"Bomb Voyage!"

Marcus's picture
Submitted by Marcus on Sun, 2011-03-20 18:13

Blown to Brits! Those were the newspaper headlines in today's News of the World.

Although this is just one of the tabloid newspapers, even the broadsheets are already calling it Cameron's War.

He has been the cheerleader for this military intervention, together with Sarkozy. It seems that Obama after asking the middle east to rise up is now hedging his bets and hiding like a coward, too frightened to come out equivocally on either side.

It has already been reported that:RAF strikes against Gaddafi's forces branded 'a success' as bombed out tanks and cars litter the roads near Benghazi

Last week the league of liberal media was saying this would never happen because Obama et al were not keen on it and Cameron was being foolish. Suddenly everyone's on his side, including begrudgingly most Liberals. This is the mark of a true leader, to actually lead, unlike Obama.

Yes this a UN mission, yes it involves the French and yes who knows if the opposition to the psychopath Gaddafi will be worse than him, but one thing is for sure - you have to admire Cameron for his balls.


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Gaddafi stays out of public view as Nato bombs Tripoli

Marcus's picture

Gaddafi stays out of public view as Nato bombs Tripoli

Questions are being asked across the Libyan capital about the leadership of Colonel Gaddafi, who has not been seen since he reportedly escaped the air strike 10 days ago in which his son was killed.

Libyan officials at the time confirmed that Gaddafi had been in the home of Saif al-Arab, when at least two bombs dropped by Nato jets hit the family compound.

Fighter planes returned to the skies over Tripoli on Monday night for the first time since that attack, hitting six targets in the early hours and hammering home to a tired city that the eight-weekcampaign has not run out of targets.

On the streets of the capital that he has ruled for almost 42 years, Gaddafi's supporters were wondering aloud about their leader's fate, while at the same time complaining that the UN-imposed siege was taking an increasingly heavy toll.

"Yes it's true that his absence is strange," said one man in an inner-city coffee shop. He was not at his son's funeral and I thought he would be."

Gaddafi's absence from the funerals of Saif al-Arab, and his three grandchildren who were also reportedly killed in the attack, was blamed on security fears, with government officials insisting that the strike on his son's home had been an assassination attempt on the leader himself.

"It's obvious that they tried to kill him and I imagine his security people have told him to keep a low profile," said one senior Libyan official. "But it is strange that he has stayed silent since."...

Whatever the reality, Gaddafi loyalists are becoming conditioned to a future without their leader solely commandeering centre stage. "Libya has to change and everyone knows this," said the senior Libyan official. "If reforms were announced when the people demanded them, we would not have been betrayed by the Arab League and by Europe and we would not be in this mess. It is a stalemate and something has to give. It has already changed actually, but no-one can admit that yet."

Britain expels Libyan ambassador

Marcus's picture

Britain expels Libyan ambassador

"Britain moved to expel Libya's ambassador tonight after the UK embassy in Tripoli was attacked by a mob.

Foreign Secretary William Hague said Omar Jelban was "persona non grata" and had been given 24 hours to leave the country.

Diplomatic missions belonging to a number of Nato states have been targeted after an airstrike reportedly killed Muammar Gaddafi's youngest son and three of his grandchildren."

Bomb Voyage

Wayne Nicholls's picture

Marcus I disagree. You said

“Yes this a UN mission, yes it involves the French and yes who knows if the opposition to the psychopath Gaddafi will be worse than him, but one thing is for sure - you have to admire Cameron for his balls.”

It is not balls that is required but an end to this phony idea of the “ forward strategy of freedom. ” Watching the battles on TV I cannot help but cringe when we continually hear about an attack by the anti -Gdaaafi forces “ after prays”. To me that means one think, these countries will be directed into a theocracy.

For example most of the Egyptians actually seek stricter Islamic rule and 95% prefer religion to play a larger role in politics.

This is what Cameron’s balls mentality is helping to achieve. He thinks “ The West must continue to spread democracy but without resorting to military force. ” he obviously has a personal definition of force.

The West is involved in a cultural war which need to be consolidated at home first.

Libyan forces loyal to Gaddafi attacked on retreat from Misrata

Marcus's picture

Libyan forces loyal to Gaddafi attacked on retreat from Misrata

"Forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi claim to have come under fierce attack as they tried to retreat from the rebel-held city of Misrata.

The Libyan government earlier said Nato air strikes may force it to withdraw from the port city, 120 miles east of Tripoli, and let tribes loyal to Gaddafi deal with rebels.

Early this morning, Nato bombs hit what appeared to be a bunker in Gaddafi's Tripoli compound. Government spokesman Moussa Ibrahim said three people were killed by the "very powerful explosion" in a car park.

Reuters reporters said they saw two large holes in the ground where the bombs had penetrated what appeared to be an underground bunker.

The strike came after the most senior American military officer admitted the conflict was heading towards a "stalemate" despite more than a month of allied strikes against Gaddafi's forces.

Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the US military's joint chiefs of staff, said Gaddafi's ground forces had been degraded by 30% to 40%.

But he warned that Nato forces faced a protracted military engagement in the civil war-torn country.

"It's certainly moving towards a stalemate," Mullen told American troops during a visit to Iraq's capital, Baghdad, on Friday. "At the same time, we've attrited somewhere between 30% and 40% of his main ground forces, his ground force capabilities. Those will continue to go away over time."

He said the allies would "put the squeeze" on the Libyan dictator "until he's gone".

"Gaddafi's gotta go," he said."

British army chiefs are sent to Benghazi

Marcus's picture

Britain risks accusations of 'mission creep' as army chiefs are sent to Benghazi to offer military advice to rebels fighting Gaddafi

"A team of top British Army officers is being sent to Libya to advise rebels who are locked in a bitter conflict with Colonel Gaddafi's forces.

The UK group will be deployed to the opposition stronghold of Benghazi, Libya's second city, in a mentoring role to help leaders who are co-ordinating attacks on the dictator's army.

The announcement came after a Royal Navy submarine launched cruise missiles on Libyan targets, with RAF warplanes attacking communication masts.

And up to 1,000 sick or injured Libyans were evacuated from the battered city of Misrata after the UK and other nations chartered ships to carry the stranded residents.

There will be renewed hopes of a breakthrough in the stalemate as handful of experienced officers will join a British team in Benghazi working with the opposition National Transitional Council (NTC).

But Up to 4,000 more are still believed to be trapped in the town, which has been relentlessly bombarded by Gaddafi's troops in recent weeks.
Britain has promised to play a lead role in the evacuation and will provide vital medical supplies to anyone caught up in the violence across western Libya.

