April 20, 2011
Mission Creep On Steroids
"The committee rejects foreign troops on the ground but we encourage the bombardment of Gaddafi's army," Ahmed El-Hasi, a spokesman for the February 17 opposition coalition, said in the eastern city of Benghazi.
Libyan rebels welcome air strikes, no ground troops, Mar 21
Rasmussen: The UN mandate does not authorise the use of forces on the ground. We are there to protect civilians against attack. We are there to implement a no-fly zone; we have no intention of putting troops on the ground.
Rasmussen says no NATO ground troops for Libya, Mar 28
Prime Minister David Cameron has insisted that Britain will not send ground forces into Libya but conceded the limits set by the UN resolution were making the campaign more difficult.
"What we've said is there is no question of an invasion or an occupation, this is not about Britain putting boots on the ground, this is not what we are about here," he told Sky News television.
Cameron insists no ground forces for Libya, Apr 18
"I remain absolutely opposed to a deployment of troops on the ground," Juppe told reporters, saying it would not be allowed under a United Nations Security Council resolution permitting the intervention in Libya.
France opposes idea of sending troops to Libya, Apr 19
Italy, however, remains opposed to sending ground troops, Frattini said, following talks with the leader of the Libyan rebels' transitional government, Mustafa Abdul-Jalil. French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe also said Tuesday he is "totally hostile" to deploying ground troops.
UK to send military advisers to help Libya rebels, Apr 19
France and Italy are joining Britain in sending military officers to Libya to help advise rebels on technical, logistical and organisational issues.
A French foreign ministry spokesperson said a small number of liaison officers would be sent out to Benghazi along with a special envoy, while Italy said it was ready to send around 10 officers - "the same number of military staff as Britain".
Ignazio La Russa, Italy's defence minister, said that stronger intervention under the UN resolution, which does not permit ground troops, may be needed in Libya.
William Hague, Britain's foreign minister, announced on Tuesday that it would be sending a team to Libya to help rebels with "military organisational structures, communications and logistics, including how best to distribute humanitarian aid and deliver medical assistance".
France and Italy to send Libya advisers , Apr 20
Rest assured. No matter what they say. There are already special forces troops on the ground preparing for an invasion of Libya.
Posted by b on April 20, 2011 at 11:16 AM | Permalink
you've been right all along b
Posted by: annie | Apr 20, 2011 11:22:17 AM | 1
b, i'm looking for the post (over a week ago) where you posited Gaddafi had not been attacking civilian by assessing the casualties of women and children. i can't find it..which post is that?
Posted by: annie | Apr 20, 2011 11:24:23 AM | 2
Posted by: annie | Apr 20, 2011 11:47:48 AM | 4
b, I've been pessimistic from the beginning, convinced that there would be an inevitable escalation in front of Gaddafi's regime's resilience, and that the destruction of Libia would have been the result, the only alternative being an unacceptable political debacle for Sarkozy, Cameron and Clinton-Obama;
but: the regime is so resilient, and the rebels so inept and untrustworthy, that the aggressors (at least the majority of them) at this point would gladly settle for the minimum face-saving objective: "get rid" of Gaddafi; the fact that Gaddafi doesn't hold any official post might make things more difficult, or easier, I don't know;
so I begin to see a ray of hope; the NYT op-ed by Obama, Sarkozy and Cameron reaffirmed the goal to see Gaddafi gone, but also posed limits to the allies: it gave the "official" interpretation of the Un resolution, that is, that it didn't allow regime change; it referred generically to "a new generation of leaders"; it affirmed that the future of the Libyan regime was an internal affair, in terms that allowed a great latitude: practically, gone Gaddafi, anything could happen, based on that op-ed, even the continuation of the same regime under the rule of one of his sons! and the day after, we had that long interview (or rather, monologue? or op-ed?) on the WP with Said Gaddafi; now, can you imagine an interview with the closest aide of Saddam Hussein, or mullah Omar, or Milosevic, or Aristide, after the war / regime change intervention had begun?
even the arrangement between Libya and the Red Cross over Misrata could be read that way; they wouldn't have allowed it, if eager to escalate
I hope I'm not deluding myself, but maybe a way out non too humiliating for anyone is slowly taking shape; military counselors, etc, if this scenario is realistic, would serve the objectives of "putting pressure" on Gaddafi but maybe even more on the rebels, rather then be the beginning of an escalation (of course they could always become such)
Posted by: claudio | Apr 20, 2011 2:12:59 PM | 5
The Obama, Sarkozy, Cameron op-ed was in the International Herald Tribune, Le Figaro, and Times of London n o t in the New York Times.
