanitarianism and the Invention of Emergency

From: Slouching Towards Sirte


In Chapter 5, Forte asks the reader to consider what the alternatives were to foreign intervention. He does this by criticizing popular myths that worked to legitimize military intervention and put them to the test in light of available evidence. He examines the role of the UN and human rights NGOs in ensuring that only one story of events in Libya could be told in international media. He also explores how Libya was repeatedly prevented from speaking for itself at the UN and at the revolving door between some NGOs and the U.S. State Department.



Maximilian C. Forte

Maximilian C. Forte is an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Concordia University in Montréal, Québec. He teaches courses in the field of political anthropology dealing with “the new imperialism,” Indigenous resistance movements and philosophies, theories and histories of colonialism, and critiques of the mass media. Max is a founding member of Anthropologists for Justice and Peace. He writes regularly for the Zero Anthropology Project, CounterPunch, and was formerly a columnist for Al Jazeera Arabic.