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War Against Libya Constitutionally Illegal; Obama Now Impeachable

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Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has just inadvertently made the case for President Obama’s impeachment.  On ABC’s This Week, Jake Tapper asked Gates, “Do you think Libya posed an actual or imminent threat to the United States?”  Gates responded, “No, no. It was not, it was not a vital national interest to the United States.”

Now let us recall what Obama said back in 2007, when he was running for president: “The president does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.”  Obama’s words in 2007 and his actions in 2011 seem rather contradictory, don’t they? And in fact, noted constitutional scholar Barack Obama was correct back in 2007. The War Powers Resolution of 1973 states that the president can only send the armed forces into military action abroad when the Congress has authorized it or if the United States is under attack, or at serious threat of attack.

Libya was not attacking us, and was not threatening to attack us. The Congress has not declared war on Libya, nor authorized military action against Libya. Therefore, this is an illegal and unconstitutional war. Violating the Constitution by launching an illegal war surely rises to the level of “high crimes and misdemeanors,” which is an impeachable offense.


Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul are right. This isn’t a Republican issue or a Democrat issue. It isn’t a conservative issue or a liberal issue. This is a constitutional issue. Impeach Obama. 

A final thought: It would be nice to see all those principled anti-war protesters demonstrating against an illegal war launched against an oil-rich Muslim country. Has anyone seen them lately? Maybe we should put them on the side of a milk carton, because they seem to be curiously missing.

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About RJ

  • RJ
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  • RJ

    House Democrats: Republican criticism of Susan Rice for lying about Libya is sexist and racist

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  • Zingzing

    In the future, no one’s going to look at this collection of what will then be dead links. You should just start editing a book, with the money quotes and some sort of narrative rather than the glorified google news notification thing you’ve got going on here. Just saying… If you want all this hard time and obsession to mean anything down the line…

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    The State Department said Tuesday it never concluded that the consulate attack in Libya stemmed from protests over an American-made video ridiculing Islam, raising further questions about why the Obama administration used that explanation for more than a week after assailants killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans.

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  • Create a link to Drudge to save time

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    U.S. officer got no reply to requests for more security in Benghazi

    A U.S. security officer twice asked his State Department superiors for more security agents for the American mission in Benghazi months before an attack that killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans, but he got no response.

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    Libya Cable Detailed Threats

    In a dispatch sent the day he was killed, Ambassador Christopher Stevens described how the militias keeping the peace in Benghazi threatened to quit over a political feud.

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    U.S. had early indications Libya attack tied to organized militants

    Within hours of last month’s attacks on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Benghazi, Libya, President Barack Obama’s administration received about a dozen intelligence reports suggesting militants connected to al Qaeda were involved, three government sources said.

    Despite these reports, in public statements and private meetings, top U.S. officials spent nearly two weeks highlighting intelligence suggesting that the attacks were spontaneous protests against an anti-Muslim film, while playing down the involvement of organized militant groups.

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    House committee: security requests in Libya denied

    American diplomats in Libya made repeated requests for increased security for the consulate in Benghazi and were turned down by officials in Washington, leaders of a House committee said Tuesday.

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    Benghazi attack followed deep cuts in State Department security budget

    The cuts were the latest in a series of squeezes on State Department spending. Congress has appropriated less money for the department than requested in every year since Fiscal 2007, according to budget figures.

  • Right, because spies never do anything behind the scenes that the press doesn’t know about.

  • RJ

    15 days after Benghazi attack, FBI still investigating from afar

    More than two weeks after four Americans — including the U.S. ambassador to Libya — were killed in an attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, FBI agents have not yet been granted access to investigate in the eastern Libyan city, and the crime scene has not been secured, sources said.

  • zingzing

    fair enough, roger. the bible’s nothing but literature any way. just stuff to play with.

  • RJ

    The Libya Debacle

    The more we learn, the more Benghazi looks like a gross security failure.

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  • roger nowosielski

    I understand it perfectly. My comment to you was tongue in cheek. Thought kind of funny you making use of the creation metaphor, that’s all.

  • Zingzing

    You badly miss the point, Roger. To rj, Libya matters not a bit. It’s all about Obama.

  • Media Silent On Libya In General, sadly. It’s a story that requires an attention span of more than 20 seconds.

  • Kinda ass-sucking, zing, even for an atheist such as you, don’t you think?

  • Zingzing

    And on the sixth day, Obama invented verb tenses, because shit happens.

  • Zingzing

    Rj’s war journal, day 508: Obama invented the middle east, then war, then death. And on the fourth day, which he called Obama, he rested on his media connections, which he invented on the fifth day, as he had fallen on his bottom on the fourth day, when he had rested on that which did not yet existed in the obamaverse, as he was apt to call it. His bottom, which he had not yet considered til he found himself upon it, he called Obamabottom, and all the girls went “YEAH YEAH” and snapped their fingers in time, which Obama decided to call “November.”

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    Death of Libyan rebel raises calls for vengeance

    MISRATA, Libya (AP) – One of the young Libyan rebels credited with capturing Moammar Gadhafi in a drainage ditch nearly a year ago died Tuesday of injuries after being kidnapped, beaten and slashed by the late dictator’s supporters – the latest victim of persistent violence and instability in the North African country.

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    Intelligence chairman doubts Libya attack linked to video

    His explanation of the events is at odds with the administration’s comments about the September 11 assault. On Thursday, White House press secretary Jay Carney said there was no verification at the time that it was a “preplanned attack” and attributed the event to the controversial video.

    Rogers said Sunday the administration’s statements have been “confusing.” He criticized President Barack Obama for attending a campaign event in Colorado the night after the attacks.

  • Zingzing

    To be fair, I suppose if I should ask rj a question… Rj, given all the time you spend studying the news from Libya (and I hope you don’t just have a google newsbot set to “fuck islam”), have you gained any appreciation for the people of Libya and the hardship they are enduring? Or is this all about American politics? I sincerely hope your extensive research has lead you to some measure of empathy with the people you are studying. One would think that after a year plus, you’d realize their humanity. What have you learned of the Libyan people? You should be quite the expert by now.

  • RJ

    Many Libyans have blamed extremist groups for the attack on the U.S. Consulate here on Sept. 11 that killed four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador. The groups have operated with relative impunity in the security vacuum that has prevailed since Gaddafi’s ouster and death.

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    By all accounts he was a good man. It’s a shame that he was left so vulnerable on the anniversary of 9/11 in a city full of Islamists despite there being warnings of an attack.

  • Igor

    Too too sad. Stevens seems to have been a dedicated and hopeful, even noble, diplomat for the USA. He’ll be hard to replace.

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    Libya’s Downward Spiral

    The country has been going to hell in a handbasket for months now. We just weren’t paying attention.

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    John Christopher Stevens, U.S. ambassador to Libya, dies at 52

    John Christopher “Chris” Stevens, the American ambassador killed Tuesday in an attack in Benghazi, Libya, was a career diplomat who had served in U.S. missions throughout the Middle East and whose last mission was focused on supporting a democratic transition in the country.

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    Libya’s interior minister resigns after attacks

    Libya’s interim interior minister resigned on Sunday after members of the newly-elected parliament accused his forces of neglect when attackers bulldozed a Sufi shrine and mosque while police stood by a day earlier.

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    Libya Islamists destroy Sufi shrines, library

    Islamists used bombs and a bulldozer to destroy the tomb of a 15th century Sufi scholar in the Libyan city of Zlitan, witnesses said on Saturday…

    The attackers reduced the revered last resting place of Abdel Salam al-Asmar to rubble on Friday and also set fire to a historic library in a nearby mosque, ruining thousands of books…

    A Reuters journalist in Zlitan, about 160 km (90 miles) west of the Libyan capital, said the mosque’s dome had collapsed and a minaret was pockmarked with holes.

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    Just thought I’d drop in RJ in case anyone gets worried about you for talking to yourself.

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    Libya’s shadow over Sinai violence

    Analysts point out that the large inflow of weapons into Sinai from Libya, where state authority has weakened substantially after the fall of Qadhafi, has sharply heightened violence. Al Arabiya television station, quoting local residents, is reporting on its website that weapons are entering Sinai from three places: Libya, Sudan, and Gaza.

    Apparently arms such as Grinov machine guns, anti-aircraft missiles, and RPGs are pouring in from Libya…

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    Three armed men killed in Libya as violence escalates

    Several violent incidents have rocked Libya in recent days and on Sunday the International Committee of the Red Cross announced it was suspending its activity in the country’s second biggest city after one of its compounds was attacked with grenades and rockets.

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    Red Cross building in Libya attacked with rockets and grenades

    Fifth time in less than three months that violence was directed against the independent aid agency in Libya

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    Election Results and Libya’s National Assembly

    As the results of Libya’s historic National Assembly election are becoming finalized, we are beginning to get a clearer picture of what the Assembly will look like. The 200-member National Assembly has 80 seats reserved for political parties and 120 seats reserved for individual candidates. Out of the 80 party seats, former interim Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril’s National Forces Alliance—a relatively liberal, secular-oriented group—seems to have won 39 out of 80 seats. The Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Justice and Construction party appears to have 17 seats, making it the next largest group.

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    A win for ‘secularists’ in Libya? It’s not what you think.

    This week, so-called ‘secularists’ were declared official winners in Libya’s parliamentary elections – and yet they support a constitutional place for Islamic sharia values. This seeming contradiction in Libya belies Western stereotypes about the incompatibility of Islam and democracy.

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    A gruesome new video has been posted on YouTube that allegedly shows a group of rebels gleefully using the dead, lifeless body of ousted Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi like a “ventriloquist’s doll.”

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    Libyan sports chief abducted

    TRIPOLI, Libya — Gunmen abducted the president of the Libyan Olympic Committee in the nation’s capital, grabbing him from his car and bundling him into a waiting vehicle, his brother said Monday.

    Salah al-Alam said his brother, committee chief Ahmed Nabil al-Taher al-Alam, was kidnapped on Sunday near the organization’s offices in central Tripoli. He said there has been no contact with him or the captors since.

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    In Libya, diverse coalition has edge over Islamists in elections

    Preliminary vote counts suggest a landslide triumph for the National Forces Alliance, or NFA, led by former Transitional National Council Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril, a Western-educated political scientist.

    The alliance, a coalition of about 60 political parties and 200 civil society groups, is seen as somewhat more progressive than its main Islamist rivals.

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    Libyan elections: Moderate Mahmoud Jibril poised for victory

    Libya’s former interim prime minister Mahmoud Jibril has won a landslide victory in the country’s first democratic election, early figures show, defying expectations that the Muslim Brotherhood would sweep to power.

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    Violence as Libyans vote

    One man was shot dead by a security guard on Saturday as he tried to steal a ballot box in the eastern town of Ajdabiya. Another was killed in gunfire in a clash between protesters and backers of the poll in Benghazi, cradle of last year’s uprising.

    Candidates with Islamist agendas dominate the field of more than 3,700 hopefuls, suggesting Libya will be the next Arab Spring country – after Egypt and Tunisia – to see religious parties secure a grip on power.

    In Benghazi, protesters stormed a polling station just after voting started and set fire to hundreds of ballot slips in a public square in a bid to undermine the election’s credibility.
    “There wasn’t enough security at the station to stop the attackers,” Nasser Zwela, 28, told Reuters. At least four voting centers were the scenes of tense standoffs between anti-poll protesters and armed locals seeking to prevent any disruption.

    On Friday, armed groups shut off half of Libya’s oil exports to press demands for greater representation in the assembly. At least three major oil-exporting terminals were affected.

    The Justice and Construction offshoot of Libya’s Muslim Brotherhood is tipped to do well, as is al-Watan, the party of former CIA detainee and Islamist insurgent Abdel Hakim Belhadj.

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    Libya elections: Muslim Brotherhood set to lead government

    While the elections for a 200-member National Congress is unlikely to grant a majority to any one faction, the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist allies are confident they can join their counterparts in Tunisia and Egypt at the helm of leadership.

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    Libyan Tabu tribe threatens election boycott

    The head of Libya’s Tabu tribe said Sunday his people will boycott this week’s national election if the government does not withdraw its forces and tanks from a southern desert city where deadly clashes have killed dozens.

    African Tabu leader Issa Abdel-Majid told The Associated Press by telephone that his tribe will not vote if government troops continue to deploy tanks, anti-aircraft missiles and snipers against Tabu fighters battling a rival Arab tribe in the southeastern city of Kufra. He said dozens of Tabu men, women and children have been killed and homes destroyed in the clashes.

    Some leaders in eastern Libya are also calling for an election boycott, pushing for semi-autonomy instead.

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    Protesters storm Libya election office in Benghazi

    Armed protesters calling for greater autonomy for Libya’s east stormed the national election commission in Benghazi on Sunday, burning materials and breaking computer equipment outside, less than a week before the North African country holds an election.

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    South Libya clashes kill 47 in three days

    “The number of wounded exceeds 100. Women and children make up more than half of the injured, with the majority of them hurt by mortar fire,” added doctor Taher Wehli.

    Sake blamed the outbreak of violence on rival Zwai tribesmen and their allies, who he said include the Libya Shield brigade, a force deployed by the interim government to act as a buffer between the conflicting camps.

    In February, tribal clashes in Kufra left more than 100 people dead and displaced half the population, according to UN figures.

    The Toubou, who are dark-skinned and present in southeast Libya as well as in Chad, Sudan and Niger, faced discrimination under Kadhafi’s regime.

    They complain of discrimination under the new authorities and some tribal leaders say the Toubou are being targeted in an “ethnic cleansing campaign.”

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    Battle for control of southern Libya

    Oil wells, water supplies, border checks, and illegal alien smuggling. Deep in southern Libya, the Tubus are masters of all they survey. Marginalized under Gaddafi, the Tubus helped bring him down. Now their plight is battling with neighboring Arab tribes to maintain control in the region. Their violent clashes have already claimed hundreds of lives. On the eve of elections, the situation is still a powder keg.

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    Egypt seizes weapons smuggled from Libya

    During the eight-month conflict that led to the toppling and killing of Gadhafi, Libyan citizens-turned-fighters stormed weapons storehouses and military camps to arm themselves, and the country is awash in everything from machine guns to mortars. Since then, the country has become a key source of illicit arms.