The op ed was for re-election and for a certain type of local constituency. This is played on many, many different levels.
The "progressive" media, Guardian, New York Times, Der Spiegel, Al Jazeera are full of "rebel" propaganda stories and Vogue like photographs of good looking young men with weapons.
The conservative press is much more matter of fact and critical.
Posted by: somebody | Apr 20, 2011 2:45:11 PM | 6
Mission creep indeed. I agree b,it's only a matter of time. With boots on the ground already (advisors), I say within a month or two, the west will be in bigtime.
Posted by: ben | Apr 20, 2011 3:10:20 PM | 7
Pretty sure this whole escapade was envisioned as it's currently rolling out. Libya looked so irresistibly ripe for a shiny new lily pad in North Africa and with the rebels so willing to pull the Trojan horse home to Tripoli, they just couldn't resist the temptation.
One has to wonder then, is there a Libyan Muqtada al-Sadr spoiler waiting in the wings? Remember, absolutely no one knew who he was before the invasion of Iraq.
Posted by: anna missed | Apr 20, 2011 4:43:00 PM | 9
I agree with @9. No Mission Creep. An occupation was always part of the plan, they didn't just fall into it.
Would they be so brazen as to find The Marvelous Mug, as they allegedly found Hussein, in a spider hole?
Many thanks to China for floating the credit line to the U.S. to help enable yet another military escapade. Every team member plays their part.
Posted by: Morocco Bama | Apr 20, 2011 5:01:22 PM | 10
What does Russia get out of this gambit? They abstained, then allowing the resolution to pass. China abstained as well, but Morocco Bama sees a method in their vote.
Did Russia decide to let the US and the West run through more of their wealth, in both blood and treasure?
Posted by: jawbone | Apr 20, 2011 6:05:13 PM | 11
Or...does Russia benefit from the somewhat predictably higher oil prices?
Posted by: jawbone | Apr 20, 2011 6:05:52 PM | 12
i prefer 'mission creeps'
if air strikes is a act of war...ground troops is even more so..How long can the lie of 'humanitarian intervention' before the public wakes up that they ARE being lied to?
Posted by: brian | Apr 20, 2011 6:16:25 PM | 13
I don't much like your view of Libya, b, I have to say it. My view is pretty neutral. I'm not an enthusiast of conspiratorial views of history.
Gaddafi is a pretty nasty megalomaniac. I doubt he has very much support other than his tribe and his money. His money he has used effectively, but his troops are not that great; he has not yet taken Misrata.
The opposition can only put forward a wild militia. That's not very different from what the demonstrators in other Arab countries could have done. The opposition in Libya are faced with a real war. That war was launched by Gaddafi.
The Western intervention. No doubt it will finish by troops on the ground, it's no great secret. I doubt though that this was what the Western powers wanted. Their interest is that the oil should continue to flow, better achieved by supporting the status quo. Rather it was the shame of allowing a repeat of Saddam's suppression of the Shi'a revolt in 1991.
The US withdrawal is a sign of the lack of interest. Britain and France are left with trying to make a success of the affair, and they have to, in order not appear defeated. Question of elections.
Posted by: alexno | Apr 20, 2011 6:40:54 PM | 14
Uncounted - Clint Curtis: Million Dollar Programmer
Be sure to see 'the rest of the story' in my posts, 42 through 44 and their various links...
I, like others, will not be putting to much more energy in following this through, as it has become detrimental to my health, reading and following this never ending fraud, treason, calculating malice and the continued unwavering corruption that is now so ubiquitous no one even bats and eye, and the worse part? No one seems to even care, except the ones whom has no voice, power or say. Having sd, that, I'd love to hear what the mooners would have to say with regards the above.
Posted by: Uncle $cam | Apr 20, 2011 6:58:06 PM | 15
Sorry, that should have been on the recent open thread... I thought i had that page open.
