I posted back in March on my thoughts on NATO intervening in Libya. It seems that my predicaments were almost correct. In the sense that NATO will support opposition in other countries who are strong enough to mount a large enough offensive to remove their own dictators.
If we look at what is happening in Syria, it seems President Bashar al-Assad has a strong enough military backing to stop any coup taking place against him. I guess in this case, all the west could do was try and impose sanctions, even though going to the United Nations was a complete failure. This was due to China and Russia threatening to use their vetoing pow er for the document drafted by several European nations condemning and trying to impose UN sanctions against Syria. – It truly showed how Russia, China and a few south American countries didn't want to be involved when the document was presented to the UN security council; as ultimately their representatives didn't even show up. However it seems now that Gaddafi has been killed it seems China is trying to squeeze-in diplomatic relations by recognizing the new power to which they once defied in an important UNSC meeting by abstaining to an important vote.
Now that the National Transitional Council seemingly are in charge and are the guys in power, opinions and decisions by these countries who originally abstained are changing their minds. Yet I don't think countries like China and Russia should have any decent diplomatic relations since their actions by abstaining could have possibly toured another outcome for the Libyan people had their been enough support against NATO partnered countries.
Talking about NATO. NATO was an essential part in the rebel force succeeding.
Otherwise Gaddafi's tanks would have rolled straight through into Benghazi. Whether the rebels/NTC could have repelled Gaddafi using their own force could have turned out very bloody, especially so in an urbanised area.
Did NATO countries do the right thing?
My opinion has not changed. I firmly believe NATO did the right thing by helping the rebels succeed in their campaign against Gaddafi.
However bar the protests in Libya it seemed the Libyan people were happy with their way of life or there were many security benefits from what I have read which Gaddafi gave to his people. Now I have heard the horror stories of what Gaddafi did to his own people, however he seemingly wasn't as ruthless as other dictators who murdered upon the thousands.
Whether Gaddafi did this is all speculation although he can be attributed for supplying money to terrorists (The IRA for example) or plotting terrorist attacks (Lockerbie bombing over Scotland as another example), however even then it seemed that the people of Libya didn't start uprising over that. So it makes me ponder why there were uprisings if Gaddafi was really treating his people 'alright'.
I guess I need to read and study more on the cause of the uprising in the first place. I guess the protests started small, influenced by other countries who's dictators were also overthrown. Then the reaction of Gaddafi by bringing in armed mercenaries must have started a stir upon the Libyan people which in-effect widened the support for the protests which took place.
Although it does kind of baffle me how easily the rebels attacked and gained control of Tripoli. Especially from sources I've read attribute Gaddafi to having over 76,000 troops in his armed forces. I wonder where were they? It seemed like to me he only had a hand full of guys to protect these cities. I have a feeling a lot of them defected to support the new cause to oust Gaddafi out of power. I look forward to reading news reports on this particular issue.