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03 April 2011

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dh

Abdel-Hafidh Ghoga is pressing all the right buttons. My own thought is that we are witnessing the limits of power.

Patrick Lang

dh

Whose? pl

Lysander

"Having said that, I can only hope that there is enough common sense left in the engaged portion of the American people that there will be continued support for NATO's military and diplomatic actions in Libya."

Col Lang,

The American public was not consulted in the matter, they were informed. After the fact. Obama didn't even go through the motions of getting some sort of congressional fig leaf. The US constitution makes no mention of the UNSC or the Arab League.

I'm beginning to get the impression that the ruling powers really don't care what the people think.

McGee

Agree completely with your assessment of state of US public opinion Colonel. People equate Libya with Iraq and Afghanistan and they are indeed tired of hearing about troubles in "those places". IMHO if we do support the Libyan rebels it would be the first thing we've done in the ME or northern Africa that's made any sense in a long time.

Jake

"LT. GEN. RUSSEL HONORE, (RET.), CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Fred, I think we need to get some boots on the ground either from the French or the British or some other coalition member to give them the help they need to defend themselves right now, and then to find some kind of sanctuary on the forward front lines to be able to conduct that training. And it has to be done quickly."

The French started this and let the French put the boots on the ground. This madness of US taking lead is total bull. Support yes, tip of the spear? Absolutely not and unless there is a direct threat to US National Security of which there is none this is nothing more than someones personal war of choice. I will be damned to follow the likes of Samantha Powers nor anyone else who thinks this is a worthy fight for us to be lead.

What the DRC, Darfur, Congo, Sudan and many of the other civil wars and forces that kill innocents are not worthy of our lead? Guess those little brown people don't mean anything? Right?

dh

Power in general. I think people are tired of simplistic military solutions to complex problems. They don't seem to work even in Libya. And I mean on both sides.

Thomas

A link to Al Jazeera report on Special Forces helping out:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=1jL4v7x36UU

Same one I posted on the Peter Principle thread.

Patrick Lang

dh

I have not proposed any simplistic military solutions, Winning the war and removing Qathaafi must be done as part of a method that is anything but simplistic or strictly military. That is the essence of UW. pl

Patrick Lang

Lysander

Have you always rejected the 90 days provision in the War Powers Act? pl

dh

But you call it a war pl. Which implies a clear winner. And you insist on Ghadaffi's removal as an objective. Right there it seems to me you make it a question of Western (nearly said US) prestige.

arbogast

Take the troops out of Afghanistan and put them in Libya... temporarily, and then send them home.

arbogast

The fascinating thing about the Al Jazeera link is that it mentions both American and Egyptian Special Forces.

I think a legitimate question Americans can ask is where are the Egyptians?

Farmer Don

“In truth this is all about war weariness”
More accurately: In truth this is all about the weariness of loosing much more than what was gained in two wars of choice and not necessity.”

America did not become weary and quit it’s civil war. Both sides fought long and hard to the bitter end. America in WWI did not become weary, it put in an effort that was until then unimaginable. In WWII America did not become weary, it pulled together and became great.

And what has the U.S. received? A loss of civil liberties, a culture of fear, loss of jobs, half priced homes, and huge debt.

TamBram

Col.,
I'm with you on the 'perception' point. So much so that I find what seems to be happening shocking.
"If you're going to take Vienna, take Vienna!"

Patrick Lang

FD

You never heard of VN? pl

Patrick Lang

arbogast

In Cairo. pl

Patrick Lang

dh

Yes. I am an American. pl

fred

Jake, the Libyan's opposed to Qathaafi started this.

arbogast

And there are a great many of them, too.

I present this as an opposing view. I do not know anywhere near enough to judge it. However, I do know enough to judge Sarkozy. He can be damned with the faintest of praise. He's better than Segolene Royale.

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MD02Ak01.html

The Twisted Genius

To dh and all others who wish to understand the complexities of UW. Here is a link to the 1969 version of Special Forces Operations. Although it's over forty years old, the lessons are timeless. It's far from a "how to" manual, but it touches upon the many facets of waging UW Green Beret style. It is definitely not a simplistic military solution.

http://www.cgsc.edu/carl/docrepository/FM31_21_1969.pdf

Redhand

So oft goeth the pitcher to the well, that at last it commeth broken home.

Col. Lang: Consider your post above this about the disastrous results our war of choice in Iraq.

Consider the utter quagmire we are in in Afghanistan because this is Obama's "war worth fighting."

Now tell me again that Libya is a conflict we should cultivate with special forces, even in the complete absence of congressional ratification, because Obama says not acting would be contrary to "our values."

I loathe MG as much as anyone, but you can hardly be surprised at the resistance Americans feel getting involved in a third conflict, especially when our war by proxy efforts are so ham-handed.

I have no confidence that our involvement in this fight will be managed any better than the other two, all the more so because the Administration is incapable of stating its goals clearly and (dare I say?) honestly. If we want to dislodge MG we should do so directly, but that won't happen.

Charles

“In truth this is all about war weariness” I disagree. It is about the President not laying out a case for why this is a vital US interest -- I think that's because he knows it is not, he wants deniability if things go wrong and no one knows if the "rebels" are the 1958 Castro, who said much the same as this spokesman.

Patrick Lang

redhand
Your insistance that all wars are equally bad and all Muslim countries are the same is illustrative of my points about war weariness. pl

William P. Fitzgerald III

Pat Lang,

As a believer in defining the problem and, thereby, identifying the strategic and political objective, I'll submit the following:

Some or many Libyans have protested and are now in revolt against the Libyan government.

Some or many Libyans support and are defending the Libyan government.

Some or many Libyans are waiting to see what happens or are trying to mind their own business.

This state of affairs is typical of a civil war and is increasingly taking on the characteristics of one. The question to answer is, in what way is our national interest going to be served by supporting one side in the conflict? Perhaps eventual stability, though it would be difficult to imagine something more stable than a 40 year governing clique.
That, however, is static, as opposed to dynamic, stability and once upset will not recover. Perhaps the goal is order along the North African littoral fro Egypt to Morrocco.

WPFIII

tunde

some details about musa kussa's defection.....now he looks war weary already...
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10716444

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