    A flood of weapons from Libya has added to security concerns in Egypt, where police have yet to fully return to the nation’s streets since disappearing early in last year’s uprising.

  • You can tell RJ cares because he calls them “brown people.”

  • The Watcher

    Someone needs to change RJ’s diaper…so declares The Watcher

  • Did you write this piece, RJ?

    Tip # 38 seems particularly your style.

  • RJ
  • You added that sentence after publishing your comment. Is that allowed, according to the comment section rules? Or is that a special privilege that you retain for yourself only?

    I admit that it is an editorial privilege. It’s neater than adding another comment.

    And the only comments I’ve deleted this morning were spam, so I suggest you redirect your paranoia elsewhere.

    complaining about the lack of comments about Syria on an article about Libya.

    Sorry, I didn’t realize we were only talking about Libyans. I was given to understand that the subject was “brown foreign people” in general.

  • RJ

    “And of course, Obama hasn’t directed the US military to intervene in Syria, has he?”

    You added that sentence after publishing your comment. Is that allowed, according to the comment section rules? Or is that a special privilege that you retain for yourself only?

  • You clearly don’t care about large numbers of brown foreign people being killed.

    A masterful piece of psychoanalysis there, RJ. Using your methods, should I in turn infer that you don’t care about brown people dying in droves either, since otherwise you would be posting links about the situation in Syria as well?

    No, for some reason what you seem to care about is just this one solitary article you are working so hard to keep the hits coming on.

    I suspect that it has far less to do with any concern for the ongoing plight of the Libyan people than with your conviction that you have found a watertight case for getting rid of the President.

    And of course, Obama hasn’t directed the US military to intervene in Syria, has he?

    How’s that for a snap diagnosis?

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    Libya in Chaos

    The NTC is unable to take on the militias. The post-Qaddafi military is still a work in progress and, in a country awash in weaponry (much of it looted from Qaddafi’s armories), the militias have abundant firepower with which to resist. When the government seeks to restore order following clashes among tribes and rival militias – something that occurs with dismaying regularity – it has been forced to turn to the militias for help. A program to demobilize and disarm them by disbursing cash to fighters and inducting them into the military or providing job training was put on hold when it was discovered that corrupt officials were diverting money from the billion-dollar fund.

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    Extradition of Gaddafi Deputy Plunges Tunisia into Political Crisis

    For months, Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki fiercely opposed Libyan requests to send al-Mahmoudi back. As the argument dragged on, it became a litmus test not only for what kind of justice system the new Tunisia might have, but also for what kind of President there will be once the new constitution is approved some time next year: one with big powers, like the American President, or a figurehead – as some suspect the newly elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy might ultimately be.

    A longtime human-rights activist and a former political prisoner himself, Marzouki, who returned last year from exile in Paris, argued that the Libyan risked being tortured and executed back home and that under the Geneva Conventions, Tunisia was obligated to keep him until it ruled on his request for political asylum; al-Mahmoudi was nabbed by Tunisian border police after fleeing Libya last September, when Gaddafi’s 42-year dictatorship was on the verge of collapse. In a statement on Monday, Marzouki’s spokesman Adnen Manser said al-Mahmoudi’s extradition on Sunday was “unilateral and without consultation, approval or signature of the President” and that “it deviates significantly from the principles of the current coalition, which threatens the image of Tunisia in the world.”

  • RJ

    What on Earth makes you think I post these links for you, DD? You clearly don’t care about large numbers of brown foreign people being killed. News stories about the suffering of brown people clearly just amuse you and spur you to write smartass comments.

  • Were we not paying enough attention to you when you didn’t put your headlines in bold, RJ?

  • RJ

    Libya east-west highway cut by armed militia

    The roadblock, which government forces have not opposed, has further raised concerns over doubts over whether Libya can hold free and fair elections on schedule as violence continues in many parts of the country.

    Fresh fighting has broken out in the southern town of Kufra, where battles between the indigenous Tibu people and Arab tribes earlier this year left 70 dead.

    Tense ceasefires continue around the towns of Zuara and Zintan, where battles cost more than 100 lives earlier this month.

    Benghazi has also been the scene of attacks blamed on jihadists, including a rocket attack on the British ambassador’s convoy earlier this month.

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    Libya’s former PM Mahmoudi tortured on forced return to Tripoli

    Marcel Ceccaldi, a French lawyer, said on Wednesday Mahmoudi had been badly beaten by Libyan security officers and left with broken ribs and a punctured lung.

    Tunisia’s president, Moncef Marzouki, has branded the extradition “illegal”, saying it was done behind his back.

    The International Committee for the Red Cross in Libya said it was still waiting for permission to visit Mahmoudi. “[He] has been visited 10 times in Tunisia,” said Soaade Messoudi, the organisation’s Tripoli spokeswoman. “We have not visited him [here] yet.”

    Amnesty International had urged the Tunisian authorities not to extradite Mahmoudi, and warned that he could be subjected to human rights violations in Libya.

    “He faces a real risk of torture and other ill-treatment, unfair trial and possibly extrajudicial execution,” said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Amnesty International’s deputy director for the Middle East and north Africa.

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    RJ’s war diary, day 414: roboblowjob and I will be married on the second anniversary of obama’s war on some people I couldn’t give two shits about. Save the date!

  • Zingzing

    RJ’s war diary, day 413: I posted another link today. Two people stuck their heads out of the woods to tell me to sit tight and keep fighting the fight to end all fights, so I did. Had some coco and played some x-box on my way to my quarters, where I took off my fatigues and fluffed my feather WAR-pillow before retiring. My phone is charging, unless I forgot to plug it in, in which case, it may die, and I may miss a text. RIP text. End transmission. Did I leave the oven on? Shit. END TRANSMISSION. End transmission. How do I turn this thing off? Mother fucking… Maybe I just pull this… No, that’s the robot vacuum cleaner thing’s charging cable. Oh no… Robot vacuum cleaner thing is mad at me. Go clean elsewhere! Yo! Robot vacuum cleaner thing! Don’t turn your sucking powers on me! Oh, no! Your brushes are so… They’re so… Oh my…

  • We’ll be so glad when your pointless posting of links is over

  • RJ

    I’m so glad the war in Libya is over…

    Libya’s tribal clashes leave 105 dead

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  • Perhaps, RJ, you should apply for Libyan citizenship and then run for president?

  • RJ

    NATO Chief Urges Release of ICC Personnel Held in Libya

    NATO general secretary, Anders Fogh Rasmussen on Thursday expressed “strong regret” at the detention of an International Criminal Court delegation in Libya and urged their swift release.

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    Libya needs more than elections to prevent civil war

    The escalation of terror attacks and violence could be halted if the militia forces were brought within a new regulated framework…

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    Tribal clashes in western, southern Libya, 15 dead

    Tribal clashes in western and southern Libya have killed at least 15 people over 48 hours this week, according to the state news agency, as old grievances between Libyan tribes and cities resurface in the absence of strong leadership in post-revolution Libya.

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    Libya to postpone June election

    TRIPOLI – Elections for a constituent assembly, originally set to be held by June 19 as Libya’s first such vote for four decades, are to be postponed, electoral commission members said on Saturday.

    One commission member, on condition of anonymity, said the postponement until July or later had been decided for logistical reasons, mainly to allow time for appeals from candidates who had been ruled out of the contest.

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    Libya army clashes with southern militia, 2 killed

    (Reuters) – Two people were killed and several injured in clashes between Libyan soldiers and tribesmen in the remote southeast, a local doctor and tribal representative said, underlining the unrest still raging seven months after Muammar Gaddafi’s overthrow.

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    After Gaddafi, Libya splits into disparate militia zones

    The rebel strongholds of Benghazi, Misrata and Zintan have become increasingly independent of Tripoli’s new regime…

  • RJ

    Locusts swarm in wake of Libya uprising

    The death of Muammar Gaddafi continues to reverberate across Africa – this time in the form of desert locusts.

    The Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations warned on Tuesday that croplands in Niger and Mali were at imminent risk from locust swarms moving south from Libya and Algeria. The revolution in Libya played a major role in allowing the pests to breed, it said.

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  • Ziiiiiinnnnng, how can he report good news about Libya from His Maher Bubble?

  • Zingzing

    Is there no good news from Libya, or do you only report the bad news? I ask because you should be an expert on it by now.

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    Try reading the article again, DD. I never said he *would* be impeached.

  • How’s that impeachment working out for you, RJ?

  • RJ

    Call for election boycott in Libya’s turbulent east

    A self-proclaimed autonomous council for Libya’s oil-producing eastern province has called on people in the region to boycott an election scheduled for next month, saying it will not give adequate representation to the east.

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    UK minister sued for sending Libyan back to torture

  • Kyle Hunter

    RJ if you’re going to write such a funny satire, you need to mark it as such or people will take you seriously :))

  • RJ
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    Triumphant Tuareg rebels fall out over al-Qaeda’s jihad in Mali

    As one group of rebels proudly proclaimed the independent state of Azawad in the “liberated” north of Mali last week, their allies were preparing for jihad by cutting off the hand of a “criminal” and forcing women to wear the veil.

    The rebels, armed with weapons stolen from Muammar Gaddafi’s formidable arsenal, took over an area of the Sahara as big as France in an astonishing 72 hours, taking advantage of the chaotic aftermath of an army coup.

  • They’re still waiting for a varifiable copy of Osama bin Laden’s birth certificate E.B!

  • Any word on the impeachment?

  • zingzing

    francis scott?

  • zingzing


  • Zingzing
  • RJ

    Libyan police brigade moves to quell clashes between rival towns in west

  • RJ

    “The militia leaders who have turned post-Qaddafi Libya into a patchwork of semiautonomous fiefs are now plunging into politics, raising fears that their armed brigades could undermine elections intended to lay the foundation of a new democracy.”

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  • RJ
  • RJ: I presume you do still remember how to format a link properly and are aware that to do so is a requirement of the comments guidelines?

    Let me know if you need a refresher on link formatting…

    Christopher Rose
    Blogcritics Comments Editor

  • RJ
  • RJ

    While the world’s attention is fixed on the worsening bloodshed in Syria, Libya teeters dangerously on the brink.

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    Libya sends army to stop clashes in southeast

    (Reuters) – Libya has sent military forces to stem clashes between rival tribes over control of territory in the far southeast of Libya, the armed forces chief said on Saturday, as more people were reported killed in the violence.

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    Saadi Gaddafi warns of uprising in Libya

    Muammar Gaddafi’s son Saadi warned on Friday of an imminent uprising in Libya, saying he was in regular contact with people in the country who were unhappy with the authorities put in place after the ousting and killing of his father.

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    Gaddafi supporters seize control of Libyan town

    Fighters loyal to Libya’s overthrown leader Muammar Gaddafi took control of a town south-east of the capital on Monday, flying their green flags in defiance of the country’s fragile new government.

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    Qaddafi daughter: Overthrow new Libyan gov’t

  • RJ

    The detention of 7,000 people in prisons and camps by the anti-Gaddafi forces is not surprising. The conflict in Libya was always much more of a civil war between Libyans than foreign governments pretended or the foreign media reported.

  • RJ

    US senior diplomat vows more help to Libya

    TRIPOLI – Visiting US ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice on Monday held talks with Libyan interim Prime Minister Abdel Rahim el-Keeb, and vowed more help for the Libyan people in various areas.

  • hamedd amer

    because the whole middle east is messy.
    and the big countries keep on pushing us and that,s going to make us blow up.we just ask them to leave us alone.
    thank so much

    hamedd amer yemen.

  • hamedd amer

    dear sirs.
    first thank you very much.
    i got one thing to say.please tell the whole world to leave us alone.
    i mean the middle east.the americans ,european, iranian and,the old and weakman turkey,also we got one enemy from inside us;the little country qatar.
    i really do thank you and i wish if you kindly let this letter spread out to the world.
    if the mentioned above don.t leave us alone than we know what to do.

  • RJ
  • RJ
  • RJ
  • RJ
  • RJ
  • RJ
  • also, you left off that Louis claims to have been abducted by a UFO in 1985

  • yes, we all have access to Drudge

  • RJ
  • RJ
  • I’ve read that Google punishes sites for too many outbound links. If true, I am not sure why RJ is allowed to sabotage the site

  • Jordan Richardson

    I’ve been such a fool.

  • Yeah, Jordan, what were you thinking? Here you’ve been shedding blood, toil, tears and sweat churning out articles and carefully formulating arguments and responses, when all you really had to do was toss off something related to a prime news topic and then post links to every story that appeared about it anywhere.

    Sloppy work, my man.

  • Jordan Richardson

    Jeez, maybe I should comment on my own articles this much…

  • It may not be democracy but it’s pure RJ.

  • Costello

    How is that democracy and why needlessly play the clown?

  • RJ
  • The people’s rage has no bounds, RJ.

    Are you really surprised?

  • RJ
  • RJ

    THIS IS WHAT DEMOCRACY LOOKS LIKE: Qaddafi apparently sodomized after capture

  • RJ
  • RJ
  • RJ
  • RJ

    Muammar Gaddafi’s ‘trophy’ body on show in Misrata meat store

    Libyans queue to see dictator’s body as wounds appear to confirm he was killed in cold blood

  • How is it different from when we summarily executed bin Laden?

  • RJ
  • RJ

    Libya’s new government increased security in Tripoli Saturday with extra roadblocks and house-to-house searches after fighting in the capital with supporters of Muammar Gaddafi raised fears of another insurgency.

  • RJ
  • RJ
  • Iran ‘steals surface-to-air missiles from Libya’

    Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have stolen dozens of sophisticated Russian-made surface-to-air missiles from Libya and smuggled them across the border to neighbouring Sudan, according to Western intelligence reports.

  • Nightmare in Libya: Thousands of Surface-to-Air Missiles Unaccounted For

    ABC News reported today U.S. officials and security experts were concerned some of the thousands of heat-seeking missiles could easily end up in the hands of al Qaeda or other terrorists groups, creating a threat to commercial airliners.

    “Matching up a terrorist with a shoulder-fired missile, that’s our worst nightmare,” said Sen. Barbara Boxer, D.-California, a member of the Senate’s Commerce, Energy and Transportation Committee.

  • Igor

    There´s no Statute Of Limitations on murder cases.

