Friday, February 17, 2012

No, Sorry, Think Again

"Administration officials say that even though the NATO intervention in Libya, emphasizing airstrikes to protect civilians, cannot be applied uniformly in other hotspots like Syria, the conflict may, in some important ways, become a model for how the United States wields force in other countries where its interests are threatened."

-- "U.S. Tactics in Libya May Be a Model for Other Efforts," New York Times, Aug. 28, 2011

"A damning report by Amnesty International says that a year after the uprising against Muammar Gaddafi, Libya's militias are 'largely out of control,' with the use of torture ubiquitous and the country's new rulers unable – or unwilling – to prevent abuses."

-- "Amnesty finds widespread use of torture by Libyan militias," The Guardian, Feb. 16, 2012

Let's bomb a country, leave it leaderless, and walk away without a plan to help build post-regime-change stability. It's a model for future operations!

Though the sticking-around-to-guide-the-rebuilding idea doesn't seem to have been a winner either.


  1. might they bomb it again to stop the abuses?

  2. As Stalin suggested: no people no problems

  3. Seems to be a case of "damned if you do, damned if you don't." There could be no mistaking, however, the desire of the Libyan people to be rid of Qaddafi and his thugocracy. I have modest faith that they will sort things out in due time, and the message is not lost on Assad and others of his ilk.

    1. It seems to me that the message Assad and others of his ilk will take away is that you must hold power or be shot (Qaddafi) or hanged (Saddam), so do whatever it takes -- compromise or weakness are deadly. Really, what lesson would a dictator take from the video footage of a wounded Qaddafi being dragged around by a crowd, then suddenly having a bullet wound in the forehead? He thinks, what, "Ah, yes, I must embrace the will of the people," and starts climbing down from confrontation? No way.

      The desire of the Libyan people was clear, and it was exciting. But I think you're right that modest faith is most appropriate for the future. The key, I think, is that they be allowed to sort things out in due time.

      No tears at all for Qaddafi and Saddam, whose deaths were well deserved and overdue.