But commentators have suggested that Britain's assistance could be going beyond the original brief which was to prevent government attacks on civilians.
The said that 'mission creep' appeared to be setting in. The term describes how a project expands beyond its original goals.

Critics highlighted how U.S. president John F Kennedy's decision to increase the number of 'military advisers' in Vietnam led to a full-scale war."

Barack Obama, David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy pledge to fight

Marcus's picture

The bombing continues until Gaddafi goes

The Libyan leader will make his country a pariah state. To leave him in power would be an unconscionable betrayal.

By David Cameron, Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy

"Together with our Nato allies and coalition partners, the United States, France and Britain have been united at the UN Security Council, as well as the following Paris Conference, in building a broad-based coalition to respond to the crisis in Libya. We are equally united on what needs to happen to end it.

Even as we continue military operations today to protect civilians in Libya, we are determined to look to the future. We are convinced that better times lie ahead for the people of Libya, and a pathway can be forged to achieve just that...

However, so long as Gaddafi is in power, Nato and its coalition partners must maintain their operations so that civilians remain protected and the pressure on the regime builds. Then a genuine transition from dictatorship to an inclusive constitutional process can really begin, led by a new generation of leaders. For that transition to succeed, Colonel Gaddafi must go, and go for good. At that point, the United Nations and its members should help the Libyan people as they rebuild where Gaddafi has destroyed — to repair homes and hospitals, to restore basic utilities, and to assist Libyans as they develop the institutions to underpin a prosperous and open society...

Britain, France and the United States will not rest until the United Nations Security Council resolutions have been implemented and the Libyan people can choose their own future."

Libyan rebels should receive training funded by Arab countries

Marcus's picture

Libyan rebels should receive training funded by Arab countries, says Britain

British defence sources are also looking to hire private security companies to help strengthen rebels' position on the battlefield.

"Britain is to urge Arab countries to train the disorganised Libyan rebels, and so strengthen their position on the battlefield before negotiations on a ceasefire, senior British defence sources have indicated.

The sources said they were also looking at hiring private security companies, some of which draw on former SAS members, to aid the rebels. These private soldiers could be paid by Arab countries to train the unstructured rebel army.

In what is seen in effect as the second phase of the battle to oust Muammar Gaddafi, it is now being acknowledged that the disorganised Libyan rebels are not going to make headway on their own. Nato member countries are looking at requesting Arab countries, such as Qatar or the United Arab Emirates, to train the rebels, or to fund the training. Qatar and the UAE are already involved in the Nato-led no-fly zone.

Some cabinet sources said that another Arab country that might be willing to train the rebels is Jordan. They are thought to have the best-trained officers, and are possibly the best army in the region, one Cabinet source said. The training of the Libyan rebels might take as long as month to turn them into an effective force capable of holding ground, and organise flanking manoeuvres. A source said: "They're not advancing, they're just driving up the road, and when they see guns drawn they turn round and go back again."

The British decision to find ways to train and equip the rebels is a further sign of the determination of the coalition administration to drive out Gaddafi. It is argued that the training, if requested by the rebels, would not be in breach of the UN resolution as it would be covered by the mandate allowing "all means necessary" to protect the civilians from attacks by Gaddafi."

Good Stuff From Diana West

Doug Bandler's picture

Diana West is one of the best Conservative commentators on our ME foreign policy. Here are some good blog entries by her:

http://www.dianawest.net/Home/...

http://www.dianawest.net/Home/...

http://www.dianawest.net/Home/...

http://www.dianawest.net/Home/...

One of the links is about a proposed 34 billion dollar city to be built north of Kabul; a "public/private" project. This is insanity.

Good Points Richard

Doug Bandler's picture

I'm no expert, but what I take from all the talk of democracy is that the socialists have done a great job of selling it.

This is what I think too. The people pushing democracy in the ME are mainly the NeoCons (some Demoncrats too though). They are all watered down socialists. So we have two things wrong here. 1) A ME population that is not primed for liberty in the least. 2) A US government that is semi-socialist itself and does not have the ability to spread liberty to anybody.

I don't think that nation building - in the sense of spreading freedom, not democracy - is wrong, if we are wealthy enough to and it's in our interests to, but it needs to be done strategically based on sound principles and an intimate knowledge of the forces at play and a clear view of the outcome we want.

I'll agree with this. I think you are right not to rule out nation building on principle. Foreign policy must be contextual of course. And you are also right that our policy should be to spread genuine freedom/liberty not "democracy" (god how I hate that word). But I still say that in our current situation, the US should not even be trying to spread freedom. We should should choose non-nation-building war strategies that involve the least amount of resources and lives (our soldiers). I also hold out the option that we may need to confiscate large sections of ME oil fields. But that too is a pipe dream in today's altruist world.

Doug

Richard Wiig's picture

I don't know if it's proof, they are only a few hundred demonstrators, not thousands, but it's certainly a sign that no nation of liberty has sprung up there yet, and how can it when Afghan law must be based on the Koran? I don't think that nation building - in the sense of spreading freedom, not democracy - is wrong, if we are wealthy enough to and it's in our interests to, but it needs to be done strategically based on sound principles and an intimate knowledge of the forces at play and a clear view of the outcome we want. I'm no expert, but what I take from all the talk of democracy is that the socialists have done a great job of selling it. Democracy will never deliver liberty to the ME until the people there are liberty minded, so that should be our primary goal. We shouldn't help unconditionally, which is what is happening now. Also, Iran, which apparently has the strongest liberal minded movement was ignored. Obama even stopped funding the democracy organisations there that were helping get accurate information on human rights abuses, yet he steps into Libya to help what looks to be people rife with anti-American jihadis. It's very topsy-turvy.

Richard

Doug Bandler's picture

That clip right there is proof why nation-building and democracy spreading in the ME will never work. After 10 years of attempting to "win the hearts and minds" of the Afghans, look how they respond. This is a savage people; a savage Islamic people. There is no "uplifting" them. We were stupid and naive for even trying.

American foreign policy needs to be rethought from the ground up. We need to drop the nation-building, democracy-spreading and "R2P" humanitarian crap. We need to understand that our enemy is the Ummah and Islam itself. Altruism is killing us. Its difficult to watch.

If it makes everyone love

Richard Wiig's picture

If it makes everyone love America it hasn't worked on these people:

Beck vs O'Reilly...