  • Libya’s NTC says Lockerbie case closed

    The investigation into the 1988 bombing of a U.S.-bound airliner over Lockerbie in Scotland is closed and Tripoli will not release more evidence that could lead to others being charged, Libya’s interim leaders said on Monday.

  • zingzing

    now, now, jordan… no diary needs to have EVERYTHING in it.

    i mean really, what would it look like if he said “i took a shit today, and man, i ate like 1200 bits of corn recently!!!”

    it wouldn’t be pretty.

    we don’t need every part of the story from rj, just the parts he wants us to hear.

  • Jordan Richardson

    Nothing on the discovery of the mass grave today, RJ?

    I’m not surprised. You’re using the plight of these people to score political points. Shameful.

  • Libyans fail to agree new government

    Libya’s interim leaders failed to agree a new cabinet on Sunday and the forces that forced Muammar Gaddafi from power remained bogged down in fighting with troops loyal to the former ruler.

  • GretzkyFan99

    any word on Burma?

  • Muammar Gaddafi in Libya, readying forces: spokesman

    (Reuters) – Muammar Gaddafi is still in Libya and in good spirits, with a powerful army behind him, the ousted leader’s spokesman said on Wednesday.

    “We have huge areas of Libya under our control — on the northern coast, in the western areas of the country and the whole south belongs to us,” he said.

    “We are gathering our forces and we will liberate every single Libyan city even if we have to fight street-to-street, house-to-house, for years to come.”

  • Human Rights Watch: Libyan weapon status ‘disturbing’

    Peter Bouckaert, emergencies director at Human Rights Watch, said, in a statement, that it was “disturbing” that the Transitional National Council hasn’t yet secured the country’s weapons storage facilities.

    “Thousands of weapons such as surface-to-air and antitank missiles are missing and many facilities are being plundered,” added Bouckaert.

    U.S. and European officials have expressed concerns over the security of weapons stockpiles in Libya. Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, al-Qaida’s North African branch, may have taken some of the weapons, European officials said.

  • Revenge Feeds Instability in Libya

    Rebels Burn Abandoned Homes in Loyalist Town as a Transitional Government Leader Stands By…

    [R]ebels have been torching homes in the abandoned city 25 miles to the south. Since Thursday, The Wall Street Journal has witnessed the burning of more than a dozen homes in the city Col. Gadhafi once lavished with money and investment. On the gates of many vandalized homes in the country’s only coastal city dominated by dark-skinned people, light-skinned rebels scrawled the words “slaves” and “negroes.”

    “We are setting it on fire to prevent anyone from living here again,” said one rebel fighter as flames engulfed several loyalist homes.

  • Report: Libya rebels may be guilty of war crimes

    Rebels fighting to topple Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi committed unlawful killings and torture, Amnesty International said in a report released on Tuesday.
    The 100-plus page report, based on three months of investigation in Libya, draws no equivalency between the crimes of Qaddafi loyalists and those of the former rebels, who now hold power in Tripoli: The Qaddafi forces’ crimes were greater, the list of them is longer, and they may have amounted to crimes against humanity, the report said.

    But it said the crimes of the rebels were not insignificant.

  • Sharp splits emerging among Libya’s new leaders

    Each side accuses the other of trying to monopolize a new government. On one side stand more secular technocrats, some of whom have long lived abroad or once had ties with Gadhafi’s regime. On the other are conservatives, including the Muslim Brotherhood, who opposed Gadhafi for years on the ground in Libya and suffered during his rule.

    “There are fears that these tensions could hamper reconstruction or just cause it all to unravel,” said a Western official in Tripoli who deals with members of the leadership of all stripes. He spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the issue.

  • Cracks emerge among Libya’s rebels, from frontlines to Tripoli

    From Libya’s still-active frontlines to the halls of power in Tripoli, divisions are emerging among revolutionaries and their leaders even before “liberation” has been officially declared.

  • Rising tensions among Libya’s new leaders threaten efforts to get country back on track

    Sharp splits are already emerging in the ranks of Libya’s new rulers between Islamic conservatives and more secular figures competing for power even as the leadership begins to settle in Tripoli and start creating a post-Moammar Gadhafi government.

    The rising tensions, which have become increasingly public, could jeopardize efforts to rebuild the country and form a cohesive state after six months of civil war.

  • US concerned about African migrants in Libya

    The United States is “deeply concerned” at the plight of black African migrants and refugees in Libya, citing reports of racism, wrongful arrest and violence, a State Department official said Monday.

  • Then why bother pretending that you do?

  • Gadhafi Forces Counterattack in Libya

    Forces loyal to former Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi launched a series of counterattacks Monday, including a surprise raid that killed 15 guards at a key oil refinery in the coastal city of Ras Lanuf.

  • I hope you understand that I don’t really care.

  • It seem that it’s you who suffers from cognitive dissonance or dishonest motives.

    I can’t discuss the Libyan situation with you as I would with Irene. I hope you understand that.

  • Here you go, Roger.

    You’re welcome.

  • RJ is a hypocrite. The only reason he’s harping here is because there’s a Democrat in the White House. It would be a different story if it were Bush.

    Little does he realize that Obama is just as much pro-establishment as any Republican. His hatred and venom have the better off him. Obscene partisanship is the natural result.

    If he were a humanitarian, it would be a different story. But of course he’s not.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    FOUR American military – not tens of thousands as in Iraq or Afghanistan, but FOUR. And they are there as part of the State Department (there are military in EVERY embassy of EVERY nation) to help restart our embassy operations there.

    Gee, RJ, don’tcha think you should read past the headlines sometimes? After all, I got this from YOUR reference.

  • RJ the pacifist.

  • shahul

    they are fighting to an enemy who is within them why r they intervene in others matter instead care for their citizens if the things go the way now no doubdt they will no longer be a super power to the world

  • zingzing

    i know. biblically.

  • I’m just curious to know what became of Gaddafi’s personal bodyguard that consisted entirely of hot chicks. Anybody know?

  • Jordan Richardson

    Irene, I recognize that it’s been a few days since I’ve visited this topic, but I have not written one word in support of the NATO air strikes – only the rebels.

    I should add that I’m still not convinced by your comparisons.

    What I’m asking, and continuing to ask, is about support for the rebels. Period. I know it’s hard to leave Obama and NATO aside for the purposes of said query, but that’s pretty much what I’m doing. I consider the intervention in Libya to be minimal at best; it’s a big stretch to suggest that Obama and other world leaders should somehow be completely silent on the issues or that they carry that much influence on the ground at this point.

    Anyway, back to RJ’s regularly-scheduled programming.

  • Libya basking in success today, but long-term picture not so rosy

    Gaddafi’s whereabouts remain unknown, but he is still regarded by his loyalists as the legitimate leader of the country. Therefore, many are worried about the possibility of subversion and sabotage by groups affiliated to the former dictator.

    Meanwhile, the Libyan National Transitional Council is currently trying to stabilize its position as the main governing body of the country. The council is primarily based on a broad consensus between various tribes of Libya, and it could continue to enjoy the support of the United States and its European allies.

    But will the NTC be able to successfully respond to unpredictable challenges in the long run?

  • Libyan Rebels Attack Qaddafi Loyalists in 2 Cities

    Libyan rebels launched what they called full-scale attacks to subdue the loyalist holdouts of Bani Walid and Surt on Friday night, a day before their own deadline for surrender.

  • Out of a job, Gadhafi’s Tuareg fighters may create new troubles

    They are the Kurds of Africa, an ancient stateless people with their own language, a minority spread across several countries, weathered by their harsh surroundings.
    And like the Kurds, the Tuareg are now at the center of international attention. Some are helping Moammar Gadhafi loyalists escape Libya across the endless expanses of the Sahel. Many more are trapped in Libya, trying to escape its post-revolutionary chaos.
    Gadhafi often turned to the nomadic Tuareg to bolster his forces and his attempts to manipulate and destabilize the poor countries to the south of Libya: Niger, Chad and Mali. The Tuareg were capable mercenaries. And there was a hint of romance in the arrangement — Gadhafi has always painted himself as a desert Bedouin.
    Peter Gwin, a journalist with National Geographic, has visited Tuareg areas of Mali and Niger frequently. He says one Tuareg who had visited many Libyan army bases told him that even before the uprising against Gadhafi began there were some 10,000 Tuareg fighters in the Libyan military.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Of COURSE there’s been violence there! There was violence in Germany long after WWII had ended! Wars are never ended neatly or quietly!

    Okay, my reference was about a resolution to establish a commission to investigate laims described in Resolution 771 which DOES describe the ethnic cleansing:

    The resolution cited cases of “mass forcible expulsion” and deportation of civilians, abuse in detention centres, deliberate attacks on non-combatants, hospitals and ambulances which impeded the delivery of humanitarian aid to affected areas. The Council strongly condemned the violations, including that of ethnic cleansing (the first such resolution to do so)

    What you are trying to purport as ‘ethnic cleansing’ does NOT compare. There is no more mass forcible expulsion, deliberate attacks on non-combatants, hospitals and ambulances, etc. But what you’re doing is concentrating on a turn of phrase rather than accepting what is and is NOT happening now in Bosnia.

  • The phrase “ethnic cleansing” does not appear anywhere in the Wiki link you supplied. Did you know that Glenn?

    Perhaps you meant to post this link instead: “The official United Nations definition of ethnic cleansing is ‘rendering an area ethnically homogeneous by using force or intimidation to remove from a given area persons of another ethnic or religious group.’ That’s precisely the definition I gave after you challenged my use of the term.

    No, NATO was NOT successful in bringing peace to the Balkans, otherwise NATO would not have cancelled plans (this month) to cut troops in the area. Major Buehler said that security in the north would have to improve dramatically for that to happen. There HAS been violence there.

    Sure sounds like another Afghanistan to me. Hundreds of years of ethnic conflict, that Western influence has been unable to quench, not to this very day. (If you don’t stop saying “no boots on the ground,” I’m going to start saying “yes, but boots in the air.”)

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Um, actually, Irene, mine IS drawn from the United Natinos. Here’s the reference from which my quote was drawn:

    Report of the Commission of Experts Established Pursuant to United Nations Security Council Resolution 780 (1992), 27 May 1994 (S/1994/674), English page=33, Paragraph 130

    I’ve yet to have heard the term “ethnic cleansing” being used by ANYone without reference to direct force. Your attempt to find a definition that was soft enough to fit your purposes does not apply to the real world. And I think you know that.

    It all boils down to this: what Clinton did in Bosnia and what Obama did in Libya canNOT be compared in ANY way to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq…nor can it, for that matter, be compared to the regime changes we forced on several nations in South America and in Asia over the past generation or two.

    Why? Because as I said before, in Bosnia and in Libya, our efforts were successful even though we had ZERO boots on the ground, ZERO fatalities of American troops, a relatively – repeat, relatively – minuscule cost to the American taxpayer, and were hardly if at all involved (at least as compared to Iraq and Afghanistan) in the nation-building that was required afterwards.

    You can decry what we did in Bosnia and Libya all you want – that’s your right. But no one can honestly compare either operation to our invasion of Afghanistan or our war crime on an epic scale in Iraq.

  • There are many definitions, and yours is not the United Nations definition which is: “rendering an area ethnically homogeneous by using force or intimidation to remove from a given area persons of another ethnic or religious group.”

    There was intimidation by a those in power: laws to disband all Serbian groups. That’s not just “racial tension,” Glenn. That’s persecution. Persecution of the group NATO demonized, by the group NATO helped to put in power.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Irene –

    Your reference did NOT describe ethnic cleansing. What it described was ethnic tensions…which are not the same thing. They’re a whole different matter.

    My point stands. There is no longer ethnic cleansing or mass murder in Bosnia. FYI, ethnic cleansing is described thusly:

    Ethnic cleansing is a purposeful policy designed by one ethnic or religious group to remove by violent and terror-inspiring means the civilian population of another ethnic or religious group from certain geographic areas.

  • If it’s a really BIG page! But I see your point: sleep did me good, and I remember now: no one has ever come to the end of his ability to make a difference in the world.

    The articles I quoted from may have made one or two people disillusioned about INSTITUTIONS, but they shouldn’t get disillusioned about themselves, or God.

    Have a good day, Roger.

  • @206

    We’re on the same page, Irene.

    Take time off and see a good flick.

    Easy Riders for starters.

  • A long chorus of woe and mourning as African worthies line up to condemn NATO’s actions in Libya.

    South Africa, the continent’s unsung military and diplomatic heavyweight, has led the way. Gaddafi was a friend and benefactor of the African National Congress during the trying days of apartheid, and the ANC is loathe to let such a dear friend go.

    Zimbabwe has expelled the resident Libyan diplomats after they raised the rebel flag over their embassy …

    Tanzania and Kenya rarely having the same policy on anything due to a silly sibling squabble over who the regional big boy is, but both have declined to recognise Libya’s Transitional National Council …

    They all should stop bothering. Nato is king because it has the means to effect regime change in pretty much any country it wishes today, save perhaps for Russia, China and India.

    The West is going through tough economic times and nations blessed with abundant energy resources and negligible population sizes make for good catches.

    By an accident of geography, most of these are in the Middle East, and it doesn’t augur well for any ruler in that region to appear to oppose the West too much. He could go the Gaddafi way.

    Dr Mugabe is lucky that his bedraggled country has no known deposits of hydrocarbons – if it did, he would surely be history.

    It is no coincidence that, once Britain’s Special Forces had taken Tripoli, the Europeans quickly arranged a “Libya Summit” during which the only order of business was, of course, how to share the spoils of war – Libya’s oil and gas riches.

  • There are ALWAYS ambiguities in civil wars, handyguy. (#192) Charges of simplistically defining these conflicts in black-and-white terms are more appropriately aimed at NATO et al, who demonized one side and aided the other.

  • Black Africans trapped in southern Libya fear for their lives

    GENEVA, Sept 6 (Reuters) – Thousands of African migrants trapped in Libya are in need of protection from growing harassment and hundreds more have been arrested by rebels who overthrew Muammar Gaddafi, aid agencies said on Tuesday.

    More than 1,200 African migrants stranded in a southern Libyan desert town held by forces loyal to the fallen leader fear for their lives and must be evacuated as quickly as possible, the International Organization for Migration said.

