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The Great Loon Must Go

Yesterday, Britain joined France in announcing that Qaddafi can stay in the country if he relinquishes power. (The rebel forces, on the other hand, rescinded that offer this morning.) It’s a wretched idea, and it casts a cruel light on the strategic miscalculations behind the Days Not Weeks War.  To persist on this road will mean that NATO has failed in Libya.

Leave the Great Loon, his son the Dear Loon and his apparatchiks in Libya and the struggle for power will continue.  See Zimbabwe: Robert Mugabe has no interest in sharing power, despite signing a western backed coalition agreement with his rival Morgan Tsvangirai in late 2008. We can all be sure the Great Loon has no serious interest in giving up power to the rebel “rats” — and he has no plans to play by the rules.

This venture was a typically botched Wilsonian war from the start but to launch a gratuitous war and then lose it is about as pure a show of fecklessness as can be imagined.  President Obama needs to finish the job.  Fast.

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  • Mrs. Davis

    Are the last two posts dots to be connected?

  • Luke Lea

    Right. Jump in with both feet. They will welcome us as liberators.

  • Adam Garfinkle

    You are right, which is not surprising coming from me since you and many others know my views about this crazy war from the start. What is most distressing at this point is the damage that this silly decision has done to NATO. The most musclebound European members of NATO have now shown the world that they cannot sustain even the paltry operational tempo in the air that they have established, itself obviously inadequate tempo to achieve the ends of the mission.

    In the issue of the American interest about to come out, one of our authors provides an historical lesson on the danger of appearing feckless before an avaricious world. The Italo-Ottoman War over Libya in 1911, almost exactly a century ago, was a dismal affair in almost every way. But as the essay points out, the most important impact of the war fell neither upon Italy nor Libya. Rather, Balkan Christians chafing under the rule of the Ottoman Empire saw in the Italian campaign, ultimately unimpressive as it was, the weakness of the Turks. The 1st Balkan war that broke out soon after 1911 was the result, and that war led willy-nilly to August 1914. We all know what happened after that.

    So never mind what happens to the Loon of Libya. the real question might end up being, who else is watching this fiasco, and what devilish adventures may be hatching against the image of Western weakness?

    This, perhaps, is the real reason why the President needs to end this war fast and end it right. But he won’t. He is Mr. Half-Measure, seemingly incapable of clear and bold thought, let alone action, on any issue in which he has to buck the tide of conventional wisdom among his advisers. it is not always a bad idea to lead from behind; United States has tried to do too much in recent years and ended up botching many a portfolio in consequence. But one cannot lead from behind in one’s own White House. That is a truly terrible idea.

  • Jim.

    It sure would be nice if our NATO allies spent enough on Defense to do a competent job of mopping up one tinpot dictator.

    Remind me again, why anyone is thinking about targeting our own defense budget for YET MORE cuts, without cutting down on the Welfare State that accounts for three times more federal spending than Defense (wars included)?

  • Damir Marusic

    On the other hand, Adam, it may be not all that bad that we too realize what a paper tiger NATO has become. Better to walk into a rough saloon and have an exact idea of how big and capable your posse is rather than go swaggering around thinking friends have your back when in fact they’re hiding behind the stables. I’m not saying we should be thanking the Administration for revealing this ugly truth, but if there’s a silver lining to their fecklessness, this is it.

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