Marcus's picture

...have an argument over Libya intervention. I side with O'Reilly. (Starts about 2 minutes in.)

Two UN staff beheaded and eight others murdered!

Marcus's picture

Already the liberal press are saying that Jones is responsible for the murders. Not the Muslims themselves, of course. You have to wonder if Obama wont follow their lead.
.................................................................................................................................................................

Two UN staff beheaded and eight others murdered in protest against U.S. pastor who burnt Koran

"Ten United Nations staff were murdered - two by beheading - after extremists stormed their compound in northern Afghanistan today.

Protesters broke into UN offices in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif after a demonstration against Koran burnings in the U.S. turned violent.

A small breakaway group attacked the UN compound, throwing stones and climbing on blast barriers to try to gain entry.

A UN spokesman confirmed that workers had been killed at the mission, but he said the situation on the ground was still confusing and it was difficult to 'ascertain facts'.

Staffan De Mistura, the top UN representative in Afghanistan, was heading to Mazar-i-Sharif to handle the matter personally, he added.

Over a thousand demonstrators had flooded into the streets of the normally peaceful city after Friday prayers, where they heard reports about the Koran burnings in America last month.

Mohammad Azim, a businessman in Mazer-i-Sharif, said that clerics with loudspeakers had driven around the city in two cars to invite residents to the protest.

On March 21, pastor Wayne Sapps set fire to a copy of the Muslim holy book at a church in Florida.

He was accompanied by Terry Jones, another pastor who hit the headlines last year after threatening to burn copies of the book on the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks.

After Sapp set fire to the text, he let it burn for ten minutes."

Libyan Rebel leader fought US troops in Afghanistan...

Robert's picture

Story here

Note the following:

"Al-Hasadi told Il Sole 24 Ore that he personally recruited “around 25” Libyans to fight in Iraq. “Some have come back and today are on the front at Ajdabiya,” al-Hasadi explained, “They are patriots and good Muslims, not terrorists.” “The members of al-Qaeda are also good Muslims and are fighting against the invader,” al-Hasadi added."

Just whom are we 'rescuing' from whom in this military effort?

I guess Barry Obama is going to enlighten us on Monday. Only about a week after starting a war, but better late than never.

I have a suspicion that the textbook definition of "Cluster Fuck" is about to be rewritten to say "see US/NATO intervention in Libya in March 2011."

And need I remind you again

Robert's picture

That the US is already at war and that by comparison Europe is on a bloody beach holiday?

That the US has been at war for 10 years and that damned near every soldier and marine in the country has done at least one tour of duty.

Meanwhile, with the exception of the UK, every other NATO country has sent token forces. And even then has restricted their use to the point that they are impotent.

Have a read of this account from The Australian about how two Dutch Attack Helicopters refused to help an Australian unit pinned down by superior Taleban forces.

The Italians and Spaniards left the Iraq coalition after separate suicide bomb attacks on their citizens.

The Germans sent about 20 blokes without sufficient equipment to do anything other than be body bag fillers.

Even the British short changed the Afghanistan effort. They had one or two Regiments cover Helman province (a area that would have been assigned to a Division or a Corps in yesteryear) on foot!

On foot! FFS! Your politicians couldn't even be bothered sending over enough helicopters to protect your men from the Taliban's most effective weapon: the road-side bomb. Instead your lot has been dicking about trying to up-armor wheeled vehicles. Great, so they double in weight and can't be air transported into the theater except by behemoth Russian helicopters and cargo aircraft that your military has to charter... And after all that effort, the Taliban only has to respond by packing a couple more lbs of explosive into their bombs.

If the Europeans had committed troops and equipment on a scale equal to the USA the coalition would have killed Bin Laden and crushed the Taliban by now. And the casualty rate would have been less because you wouldn't be asking 2 blokes on foot, to clear 200 square miles of Taliban.

But Europe didn't surge troops in any meaningful way. Only the US & UK did. And this even though US still has troops in Iraq, who are still armed, wearing vests and patrolling the rural areas. Only you won't read that in the NYT because it would make Obama look bad.

Well now you've gotten a US President who shares Europe's point of view of America, muslims and war. The result? He won't selflessly step up and muck out a third Middle Eastern latrine.

Now you know how it feels.

And let's not forget that the US has contributed forces. Just not a decisive number. Just like Europe in Afghanistan.

But instead of just getting on with the job of killing Gaddaffi yourselves, you complain about this not being a European problem. Just think about that for a minute. You've decided that something needs to be done, but it isn't important enough to unilaterally do it yourselves if necessary.

And it isn't a question of Gaddaffi's forces out-gunning you. Gaddaffi's last war was in Chad. And he got his arse handed to him. Chad's armoured forces consisted of Toyota Hilux's with a machine-guns on the back-decks.

Two weeks ago something like 20% of Gaddaffi's serviceable ground attack aircraft surrendered to a Maltese Police constable.

A century ago you only had to look sideways at a Frog, a Hun or a Pom and the bastards would be fixing bayonets and shouting crap like "Death before dishonor" before marching, wave upon wave, into the collective maw of a cannon phalanx.

Now it seems Europe can't go to the potty without a US serviceman there to save them the trouble of wiping themselves.

That's NOT an improvement.

No Marcus, the question you should be asking is "What in the fucking hell happened to Europe's testicles?"

Does the US President always need to be dragged...

Robert's picture

Oh come on.

Please tell me you know more about how the US system of government works than that statement implies. The President doesn't have the unilateral power to declare war.

As for FDR being shy about joining in against Hitler: you need to brush up on your history.

Lead lease ring a bell? A small matter of the 50 odd V & W class destroyers that the US transferred to the RN in exchange for basing rights. Effectively replacing (in quantity not quality) the losses that the RN's destroyer flotillas had suffered to that point.

Or how about the US replacing the British Garrison in Iceland five months before Pearl Harbor. Iceland being an important refueling point for Escort ships and a Danish protectorate prior to Britain's bloodless annexing of it in May 1940. The US action effectively eliminated the possibility of a German attack on the island prior to December 1941. Remember Bismark and Hipper passed the Denmark Strait in May 1941 and could easily have bombarded the Island into submission or worse, landed disembarked troops as the German heavy units did in 1940 when Norway was captured.

Or how about the US extending the "Pan-American Security Zone to a point just west of Iceland in April 1941. An action akin to Thatcher's declaring a 200 mile exclusion zone around the Falkland islands in 1984.