Posted by: Uncle $cam | Apr 20, 2011 7:02:16 PM | 16
@14 "Rather it was the shame of allowing a repeat of Saddam's suppression of the Shi'a revolt in 1991."
I'm not following your reasoning, are you saying that something held back the West from stopping Saddam's Republican Guard from slaughtering Shia's in southern Iraq after the Shia's were encouraged to rise up by GW Bush senior? So this shame of 1991, why did it not kick in in 1994 during the Rwanda genocide? Ok, maybe it is was 2 early, how about from 1998-2004 when over 4 million of Congo's citizens were being killed, mostly bu the Ugandan and Rwanda militar and proxy forces (key Western allies)?
Is it b/c it is Africa south of the Sahara? So the West's 'shame' is going to kick in 2011 to save how many Libyan's? Did you say 1, 2,3 thousand (shit who is counting make it 25), so 25 thousand Libyan's are going to be saved from a 'meglomaniac' (why are the 'bad' guys always mental? ... not cool, cold and bloody murderers like, well Obama and Sarko) and pray tell how are they going to be 'saved'? Yes, an invasion, so even if you believe the bs about humanitarian concerns for Africa only NORTH of the Sahara then b's contention that a ground invasion was a part of the plan comes to center stage ... where we should be.
I would suggest that it is way to narrow of a view to see the war on Libya in personal terms or simply about 'saving' this or that .... the game is much deeper and the stakes are very high, with a future body count from the saviors bombs that will make any 'savings' in Libya look like pennies in my pocket.
Posted by: Minerva | Apr 20, 2011 7:54:43 PM | 17
Lie's Behind the West's War on Libya
The US$30 billion frozen by Mr Obama belong to the Libyan Central Bank and had been earmarked as the Libyan contribution to three key projects which would add the finishing touches to the African federation – the African Investment Bank in Syrte, Libya, the establishment in 2011 of the African Monetary Fund to be based in Yaounde with a US$42 billion capital fund and the Abuja-based African Central Bank in Nigeria which when it starts printing African money will ring the death knell for the CFA franc through which Paris has been able to maintain its hold on some African countries for the last fifty years. It is easy to understand the French wrath against Gaddafi.
The African Monetary Fund is expected to totally supplant the African activities of the International Monetary Fund which, with only US$25 billion, was able to bring an entire continent to its knees and make it swallow questionable privatisation like forcing African countries to move from public to private monopolies. No surprise then that on 16-17December 2010, the Africans unanimously rejected attempts by Western countries to join the African Monetary Fund, saying it was open only to African nations.
Just some of the reasons why Libya's Gaddafi has a strong following in Africa - but as important is what makes him really dangerous for the Western saviors
Posted by: Minerva | Apr 20, 2011 8:13:31 PM | 18
alexno the ignorant..:
'Gaddafi is a pretty nasty megalomaniac. I doubt he has very much support other than his tribe and his money'
Well gadafi has massive suppotr esp in west and south Libya.
as for' nasty megalomaniac? jeez: what do you base your misinfo on:
'On February 16, 2009, Gaddafi took a step further and called on Libyans to back his proposal to dismantle the government and to distribute the oil wealth directly to the 5 million inhabitants of the country.
However, his plan to deliver oil revenues directly to the Libyan people met opposition by senior officials who could lose their jobs due to a parallel plan by Gaddafi to rid the state of corruption.
Some officials, including Prime Minister Al-Baghdadi, Ali Al-Mahmoudi and Farhat Omar Bin Guida, of the Central Bank, told Gaddafi that the measure could harm the country’s economy in the long term due to “capital flight.”
“Do not be afraid to directly redistribute the oil money and create fairer governance structures that respond to people’s interests,” Gaddafi said in a Popular Committee.
The Popular Committees are the backbone of Libya. Through them citizens are represented at the district level.
“The Administration has failed and the state’s economy has failed. Enough is enough. The solution is for the Libyan people to directly receive oil revenues and decide what to do with them,” Gaddafi said in a speech broadcast on state television. To this end, the Libyan leader urged a radical reform of government bureaucracy.