  • Libya’s many stumbling blocks ahead

    As the old regime collapses, Libya is nervously preparing for a post-Gaddafi era. A peaceful democratic transition in the northern African country is easier said than done.

    Even as Muammar Gaddafi’s strongholds gradually fall into rebel hands, led by the National Transitional Council (NTC), the differences between the new rulers and the Libyan people may begin to widen.

    The European Union (EU), the nearest and richest grouping of countries, recognized and provided support to the NTC months before Gaddafi was ousted. But some observers question their credibility.

    “The fate is Libya is full of uncertainties. The reliability of the NTC feeds some doubts in European countries,” Dr. Rym Ayadi, director of Belgium-based think-tank Mediterranean Prospects, told Xinhua.

  • Libya’s Weapons Problem

    There is a plethora of weapons in Libya, and experts are concerned that arms could make their way into neighboring countries—and possibly fall into Al Qaeda’s grasp.

  • Irene, surely it’s possible to be ambivalent about Kosovo, Libya, even Iraq. In each case there were negative consequences with or without American involvement — but different consequences.

    You do tend to cast this [and other issues] as a moral black-or-white dichotomy. [If someone disagrees with you, they are at least flirting with The Dark Side.] But there is often a lot of gray area in these matters. The original intent of the NATO bombing was to prevent Qaddafi from slaughtering his own citizens. Yes, there were civilian casualties caused by NATO and by the rebels too. But at least acknowledge the ambiguity.

  • The last position, which you will correct me if I am assuming, wrongly, is yours, Roger, curiously resembles the stance of Christians who assert that involvement in politics is a waste of time: real Evil exists, and is something that an individual can confront and fight in a limited way, but the great cosmic battle unfolds and will culminate in a way no human or group of humans can alter.

    Funny the way things can come full circle. The last view is actually sounding like an eminently sane position when one has come to the end of one’s ability to make a difference in the world. There’s always sleep, and tomorrow, though.

  • Not to leave things on an entirely sour note, and at the risk of summarizing things in a way that states the obvious:
    We’d basically agree, if we were all living in the same little hamlet, on what constitutes decent treatment of one’s neighbor. Our sharpest disagreements arise over the role of the State. If the State tries to get away with behavior that none of us would countenance in an individual, some of us remind the State that it exists to serve the people and that it’s gone too far, some of us trust that there is a method to the State’s madness, and acquiesce, and others figure they’ll let the sickness of Statism run its natural course, trusting that a wise and benevolent council of sages will take the reins at the final death rattle.

  • Yes, maybe we do. But don’t despair. There may be a common ground.

    I like your instincts, Irene. You should appreciate mine.

  • Then we disagree on the means AND the end.

  • No, I haven’t. I’m still for abolishing the state because it’s inherently evil. I’m aware, however, of the fact that it won’t happen overnight but only in stages. And I do see the court of international law, which limits the sovereignty of individual nation-states, as a step in the right direction — a kind of Federation of Planets a la Star Trek.

  • Good, Roger, do that. Read.

  • You are indeed a difficult person to categorize (#196), but if I had to find a place for you, I’d put you in the “Cubby Hole for the Temporarily Confused.” I had wondered what good would come of your public scrutiny of “the mind of the modern liberal.” Instead of encouraging liberals not to abandon their original progressive ideals, you seem to have become infected with the same uncritical mindset you set out to criticize.

  • I’ll read that, but China and Russia aren’t exactly the nation’s to emulate when it comes to human rights. And as to “commercial opportunities,” we don’t want to go there because we both know what it means — unless of course the opportunities are for the Africans, which rarely is the case. It wasn’t so during the colonial period, and I very much doubt that China has undergone a change of heart, as bent on its own expansion and growth of influence as it has been of late. It’s just another dragon, except that it’s Oriental.

    I’m all for Africans running their own affairs, and it’s no different for the Arabs — you ought to know that.

    I didn’t know about the AU, however, and the administration’s checkered relations with them.

  • Kucinich’s article is packed!

    A negotiated settlement in Libya was deliberately avoided for months while NATO, in violation of UN Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions 1970 and 1973, illegally pursued regime change…

    The NATO command recklessly bombed civilians in the name of saving civilians. Usurping the United Nation’s traditional role, NATO looked the other way as the arms embargo was openly violated by U.N. member nations…

    The reasons for the U.S./NATO intervention in Libya keep changing. First it was about the potential for a massacre in Benghazi. When the massacre did not materialize and once the war against Libya was underway, the reasons for intervention changed.We were reminded Libya had spent ‘forty years under a tyrant…’

    Well, lest I exceed the limits for cutting and pasting from the website of the good Democratic Congressman from Ohio, I’ll stop here and recommend that people read the rest themselves.

  • Kucinich’s objections about US involvement in Libya are FAR from being limited to congressional powers concerns. Libya and Beyond: How Did We Get There and What Happens Next?

    In the case of Libya, now that NATO, with the help of the U.S., has brought the rebels into the streets of Tripoli to fight, what follows? What’s the plan? Who governs and for whose sake? Will Libya become NATO’s protectorate?

    It is not only the Gaddafi compound in Tripoli that will be left in ruins by NATO’s actions; it will also be the Obama Administration’s relationship with the African Union (AU). The AU and its member nations have been repeatedly rebuffed by the U.S. in its efforts to bring about a peaceful, negotiated settlement for the regime’s transition out of power. While the U.S., through NATO, has been bombing Libya, China has spent time building commercial opportunities across the African continent.

  • Am not taking it personally, Irene, just don’t like the “we” pronoun.

    As to Kucinich, it’s the usual argument about congressional powers. Doesn’t always cut it for me.

    Trust me, I’m as much against Western interference as you are, even more so, but from a different perspective, so yes, perhaps our real disagreement is about ends. And I’m no big fan of Obama in case you haven’t noticed.

  • PS note that “yourselves” is plural in comment #92. Don’t take everything so personally. Breathe.

  • You’d have to figure out why you haven’t set much store by Kucinich’s opinion. (#184)

  • You may be right insofar as second paragraph is concerned. I assure you, however, I’m not taking anybody’s word for anything, nor do I minimize or dismiss the brutality that’s bound to occur in a situation such as this.

    Do you have Ron Paul’s position on the issue so I could respond to his take on things?

  • “Ethnic cleansing” HASN’T stopped in Kosovo. The conflict in the Balkans was, and is, a civil matter, and we (the U.S. and NATO) chose sides. The situation was analyzed through the lens of “public opinion and the court of international law,” and they got it wrong.

    (Roger, we also are probably not in full agreement about what constitutes a “good end.” That discussion is for another day, if it ever occurs.)

    I’m telling you not to take Obama’s word, or Clinton’s or Bush’s or NATO’s word for it, or MINE either, for that matter. Investigate for yourselves the possibility that first, you were wrong to assume the horrors in the Balkans were uni-directional, and second, in dismissing stories about the malicious targeting of black Africans by the Libyan rebels as “irrelevant” or “partisan,” you are making the same kind of mistake again.

  • Neither do I, and I don’t believe I argued to that effect.

  • Roger, I don’t endorse good ends being achieved through bad means. Good ends met that way rarely stay good.

  • What, did you skip right over the first paragraph, Glenn?

    “We republish it now [2008], in successive installments, because the rise of Barack Obama as the putative Democratic presidential candidate augurs the rise of a new liberal internationalism — the very same sort of policy that led us to bomb Belgrade, one of the oldest cities in Europe, and paved the way for the establishment of the gangster state known as Kosovo.”

    The author’s prescience, making this observation about Obama in 2008, is impressive, given what has transpired in Libya since then.

    Those who read more than the first sentence in the article will be challenged, possibly for the first time, to consider the claim that the American people were subjected to propaganda…lies…about the Balkans, just as we were exposed to propaganda…lies…about Iraq before we were asked to throw our support behind intervention. Moral of the story (pay close attention, Glenn, or, as you would say, “REAL close attention”), the realpolitik approaches of Democrat and Republic presidents for the last 20 years have been, for all your claims that they are fundamentally different, fundamentally the same.

  • The world is changing, Irene. You can’t be affixing the same interpretation to actions twenty years apart or longer, even if they appear to look alike. True, the Western motivation may not have undergone any significant changes other than what was before blatant is now window-dressed. True, the presumably humanitarian motives for the action may still be a pretext, a gesture, but it’s a gesture which, apparently, needs to be re-enacted over and over again. Doesn’t that tell you something?

    Nation-states, however slowly, are beginning to recognize the condition of interdependence and their limited sovereignty when viewed through the prism of public opinion and the court of international law. I think it’s a good thing.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Irene –

    The reference you gave was a reprint from 1996. What difference does that make? I’ll answer with a few questions: is ethnic cleansing still going on in Bosnia? How about mass murders? Hm?


    So, exactly HOW, then, was what Clinton did in Bosnia a failure?

    The point, Irene, is that ANY war is not neat and clean, and never, ever truly stops on a particular day no matter what the history books may say. A war is a sloppy, tragic mess. That said, sometimes a war is necessary.

    TODAY – not in 1996 which is where your reference gets its information, but TODAY – there is no ethnic cleansing going on in Bosnia. There is no mass murder going on in Bosnia. Clinton’s actions concerning Bosnia were NOT a mistake, but likely saved tens of thousands of lives, and perhaps even stopped the spread of the terror to neighboring states.

    When it comes to Libya, Obama felt which way the winds of history were blowing. He KNEW that – given what’s been happening with the ‘Arab Spring’ – sooner or later Qaddafi would fall…and the people there are now crediting Obama and French president Sarkozy for assisting them in their victory. The Libyan people will remember as the years go by who helped them…even though not one American military boot was set foot on the ground.

    Not only that, but we are not at all involved in forcing our particular version of ‘democracy’ on them…unlike what we’ve been doing for close to a decade in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    That, Irene, is realpolitik as it should be done. NO ONE can honestly compare Bosnia and Libya to our military adventurism in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  • El Bicho: Hmmm, good question. Knowledge before action. I would make YOU read the link in #180. Obama already knows all about what the author has to say, but I’m pretty sure most of the rest of the country doesn’t.

  • From what you can tell, US military intervention in Libya is “not like Iraq or the Balkans in the slightest?” Not even a teeny weeny itty bitty smidgeon of similarity do you see? If that’s REALLY the case, I’m not sure anything I’m about to say will help, but I can try.

    Political unrest develops in a part of the world where it would suit the United States to have a strategic foot-hold. Stategists recognize the opportunity that the unrest affords. A “villain” is selected (from a line-up of, unfortunately, hundreds of powerful villains in this world) upon which Americans can focus their righteous indignation. Their support for his overthrow, and the “liberation” of his people via military intervention, follows soon after. Murderous Miloševi?, murderous Hussein, murderous Gaddafi.

    “Most of the world is supporting the overflow of the murderous Gaddafi.” Really? China? India? Brazil? South Africa? They’ve actually been CRITICAL of the NATO air strikes. You hinted at corporate interest being a motivation for involvement. Never underestimate its influence.

    Jordan Richardson, I appreciate your sentiments, your desire for the Libyan people to have the opportunity to be in charge of their own destiny and have some semblance of civil society. But self-direction for Iraq, the Balkans, Libya is PRECISELY the thing that we are depriving these when we pick sides in their civil wars, and intervene with a view, not so much liberate as to control.

  • @182

    Right on. The US and NATO involvement has been rather limited and let’s hope it stays that way. One could well view the action in Libya as expression of the will of the international community.

    The world can only be better off for deposing age-old dictators and strongmen, however inconvenient it may be (since we’ve installed them in the first place).

    As much as I may respect many positions by Dennis Kucinich, not on this one.

  • So what would be your solutions to the conflicts you speak of, Irene?

  • Jordan Richardson

    Besides, RJ already said that this was his “diary of the war.” A one-sided diary that appears to support the status quo in Libya, sure, but a diary nonetheless.

    Yes, the glorious Obama administration is supporting the overthrow of the murderous Gaddafi. Most of the world is, too. So what?

    From what I can tell, it’s not like Iraq or the Balkans in the slightest. No Americans whipped an American flag up, for starters, and there doesn’t appear to be an occupation in order. The usual corporate squatting will occur, as will the no-bid contracts and the oil nonsense. But at least the Libyan people have the opportunity to be in charge of their own destiny and have some semblance of civil society, bloody as that may sometimes be.

  • Jordan Richardson

    Sorry, Irene Athena, but I honestly don’t understand any of that. I think Costello was closer.

  • Irene Athena

    The point seems to be, Jordan Richardson, that the Obama administration, not knowing whether the plight of the Libyan people will IMPROVE under any government the rebels may set up, is actively supporting their overthrow of the current regime. Clinton tried the same thing in the Balkans. It didn’t work; just ask a Serbian refugee. Bush tried the same thing in Iraq. Also far from satisfactory results.

    Repeat this three times, and click your ruby shoes after each repetition:
    “Criticism of Obama is not vindication of Bush. Criticism of Obama is not vindication of Bush. Criticism of Obama is not vindication of Bush.”

    I can’t speak for RJ, of course, but I speak for those who are, and have been, even-handed in their “thumbs-downs” for Clinton’s plans for Bosnia, McCain’s plans for Iran, Bush’s plans for Iraq, and Obama’s plans for Libya.

  • African Migrants in Libya Live in Fear

    Human rights organizations say tens of thousands of African migrants in Libya have been displaced from their homes and jobs by months of fighting between forces loyal to former leader Moammar Gadhafi and the transitional authority that opposes him. Many are living in fear under difficult conditions in makeshift camps.

    Tensions are running high at Sidi Blal port where about 1,000 workers from sub-Saharan Africa have taken refuge. Although the fighting in this part of Libya has largely ended, the migrants say they are being threatened by unknown gunmen.

  • Costello

    UN reports 750,000 deaths could occur in Somalia due to starvation. RJ, unable to find a way to blame Obama, writes about football.

  • Costello

    Considering he draws no attention to other current conflicts around the globe, his point appears to be he has no shame in exploiting people’s deaths for his political agenda. Rather pathetic.

  • Jordan Richardson

    RJ, do you think the Libyan people were better off under the autocratic rule of Gaddafi? What exactly is the point you’re trying to make?