The first US Navy ship sunk in WWII was the USS Greer. She was sunk in Sept 1941 by a U-boat within that 'Security zone.' Greer was an ASW vessel, much like the USS Reuben James which also fell to a U-boat a month later in the same area. At the time she was escorting convoy HX156. Of her 156 man crew, only 44 survived.

Three more months would elapse before the US president was dragged into World War II.

FDR did every bloody thing he could to goad the US people into going to war.

Why is this only a European problem?

Marcus's picture

When Gaddafi has committed terrorist acts against US citizens?

Does the US President always need to be dragged kicking and screaming into a conflict to realize who the bad guy is, just like in WWII?

Damn right, Robert

Ross Elliot's picture

"But until then, the US has better things to do. To paraphrase Coolidge: the business of America is business. It's about bloody time we got back to it starting with removing the anti-capitalist elements inside our Federal, State and municipal governments. "

As I've said previously, the Chinese, et al, are more than happy for America's carrier battle groups to do their job, protecting the trade routes and intimating harsh penalties for wayward behavior. America is being played for a ripe suck.

This can't go on. America is failing, and the strength it projects has a limit. Obama may be exacerbating this trend, but the rot has been years in the making. The America I love will retrench, restart and come back stronger, projecting its power to protect American capitalist ideals.

The NATO clusterfuck over the Libya situation is proof positive that the Europeans need to handle their own backyard.

Sam

Richard Wiig's picture

Here's an opinion piece that has another point of view. I don't know who wrote it. I came across it on a muslim website, which is why it says "kuffar source". That's what they call non-muslims there.

Why the Mideast revolts will help al-Qaeda

The rush in the West to proclaim the advance of democracy in the Arab world has led to the propagation of an ill-conceived and dangerous corollary: that the revolts in the Middle East and North Africa also mark the irrelevance of al-Qaeda and other Islamist militant groups.

"Al Qaeda Sees History Fly By," declared the New York Times. "Uprisings Put al Qaeda on Sidelines," asserted the Wall Street Journal. And Western politicians, academics and even intelligence specialists appear to agree that, with peaceful and pro-democratic change afoot in the Middle East, the world has moved beyond al-Qaeda, leaving Osama bin Laden writhing in the dust.

If only that were true. Since bin Laden declared war against the United States in 1996, al-Qaeda's main goals have included the destruction of the Arab world's tyrannies and of Israel. The events of recent weeks only move al-Qaeda closer to those objectives.

Today, the dictatorships of Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali in Tunisia and Hosni Mubarak in Egypt are gone. Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh is little more than the mayor of his capital city of Sanaa. And Col. Moammar Gaddafi may be on his way out in Libya, unless some knee-jerk U.S.-led intervention saves him by refocusing Libyan and other North African Islamists on what they consider an infidel threat greater than Gaddafi.

As for Israel, the fall of Mubarak - and the unsealing of Egypt's border with Gaza - pose a security disaster equal to the destruction of Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq. Israel's two anti-Islamist shields to the east and to the west are now history.

All of this amounts to an enormous strategic step forward for al-Qaeda. That these victories have come with virtually no investment of manpower or money by the terrorist network, and with self-defeating applause from the Facebook-obsessed, Twitter-addled West, only makes them all the sweeter for bin Laden.

Peering into the future, the autocrats' probable successors likewise offer abundant good news for al-Qaeda and kindred groups. In Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Yemen and any other nation with a U.S.-supported tyranny that sinks in the weeks and months ahead, the role of Islamist groups will become larger - and over time perhaps dominant - if only because the populations in play are almost entirely Muslim and because Islamist groups have the most effective nationwide infrastructures to replace the old guard. And most do and will receive funding, openly or covertly, from always generous donors in Saudi Arabia and other oil-rich Sunni gulf states.

Each new regime is likely to host a more open, religion-friendly environment for speech, assembly and press freedoms than did Mubarak and his ilk. So it will be easier for media-savvy Islamist groups - whether peaceful or militant - to proselytize, publish and foment without immediate threat of arrest and incarceration. Indeed, Washington and its Western allies will dogmatically urge the new governments to maintain such freedoms, even as the Islamists capitalize on them.

The Islamists will follow the formulas for gaining power and then governing that are detailed in the Koran and the Sunnah, the prophet Muhammad's sayings and traditions. Western experts have long failed to recognize these documents as Islam's equivalent to the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Federalist Papers. In Egypt, for example, governance based on them would be far more familiar, comfortable and culturally appropriate than anything opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei and his followers could offer.

The blessing of the Arab revolts for al-Qaeda and its allies also can be seen in the opening of prisons across Egypt, Tunisia and Libya. In Egypt alone, the news media are reporting that at least 17,000 prisoners have been freed. Many of those released are not thieves and murderers, but Islamist firebrands that the regimes had jailed to protect their internal security - at times even at the request and with the funding of Washington and its allies. Indeed, many were incarcerated as a result of quiet cooperation between Western and Arab intelligence services; their release is a major setback for these efforts.

So al-Qaeda and like-minded groups are now being replenished by a steady flow of pious, veteran mujaheddin, each of whom will never forget that U.S. and other Western funds helped keep them jailed by Arab tyrants.

The revolts also mean that the United States and its Western allies must take on a far greater share of the counterterrorism operations that they previously conducted with the help of Arab regimes. The days of Mubarak, Saleh, Gaddafi and Ben Ali doing the dirty work for American, European and Israeli counterterrorism efforts are over. Soon it will be U.S. and Western special forces and intelligence services that will be ordered to capture or kill militants in Muslim lands - individuals that our tyrannical friends used to dispose of for us.

How tragic that in the war being waged against the United States by al-Qaeda and its allies precisely because of Washington's relentless intervention in the Islamic world, the U.S. government will now be forced to intervene even more - or sit on the sidelines and watch al-Qaeda build or expand bases from which to threaten U.S. security.

Of course, open and vociferous participation by Islamists in the demonstrations in Cairo, Tunis, Tripoli and elsewhere would have earned a lethal and Western-supported response from Mubarak, Ben Ali and Gaddafi. So al-Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood and other groups simply used a talent that long ago atrophied in the West - the ability to keep their mouths shut. As usual, the West wrongly concluded that silence connotes not strategy, but impotence and irrelevance.

Bin Laden and his peers are counting on the fact that the uprisings' secular, pro-democracy Facebookers and tweeters - so beloved of reality-averse Western journalists and politicians - are a thin veneer across a deeply pious Arab world. They are confident that these revolts are not about democratic change but about who, in societies where peaceful transfers of power are rare, will fill the vacuum left by the dictators and consolidate power. These men also know that the answer to that question will ultimately come out of the barrel of a Kalashnikov, of which they have many, along with the old tyrants' weapons stockpiles, on which they are now feasting.

