Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Obama In Libya 

First, I hope the current campaign in Libya succeeds in getting Kadafi (spelled phonetically because the "preferred" spelling seems to change by the hour) to go away. Preferably at room temperature in a box, to an underground destination. I bow to no one in my dislike and disgust at the man and all he stands for. In retrospect I think we probably should have declared war against Libya as soon as we discovered it was behind the Lockerbie bombing of PanAm 103, which at the latest would be 24 February 2011, when resigned justice minister Mustafa Abdel-Jalil revealed that Muamar Gaddafi personally ordered the Lockerbie bombing. Certainly that constituted an act of war by Kadafi under age-old principles of international law, and unlike al Qaeda, the Kadafi regime is a nation-state and precisely identifiable.

That said, Michael Barone's piece in the March 23 Washington Examiner puts into words in eloquent fashion the muddle of thoughts that have been bouncing around inside my own head for the last several days. Obama missed the optimum moment to act, then ignored Congress in favor of the UN, and acted without a plan, or at least without a plan that his administration has been willing or able to discuss coherently in public. As a result, I, along with Mr. Barone, am not at all confident that Kadafi will be ousted. If he survives, Obama (and unfortunately America) will suffer a significant loss of prestige and, more importantly, respect in the world.

The most unnerving thing to me about Obama's adventure is, although he ignored Congress he made sure to obtain UN approval for the action. That suggests to me that Obama considers himself more of a transnationalist than the President of the United States; that, together with his apparent willingness to put US military forces at the disposal of commanders from foreign countries, sets some very dangerous precedents in my opinion. It reinforces my oft-expressed opinion that Obama is either incompetent or the first anti-American president.

Another troublesome factor in Obama's lead-from-the-rear behavior is that we appear to be trying to do this on the cheap. This I attribute to the fact that, due to the profligate spending of Congress since 2007 (when the Democrat Party won its majority) and especially since the beginning of Obama's term, the country is broke. That is, we can't afford do do more. I am concerned that Obama and the rest of the Democrat Party, if not our whole political class, won't learn the lesson that excessive debt is a national security issue.

I repeat that I hope the effort to unseat Kadafi is successful, and I hope and believe that whatever takes his place won't be as bad, at least in the short term, but I am not at all confident that Obama and his merry band have the slightest idea of what they're doing.

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