  • Your ‘diary’ would be more interesting and have more value if it weren’t so relentlessly one-sided. You pretend that no other parts of this story exist…just the ugly side of the rebels.

  • Foreigners complain of harassment by Libya rebels

    TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — A Ghanaian teacher cowers in his house, certain he will be grabbed at a checkpoint because of his dark skin. Armed rebels detain 19 Ukrainian cooks and oil workers for several days on unsupported claims that they are really snipers for Moammar Gadhafi.

    They’re among thousands of foreigners caught in a web of suspicion as rebel fighters pursue the remnants of Gadhafi’s forces. Gadhafi hired some foreigners as mercenaries, but many others held ordinary jobs in Libya, and the rebels who ousted the Gadhafi regime from most of Tripoli last month often seem to make little effort to tell them apart.

  • Costello

    Why no links about the constitutionality of the NATO agreement or Obama’s impeachment? Is it a hope people won’t remember the article that demonstrates how poorly informed you are?

  • lol…

    I consider this to be sort of my diary of the war. Well, not “diary” but you know what I mean.

    I intend on continuing to post relevant links to the comments section of this article for, well, possibly months or even years.

    Unless there’s some policy against that…

  • “Blogcritics thread overwhelmed by writer who thinks it’s Digg”

  • For a rather different, equally inane Republican response, we hear from John McCain and Lindsey Graham:

    “we regret that this success was so long in coming due to the failure of the United States to employ the full weight of our airpower.”


  • Cool response, handy. Ignore the facts, attack the messenger.

    How very “liberal” of you.

  • If a Republican president had done the same thing, you would
    [a] not have written this article in the first place
    [b] would be celebrating the end of Gadhafi’s reign.

    With a Dem in the White House, you conveniently become a scrupulous peacenik.

  • There were never going to be impeachment proceedings. (Democrats still control the Senate, you know.) But this was, by definition, an illegal war.

    Now the “fun” part begins…

  • Glenn Contrarian

    So…when are you going to start impeachment proceedings?

  • Libyan rebels raced into Tripoli in a lightning advance Sunday that met little resistance as Moammar Gadhafi’s defenders melted away and his 40-year rule appeared to rapidly crumble. The euphoric fighters celebrated with residents of the capital in the city’s main square, the symbolic heart of the regime.

  • Heh

    Six months in, the war has reached a stalemate. France, once the gung-ho supporter leading the charge for intervention, is signaling it would like Qaddafi to stay. Italy is also making moves to quietly back away, if they were ever even on board in the first place. John Rosenthal makes a strong case that Italy never supported intervention in Libya, contrary to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s claim otherwise. England is following suit. The Arab League quickly returned to criticizing the West. The U.N. vote authorizing action had five major abstentions ?” Brazil, India, China, Russia, Germany ?” a suggestion that it wasn’t as multilateral as advertised. The stress of the war has revealed how fragile NATO has become. Congress openly revolted against Obama’s Libya “intervention” ?” we mustn’t, after all, call it war, Obama says. It’s still not popular among voters. We’ve repeatedly stated Qaddafi must go, but that’s far from certain at this point.

  • Where Have Libya’s Children Gone?

    The quality of life continues to degrade in certain areas of western Libya while public anxiety noticeably rises over missing Libyan children as the first week of an unusually stressful Ramadan passes.

    Also of growing public and government concern in Western Libya is the whereabouts of 53 female and 52 male children aged one to 12 years and another group ranging from 12 to 18 years, both part of a government-run home for orphans and abused children that until February was operating in Misrata, now under rebel control. According to several reports over the past three months and testimony presented last Thursday evening to the international media gathered at the Tripoli Rexis Hotel, by the General Union for Civil Society Organizations:

    The 105 children, part of more than 1000 missing, were “kidnapped” by rebel forces as they entered Misrata and went on a killing spree, some of which has been documented by Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International among other groups. There is no question that the children are no longer in their sheltered facility. But from there what became of them remains a mystery.

  • The most recent two headline posts depend on Qaddafi as an information source. He’s a nutjob and a propagandist, and I doubt that RJ [or anyone] takes what he and/or his sons say at face value.

  • There is no glee in being right when your government is wrong.

  • zingzing

    besides, i was only wondering. you seem to take a bit of glee in every setback the rebellion faces. possibly because it could be damaging to obama, nevermind the fact that real people die.

  • zingzing

    iraq and al-qaeda had nothing to do with each other until iraq was invaded.

    try another country.

  • Did critics of the Iraq war hope that al-Qaeda won?

    Weren’t you one of those critics, zingzing? Maybe you can tell me.

  • zingzing

    i wonder, rj, if you hope he wins.

  • Libya Allying With Islamists, Qaddafi Son Says

    After six months battling a rebellion that his family portrayed as an Islamist conspiracy, Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s son and one-time heir apparent said Wednesday that he was reversing course to forge a behind-the-scenes alliance with radical Islamist elements among the Libyan rebels to drive out their more liberal-minded confederates.

    “The liberals will escape or be killed,” the son, Seif al-Islam el-Qaddafi, vowed in an hourlong interview that stretched past midnight. “We will do it together,” he added, wearing a newly grown beard and fingering Islamic prayer beads as he reclined on a love seat in a spare office tucked in a nearly deserted downtown hotel. “Libya will look like Saudi Arabia, like Iran. So what?”

  • RJ
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  • S.T..M

    RJ’s talkin’ to himself again. G’day RJ!

  • RJ

    In Response To War Against Him, Qaddfi Warns Of Carrying Out Attacks In Europe

    A defiant Muammar al-Qaddafi threatened Friday to carry out attacks in Europe against “homes, offices, families,” unless NATO halts its campaign of airstrikes against his regime in Libya.

  • RJ

    USAF, US Navy still flying Libya missions

    Air Force and Navy aircraft are still flying hundreds of strike missions over Libya despite the Obama administration’s claim that American forces are playing only a limited support role in the NATO operation.

  • The “war” against the Libyan regime is far more acceptable and useful than those in Iraq or Afghanistan, which should never have happened.

    All this situation has proved is that the US Constitution needs updating to cope with the complexities of the modern world.

  • To Dave and others who share his rather unconvincingly noble and pious views on this:

    It’s possible to be ambivalent about NATO’s actions in Libya without calling for impeachment, which is a purely political stance. Obama in Libya is more akin to Clinton in Kosovo than any ground war. And the president has taken care to minimize hands-on American involvement.

    I wish he had asked for a Congressional resolution beforehand, and I assume he didn’t because of the chance that the GOP would just use it as an opportunity to embarrass him by saying no. Which they eventually did anyway.

    Do RJ and Dave favor the impeachment of Sarkozy and Cameron too?

  • zingzing

    ahem. libyan. dammit.

  • zingzing
  • zingzing

    i think you could spank rj with the entire truth and he still wouldn’t realize it was there.

  • “that was for everyone else but rj.”

    Just helping drawing attention to the point you were making.

  • RJ
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  • Leroy

    Impeachment? Isn´t that just a political vengeance tool? I mean, the republicans impeached Clinton as revenge for Nixon being driven from office, right?

  • zingzing

    “No he won’t.”

    that was for everyone else but rj.

    “It’s not necessary to give a damn about Libya in order to oppose our irrational policy of invading and bombing the hell out of countries we have no business being involved with at all.”

    where was this 8 years ago? i know you’re allowed to change, but why did you change?

  • It’s not necessary to give a damn about Libya in order to oppose our irrational policy of invading and bombing the hell out of countries we have no business being involved with at all. Just caring about America and the rational use of our resources and our armed forces should make anyone oppose this kind of unncessary military adventurism.


  • “you’ll of course note…”

    No he won’t. Partisan hacks never want to tell the whole story

  • The Clinton quote can only be found on right-wing blogs. They are very vague about the original context, so I’d like to know more about when and where and why she said it.

    But this is not about suppressing dissent anyway. It’s about pointing out purely political attacks for what they are. When RJ pretends to agree with Dennis Kucinich about the constitution or anything else, it doesn’t pass the smell test.

  • And no one here has called RJ unpatriotic. Just disingenuous.

    If he really gives a shit about Libya, he has an odd way of demonstrating it. What really interests him is getting “impeachable” and “Obama” in the same sentence. Then lather/rinse/repeat over and over and over, ad infinitum, ad nauseam.

    The birth certificate thing [which RJ was similarly monomaniacal about, while admitting it was not important in the least] didn’t pan out, so why not hit this one over and over 50 or 60 times.

  • zingzing

    “Clinton says Congress is free to raise objections but questions the priorities of the critics,” says the ap article your article references.

    the article (not the ap article, but the article you reference) then goes on, nonsensically, to state “That sure sounds like Hillary no longer considers dissent to be patriotic. In fact, she seems to be implying that any objections are anti-democratic, even un-American.”

    how it got from point a to point c is a) a good leap and b) very specific. there’s nothing in the article (as short and vague as it was, giving none of the context,) to suggest that clinton would have said that questioning obama’s foreign policy in libya was “anti-democratic” or “un-american.” that’s just the conjecture and opinion of one man, and one that obviously misses the point of the first phrase in the sentence, although that, of course, was not a direct quote. if a more substantial article could be referenced, that would be helpful.

  • zingzing

    rj, 2003:

    “Target: Saddam. The only question: Did we get him?”

    why was that your only question then?

  • RJ

    Hillary Clinton, 2003:

    “I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and you disagree with this administration somehow you’re not patriotic. We should stand up and say we are Americans and we have a right to debate and disagree with any administration.”

    Hillary Clinton, 2011, on critics of the Libya war:

    “Whose side are you on?”

  • zingzing

    you’ll of course note that they also voted against cutting off funding for the same thing… that’s taking a stand! yay… congress…

  • RJ
  • RJ

    Italy breaks ranks over NATO’s Libya mission

    Italy called for a suspension of hostilities in Libya on Wednesday in the latest sign of dissent within NATO as the civilian death toll mounts and Moamer Kadhafi shows no signs of quitting power.

  • Costello

    RJ appears to suffer some type of e-autism that only allows him to communicate with links

  • RJ

    When it comes to U.S. involvement in Libya, the Obama administration has made a mess in dealing with its obligations under the War Powers Resolution (WPR), a law designed to check the president’s ability to commit America to war without the consent of Congress.

  • RJ
  • RJ
  • STM

    And yes, as Doc reports, I did support both dubya’s invasion of Iraq AND his war on terror.

    I still do. It’s only the conduct of the “peace” in Iraq that I found worrying.

    The reason? I lived in Iraq as a boy and I know what the Baathists got up to. The coalition liberating that country got rid of a tyrant who was in the same league as Hitler and Stalin.

    His hateful ideology is now ground into the dirt of history, where it belongs, along with all the other hateful ideologies.

    So when it comes to political agendas, conservative or liberal, when it comes to this stuff, I don’t have a dog in the fight.

    I don’t give a rat’s arse, except for believiing that some of these things are the right actions no matter which side of politics is running the show.

  • STM

    RJ, the action in Libya DID begin as an action of NATO nations, of which the US is a part, to enforce UN security council resolution 1973. I guess it all depends on how you look at it.

    The first attacks were by US and British cruise missiles in about equal numbers, followed by missions by the Royal Air Force and ‘Armée De l’Air and a blockade by the Royal Navy. Early in the piece, most of the enforcement was done by the UK and France with command shared between three NATO countries: France, Britain and the US.

    Soon after, Spanish and Italian fighter jets were spotted in missions over Libya. The coalition has now expanded to nearly 20 countries, including most of the NATO nations. The Germans are a bit worried about going to war and why wouldn’t they be, given their past. If any country in Europe needs to be pacifist, it’s them.

    Mind you, I can never understand why they never want to get on the side of the good guys.

    One of the reasons WWII broke out is because the US buried its head in the sand for 20 years after WWI, then buried it again for a while after Vietnam.

    Do you really want to see a situation where people fighting for freedom are destroyed by an oppressive regime?

    Imagine if the French hadn’t come to the aid of the US in the War of Independence. The Brits would have got their ships through to Yorktown and that, very likely, would have been that. The US would still have a Union Jack in the corner of its flag.

    It can’t be OK when it suits but not at other times because your political agenda doesn’t allow it.

    OK, I know it was 200 years ago, but still … what’s the difference, apart from the fact Americans were nowhere near as oppressed as the Libyan rebels?

    Everyone has the right to self determination regardless, and how would anyone get if others who could help didn’t?

    I also don’t think Iraq was a genuine threat to the US in 2003, but dubya went ahead and smashed it anyway. How is it different? Tell me and then we’ll all know.

  • RJ

    Lawmakers mock Obama claim on Libya hostilities

    “We have got drone attacks under way, we’re spending $10 million a day,” Boehner told reporters. “We’re part of an effort to drop bombs on Gadhafi’s compound. It doesn’t pass the straight-face test, in my view, that we’re not in the midst of hostilities.”

    Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., a combat veteran and member of the Armed Services Committee, scoffed at the notion.

    “Spending a billion dollars and dropping bombs on people sounds like hostilities to me,” Webb said in an interview.

    Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., called the claims “really totally bizarre.” Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Fla., said telling Congress and Americans “that this is not a war insults our intelligence. I won’t stand for it and neither will my constituents.”

  • RJ
  • RJ
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  • RJ
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  • RJ

    Here you go handyman.

  • When does football season start? That will give RJ something more useful to do…

  • “Fein is a small-government conservative who worked on the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and also called for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney…”

    So apparently, his hobby is impeaching people.

    At least he’s an equal-opportunity impeacher.

  • If you bother to read the first sentence, you’ll see he’s not a GOP lawyer.

  • zingzing

    another brilliant waste of our time? shouldn’t they be out creating jobs?

  • RJ
  • zingzing

    nah, they’re just actively trying to defund the jobs they have direct control over. except theirs, of course. never theirs.

  • Are the Republicans doing anything to create jobs beyond calling for a special prosecutor?

  • We realize that ‘proving’ Obama has committed impeachable offenses is just a hell of a luscious wet dream for you. But the hypocrisy of your overheated language is so….absurdly obvious. Laughable.

    Rand Paul’s hypocrisy is in particular pretty eye-rollingly apparent, since he had no objections to the no-fly zone until he saw political advantage in getting on C-SPAN. For a ‘man of principle,’ he is very rapidly becoming just another opportunistic fame whore.