[Kuffar-Source: WashingtonPost]

Richard,

Sam Pierson's picture

You may be right, it's just hard to know. But something's going on in the ME right now with all these protestors calling for the exit of their longtime overlords. They're emboldened. It's even happening in Syria now. No doubt some bad guys will try get in on it but overall it doesn't seem their style. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable than me on all this might give an account. I think there's good reason to believe that the democracy planted in Iraq under Bush is now giving birth to this new unrest.

If the West had not have intervened in Libya, the rebellion would have been snuffed out (probably viciously) and all those voices across the ME would go silent while the establishment dictators would breathe relief and initiate a crack down themselves. I'm pleased the likes of Cameron would not let that happen and I think it's a few cruise missiles well spent.

I'm pretty sure the mullahs of Iran are not feeling so comfy about things right now, and the 'dissidents' within Iran would be a little heartened.

I say it because that is

Richard Wiig's picture

I say it because that is essentially what the vote has done; played straight into the hands of the Islamists. What they most wanted to protect was article two, and they've done it. Egypt is now headed down a path that's going to make it harder for America and the West to defend against the Jihad. That of course will change if the protests were truly about freedom, as opposed to the right to vote, but that hasn't been made clear yet.

"In Egypt the vote has just gone 80% in favour of Islam."

Marcus's picture

It was a referendum for constitutional change.

Yes the muslim brotherhood favoured it, but they did not draft it themselves.

So how can you say that this vote was in favour of Islam?

By your logic American overwhelmingly voted in favour of Islam when they voted in Obama because he was supported by Louis Farrakhan.

Robert

Doug Bandler's picture

Pure fucking brilliance! What are you always screaming at me for? I agree with every word you said. Really. Best foreign policy post I've seen at SOLO for awhile.

Besides, I suspect that the greatest favor that the US could do the Middle East is to find and develop its own domestic oil reserves. One wonders how long the Middle East would remain a hotbed of terrorism once oil hits $1 a barrel and the bastards have to work for a year to pay for the rocks with which they stone their women to death.

I'm stealing this. Genius.

Sam

Richard Wiig's picture

Freedom hasn't been brought to Iraq. In actual fact Islam has strengthened in Iraq, and that doesn't help anyone one bit. What's happening in Libya right now is that we are lending a hand to some of the most virulent anti-western forces there is. That's not going to help us one bit either. Freedom won't be advanced; Islam will be - unless of course we follow through and make demands. What are the chances of that happening? Zero. Someones done a great job at selling democracy, but democracy doesn't equate to freedom. It equates to sanctioning whatever the majority vote is going to be. In Egypt the vote has just gone 80% in favour of Islam. It seems to me that what we're moving towards is a safer environment for anti-Western forces. It's not a shift for the better, it's a shift for the worse.

Actually...

Ross Elliot's picture

...I think Obama got pushed into this despite his best [read:worst] lefty intentions.

He's a clusterfuck in search of a good cause. He's a disaster. As Lindsay has written, the Anti-American President.

I don't think for one second that the US should have done a damn thing with regards to Libya. Let Sarkozy and Cameron stick their dicks in the mincer. The world will blame America regardless. But it shows that under stress Obama is nothing more than a crossdressing Jane Fonda ala Barbarella.

It was wrong of me...

Marcus's picture

...to criticize the US. The military are to be applauded.

It is really just Obama and parts of his administration that are the targets of my anger.

"With 140,000 "soft cock" Americans fighting Islamic nutters in Iraq and Afghanistan so the US is hardly well positioned for an additional campaign in the Med - not with the nutter in North Korea rattling his sabre."

Just because you can't do everything doesn't mean you should do nothing. (Both in internal and external politics).

The US and UK don't need to occupy Libya, which they don't have permission to do anyway, just kill or weaken Gaddafi from the air.

A tory politician on the radio put it well last night.

He said we only attack countries where it in our interests to do so. If our interests don't coincide with need to attack or contain some dictator, then we probably will leave them alone. This is in our interest because of Libya's closeness to Europe. (I don't agree with that last part exactly, I would have said the oil and Gaddafi's history of terrorism against the west was more the source of interest. It has already been reported that Gaddafi is planning fresh terrorist attacks against the UK, and that was before we even started bombing.)

In the context of Sangin District

Robert's picture

of Helmand province: winning means killing every last stinking Taliban. It means destroying their fixed positions and demolishing their ability to use Helmand as a staging post for a larger effort into Afghanistan and beyond.

Why? How did it get to that point?

Because in 2006 the Taliban fought the undermanned British taskforce to a standstill. They halted the English offensive and forced them into a defensive posture that persisted because the British Government refused to send enough troops and equipment to destroy the Taliban. The Brits even negotiated a truce with the Taliban elements in the region. A truce which the Taliban broke. The British left and a 4000 man USMC force took over. Too few IMHO, but enough to begin to push the Taliban out of the province at grievous cost to the valiant 5th Marine Regiment.

The UK squaddies did their best with what they had. They attempted to compensate for their lack of numbers with raw courage and professionalism. They killed many Taliban, taking heavy losses in return and yet they were unable to displace their enemy. The fault for their reverse lies with their spineless sodding leaders all of whom believed that you can fight a war without sending sufficient soldiers in to take and hold ground.

True, the objectives in Afghanistan and Iraq are sub-optimal and any gains stand a good chance of being reversed in the future - especially with Barrack snubbing fledgling revolts in Iran. But at least in Iraq and Afghanistan land is being occupied and denied to our current enemies. That is the minimum requirement in war. That's not sufficient IMHO, but it could be worse.

Observe the situation in the current Libyan campaign where taking ground with does not appear to be a major goal. I would hope that NATO is sending in special forces to lead the Rebels to victory over Gaddaffi. If they are, NATO is unlikely to announce it until after the Rebels begin to win in set piece battles, and given the previaling Liberal ethos in Europe they may never willingly announce that they had a larger role in displacing Gaddaffi.

But I have a bad feeling that this is just a multi-million dollar PR exercise. And if so, then the blame lies not only with Obama but with NATO too.

With 140,000 "soft cock" Americans fighting Islamic nutters in Iraq and Afghanistan the US is hardly in a position to mount an additional campaign in the Med - not with the nutter in North Korea rattling his sabre. After 10 years, practically every combat unit in the US military - Regular, Reserve, and National Guard - has rotated through Iraq or Afghanistan. Many of them have been twice and thrice. Can the UK and European nations say the same?

