> 71, 2013 > The Responsibility to Protect: The Libya Test Case

Margaret H. Woodward and Philip G. Morrison
The Responsibility to Protect: The Libya Test Case

16 2013

The history of the air campaign over Libya has yet to be fully written. What might appear as yet another “operation in the Middle East” to the casual observer is in fact a revolution in global politics and the role of the United Nations (UN) as a global leadership body. The world collectively redefined what sovereignty is and what it means to the people of the world. Operation Odyssey Dawn consummated the resolve of the international community to protect the global citizenry from atrocities, even those originating in their own state. Odyssey Dawn also presented significant challenges since it was the first operation of its kind and was correspondingly governed by novel objectives, rules of engagement, and limitations. The result of the operation has far-reaching political and military implications that are important for both statesmen and military leaders to understand. To fully grasp the significance of Odyssey Dawn, it is important to understand the recent history that led to the events of the March 2011 air campaign.