I seem to recall a lot of people objecting to the US invasion of Iraq by saying that while they agree that Saddam was brutal and terrible, etc., it isn’t appropriate to use and risk US military forces for humanitarian missions. That if WMDs didn’t really pose an imminent threat to the United States, we had no right using our forces there.
I don’t hear many of these people complaining of the military assets used now to help tsunami victims (weakening us elsewhere in the world, and exposing fighters to risks of disease and accidents during hectic operations).
I can only conclude that they didn’t really believe that rescuing Iraqis was a genuinely worthwhile humanitarian goal; that helping people hit by a natural disaster is fine, but from a murderous regime is wrong.
It seems to me that many of them honor state power, even the worst sort, because it’s something they respect and would like to be held sacred so that they can more easily use it to impose their visions on others.