There are more than enough Germans, French, Dutch, British and Italian troops and airmen currently sleeping snugly in their barracks to take the keys of Tripoli and turn them over to the least loony Libyan rebels -- assuming that the Rebels ever decide on a leader, a flag, and a political/military objective beyond "Death to Gaddaffi." I won't be holding my breath.

But Europe won't do jack-shit beyond token bombing. The only finger Europe will raise will be the index finger that they use to tut-tut America for being a bad World Policeman and not adding Libya to its janitorial duties.

Gaddaffi deserves to die in the same ditch as his stinking regime. But I fail to see what possible benefit it would be to the US to occupy yet a third country when we've still got two military operations going on elsewhere in addition to putting China, Iran and North Korea in check. Oh, and let's not forget anti-piracy operations off Somalia, keeping crucial sea-lanes open and mounting relief efforts to Haiti, Japan and fuck knows where else.

Have I missed anything from our list of self-sacrificial duties?

I say ours because I'm now on the penultimate step of becoming a US citizen. And I'm very determined not to shoulder the burden unearned obligations from our self-described 'betters' in Europe or Australasia.

As for helping out the Libyans as a public relations exercise? Don't make me laugh.

The US has tried to occupy and reform two Muslim dictatorships. It's still hasn't worked yet after a decade of occupation. And people here really think that the third time will be the charm? In Libya of all places?

If you believe the polls, most of the Arabs out protested in the past few months will be out on the street shouting 'Death to America' just to break up the monotony of shouting 'Death to the Jews.' I haven't seen a single shred of evidence that these idiots want anything more than a changing of the guard at the palace of their local Dictator. I have very little doubt that they will settle for some strong-man more effective at giving them bread, circuses and Hezbollah rocket attacks on Israel.

I'd be happy to be proven wrong. But this crap has been going on for a century. No doubt the grandson of the Fascist sympathizer who reported the movements of my Grand-father and his 2nd NZ Division comrades in 1941-'43 is stalking about Egypt or Libya at this moment dreaming of the day when he and his Muslim Brotherhood brethren can finish what Hitler started.

So you'll forgive me my reticence for wanting to jump into yet another war to win the hearts and minds of warring anti-captialist religious tribalists, occupying a North African territory whose existence owes more to the whims of post WWI European geographers than to any cultural or philosophical boundaries between the inhabitants of that arid dusty shit-hole.

I see no group or individual in Libya worth assisting. Again, I'd be happy to be proved wrong. And if all you're about is killing Gaddaffi - what's stopping you? Europe has the SAS, SIS, MI6, DGSE and god knows how many other alphabet soup units and agencies full of trench-coated, mustachioed stilletto-wielders plus cruise missile throwing nuclear submarines. Use them. Kill the fucker. Why do you need the US? We aren't your sodding nanny.

If I was a cynic, I'd say that the only reason people care about Libya is that unlike recent civil wars in Rawanda and Darfur (or the heavy handed tactics used to suppress dissent in Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia) there are a multitude of reporters there to report on it. Libya has good airports so networks don't have to spend a lot of money in shipping. The reporters don't have to slum it in mud-huts in between takes. No, in Libya and Egypt they can repair to good hotels and cafes and if the crap hits the fan, they can bug out to sunny Malta and commiserate on the beach sipping gin garnished with self aggrandizement. Thus they are all over this story like flies on shit. As an added bonus, they don't risk being irradiated like the schmucks covering Japan do.

And it doesn't hurt that reporting on this takes the public's eyes off a shitty domestic economy created by the very policies these reporters stumped for previously. Notice how little has been said about the fact that the US has yet to settle on a budget? How about the EU's ballooning debt:GDP ratio? How about the impending bursting of China's various economic bubbles?

Here's an idea, how about the US finishes up (i.e. boards up the windows, secures the front door and then buggers off) what we've started in Iraq and Afghanistan and then set about fixing it's own economy? It's sure to need one in the future if only to pay the soldiers required to keep the barbarians from Europe's door. Yes, that's right folks, the US still maintains a garrison in Germany! Funny how this 60+ year defense subsidy never enters the equation used by Europeans to judge America.

If Europe wants to have a go at playing 'Flip that country' go right ahead. The US has enough fixer-uppers on our plate thank you very much. That includes reversing the damage caused by the Obama-Reid-Pelosi axis.

In other words is isn't a high priority for the limited pool of US resources. Especially considering the fact that the lesson apparent from Iraq and Afghanistan is that you can't 'liberate' a people from tyranny until they've undergone the philosophical revolution that allows them to define the difference between liberty and tyranny; between a US soldier and a Taliban/Al Quaeda/Hezbollah/Hamas terrorist. Show me a group in Libya that truly gets that and maybe I'll revisit my position.

But until then, the US has better things to do. To paraphrase Coolidge: the business of America is business. It's about bloody time we got back to it starting with removing the anti-capitalist elements inside our Federal, State and municipal governments.

Besides, I suspect that the greatest favor that the US could do the Middle East is to find and develop its own domestic oil reserves. One wonders how long the Middle East would remain a hotbed of terrorism once oil hits $1 a barrel and the bastards have to work for a year to pay for the rocks with which they stone their women to death.

Richard,

Sam Pierson's picture

I'm assuming the 'they' you refer to are the coalition forces? Iraq was followed through on. Early days now.

Marcus,

I think it's safe to assume the West will get no thanks from the Libyan rebels, should they succeed. "No good deed goes unpunished."

I don't think foreign policy actions like this are about winning friends, and they don't; they are about enhancing western status and prestige because that keeps the peace, saves lives and advances the western way. It's about making 'them' fear and respect us, and listen when we talk because we have a track record of doing what we say.

Interesting that Cameron is fan of Lord Palmerston. Me too. Palmerston knew how it was done.

(Off topic, here's a speculation on my part: The US part in this is mostly Mrs Clinton's doing and she got Obama on board by saying she would resign if he did not get with the program. She was not about to stand by and observe a massacre on her watch.)

Bush and Blair were wrong about...

Marcus's picture

...Gaddafi.

If they listened to his speeches they would have heard that he was still anti-west and bat-shit insane.

Instead they looked the other way and pretended he was a sane partner and a success story because of the unpopular wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They thought that it made a good PR story when they needed one.

Tony Blair wrote in the Times on the weekend that he phoned Gaddafi a few weeks ago and asked him not to attack his people, but was ignored.

