As discussed in Episode 40 there is an immense issue with how we look at and deal with conflicts in the middle east. The issue stems from an emotional want to help our fellow man, but our incapability to stop violence without causing more violence. This issue culminates into the tyranny of the ideal, wherein we push peoples and countries to try and advanced their societies and government quicker than they are ready to do so. So, how can the US citizenry satiate their need to intervene in other countries’ seemingly unsolvable affairs while at the same time not causing harm to the people of the country in need? The following is a proposed alternative to how liberal countries, like the US, deal with foreign affairs that they deem reprehensible. I call this proposed solution “Libertarian Annexation”.
Looking back through history annexation appears to almost be the antithesis of the non-aggression principle: people coming into a land occupied by other people and violently taking the land in the name of their country’s leviathan. However, this appearance is only surface level, caused by mankind’s issue with the unjustified violence that often comes with classic annexation.
We would not have an issue with a country marching into another country and being welcomed by all as the great liberators and then assimilating the people into their society without ever raising a sword, would we?
No, I do not believe we would because no harm has been wrought to either the “invading” party or the “liberated” party, their societies have in a sense just combined to become one.
Some may get this far and argue that most likely unlawful or unwanted invasion of territory by a foreign force in and of itself is a violation of the non-aggression principle. I would argue against this idea in two places.
(1) That individuals do not and can not have legitimate claim to the physical land itself
(2) that property can only be possessed by people or individuals.
So, if our issue with annexation is with the violence that precursors it and not the actual taking of land then our solution is to enter a country and annex it for the “good of liberty” without ever raising arms in an aggressing manner.
The only situation where libertarian annexation is justified is if a civil war, like in the case of Syria, breaks out in a country. This situation is justified due to the fact that there already is a presence of force in the nation and the harm being caused to all people will more than likely occur regardless of intervention.
What libertarian annexation would look like is the libertarian country, we’ll use the US, sending its military into a currently non-contentious area of the country and establishing a neutral and de-weaponized zone. It is important to note here that this zone should avoid any large cities or areas of strategic importance to either side of the civil war as this would more than likely draw unwanted attention and conflict. The US should make this intention clear before entering the country and hopefully with the consent of the two warring parties (however, it is not required). Upon establishment, all civilians who entered would be removed of their firearms and taken note of. At this point of the process the area is one way: all entry, no exit. The US military is not allowed to support either side of the civil war and only engage if first fired upon. No incident of fighting is allowed to be justification for the US to enter into the civil war. After a year of entry the “ports” would be closed and the warring parties would be given a set of stipulations and a timeline similar to this:
- End the war (either through surrender or armistice) within two years or else the people of the neutral zone will begin to construct a town government. This will culminate in the construction of a two-year term mayor who is head of the executive branch, voted in two-year term legislature who make up a town board, and a judicial panel who govern via the US established law. After this point if the war is to end then the neutral zone would fold back into the Syrian government and become essentially a city in the country.
- At this point the borders of the town will become more porous to trade, but still under strict scrutiny by the US.
- If the war does not end within another four years then it will kick off the next step in annexation. The executive and legislative branch will craft a constitution wherein they establish the rights granted to the people and the people of the neutral zone will vote on the rights with a ¾ confirmation needed for each.
- At this point the new government will be allowed to form its own defense force and police force, but will still not be in charge of “border protection”
- After the second election wherein all positions have a possibility of being voted out of office, the US would begin the extraction process leaving the newly created country to fully govern themselves
- This process should not exceed 5 years and during which the presiding defense force should begin to phase into the US defense.
- Once fully extracted from the new country, the US should decide to leave no military/military base behind or renegotiate with the government to allow a military base to remain
A good example of this successfully working is the nation of Japan after their surrender to the United States after WWII. While the reason and way US occupied Japan is wholly unacceptable, if we ignore how we got there and instead focus on the occupation afterwards, we then see a country that went from an almost total authoritarian state to a democratic country that greatly reflects the rights agreed upon by the populace it governs.
While the timeline year requirements are open to some debate, if the objectives outlined in this idea are kept true then I believe that countries and libertarians can satiate their desire to intervene while minimizing or even possibly completely eliminating the harm that often comes with interventionism and not falling into the issue of moving a society beyond their current ideological capabilities.