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28 March 2011

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mbrenner

OBAMA BEGINS VICTORY LAP


A summary of President Obama's remarks on Libya has reached me seredipitously. Here are the main points.

1. I’ve been on top of this from Day 1 and I've orchestrated the world-wide response.

2. Our principal objective has been reached: we have saved the citizens from Benghazi from a massacre. And we've given the opposition a chance to fight on a level playing field field.

3. Our military objective of establishing s 'free fly zone' was achieved in a less than a week thanks to the skill and devotion.....

4. I want to make one thing clear: this is not an American action, not a unilateral intervention. We are working together with 'X' countries to promote democracy and bring peace to the region. NATO allies, Qatar, AU...

5.Americans rightly wonder about how long this action will continue; is there a danger of a long-term involvement? I want to assure you that American involvement is self-limiting. By transferring command authority to NATO yesterday we already are exiting the first phase of the operation. We now will rely progressively on the efforts of other nations to enforce the no-fly zone.

Into ‘dead’ mike: “It’s win-win for us. If the opposition topples Gaddafi, I can take credit since I said that he has to go. If the crisis is protracted, then it’s a multilateral responsibility and we have to realize that America cannot be expected to do I all and do it on its own I’ve followed the responsible path of prudent idealism.”

“No, I have no plans to address the nation on the situation in Yemen, or Bahrain, or Syria or Jordan or = what do you call it, Iraq.” ‘Michele and I have to prepare for our trip next month to…..


Russ Wagenfeld

Hi Jeff,
Good to see you posting here.
Regards,
Russ

William R. Cumming

Agree with Professor Brenner on the speech. Wow! What world does he live in? What cocoon? I was and am for intervention but most Americans just see this is another war! How is perceived elsewhere?

mbrenner

I am in need of help. Lacking any knowledge of practical military matters, I am baffled by today's news from libya. How is it possible for Gaddafi's mechanized forces to traverse 100 miles or so of open country without being interdicted? How can his naval vessels sit offshore and bombard Ras Lanuf? Clouds? Are we still in 1945.

This strikes me as one of the great hald-ass operations of modern times, or else somebody's perverse idea of doing a comic remake of "Rommel:The Desert Fox."

mbrenner

Patrick Lang

Mbrenner

You know the answer. Political discord is rendering chesive military action difficult. The allied commanders are contemplating Obama's speech and wondering how much they can do without being relieved for exceeding their authority. pl

dh

Ghadaffi's forces have probably figured out they are safer using civilian vehicles. BP and Total are worried about losing their concessions. Italy is scared stiff of a flood of African refugees.

Patrick Lang

dh

You mean those civilian tanks, APCs, mobile rocket launchers, and AAA guns mounted on pick ups? Are those the ones you mean? pl

dh

Weren't all his tanks taken out? Yes I think they are using pickup trucks much the way the rebels use them. They are fast and don't make very good targets for the A.10s and gunships.

Patrick Lang

dh

No. He started with 2,000 tanks. You are absolutely wrong about other vehicles not being suitable targets for the aircraft. Do you actually know anything about this? pl

dh

I only know what I see on TV basically. The air defences were destroyed then I saw lots of tanks blown up. The rebels captured some too. Probably some are hidden around Tripoli. I imagine it's not easy to move them around quickly so it would make sense to use pickups. I would think that makes it harder for NATO to pick out the bad guys.

The Twisted Genius

dh,

If you're going to try to determine battle damage by watching news video, you will never make an accurate assessment. You, nor I, can determine the number of tanks taken out by our aircraft just by watching the news. We've probably seen the same footage of a few smoldering tanks dozens of times and the same scenes filmed by different news crews from different angles. Most, if not all, of those shots of pickup mounted weapons were of rebel forces. I seriously doubt if any journalists are with Qathafi's front line forces. TV can be deceiving.

dh

True. I work from the supposition that I'm being fed a load of propaganda. Nevertheless I think it's possible to draw conclusions about the way tactics evolve.

The Twisted Genius

dh, I agree. We are getting an interesting look at how the rebels use different weapon systems and maintain their mobility rather than electing to "die in place." Hell of a way to learn.

dh

Right. The rebels are really only as effective as their air cover. Amazing how fast things change there....I'm losing track of how many times they've been up and down that road. It must be littered with abandoned vehicles. Pity the media coverage is so one-sided.

Patrick Lang

dh

"The Benghazi Stakes" pl

dh

I'm wondering who's going to get the scrap metal contract.

Medicine Man

I think they'll award the scrap metal contract using the "fast hands" RFP system. An oldie but a goodie.

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