Duh, what did Blair think he would do? Blair seems to think Gaddafi, being a good friend of his, is also a great diplomat and would call a meeting with the rebels rather than try to smash them to bits.

The official line from Labour luvvies, like Blair and Mandelson, is that the Dictator has suddenly lost his mind.

No he didn't - he was insane to start with. The Lockerbie bombing should have been enough evidence of that.

I mean what did Blair think when Gaddafi welcomed Megrahi back to Libya as a national hero?

That Gaddafi just happened to be throwing a party at the airport that day?

Regarding Libya

Doug Bandler's picture

In 2006 the Bush administration normalized relations with Libya, declaring that Libya was no longer a state sponsor of terrorism. Bush stated that Libya had agreed to eliminate its WMD. From 2006 to 2010, Libya was a supposed success story in that we didn't have to fight them because they renounced terrorism and WMD.

The claim that this military intervention is in our self interest might hold water if Libya had done something recently to call into question its renunciation of terrorism and WMD. But Libya has done no such thing. As I said, if your argument for intervention is based on revenge then all we needed was a good sniper.

But I think the larger point is being ignored. Islamic societies have demonstrated that the only way they can be governed is through strong men (at least in the Middle East, some of the Asian ones are republics). We keep trying to spread Democratic governance to the Islamic world and it is not working. It is not resulting in peaceful, stable societies. Gee. Why is that? Could it have something to do with Islam?

IMO, the failure to understand the centrality of the destructive nature of Islam in our dealings with the Muslim world is the greatest failure of our foreign policy. It goes beyond altruism. It goes to objectivity.

Our enemy is Islam. There are two fronts to their war against us. One is the Islamic world and its support of Jihad. The two primary players there are Iran and Saudi Arabia. That we have failed to deal with either is the greatest sign of our suicidal weakness and cowardice. The second front is the domestic front. This includes Islamic immigration and the presence of Sharia sympathetic Muslims in Western nations. In many ways this is the more important and more complicated front. It has received virtually no treatment from Objectivist intellectuals. They are solely dealing with military policy. This is a big mistake.

Libya is a marginal player in all this. Our goal regarding a country like Libya should fit into a broader strategy regarding the Islamic world. We don't have such a strategy because we refuse to consider the subject of the evil of Islam. Our philosophical climate won't let us.

"No follow through in Afghanistan."

Marcus's picture

There is a big difference here. These are rebels already fighting Gadaffi.

Assuming they did win now, if they started the same sort of thing as Gadaffi they would be bombed too.

They would probably expect it too.

Even Gadaffi is not too keen on being bombed.

Don't you think...

Marcus's picture

...that if the opposition win with western support they are going to western-friendly, even if Islamic?

They cheered when the French shot down Gadaffi's planes over Bengasi. Their provisional government asked the west for help.

If the rebels wanted to be another fundamentalist Iran, why would they behave this way?

Good point Richard

Doug Bandler's picture

If they follow through and make certain demands as to what follows, then I'll agree with you that they're fighting for freedom. I haven't seen that anywhere else yet, so I don't have any reason to believe that this will be any different. Without that follow through the ones who are going to benefit the most is the Islamic supremacists.

This is just it. There will be no follow through in Libya as there was no follow through in Afghanistan as there was no follow through in Iraq. Our culture is incapable of follow through!! This is what pisses me off about the pro-Bush, pro-"spread freedom in the ME" Objectivists. This transformative approach to war is not working and it has not worked since Vietnam. Even under ideal cultural situations I would still be hesitant to base a foreign policy on transforming Islamic societies and Islamic peoples. But in our sick culture? It is futile and destructive. Saying that does not make me a god-damned Rockwellian.

False Alternative

Doug Bandler's picture

Quite so. If this be "altruism," let there be a surfeit of it. Play on! Death to tyrants, and to the Rockwellian/Rothbardian Saddamites who infest the libertarian movement.

This is the false alternative that you keep pressing: the NeoCon / Anarchist false alternative. I am not critiquing American foreign policy from the Leftist/Libertarian anti-war perspective that we are being mean to Muslims. I am coming at this from the pro-war Right that says that we should not be trying to transform Muslim societies or to spread "freedom" or "democracy" to Muslim societies. Our foreign policy should not orient itself around saving Muslims from themselves but on saving ourselves from Muslims! There were non-nation-building strategies of war that could have been used in the war against Islamic Jihad.

Regarding Libya, Gaddafi deserves to die. But the reality is that Libya is a very Islamic country and the rebels are largely what we would call Islamists who in all probability might be worse than Gaddafi. So given the political realities of today, replacing Gaddafi might result in an even more Islamic, more anti-American regime.

But the problem goes deeper, to the ethical level. That is why I brought up altruism. Look at how the Republicans are writing about this; in purely altruist terms - "moral obligation" to help "those fighting for freedom". That's what I am alarmed by and have been since 9/11. There is no egoism in our approach to war sadly because there is no egoism in our culture.

Win what?

Doug Bandler's picture

As for the US being soft-cocks. I notice that the US Marines are doing in Sanguin province Afghanistan what the Brits would not: WIN.

Win what? What is the definition of victory in Afghanistan? Spreading "freedom" to an Islamic society? Creating a politically stable society that is an "ally" of American infidels?

Is any of that realistic?

I'm hoping

Robert's picture

that the US is pursuing the same strategy that they initially used during the Afghanistan Campaign. Send in special forces to direct air attacks and allow the rebels to defeat the enemy with minimal cost to the US in lives and money.

That would be the smart thing to do. Unfortunately, whether the US/UK and France are being smart or dumb (repeating the Bosnian tactics of limiting the risk to Allied forces beyond the point where it degrades the effectiveness of their attacks) you will not know until several weeks from now.

Nobody is going to hand the NY-Times a complete war-plan showing how they are planning to proceed.

As for the US being soft-cocks. I notice that the US Marines are doing in Sanguin province Afghanistan what the Brits would not: WIN.

Sam

Richard Wiig's picture

If they follow through and make certain demands as to what follows, then I'll agree with you that they're fighting for freedom. I haven't seen that anywhere else yet, so I don't have any reason to believe that this will be any different. Without that follow through the ones who are going to benefit the most is the Islamic supremacists.

Obama USA

Marcus's picture

Is Gaddafi himself a target?

"As western-led military attacks on Libyan regime forces entered a third day, controversy grew over whether Britain and its allies were deliberately targeting Colonel Muammar Gaddafi with the unspoken intention of killing him.

