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Windmills and Lances

confessions of a quixotic unicorn fanatic

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Europe Continues to Dither, Civilians Continue to Die
The Crusader
QUOTE: "Europe has moved closer to doing what it said it wouldn't do in Libya — directly jump into the bid to overthrow leader Moammar Gadhafi."


Ya gotta love this "eat our cake and still have it after" mentality from Europe.

They WANTED a nice neat civilized-sounding UN resolution where all they had to do was "protect civilians from military attacks" --- when it looked like the rebels were going to win with just a little extra help.

Then airstrikes against military targets NOT going after civilians were okay.

Then military troops on the ground, despite the resolution prohibiting them, because they're "just advisors" in a "non-combat role". Hey, why not put in 50,000 "non-combat support forces" while they're at it, like we still have in Iraq?

And NOW they're talking about putting actual combat troops on the ground...like they should have done in the first place, except they wanted to look all "civilized" about toppling Gaddhafi while keeping their own hands nice and shiny and blood-free (by some arcane philosophic standard, perhaps).

And meanwhile, civilians are dying in Misrata because of these DAMN POSERS and their IMAGE ISSUES.

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The problem is, the rebel leaders are closely tied to al Qaeda. Maybe not the civilians the rebels are purporting to protect, but... will the rebel leaders be any better than the Colonel in the long run?

Sorry, Kiyoshi, but that's simply a myth. The only thing known about Al Qaeda in Libya is that there are some cells there.

There's nothing known about what ties, if any, these few cells have to the rebels, aside from the obvious point that both want Gaddhafi out of power. For that matter, so does Obama and most of the rest of the Western world.

What IS known is that Al Qaeda was never a significant force in Libya because it wasn't a priority when Gaddhafi's hold seemed impregnable. They had less presence than in Libya than in Egypt (and no one is running around worried that the Egyptian power change will bring Al Qaeda to the fore there, are they?).

In point of fact, the worst thing we could do is NOT strongly intervene on behalf of the rebels and allow this matter to fester into a long-running civil war. Direct intervention means we have some ability to direct how things go on the ground, it will be over much faster, and we will have a chance to ramp up goodwill towards the West from the general Libyan public.

If it festers? We're going to find the West is blamed for letting the suffering go on when we COULD have done something. And Al Qaeda will have more time to devote more resources to building up an actual and active presence, filling the support gap WE should be occupying.

This current course of action not only doesn't prevent Al Qaeda from obtaining a foothold in Libya, it PROMOTES it.

Alright, I'll take my correction.

Though if Egypt is not turning to Al Qaeda, there is concern about them going for the Islamists. They're ramping up full-scale diplomatic relations with Iran where they used to be enemies, and the new president is very much anti-Israel to boot, where Mubarak was actually willing to be at peace with them.

I think things would probably be different right now if they'd gone in with guns blazing to begin with, hit every available military target. Instead, they broke just a few of Gaddafi's toys in the vain hope he'd take the rest and go home. Instead, he repositioned his hardware with human shields and proceeded according to his own plan (Operation: Kill Everybody).

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