Despite this, senior Libyan government officials voted to delay Gaddafi’s plans. Only 64 ministers from a total of 468 Popular Committee members voted for the measure. There were 251 who saw the measures as positive, but chose to delay their implementation.
Given the rejection of the Committee, Gaddafi affirmed before a public meeting: “My dream during all these years was to give the power and wealth directly to the people.”
So…another big LIE falls by the wayside, the false image of Ghaddafi the dictator who robs from his people.
most westerners know little to nothing aboput Gadaffi, and trhat makes them prime targets for he official MSM propaganda
Posted by: brian | Apr 20, 2011 8:39:31 PM | 19
What does Russia get out of this? Same thing as Osama Bin Laden. Another quagmire for the virtually bankrupt "international community," perhaps sparking a crisis similar to the one that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union.
If you're a Russian, revenge is so, so sweet. What's not to like about the cash starved US taking on more and more expensive foreign obligations?
Posted by: JohnH | Apr 21, 2011 12:27:24 AM | 21
Russia would have weighed up the options. Voting with fukUS would have won a few kudos with fukUS but that is all, next time it suited fukUS they woulda shat upon Russians and blamed 'Putin' (the trick of creating a bogey man out of the leaders of nations that don't always conform isn't confined to Libya and the colonel) for some alleged rort against someone/something. Prolly the usual "we're not gonna let Russia do that because Putin is mean to Russians" is a favourite - punishing the people they claim to be sticking up for. Anyway voting with fukUS really didn't have much upside for Russia whose imperial escapades closer to home are keeping them too busy to get very involved in Africa. The big downside in voting with fukUS is that the legit Libyan govt obviously has the support of the bulk of the Libyan population. The mass defection of troops hasn't happened people in Libya enjoy one of the highest standards of living in Africa or the ME, why would they risk that? This means that the rebels may lose, or at least not win unless fukUS gets totally involved and even then victory is not assured. Voting yes would have had the sleazy little frog turning up in Moscow whining for Russian military support "Vladimir mon ami, put d'argent where la bouche was". Plus if the current Libyan administration sees off this clumsy coalition of under-resourced and poorly trained poms, frogs and eyties, not voting for the invasion leaves Russia in a good possie re hydro-carbon exploration contracts.
This is the most likely option oblamblam can't buy in, not yet anyway, it's not a good look starting a new war when yer wanting votes for being too broke to feed and house the citizenry, and you haven't finished the last war you started yet.
Remember the state that the Afghanistan colonisation was in when amerika was too busy raping & murdering Iraqis to lend a hand? And that was against a rag tag mob not unlike the ones fukUS has on side this time. A fukI coalition would have trouble beating a rug, or winning a raffle.
(with the italians in we should be able to latinate the acronym and decline it
Voting against fuk US woulda got cameron, sarkozy and berlusconi whining like a scratched leornard cohen LP, on and on about how Russia had let the team down (ie whitefella domination) then they woulda gone for some sorta payback, so abstaining was the only logical play.
China's reasoning was simnilar, but not the same. They are players in Africa and have enough hassle dealing with fukUS as it is, getting offside will make that worse, plus taking out another player (Libya) will make it easier to finesse fukUS, without a third player to complicate everything.
Posted by: Debs is dead | Apr 21, 2011 2:01:45 AM | 22
Inside a Dying Empire
This can’t end well.
But then, how often do empires end well, really? They live vampirically by feeding off others until, sooner or later, they begin to feed on themselves, to suck their own blood, to hollow themselves out. Sooner or later, they find themselves, as in our case, economically stressed and militarily extended in wars they can’t afford to win or lose.
Historians have certainly written about the dangers of overextended empires and of endless war as a way of life, but there’s something distant and abstract about the patterns of history. It’s quite another thing to take it in when you’re part of it; when, as they used to say in the overheated 1960s, you’re in the belly of the beast.
I don’t know what it felt like to be inside the Roman Empire in the long decades, even centuries, before it collapsed, or to experience the waning years of the Spanish empire, or the twilight of the Qing dynasty, or of Imperial Britain as the sun first began to set, or even of the Soviet Empire before the troops came slinking home from Afghanistan, but at some point it must have seemed at least a little like this -- truly strange, like watching a machine losing its parts. It must have seemed as odd and unnerving as it does now to see a formerly mighty power enter a state of semi-paralysis at home even as it staggers on blindly with its war-making abroad.