Suspicions that this might be the case were heightened by a reported overnight missile attack on Gaddafi's compound in Tripoli, which the regime immediately seized on as evidence of an assassination plot...

Liam Fox, the defence secretary, increased speculation that Gaddafi was indeed a target with comments in media interviews on Sunday.

Asked whether Britain was trying to kill Gaddafi, Fox replied: "Well, that would potentially be a possibility but you mention immediately one of the problems we would have, which is that you would have to take into account any civilian casualties that might result from that.

"And at all times we are very careful to avoid that for its humanitarian reasons, but also for the propaganda reasons that it would provide for the regime itself."

Fox was ambivalent about whether regime change was a coalition objective, even though it is not authorised under UN resolution 1973, which paved the way for the military intervention. "Regime change is not an objective, but it may come about as a result of what is happening amongst the people of Libya." Fox said.

"When the dynamic shifts and the equilibrium shifts, we will get a better idea just how much support the Gaddafi regime has and how much the people of Libya genuinely long to be able to control their own country.

"If Colonel Gaddafi went, not every eye would be wet," Fox said...

Hague also refused to rule out the limited use of British ground forces in Libya, although he insisted there would be no occupation and no invasion.

Asked about Fox's comments and whether the US supported "dropping a bomb on Mr Gaddafi", Robert Gates, the US defence secretary, delivered a putdown to his British counterpart.

Gates said: "I think that it's important that we operate within the mandate of the UN security council resolution. This is a very diverse coalition and the one thing that there is common agreement on are the terms set forth in the security council resolution.

"If we start adding additional objectives, then I think we create a problem in that respect. I also think that it is unwise to set as specific goals, things that you may or may not be able to achieve."

A Pentagon spokesman, vice-admiral Bill Gortney, was more forthright. "We are not going after Gaddafi," he said.

Confusion over allied intentions regarding Gaddafi has been encouraged by on-the-record statements by Barack Obama, the US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, David Cameron and the French president Nicolas Sarkozy that Gaddafi "must go", "needs to go", and has "lost his legitimacy".

Sarkozy said last week that Gaddafi was behaving like a madman. He has also raised the prospect of a "targeted" action against Gaddafi if the Libyan leader tries to make use of his mustard gas stockpile or other, undocumented WMD.

Rebel forces in eastern Libya say the aims of the revolution and the western-led military intervention are the same: regime change."

Richard Wiig

Sam Pierson's picture

You'll need elaborate.

Ha, ha Linz...

Marcus's picture

As it says in the Goode Book of his most holy intelligent designer...

"And the lion shall lie down with the lamb!"

Good on Cameron. The

Richard Wiig's picture

Good on Cameron. The alternative of leaving those protestors to Gaddafi's hired thugs was worse. You can't support the spread of freedom without taking action.

Is that what they're doing here?

Shit!

Lindsay Perigo's picture

Saddamite Baade endorses the action against Gaddafi. Barren and Bandler are about to get married. The world makes absolutely no sense any more. Next thing, Brant will be divorcing Babs, Rosie will be embracing atheism, Peikoff and Kelley will be drinking Martinis together, Kosher will be repudiating Bullshitto, Leonid will be denouncing Islamogoblinism and Marcus will be advocating for Intelligent Design.

It's all beyond me.

Befuddled, bothered and bewildered am I.

Good on Cameron

Richard Goode's picture

should I be paying for it?

Is there a good selfish argument for this?

Spoken like a true heartless bastard. (Same goes for you, Doug.)

Good on Cameron. The current military action is necessary, it is legal, and it is right.

Couldn't agree more, Pierson ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

I think it's the right move, and a cheap way to put thugs running slavepens on notice.

Quite so. If this be "altruism," let there be a surfeit of it. Play on! Death to tyrants, and to the Rockwellian/Rothbardian Saddamites who infest the libertarian movement.

"Is there a good selfish argument for this?"

Marcus's picture

Don't forget that Gaddafi has been responsible for at least two seperate acts of terrorism on UK soil.

The killing of PC Fletcher outside the Libyan embassy.

Also the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 at Lockerbie killing 270 people, UK and US citizens amongst them.

Sure, afterwards the Blair government kissed Gaddafi's ass and released the jailed terrorist Megrahi back to his boss Gaddafi - however Cameron was in opposition at the time this was happening and adamantly disagreed with this action.

Cameron has said several times that he would like to see the end of Gaddafi.

So getting rid of a terrorist is indeed a selfish act of defence for the UK and US.

Good on Cameron.

Sam Pierson's picture

Good on Cameron. The alternative of leaving those protestors to Gaddafi's hired thugs was worse. You can't support the spread of freedom without taking action. Where it goes now is of course to be seen, but I think it's the right move, and a cheap way to put thugs running slavepens on notice.

more altruism on display

Doug Bandler's picture

The whole thing reeks of altruism. Sure, the thought of Gaddafi and his thugs getting hit with bombs warms my heart, but should I be paying for it? The West will always be blamed for anything that goes wrong whether it intervenes or not...

My sentiments exactly.

Is there a good selfish argument for this? Long overdue revenge maybe?

Revenge is about the only selfish argument I can think of. But that could have been achieved with one really good sniper.

Regarding altruism, here is the way a Conservative defended the Libya military intervention. It comes from Roger Simon at Pajamas Media:

I know there are some extreme libertarians who think Libya is none of our business--that we, and the international community, should stay out and let the locals blow each other to smithereens until the next dictator takes the throne or the old one keeps it and locks his enemies in torture chambers. Attractive and consoling as that idea may be, the world is nowhere near that simple. We live on a tiny globe that is shrinking by the moment for a myriad of reasons from instant communications to limited energy to a global economy. The bloodshed in Benghazi affects the refineries of Texas just as the tsunami at Fukushima rocks the boatyards of Crescent City. And those are only a couple of the most obvious instances this week.

We're all in this together. Sorry.

And I have to tell you one other thing. Remember this: We're Americans. Good is what we are supposed to do.

This is pure altruism. American does "good" in every corner of the world no matter what the expense or the consequences. Period. And this is from the Conservatives, let alone the Democrats. With an opposition party like this, we're doomed.

The whole thing reeks of

Jason Quintana's picture

The whole thing reeks of altruism. Sure, the thought of Gaddafi and his thugs getting hit with bombs warms my heart, but should I be paying for it? The West will always be blamed for anything that goes wrong whether it intervenes or not...

Is there a good selfish argument for this? Long overdue revenge maybe?

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