    Why not just concentrate on issues that maybe, just maybe, will decide the next election? If you can win the argument on issues, bully for you. If all you have is this sort of gamesmanship, too bad.

  • RJ
  • “It is ignorant nonsense.”

    Consider the source

  • STM

    Dan: “Send your own son”.

    My son intended to enlist in the Commandos two years ago; I warned him he would be sent to Afghanistan. And of course, I would not have wanted him to go.

    But he’s a grown man. Old enough to vote, old enough to drink old enough to join the Army.

    In the end he didn’t, but it was his decision, not mine.

  • Blaming the 2003-2007 chaos in Iraq on the Iraqis, as if we played no part at all, is weird fantasy, wrong-end-of-the telescope stuff. It is propagandistic distortion presented as ‘plain talk.’ It is ignorant nonsense.

  • Dan

    “Yes, he fucking did; read the comment properly.”—STM

    RJ gave several hypotheticals:

    “If a foreign country (or countries) was bombing Australia, destroying your air force, launching missiles at your military sites, killing your military personnel in their vehicles, and in the process of doing all this was also killing Australian civilians, I’m pretty sure you’d consider that an act of war”—RJ

    And all you could muster in response:

    “…no real democracy – and especially not the US – is going to try to march into this country, so your point is moot. In fact, it’s absurd and shows you’ve completely run out of any coherent thought…”

    What’s with that? You can avoid refuting something because it’s unlikely? Is that some sort of ninja debating tactic that I’m unaware of?

    “America and the west have a duty to stand up for human decency wherever they can; they have in the past, and they need to keep doing it”—STM

    No we don’t. You bristle at the notion of American Exceptionalism, yet you have the audacity to demand exceptionalism from them. Send your son STM, I’ll root for him. Or at least send some money. Those tomahawks cost a mill each.

    “That’s the kind of ignorant, arrogant claptrap that gets Americans in the shit the world over”

    Except that it is very frankly true. Iraqi’s get handed a wonderful opportunity paid for with BLOOD and treasure by a powerful coalition that could easily exterminate them and take their oil, yet they cannot be civilized enough to make the shift from tribal to individual. Let alone show any fucking gratitude whatsoever.

    Plain talk angers you I know.

    And please stop with this ‘Constitution “rip off” nonsense. Americans (most) are well aware of their white European philosophical heritage. It’s only logical that the philosophy spawns the experiment.

    “…while I know America is not wholly a nation of complete imbeciles, sometimes I wonder … as do many millions more of us.”

    While there is a shift in immigration patterns since 1965 that is somewhat trending that way, the founding and traditional immigrant stock is still alive and well, and just recently, making a comeback in political affairs.

    You should be glad.

  • STM

    And nice take on the Iraqi political system Dan and western attempts to give them something resembling a democracy (in the modern sense).

    “What happened next was the Iraqi peoples fault. Jeffersonian Democratic self governing of the individualist type that promotes human flourishing is not easily mastered by tribalistic parasites.”

    That’s the kind of ignorant, arrogant claptrap that gets Americans in the shit the world over.

    As for Jeffersonian democracy, it’s a rip-off of the same democracy that spawned America, except Americans thought it would be a good idea to write down their (near identical) constitution instead of having one made up of made up of laws, tradition, precedents and statutes, and replace the king with a president.

    In doing so, they ended up with the opposite of what they’d intended and a democracy (in the modern sense) that has been unable to change and grow with the times. The constitution is a classic example. Some Americans regard it as a tablet sent down by God rather than a bunch of ink on paper written by a pack of self-interested old farts. (Has anything changed in Washington?)

    So while the king of the democracy that spawned you and gave you 99 per cent of your laws AND most of your political system was gradually stripped of his power and given little more than an executive figurehead role starting with the Glorious Revolution in the 1690s, and most of that power was given to the people’s elected representatives, in the US the opposite happened: the president ended up with nearly all the power while the people’s elected representatives to all intents and purposes ended up with virtually none.

    You shouldn’t be celebrating on Indepebdence Day, you should be weeping.

    One of the reasons this country has chosen not to be an American-style republic is because we only have America as the benchmark.

    And when it comes to world affairs and American knowledge (or lack thereof) of anything that happens outside the US, while I know America is not wholly a nation of complete imbeciles, sometimes I wonder … as do many millions more of us.

  • STM

    Dan writes: “Nice take down Pablo. STM was getting a little too preachy.”

    Says you. Pot, meet kettle.

    Dan: “He also didn’t refute RJ’s point that the US action in Lybia is an act of war.”

    Yes, he fucking did; read the comment properly.

  • pablo

    What you fail to understand Stm imho the guys who actually call the shots both literally and proverbially in this world are criminals of the highest magnitude. They do not believe in any sort of democracy of the masses, freedom, liberty, or any other rule of law other than that they rule. It is all facade and mirage.

  • Dan

    Nice take down Pablo. STM was getting a little too preachy.

    He also didn’t refute RJ’s point that the US action in Lybia is an act of war:

    “But no real democracy – and especially not the US – is going to try to march into this country, so your point is moot”—STM

    That misses the “point” entirely.

    But enough on that.

    The Bush strategy for Iraq was comparatively coherent. After 17 UN resolutions, numerous violations of the treaty generously offered Saddam after losing the first war, and over a year gathering a coalition twice as large, team Bush moved in, and swiftly secured victory in just a couple of weeks.

    What happened next was the Iraqi peoples fault. Jeffersonian Democratic self governing of the individualist type that promotes human flourishing is not easily mastered by tribalistic parasites. (note the deterioration of the system by “progressives” in the US)

    What Obama has stupidly stumbled into is to promote violence and unrest among competing tribalistic parasites in the mideast who will now vie for the gift of “no fly zones” while they go about the business of exterminating the disfavored tribe.

    The action to “protect civilians” doesn’t apply when Lybian rebels take Gadaffi’s hometown of Sirte. Those “civilians” are on the wrong side.

  • pablo

    Another view of Iraq, and one that I believe far far far more than Bush wanted to get rid of a tyrant, particularly since Bush himself is a tyrant, and in many people’s views including my own much worse than that.


    As far as Skolnicks claim that Hilary was on the board of LaFarge, I myself validated that years ago. And before you go off half cocked about Skolnick being a loonytune, you might want to check out his background in Chicago, and what he did during his life challenging the Federal Judiciary in Chicago, it was substantial.

    I personally subscribe to most of his writing. Btw the same as with Saddam, the same as with Noriega. These guys went rogue and were either eliminated or put in prison, end of story.

  • STM

    If you believe the Libyan government’s bullshit about its high standard of living, fantastic healthcare and everything else, then you’d believe the fairy godmother will soon come out of the bottom of the backyard and instantly turn America into the world’s most harmonious and crime-free society.

    Serious, mate, how can you believe that crap? There are sources I’d rather believe … including the CIA’s world factbook, which, despite every other totally nefarious and questionable thing the CIA might have done, is actually pretty accurate when it comes to assessments of how countries operate.

    The problem with regimes like Gaddafi’s is that they’re the ones giving out the literacy, healthcare and standard of living info and it doesn’t tally – it’s not even close – to reality. The first casualty of dictatorship is truth.

    However, you did read my “he might be a bastard but at least he’s our bastard comment”, right? I hate what’s been done in the past in the name of “freedom”, with a couple of exceptions.

    Of course I understand the kind of stupidity the black hand of the western military industrial complex has engaged in, especially: The CIA and the Pentagon and Washington; MI6 and Whitehall and London), who have had their own interests at heart. I mention these two nations in the same breath as they control most of the world’s finances, merchant banks and financial markets.

    The ones you’ve mentioned above I mostly agree with – except Iraq. Saddam was a bastard. Stringing him up was too good an end for him. There weren’t too many tears shed on that one.

    Let’s add to the list: Your good friends the Brits have engaged in others of their own you probably don’t know about: Iraq (1930s), Israel/Palestine (1940s), Sierra Leone, Malaya (where a 12-year communist insurgency was eventually defeated and one of the mechanisms was to use a type a concentration camp, although to be fair, no one got gassed, starved or clubbed to death and Malaysia today has one of the highest standards of living in Asia), the Indonesian Konfrontasi, South Yemen, among others. I see Britain’s Falklands war as legit because one nation tried to take over another against the will of the people being taken over. If the Falklanders wanted to be Argentines, they’d have invited them over for bvreakfast, lunch and dinner. That’s not what happened.

    Most of these quasi western wars in the previous century, including the French and Portuguese efforts efforts to hold on to their former colonies and the wars by proxy between communism and capitalism, have pissed me off as much as some of those you mention have pissed you off.

    However, these are things that have happened when all sides of politics are in power and they have been aimed at fostering our own collective interests (those of the west). And using oil as an argument is ridiculous. We’ve got enough money to buy it all off. That’s also why I don’t understand RJ’s ridiculous argument, with its obvious political agenda, unless of course he wants the US to return to ostrich status and puts its head back in the sand, which is why there was so much drama 70 years back.

    What I hope is that post 9/11, the West in general and the US in particular understands that it DOES have a role to play in removing dictators and inhumane regimes instead of propping them up because they’re our “friends”, and moves instead to bring basic human rights to all those who don’t have them and who desperately want them. And then let those people decide the kind of “democracy” they want, even if it’s not quite what we think it is.

    That is what Iraq was about (not oil; the US simply could have bought off Saddam), but we screwed up and I hope that we are going to learn that lesson in Libya and help the Libyans to make their own decisions.

    As for Afghanistan, if it’s a lost cause, so be it.

    But it’s worth standing up to people whose avowed aim is to bring in a new world caliphate and make us believe their own particular brand of Islam, one that takes us back to medieval times, or else.

    Anyone who doubts the veracity of this should watch over and over again re-runs of f.ckwits flying planes full of innocent Americans going about their normal business into buildings full of Americans going about their normal business. Cause, you know, it really helps if we just bury our heads in the sand, apologise for being wealthy, comfortable and free when in regard to their own countries, they couldn’t even organise a fuck in a brothel, and hope they don’t attack us.

    Or, we could just stand there and wave flowers at them and blow kisses.

    Yes, we know why they’re pissed off (the islamists). Not sure their means justify their end, though.

    We aim to give people the kind of rights to which every citizen of this earth is entitled, while they aim to take them away.

    And for real courage, forget suicide jet pilots or brainwashed idiots with semtex belts blowing themselves up because they hope they might (finally) get themselves a bit of fornication in heaven.

    Watch the 9/11 re-runs again for that: Real courage is New York firefighters entering burning skyscrapers, knowing with near certainty that they were going to die, and not wanting to die, but doing what they did anyway because it was their duty to save lives and not to let down their mates.

    That’s why the pricks in their semtex belts will never win.

    So, is ever bastard all clear now on where I stand?.

    Good, and I still don’t believe that a US president giving US help to a NATO effort sanctioned by the UN, of which the US is a part, and which has been endorsed by the Arab league itself.

    Also, I might be a leftie, but lefties in my country aren’t chardonnay liberals with soft hands and groomed fingernails and their pinkies sticking up while they sit down with a latte.

    I believe you can tear a terrorist a new set of arsehols no matter which brand of politics you believe in, especially if that’s what it takes to defend yourself.

    And Gaddafi’s already shown that he’s prepared to blow up jets, among other things, to achieve his ends, so let’s not fool ourselves that this no-fly-zone, as opposed to a war, isn’t a just no-fly zone.

    As for “unconstitutional wars”, why not go back to America’s first war of aggression and its first lost war, the War of 1812, and especially the debacle of the failed invasion of Canada (clue to this: “America’s hat” still exists today as a sovereign nation and a healthy democracy at that). How come no one wanted to impeach Madison?

    We could go on for ever with this, but it’s moot when the only agenda is political.

    That’s when it just turns into a whole lot of hot cock and bullshit.

  • pablo

    STM 72

    As for Stm’s view (and those other blindly naive people of his ilk), he is ENTITLED to them same as Libyans who don’t have the opportunity to express such contrary points of view against their current government, but it doesn’t mean Stm’s views are right. However, they’re as legitimate as any other view, within reason.
    Although, to be fair, even naive delusional folks have real enemies. Just because you’re naive doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you :).

    STM 79
    Rarely have a read a bunch of half baked, uniformed, naive, and patently untrue sentences such as those you purport in comment 79 Stm.
    One of the most glaring examples is this one:
    “Libya, on the other hand, is an oil-rich nation whose leaders keep all the huge profits for themselves, live in palaces, hide their dough in Swiss bank accounts, drive Mercs, Jags, Caddies and Porsches and whatever else, while the average Libyan is struggling to put food on the table, get an education, a job, and decent healthcare”
    Libya has not only the highest literacy rate in Africa, but free health for all, living standards among the highest in Africa as well. Here is a quote from nationencylpedia.com concerning all those poor Libyans.
    “The living standards of Libyans have improved significantly since the 1970s, ranking the country among the highest in Africa. Urbanization, developmental projects, and high oil revenues have enabled the Libyan government to elevate its people’s living standards. The social and economic status of women and children has particularly improved. Various subsidized or free services (health, education, housing, and basic foodstuffs) have ensured basic necessities. The low percentage of people without access to safe water (3 percent), health services (0 percent) and sanitation (2 percent), and a relatively high life expectancy (70.2 years) in 1998 indicate the improved living standards. Adequate health care and subsidized foodstuffs have sharply reduced infant mortality, from 105 per 1,000 live births in 1970 to 20 per 1,000 live births in 1998. The government also subsidizes education, which is compulsory and free between the ages of 6 and 15. The expansion of educational facilities has elevated the literacy rate (78.1 in 1998). There are universities in Tripoli, Benghazi, Marsa el-Brega, Misurata, Sebha, and Tobruq. Despite its successes, the educational system has failed to train adequate numbers of professionals, resulting in Libya’s dependency on foreign teachers, doctors, and scientists.

    Many direct and indirect subsidies and free services have helped raise the economic status of low-income families, a policy which has prevented extreme poverty. As part of its socialist model of economic development,”

    Your blind and uniformed assessment regarding the plight of the poor huddled masses in Libya yearning to be free, at least in the arena of poverty, health care, infant mortality rates, and income levels in the African continent are absurd on their face to this paranoid conspiracist; who is so utterly thankful to the current regime in Washington for protecting my freedom to express myself.

