Robert Stein 1924-2014

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Friday, April 01, 2011

No Boots on the Ground, Only Sneakers

The whatever-it-is in Libya gets more convoluted daily as Defense Secretary Gates tells Congress there will be no U.S. boots on the ground "as long as I'm in this job," while non-uniformed C.I.A agents soft-shoe their way in to find out who the rebels are and what they need.

In the Senate, John McCain proclaims that "Hope is not a strategy" as Joint Chiefs Chairman Mullen reports the no-fly mission has been hampered by bad weather.

So much for the military situation. With obvious White House help, David Brooks enthuses over a "Squeeze and See" strategy to "ratchet up the pressure...reaching out to senior Libyan figures to encourage defection (the foreign minister has already split, and more seem to be coming).

"There is an effort to broadcast television signals into Libya to rival state TV. In the liberated areas, the multilateral alliance is sending aid to build civil society and organize the political opposition. The U.S. is releasing billions of confiscated Libyan dollars to the opposition to ensure its staying power."

Sounds good, but at the same time we learn that our Treasury Department has exempted from financial sanctions the Arab Banking Corporation, an institution almost 60 percent owned by the Libyan Central Bank.

Meanwhile, a trickle of high-level defections and rumors of Qaddafi peace overtures in London feed hope this water-drop torture of a non-war may actually end in the foreseeable future.

If it does, Obama will have earned his Peace Prize by winning a war without actually fighting one. Any bets?

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

No fair Bro. "No Boots on the Ground, only sneakers" is my saying. I started it.

(Really)

Tony S
Indianapolis, Indiana
t_schwartz317@sbcglobal.net

Solomon Kleinsmith said...

If anyone deserves an award for what happens in Libya, it's David Cameron and Nicholas Sarkozy. Obama was still making public excuses to inaction when they started publicly pushing for the UN to do something, and didn't come out in support of action until days after Gaddafi began really slaughtering his people.

Solomon Kleinsmith
Rise of the Center

Ravinder Makhaik said...

Stakes for Libyan oil are higher in Europe than in the US, so its no surprise that Sarkozy and Cameron took to get the UN involved.

Obama by ceding the lead role to European partners in NATO and taking a back seat has only reinforced that US is not in a position to police all the trouble spots in the world and with time will have to re-adjust to a smaller role in geo-politics

Fuzzy Slippers said...

It's not a war, Silly. It's a kinetic military action. We don't have terrorist attacks, we have man-made disasters. We don't raise taxes, we have spending reductions in the tax code (Jon Stewart was hilarious on this one). We don't say "terrorists" (unless we're talking about white Americans, preferably Christians, but Jews will do), we say . . . well, we're still trying out new terms and will get back to you.