Posted by: DeAnander | Apr 21, 2011 2:32:15 AM | 23
No need to listen what Libyan leaders are saying the forces trying to kill all the rebels and also they do not want to participate in help of Libyan people if the other forces will come to Libya then they will what is going on in Libya exactly that's why they do not want to allow other countries forces into Libya.
Posted by: Prasad | Apr 21, 2011 5:35:10 AM | 24
It would be useful to change your trained perspective on this issue. Many of you are still thinking in terms of Nation-States, and I would suggest that it is an antiquated and inappropriate filter. Nation-States are now likened to skins the moneyed-elite can put on and take off when the situation warrants. Russia is a prime example. The Soviet Union collapses, i.e. a skin is not only taken off but discarded and the moneyed-elite quickly pick the remnants of the old skin to sew a new one that pays significant returns at the expense of the new skin's integrity.
Remember Larry Summers in Post-Soviet Collapse Russia? Remember Larry Summers in collapsing United States? Watching what happened in Russia.....the fall of the Soviet Union and the unprecedented rise of the Oligarchs sealed the deal for me. I realized that my filter for perceiving the events was all wrong and it could not, and did not, provide adequate explanations and reconciliations of obvious contradictions. Once I changed my filter, my perspective, the contradictions reconciled and it made sense.
Several years ago, I returned to the place of my birth, Philadelphia, Pa.. Folks in Pennsylvania were as devout Anti-Communists as any place in the USA. Everywhere I looked, there were Lukoil gas stations. They were ubiquitous. It made me laugh, hysterically. This former bastion of Anti-Communism was not only doing business with the Communists, but now they were working for the Communists. My former perspective would not have been able to reconcile this insanity. My current perspective easily reconciles it. The Philadelphia dopes don't even know what Lukoil is, nor do they care....because they've not been told to care, or trained to care. Contradictions don't even register on their radar, because there is no radar. Notice the Red.......and the employees wearing it. Is that not a rub in the face, or what? Clueless....the Global Oligarchs are having their laugh at the dolt's expense....with a nod, nudge and smirk amongst one another...whilst saying to each other about their dutiful servants "what a bunch of Maroons!"
Posted by: Morocco Bama | Apr 21, 2011 8:05:41 AM | 25
Does anyone else here see a pattern?
The two countries that border Libya, namely Tunisia and Egypt get
taken out there with peaceful demonstrations and strong pressure, Egypt with cash from US, and Tunisia by the old colonial master.
If the two ex-leaders were still in place, there is no way that the two little Bonapartes, Sarkozy and Cameron would have tried to intervene in the Libyan conflict.
This must have been planned long ago with the tacit approval of Obama, on the proviso that this is Sarkozy's and Cameron's game and no US boots on the ground.
This is Suez redux, "hoisted with his own petard" springs to mind.
Posted by: Cloned Poster | Apr 21, 2011 8:57:06 AM | 26
You nailed it. The world is still being run by the monied who treat the nations they own like fighting pit bulls. It's all a game to them because the real power/wealth is all held in the same hands. Everyone below is scrambling like mad to climb a polished glass rod while those sitting at the top watch and laugh and occasionally pour a little oil down the sides – just to keep it interesting, you know.
Posted by: DaveS | Apr 21, 2011 9:02:31 AM | 27
DaveS @ 27 -- Nicely put. I've thought it was a game played with out ives, but I did not quite get to the fighting pit bulls image.
Posted by: jawbone | Apr 21, 2011 8:17:15 PM | 28
this is total bullshit:
"Rather it was the shame of allowing a repeat of Saddam's suppression of the Shi'a revolt in 1991."
There was no one in power in America in 1991 -- or since -- who felt any shame, or regret, or guilt about what they allowed to happen. They did not give a rat's ass about these people being killed.
Just as today they do not give a rat's ass about what is happening in Bahrain to peaceful protesters.
And they do not give a rat's ass about the people of Libya either. To suggest otherwise is delusional at best, and sickly evil at worst.
Posted by: Susan | Apr 22, 2011 2:15:22 AM | 29