    “Yeah, so I’m glad NATO’s attacking the bastard, because if you’ve paid any serious attention to the news reports, most Libyans seem to want him gone too.”
    Fortunately for me STM I give little to no credence to the MSM portrayal of any country that the USA is bombing. The fact that you do speaks reams about your own naivete, and I might add blind obedience to authority.
    You also apparently have no probem with either my country or yours invading (making war upon it) because a despot is in power. I do.

    “America and the west have a duty to stand up for human decency wherever they can; they have in the past, and they need to keep doing it.”
    I will give you my list and perhaps you will give me yours.
    Guatamala circa 1950’s
    El Salvador 80’s
    Iraq 91 and 2004
    Afghanistan 2001
    Chile 1972
    USA rendition program
    Abu Gharib
    Water torture under the cute name of enhanced interrogation

    On top of all that Stm, I DO respect your right to have an opinion, isn’t that really “white” of me?

  • STM

    Cannon: “NATO aircraft (i.e. U.S. aircraft)”

    Actually, Cannon, they’re not.

    So far as I can tell up to this point, from the various news stations and sources I’ve been watching, they are: US, British, French, Danish, Spanish and Italian.

    Other NATO countries may be involved too, but these are the only ones I know of.

    The French (can you believe that) and British have taken as much of a role this time as the US, the other NATO countries less so. But they are at least doing something. Spanish, Danish and Italian TV footage shows the jets taking off from their bases, some in Sicily, and then returning from Libya after their strikes and patrols.

    Apart from the US jets, lots of pics and footage of RAF and Spanish, French and Italian Typhoons, Jags, and Tornadoes and French navy Dassaults being used, so we know they’re not only American jets on these missions. The Danes appear to be flying F-18s and have sent four jets that are flying regular no-fly patrols.

    There is also plenty of footage of a dirty great big French aircraft carrier launching missions in the Med.

    This is the whole point: it IS an international effort, which is why I suspect so much of the opposition to this has little to with reality and more to with polarised American political viewpoints.

  • STM

    Except for one thing, RJ … Australia is a democracy that operates on the identical kind of rule law as that which guarantees the freedoms enjoyed in the US and the UK, and frankly, most of us like it that way, so if some arsehole like Gadaffi were to come and try to change that, he’d get the rudest of Aussie greetings. But no real democracy – and especially not the US – is going to try to march into this country, so your point is moot. In fact, it’s absurd and shows you’ve completely run out of any coherent thought in regard to this.

    Libya, on the other hand, is an oil-rich nation whose leaders keep all the huge profits for themselves, live in palaces, hide their dough in Swiss bank accounts, drive Mercs, Jags, Caddies and Porsches and whatever else, while the average Libyan is struggling to put food on the table, get an education, a job, and decent healthcare. Why do you think there’s a rebellion there? The place is run by nasty dictator whose greatest claim to fame is blowing up a Pan Am jet over Scotland, in the process killing hubdreds of your countrymen and mine (well, my other mob of countrymen, as I have dual Aussie/British citizenship).

    If I don’t like my government here, I get the chance to vote it out every few years. If I get arrested, I have the right to silence, a lawyer, and a trial by a jury of my peers. If I lose, I also can appeal through a whole series of courts right to the highest court in the land. I can call the Prime Minister’s office and tell them I think he/she is a complete bastard and they’ll say: “That’s nice, you’re welcome to your opinion”.

    Remember that RJ … due process, and all that lovely stuff most dictators in the mid-east and elsewhere don’t allow their people?

    In Libya, Gaddafi has ruled for 40 years. If you spoke out against him, if you were lucky you got a bullet. If you were unlucky, you got shoved in a Libyan jail.

    No vote, no due process, no rights. No f.cking nothing.

    Yeah, so I’m glad NATO’s attacking the bastard, because if you’ve paid any serious attention to the news reports, most Libyans seem to want him gone too.

    As for your Orwell comment, can I suggest you stop peering into your own navel in case your head goes a bit further south and you disappear completely.

    And yes, I supported the attack on Saddam. I lived in Iraq – I went to school there – and I know what a pack of arseholes the baathists were … nothing but nasty Arab stalinists who got rid of a pro-western government trying to include all Iraqis in the political process. Anyone they didn’t like got shot but their favourite torture/execution method for the majority Shia was to put people feet-first into an industrial meat grinder.

    It’s what happened after the invasion of Iraq that pissed me off, and it had nothing to do with George W. Bush, Tony Blair or any other bastard. The US fell into the same trap as the British in the 1930s in Iraq; they tried to conduct a running war that took years to resolve and they imposed their own system of democracy on the country instead of something a bit more palatable to the local culture. The Poms should have told the Yanks what to do, but being American they probably wouldn’t or didn’t listen, which is why it turned into a clusterf.ck. Everything was OK until a US Marine disobeyed orders and put up the Stars and Stripes on the statue of Saddam at the mosque near Tahrir Square … thus turning it into a US invasion in Iraqi eyes, rather than the liberation they’d longed for.

    They let that go, but then some bright spark at the Pentagon thought it would be a good idea to get a bunch of reservist MPS, most of whom were serving correctional officers and had probably never been out of Hodad County and couldn’t point to Canada on a map, in charge of Abu Graib … which turned out to be one of the most sensitive missions in American military history.

    Oh, look what happened … all those nice holiday in Baghdad snaps.

    So mate, I reckon everything you’ve written about this is absolute crap. I don’t care who’s in power in Washington: a democrat, a republican or a calathumpian with pink polka f.cking dots.

    America and the west have a duty to stand up for human decency wherever they can; they have in the past, and they need to keep doing it.

    But what they also need to do is recognise that some other cultures have a different idea of what constitutes democracy than we do and to live with it.

    Let the Libyan people decide their own future, but let’s help them do it without interfering by imposing our own idea of democracy the way we did in Iraq.

    A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, I suggest you get a bit me before you try to debate me – or anyone with half a brain – on this issue.

    Because you’re just not making any f.cking sense whatsoever.

    Apart from that, I DO respect your right to have an opinion, which is also what I’d like to see the peoiple of Libya have too.

    Can I also suggest you read my comments in full before you go off half-cocked. It must have been obvious to anyone reading my previous comment that I supported Bush’s decision to get rid of one of the world’s nastiest dictators in 2003. And good on him, too. My views have nothing to with American politics because in this context, they’re totally irrelevant.

  • Let me get this straight. Regime change against murderous dictator of oil-rich Arab Muslim nation in 2003 – BAD. Regime change against murderous dictator of oil-rich Arab Muslim nation in 2011 – GOOD.

    RJ, as far as I can recall, STM supported the Iraq invasion.

  • Dan


    Obama worshipers now have to defend their warmongering teleprompter interpreter from his own hypocritical statements from the recent past.

    I think rational people can at least now appreciate Bush’s honesty in leveling with us about what his objectives were. Obama can’t even be honest enough to acknowledge that regime change is a required outcome.

    He is a fool. His defenders are fools

  • RJ


    A few points:

    – If a foreign country (or countries) was bombing Australia, destroying your air force, launching missiles at your military sites, killing your military personnel in their vehicles, and in the process of doing all this was also killing Australian civilians, I’m pretty sure you’d consider that an act of war. Especially if the ultimate goal was the overthrow of your existing form of government. So, yeah, it’s a war. It’s frankly absurd to deny this.

    – Even if the UN half-ass blesses a war, it’s still a war. Unless you don’t believe the Korean War was a war?

    – You clearly don’t know what “impeachable” means. It doesn’t mean “stuff that STM disagrees with.” It means “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Sending the military off to fight a war against a country that poses no threat – without getting the approval of the Congress – is illegal under the War Powers Act. So it’s an illegal war, by definition. Waging an illegal war is a violation of the Constitution – OBAMA HIMSELF SAID SO. What part of that are you unable to grasp?

    – Let me get this straight. Regime change against murderous dictator of oil-rich Arab Muslim nation in 2003 – BAD. Regime change against murderous dictator of oil-rich Arab Muslim nation in 2011 – GOOD.

    – You would creep Orwell the fuck out.

  • STM

    And you’re right, Somalia was an absolute cluster-f.ck. Let’s hope we’ve learned from that debacle too.

    Look at the Aussie invasion of East Timor, sanctioned by the UN.

    East Timor today might be poor and troubled up to a point, but it’s also not being ruled by people it hates and who are subjugating them; it’s a democracy and now takes its place in the long list nations that base their system of government on the kind of rule of law we know is the only thing that works.

    What did Churchil say in his speech to the House of Commons?

    “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”

    Winston and FDR were pretty smart blokes. We are what were in no small part because of them.

    Let’s not change the way we do things, or stop believing in the one thing in this world that is really important: human decency.

  • STM

    I agree up to a point Cannon but I do believe that this guy was killing thousands of his own people who were doing nothing but express their discontent against his rule.

    It IS our business, because if we just want to buy people off and keep them onside no matter what they do to their own people, that’s a throwback to the old “he might be a bastard, but at least he’s our bastard” days.

    As I say, we take that right for granted; others don’t have it. Even small steps towards democracy are better than none.

    And yes, I agree too regarding your comment on collateral damage. It always makes me angry when I hear the “apology” and it’s something the US and its partners need to really think seriously about. There are, I am certain, other ways of doing things.

    Regarding Wilson: He never had the balls – or Congress didn’t in the end – to back up his rhetoric and what was actually a great idea. But without the US, it didn’t mean much; it’s also the reason why 70 years back two of the most inhumane regimes ever to set foot on this eart were allowed to go unchecked until they had built up massive military machines devised for one purpose only: world conquest.

    For that reason, he rightly isn’t remembered in the same light as FDR and his fellow Americans of that generation, who made such a sacrifice and really did have a cause to fight for (along with the rest of us, I might add, and you know who we are, who also suffered terribly but who thought real freedom from tyranny was something worth standing up for). There are people in my family who laid down their lives for it and others who put their lives at risk for it. I don’t believe even this far down the track that it was for nothing.

    Look at how democracy took flower and blossomed in Germany and Japan … (and Italy, too) because of that.

    This is very different, but if we allow people to rid themselves of nasty dictators, even if the step towards a kind of new democracy is not really what we think of as democracy, it is still a step forward, not a step back.

    I lived in Baghdad as a boy and maintain some contacts with people I knew and I can tell you with absolute certainty that 99 per cent of Iraqis were ecstatic when the Coalition liberated their country and freed them from four decades of the depredations of Saddam’s bastardised Arab version of Stalinism.

    It’s what happened afterwards that pissed them off, not what happened first.

    I just hope we’ve learned our lessons from that and will stay out of the affairs of Libya so that Libyans can decide for themselves on a new government. That decision IS one small step towards democracy as we know it. The Arab League should be the guiding hand, not us.

    And, whatever it is that comes out of this and is the will of the Libyan people, it has to be an improvement – because it couldn’t get any worse than it was.

  • Cannonshop

    Stan, you’ve got a good point about the constitutionality of intervention in Libya, but I think you’re missing something pretty obvious…

    Indecisive ‘help’ in these cases is about as good as no help at all, and may actually result in worse outcomes than doing nothing at all. If you’re going to take sides in a civil war, you have to bloody TAKE A SIDE, and stick with it once you’ve decided to enter the situation.

    The second thing is, you have to accept responsibility for the collateral damage once you start bombing-even “limited” airstrikes are more likely to hit joe peasant, than to affect the life of someone close to the centre of power in the regime.

    Third, is that the odds that a replacement regime is going to be more humane, inclined toward democratic (small ‘d’) processes, rule of law, or the other things valued in western civilizations, is rather small and unlikely. What is more likely, is a regime even MORE radicalized than the one you’re overthrowing, with less responsiveness to international pressures to actually carry through reforms.

    (or worse, you get a western-friendly regime, that likes to kill people and enslave them-but pays off the international cops with cheap oil and big contracts for their money-men, that spawns a more radicalized and hostile population, one that favours those neat jackets loaded with semtex and ball-bearings.)

    Wilsonian ventures haven’t generally turned out well for the United States, and even LESS well when they’ve had the U.N. Stamp of Approval. Were it otherwise, Somalia would be a light of democracy, prosperity, and peace in Africa…which it ain’t.

  • STM

    G’day. Same old BC. Same old pot of steaming brown smelly stuff (free speech comes in palatable and unpalatable iterations; but then, it is what it is, right?).

    Now, the “War against Libya” is REALLY not a war at all.

    While NATO – of which the US is a part but not the only part – is seriously patrolling the no-fly zone and the attacks against Gaddafi’s anti-aircraft sites are a legit part of that decision, let’s remember who sanctioned the action in the first place to protect anti-Gadaffi protestors who were being killed in their thousands.

    Oh, yes, it was the UN, silly … not a unilateral action by the US and its British pet bulldog (or even the nicely groomed and perfumed French poodle)

    Let’s not forget one truism here: that we live in countries where free speech, free association, due process, trial by a jury of your peers and the freedom to choose your own leader by voting for whomever you like is enshrined in our collective cultural identities by rule of law and because of that, we stupidly take it for granted whilst forgetting others don’t have those basic freedoms and rights.

    None of those things were happening in Gaddafi’s Libya. If the government didn’t like you, or what you said, or who you associated with, or what you read, you’d get a bullet and the back of the head … or a sham trial that might extend your life for short time if you were unlucky enough to get shoved into a Libyan jail.

    How many more times are we going to forget that what we have … or at least some version of it that is palatable to cultures that differ from ours but still guarntees basic human rights and freedoms … is a worthy goal, not a bad one.

    When you live in a country that produces so much oil it should one of the richest in the world but whose people are being ripped off by their rulers to the point where they can barely afford the basic necessities of life, is it any wonder they are up in arms and agitating for the removal of a very nasty dictator who has ruled with an iron fist for 40 years?

    Gaddafi’s people live in luxury and wealth while the average Libyan struggles to survive.

    As for American involvement, it’s not about oil. If America or the west wanted the oil, they’d just buy off Gaddafi. Remember, just like the old days?

    No guys. There’s more at stake here and if America and the west in general wants to improve its stocks in the middle-east and elsewhere, then it is actually a good thing to be seen to be part of a unilateral action designed to help an opressed people decide THEIR OWN futures.

