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24 February 2011


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The revolt of the Arab peoples was foreseeable, the precise timing was not. The grave error appears to be that no contingency plans were ine in place and are having to be improvised. The theory seems to have been that the pressure could have been eased by leaning on the various regimes to reform slowly. In that regards the rulers have strung us and their own populaces along for decades.

William R. Cumming

Jane! Agree but you have to understand that the norm in Washington is to follow the path of least resistence. Never never call on US citizens to sacrifice, tell them the truth, or actually lead them to a better future. Libya past sits on the US doorstep. Libya's future hopefully is in the hands of the courageous protestors.

Charles I

William R. Cumming, I heard the most heartening street interview with a Libyan. Notice the great majority of the crowds are young men, they look 30 or so, with cell phones.

He, admittedly a sample, claimed that the counter-revolution had forged a common Libyan identity that subsumed mooted tribal divisions.

Didn't get rid of them, and who knows what will happen when nthe clans sit down to figure it all out. But I get sense that technology has socialized these, and many other people, not so they are like us, but so at least they are aware they are more like each other. Add in a searing common trauma not predicated on tribalism. Some semblance of national identity in yet another colonially drawn region may be emerging that tends against the default MSM bunch of disputatious savages incapable of agreeing on national civil society, let alone democracy paradigm.

May make the drive to the cottage a bit more pricey, but I was very encouraged, of course by death defying courage, but by the heart with which the fellow proclaimed his status as a New Libyan.

I wonder how corrupt, comfy, venal, attached to present local cash flow/power arrangements the clans shall turn out to be.

Charles I

Thanks Pat w/r/t the Edmund Burke club. Gobsmacked with esteem for the cohort active here though I am, the occasion of my induction calls an old Woody Allen joke to mind, about joining "a club that'd have me as a member. . ."

SST itself a privilege over and above addiction to it, Sir.


Clifford Kiracofe

1. PA103: Weren't there certain arrangements between Libya-Syria-Iran back in the 1980s? Thus one might argue it is not either Libya or Syria-Iran but rather a matter of some coordination by all three on various joint ops.

2. I note that Little Leader's very close link to the UK went beyond London School of Economics and some nice properties and wild parties. Seems he was a pal of Peter Mandelson and they both took off to Corfu to visit Nat Rothschild together...

Paul Escobar

Charles I,

"I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member"

Woody Allen must have stolen it from Groucho Marx.

William R. Cumming

Great comment Charles I! Coruage aplenty in the Libyan insurgents its seems. Not restricted to any one tribe.

Charles I

Paul Escobar, thanks.

Notice I didn't actually write "I don't care to. . ." whilst having mixed up my comedians and mangling my metaphor.

More like the passage from starry-eyed bleeder to passing acquaintance with reality being fraught with ennui and the conservative urge to hold onto the childish things in hand. . .

The rule of law is so much simpler than here we are with Pat the non-interventionist, a while back concerned with unconstitutional Egyptian revolutionary transition, today calling for action, hoping the first one'd be free, wondering what the subjective criteria in the future will be.

I will tip my hat to former Canadian PM Paul Martin who introduce the Duty to Protect to the UN. Dismissed as an unworkable but laudable principle, here we are confronted by slaughter, law, duty, morality, self -interest, a will to power. Yet there is no structure to facilitate/restrain/channel these impulses, denied in Rwanda and Darfur. A precarious place, desiring to dispense violence beneficially, loath to attorn to strictures like the ICC at the Hague, we are left to our. . . leadership.

I wish we had a leader AND a rule. . .

William R. Cumming

Of course arguably instead of evacuation we could have protected US citizens in country under International Law. Close call!

D greer

Hi Pat
Nixon was president in 69
unless the Libya coup happened before the inaguration.


Patrick Lang

D. Greer

OK. Nixon it was. pl


"The result was his nonsense about the "Zone of Death" in the Gulf of Sirte and the discotec bombing in Germany."

"After that Qathaafi "sobered up" about the US and began to beg like a dog at the door in a cold rain to be allowed in out of the weather by the US."

"He begged until 2003 when he realized that the GW Bush Administration was vulnerable to blandishments involving the offer of surrender to the "freedom agenda."

"The US re-established diplomatic relations after that and Qathaafi was "re-constructed."

The United States of America: A Super-Power Enabler. It would be funny except for the fact he killed Americans.

William R. Cumming

MT! And now again repreived by a the President of the US and his followers. "Beware well-meaning men without understanding" SCOTUS Associate Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes I believe. Electing well-meaning but incompetent Presidents largely because they "want" to be President may bring on the endgame for the US this century.

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