U.N. <---> Libya

Let me get this straight…the U.N. interfered in a countries civil war?

Maybe this is just me (it probably is) but isn’t that a bit…disturbing?

The U.N. allowed intervention to prevent genocide. I do indeed find this disturbing. Or maybe not.

What’s new about that? Congo/Katanga 1961-1964

Or Somalia, 1992-1995, Rwanda 1993-96, Liberia 1993-97, Cyprus, 1964-now, and so on.

Also Kosovo.

Wasn’t that unilateral action?

What I find most interesting about this is that there is a wide world consensus that something must be done - not just in the U.N., but individual countries are taking action. Canada is sending six F-18’s to help maintain a no-fly zone. France is requesting the help of the U.S. and committing its own forces.

And yet, the Obama administration seems to be completely AWOL. What’s with that? I thought Obama was all about multinational efforts and the UN? Why isn’t he listening to them now? Apparently, Hillary and Bill Clinton are just hopping mad at Obama right now for disengaging. It doesn’t make any sense to me.

Total WAG on my part, as I have no idea how this is playing in the US, but is there any possibility that Obama is concerned that the perception of “sending the hard-earned money of US tax payers’ to sort out African problems” will exacerbate his re-election issues and only serve to underline his Kenyan past and potentially divided loyalities with a certain sub-section of the populace at large? (Especially if the results of any intervention are not immediately spectacular and obvious). It could certainly be spun that way by an adversarial press, should they be so inclined, so maybe that is one thought that is making him reticent. It shouldn’t, but…

Or all of the above could, more likely, be nonsense that has occured only in my head.

Nope, the very ones who wave the flag and question some peoples true american patriotism if you were against Iraq are the same ones screaming WAG THE DOG! WAG THE DOG! when Clinton tried to push into Bosnia.

Maybe because the United States is already bogged down with two wars in two other Muslim countries that have cost hundreds of billions of dollars and thousands of American lives, plus at least hundreds of thousands of dead foreigners?

Did the US lobby for and vote for the resolution to create a no-fly zone? Yes. Would that have happened if Obama had not authorized Secretary Clinton and the UN Rep to do so? No. Was this a deliberate choice on the part of Obama to be part of a coalition which enacted the de facto international law which authorized a no-fly zone? Yes. Were US pilots, carriers, and equipment the first on the scene? No. Could they have been? Yes. Should they have been? Not necessarially. The Europoean nations nearby have more than enough resources in place and ready to deploy to effect the no fly zone. The US doesn’t have to patrol all the beats itself. In this case there appears to be plenty of resources capable of deploying to protect the Libyan citizenry from airstrikes without having to travel a third of the way around the globe to do it. So what’s the big deal?


Maybe it is time for the other countries to be doing these things without U.S. help. Really, do they need U.S. help?

If they do…then doesn’t that say something about their military capability and the fact that maybe they have gotten lax? Seriously though, I don’t think they need U.S. help.

Libyan government has declared a ceasefire.

Pretty much, yes. Very few nations, if any, have force projection capabilities even approaching that of the U.S.; I don’t think any European nation, other than Russia, can operate away from its own borders for long without American support.

Lets just say having US help would make things a lot easier. The US has military resources that Canada and France can’t match, which is a function of size as much as anything; we have a bigger economy and a bigger population, and just can project more force. If anything, the US is the only country with more than two aircraft carriers in service.

I am inclined to say that bombing Quaddafi’s thugs is a good thing, but jesus freakin’ Christ, can the rest of the world do one goddamn military action without the United States having to provide the huge bulk of forces and funds??

If France, Canada and Britain can’t handle the Libyan military threat despite the proximity of European military bases and the advanced state of their own miltiary hardware, then perhaps they should just give up having air forces.

Libya is only a few hundred kilometers away from Italy. France is next door.

Who says they can’t?

The Obama administration is engaged. It has a rather full plate at the moment though. Libya is still only one of several countries going through turmoil or tragedies they are keeping eyes on, and assets nearby. Bahrain, Yemen, and now Japan, plus continuing operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Korea and other areas.

Plus he has to deal with the domestic issues such as the budget battle in Congress, all the proposed state legislation gutting public unions along with the myriad issues that the administration has to deal with when not in crisis mode.

And we are deploying assets, though maybe not strike fighters, but AWACs, radar jamming equipment, drones, etc.

Hearing the press this morning, too many were acting like this would be a US unilateral operation and complaining how we were stretched too thin. The Army might be, but not our air forces. I think we will probably focus on logistics and intelligence and let our allies to the heavy lifting.

I have to say that the UN has moved at lightning speed compared to their previous actions in Kosovo or Rwanda. It has been less than a month since the uprising began. And I think that was in good part to backroom pressure by the US and France. But this ain’t your daddy’s UN. They have learned from their mistakes in previous crises and are more engaged than previous generations that involved a lot 'tut tut’s from Geneva or New York. I think the first example of that was the SARS outbreak in 2003. They ain’t perfect, and still drop the ball as much as anyone, but they are more capable than previous generations.

I expect the UK and France will be leading the way. And just want to point out the UK is heavily engaged in Afghanistan with the USA on the ground and in the air. So less self righteous USA crap (not aimed at you obviously) please.

Besides the USA sometimes has to take a break from arming and supporting odious dictatorships and put its money where its ‘freedom, yay!’ mouth is.