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Lugar: No-fly zone requires declaration of war - By Josh Rogin | The Cable

The top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee argued against implementing a no-fly zone over Libya on Thursday, and also said that Congress must pass a formal declaration of war if the Obama administration decides to take that step.

"Clearly, the United States should be engaged with allies on how to oppose the Qaddafi regime and support the aspirations of the Libyan people," said Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) at the start of the committee's Thursday morning hearing on the Middle East. "But given the costs of a no-fly zone, the risks that our involvement would escalate, the uncertain reception in the Arab street of any American intervention in an Arab country, the potential for civilian deaths, the unpredictability of the endgame in a civil war, the strains on our military, and other factors, I am doubtful that U.S. interests would be served by imposing a no-fly zone over Libya."



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 08:47:20 PM EST
It would appear that Richard Lugar does not remember what led to the Korean intervention. The key here was that Russia and China were prepared to abstain. Gadaffi is now officially fucked. His forces can and will be ripped to shreds from the air and the rebels will quickly recapture all they have lost and then all that will be left is Tripoli. I just hope that no A-10s with "depleted uranium penetrators" are used.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 09:41:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And the Egyptian Air Force is free to get some valuable combat training under UN auspices.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 09:56:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I also hope that they won't try the decapitation strategy, and kill lots of civilians in the process.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 05:04:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Best done up close and personal by Libyans in the traditional Arab manner with the knife carried in the waist sash.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 09:18:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'd prefer courts and truth commissions.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 10:13:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If possible, I agree. Getting him out of power is a must. And one could not blame the Libyan people for preferring him dead to having him gone but using his ill gotten gains to plot comebacks. If he is dead he cannot do that. I don't see any reason to expect that he has a sufficient regard for the truth that any truth commission would be anything but a game for him. Courts might be the best way to deal with his sons and remaining supporters.

The method I suggested is a traditional method and would be immediately recognized and accepted as such by the Libyan people, especially if performed by a tribal elder or leader. It comes from T.E. Laurence, who did know the traditional Arab mind rather well.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 05:51:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Abstainers, with some editorialising from the Independent:

UN orders air strikes against Gaddafi - World Politics, World - The Independent

The abstainers

Brazil Has a long history of supporting pariah states.

India Like Germany and Brazil, has no veto on Security Council. Its abstention came even as the US championed its promotion to permanent membership.

China Usually abstains when it disapproves of a resolution, sparing its veto for issues of direct strategic interest. Its authoritarian government is concerned about setting precedents for interfering in a sovereign state.

Germany Outspoken critic of the UK-French plans for a no-fly zone, saying it did not want to get sucked into a war.

Russia Has its own internal problems, including in Caucasus. Unwilling to get involved in other countries' affairs.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 05:11:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In other words, the BRIC plus Germany, which means all the second-tier powers vying for permanent member status abstained, as well as Russia and China.

Doesn't bode well for the multipolar world.

Then again, based on past experience, The WestTM could be doing the right thing for the wrong reasons, and could also botch it.

So, in what may be my last act of "advising", I'll advise you to cut the jargon. -- My old PhD advisor, to me, 26/2/11

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 05:23:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Which reasons would those be?

My instinct is that they are doing it primarily under pressure of public opinion. Those who are sticking out their chins and their chests brashly (not naming names...) are doing it to gain popularity, to be sure.

International public opinion is a good reason. (In this case, at least.)

I don't believe they are doing it primarily for access to energy, because nothing the rebel leaders could promise now would be enforceable.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 05:42:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
eurogreen:
I don't believe they are doing it primarily for access to energy, because nothing the rebel leaders could promise now would be enforceable.
But that doesn't prevent voices from the ends of the political spectrum and the "global South", as well as Gaddafi, from claiming that this is all about the oil.

In the case of the UK, it could be trying scratch the Lockerbie itch, and so on...

So, in what may be my last act of "advising", I'll advise you to cut the jargon. -- My old PhD advisor, to me, 26/2/11

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 06:00:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't believe they are doing it primarily for access to energy, because nothing the rebel leaders could promise now would be enforceable.

If anything, I think access to energy might explain the reluctance to act to some degree.  Gaddafi winning would likely be better for that anyway.  By going for the NFZ and airstrikes, we're pretty much guaranteeing that the oil fields are going to be offline for the foreseeable future.

Like Mig says, the argument will undoubtedly be made by Gaddafi and others, but in this case I don't think it's terribly convincing, particularly as the rebels asked us to do this and enjoy a lot more popularity in the Middle East/North Africa than Gaddafi.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 06:57:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
eurogreen:
Which reasons would those be?

The autocrats in the Arab League is going to sign off on this tomorrow as I understand. What are they being promised? A blind eye as they strike down their own rebellions?

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Fri Mar 18th, 2011 at 05:39:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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