    That’s what’s going in Libya.

    Oh, did I forget to mention that no action was taken until it was also sanctioned by the Arab League themselves.

    Impeachable offence.

    The only impeachable offence here is the offensive nature of the suggestion that this is unconstitutional and therefore constitutes an impeachable offence.

    In my view, for what it’s worth, there are only a couple of good reasons to go to war: when someone else wants to tyrannise your people, or when tyranny genuinely exists and people don’t want it and want help to get rid of it. But let’s hope the west has
    learned the lessons of Vietnam and Iraq this time around. Let Libyans decide for themselves.

    As for Pablo’s views (and those of other conspiracy theorists): he’s entitled to them the same as Libyans who don’t have the opportunity to express such contrary points of view against their current government, but it doesn’t mean Pablo’s views are right.

    However, they’re as legitimate as any other view, within reason.

    And he’s lucky to be a US citizen, because he’s not going to get locked up for saying what the government doesn’t want to hear.

    Remember that, Pablo. Remember what you have, and others don’t.

    Although, to be fair, even paranoids have real enemies. Just because you’re a conspiracy theorist doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you 🙂

  • pablo

    NATO for all practical purposes is run by the USA. You did not know that?

    “i’m sure that’s why we’ve ceded all control to nato and are pulling our planes out of libya. but, pray tell, how are actions in libya, short though they have been, part of a plot to tun “the home front into a police state?”
    What I said Zing, is that the creation of alciada has been used to create a police state here at home as in 9/11, the Patriot Act, nude body scanning machines, national security letters in lieu of a warrant issued upon probable cause as required by the 4th amendment, and the list goes on and on and on.

    “nor am i privy to the inner workings of our gov’t or the shit going on in libya.

    and neither are you, so stop pretending like you know anything.”

    Uhhh isnt that what I said the last sentence of post 69? Thats right I am not privy to it, but
    I do know bullshit when I see it, and anybody that buys that we are in Libya to protect Jihadists, such as many of the insurgents/rebels is foolish beyond comprehension.

  • zingzing

    “Indeed Alciada itself is nothing more than an Agency front to provide for reasons to expand the military industrial complex, and create a pretext for aggression, as well as turning the home front into a police state.
    This war in Libya has NOTHING to do with protecting civilians and everything to do with a neocon objective of which I am not privy to.”

    i’m sure that’s why we’ve ceded all control to nato and are pulling our planes out of libya. but, pray tell, how are actions in libya, short though they have been, part of a plot to tun “the home front into a police state?”

    “In my opinion the so called rebels, which if they were not following the dictates of Washington would be called “insurgents” are for the most part jihadists and terrorists trained in the finest tradtion of the Agency.”

    sure, when they’re against us, they’re insurgents. fair enough. but who is this “Agency?” you posit al qaeda as a front? fair enough, but you’re not going to get too far with that theory. come on, pablo. where does it end?

    the cia? apparently, they’re down there. so, yeah, maybe that’s happening. but it doesn’t seem they’re getting their way. although they might stay. who knows. you don’t. and i don’t.

    i hope (don’t read into that word) that this IS about protecting civilians. based on our other soirees into the middle east, i have my doubts. but, obama put it on nato and is pulling out. maybe it’s not the right time for any of this, but i’m not privy to the facts, nor am i privy to the inner workings of our gov’t or the shit going on in libya.

    and neither are you, so stop pretending like you know anything.

    your ability to know the facts that the rest of us don’t is rather mystifying. how do you know them? do you read them on the internets? or are you part of some inside gang? are you part of the conspiracy?

    are you the superhuman we have waited for? clark?

  • pablo

    Any law zing, and that includes a treaty must conform to the constitution, there is nothing interesting about that. It is basic and elemtary. Otherwise for instance, if a treaty superceded the constitution, 2/3 of the senate and one other foreign power could amend the constition.
    The power to make war lies in the congress and not in the president. One could perhaps argue that if an external threat was imminent that perhaps the president could act without a declaration of war.
    Dread’s original post concerning this suggested that because we are in the NATO treaty that Obama could act without congressional authority. That is false. The fact that he is getting away with it however is something else altogether. We have a spineless congress, and the neocons and the liberals have formed an unholy aggressive alliance that is allowing the president to exceed his authority under the law. Furthermore Obama is also in direct violation of The War Powers Act to boot.
    In my opinion the so called rebels, which if they were not following the dictates of Washington would be called “insurgents” are for the most part jihadists and terrorists trained in the finest tradtion of the Agency. Indeed Alciada itself is nothing more than an Agency front to provide for reasons to expand the military industrial complex, and create a pretext for aggression, as well as turning the home front into a police state.
    This war in Libya has NOTHING to do with protecting civilians and everything to do with a neocon objective of which I am not privy to.

  • zingzing

    so we can sign treaties and then renege on them because they don’t conform to the constitution? interesting… i’m sure we can exploit that.

  • pablo

    What I meant Dread be was that a treaty once ratified, is only the law of the land as long as when it was passed it conformed to the constitution to begin with.

  • zingzing

    that’s all conjecture, cannonshop. (btw, in my head, i’m pronouncing your name cannons-hop.)

    “An admission of coordination, in this case, would substantially undermine the strategic objectives of involving ourselves in the Libyan internal conflict (unless you WANT to draw more recruits to radical jihadist anti-western groups, or undermine any western-friendly successor to Quaddafi, you don’t admit coordination with the rebels.)”

    and you really think that means we aren’t coordinating with the rebels? and sources say that the cia has been in libya for a while now, working with the forces on the ground. i’m sure they are talking to their own countrymen in the sky as well. but i could be wrong. maybe they’re not. unlike you, i’m not all-knowing about things libya.

    and now that nato forces are taking out ada sites, how does that jibe with your “random targeting” comments earlier? how do we know where these sites are all of a sudden?

    it’s a rather odd change in your narrative.

  • Cannonshop

    I know what bombs do, Zing, I know where to site Anti-Aircraft Artillery, and I know you have to “Suppress” (means destroy) ADA before you can enforce a no-fly-zone.

    I also know what the president and his coalition partners say their rules of engagement are. Now, if you think they’re VIOLATING those ROE, well…

    That’s another stack of bodies right there, isn’t it?

    I do not think Qaddafi’s got enough humanitarian feeling NOT to site his ADA in populated areas-not only would it render much of those systems ineffective in covering his assets, but it would complicate his logistics un-necessarily (prior, of course, to the Presidential decision to intervene).

    So, we’re dropping bombs on populated areas, if we hit the target, there are secondary explosions, if we don’t, there are primary detonations in populated areas.

    Given I don’t think Moammar is dumb enough NOT to dig his ADA sites in, that also means we have to use BIGGER bombs to suppress those sites-this shit ain’t hand-grenades, bystanders are GOING to die (have died, now).

    Since visual recognition is, at best, a 50/50 game from the air, after the first wave of suppression, your next wave of targets have likely moved, and your intel is now out of date.

    Which is why you need coordination with ground forces.

    An admission of coordination, in this case, would substantially undermine the strategic objectives of involving ourselves in the Libyan internal conflict (unless you WANT to draw more recruits to radical jihadist anti-western groups, or undermine any western-friendly successor to Quaddafi, you don’t admit coordination with the rebels.)

    Which means that any subsequent suppression of ADA sites is going to result in civilian casualties and likely will result in missed targets while you’re doing it.

    Get it now?

  • @63

    Agreed. To this day, we haven’t been able to identify who “the rebels” are and who are “the loyalists.” The very fact we keep on resorting to this shorthand only testifies to our ignorance of what’s really going on. Yet, Cannonball appears to have a crystal ball.

  • zingzing

    frankly, cannonshop, i don’t think you know shit about what’s happening over there. you have formed your opinion, but that’s all it is. when international reporters aren’t allowed in, when there’s utter chaos on the ground, when the cia is involved, you never can tell exactly what’s happening. to form such a strong opinion as you have stinks of predetermination.

  • Pablo, everyone commenting here has the option not to enter into a debate if they don’t wish to. I didn’t respond to you in part because I felt that Baritone had said pretty much what I would have wanted to in his #25.

    I also wasn’t particularly interested in getting involved in a constitutional flame war. I felt that RJ was making a mountain out of a molehill, and pointed out that the legal status of treaties was enumerated under Article VI. I thought that should be part of the discussion: I never claimed it to be the final word, and so I don’t find your all-or-nothing approach very helpful.

    I’m also not sure what you mean when you say that Article VI “only becomes the supreme law of the land if it was passed in conformity with the rest of the constitution”. Wasn’t it?

  • Cannonshop

    Zing, I don’t NEED a window into Libya, I just need to listen to what the President of the United States is saying-and draw my conclusions as to his actions, based on his statements and the public statements of our allies in the operation.

    See, Zing, when someone says outright “I am doing (insert military activity) in the most idiotic way possible”, then the people that are supposed to be ‘helped’ by this get their asses kicked by the people who are allegedly being restrained by it?

    Well… I tend to believe that, yes, the President has ordered this done in the stupidest, most wasteful and inaccurate manner possible within the limits of the technology and manpower employed.

  • pablo


    I love how you just glossed over comment 20 by me directed at you.

    I am still patiently waiting for you to show me some case law that a treaty trumps the constitution, and I am not talking about citing Article 6 which only becomes the supreme law of the land if it was passed in conformity with the rest of the constitution.

    So what say you Dread? Care to amend your statement? If not, show me ONE supreme court case in the last 100 years that agrees with you. You can’t.

    Obama’s foray into Syria is clearly unlawful. Unfortunately we have a bunch of spineless snakes in the congress. The liberals and the neocons have teamed up.

    I also love the newspeak used these days. If we don’t like em, they are insurgents, if we do, they are rebels. By the way many of the so called rebels are fundamentalist Jihadis, and no I am not a lover or liker of Khadaffi.

  • zingzing

    cannonshop: “in this case, we have NATO aircraft (i.e. U.S. aircraft) dropping bombs pretty much at random, without coordination with the Libyan rebels or anyone else on the ground.”

    funny. and here i thought the cia was down there. apparently, they were there even before the airstrikes were ordered. not sure how much i like that, but i’d bet that if they are there, one of the things they’re up to is coordinating the airstrikes, either with the rebels or from some vantage point on the ground. you really think they’re just dropping bombs at random? if it seems like a complete waste of time, it’s more than likely that that’s not what’s happening.

    “Why do I keep reiterating the line about the little brown people?”

    probably because you just like making stuff up. i’m ambivalent about this whole thing. don’t know quite what to think. i’m not sure what’s really going on there. you seem to be able to look into a foreign country a thousand+ miles away and know all, much as you seem to be able to look into the hearts of millions of people who may or may not fully support this effort. it’s a mystical power, and i’m frankly flabbergasted that you won’t share it with us.

    you are simply greedy, i guess.

  • RJ, the entire second half of Ruvy’s comment violated the comments policy, which, although people tend to fixate on the “personal attack” bit, covers a bit more than that.

    Consequently, your response had to go too because it quoted the offending part of Ruvy’s in its entirety.

  • RJ


    Why did you remove most of Ruvy’s comment, and completely delete my comment that quoted his?

    Ruvy’s comment wasn’t a personal attack or spam; it was his honest belief. Does stating one’s sincere beliefs violate the official comment policy here?

  • Cannonshop

    Why do I keep reiterating the line about the little brown people? Here’s why:

    If you gave a shit, you’d insist on direct coordination and support to the Rebels…INCLUDING a ground Campaign.

    you folk are satisfied with pretty much random bomb-dropping, that says a LOT about how much ‘support’ you really have for the people fighting Qaddafi-and the Libyan people as a whole. You’ll interfere in their civil war, but you don’t want to be seen as ‘taking sides’, so you ease your pangs with the blood of people you don’t know a dicking thing about, and support your glorious leader unquestioningly and without any analytical thought whatsoever as to what the long term impacts are going to be…’cause really, you don’t give a flying fuck, you’re just turned on by the explosions.

  • Cannonshop

    Without coordination, Zing, airstrikes are next to useless for influencing a ground battle. Milosevic wasn’t ‘taken out’ by airstrikes-he was alive when they put him up on trial, and the International forces were engaging in ground action.

    in this case, we have NATO aircraft (i.e. U.S. aircraft) dropping bombs pretty much at random, without coordination with the Libyan rebels or anyone else on the ground. Undirected Air-Support is about as effective as B-52 strikes on rice paddies were in 1965-only less so, since there’s nobody on the ground even pretending to call it in.

    This is, effectively, purposeless posturing, only it’s posturing that kills innocent bystanders and destroys civilian infrastructure (“Collateral Damage”) with minimal battlefield effect.

    and like I said, you people don’t give two shits about the little brown people on the other end of those bombs, you’re just getting a chubby off thinking your Harvard-educated Chicago Pol is showing “Muscle”.

  • zingzing

    and what about all those rebels? they aren’t a ground force? isn’t that what the airstrikes are supporting? i know gadhafi’s forces had a good day yesterday or the day before, but how long can they really last?

  • zingzing

    so you support a full military action in libya then, cannonshop? do you want to lead the troops in?

  • El Bicho

    Wasn’t Miloševi? taken out with just air strikes?

  • Cannonshop

    #25 Baritone, do you know what the net success rate is for an air-campaign unsupported by ground action in changing situations for the BETTER?


    It’s been tried-it was a popular Clinton era ‘strategy’-airstrikes without follow-up, usually to ‘wag the dog’ over domestic issues, but those strikes never achieved the stated strategic objectives.

    All bombing Libya’s doing, is killing civilians and breaking stuff in the vain hope of getting some of Quaddaffi’s guys in the blast pattern.

    Air-Power is a SUPPORT arm, Baritone, it achieves little to nothing on its own, and historically has tended NOT to break a defender’s will to fight.

    It IS, however, the only military “action” that Liberals will support, since it is low-risk, and nobody gives a flying fuck about the brown people at the other end of the bombing run anyway-at least, nobody of importance in the Democratic Party does.

  • iball

    Wish I had the time and inclination to read more than your first couple of sentences but I don’t.

  • @ iball #48.

    I’m still waiting for the proof that we Israelis have committed genocide. You know, like the gas chambers murdering off millions of Arabs, the rains of ashes falling all over Israel from the exterminated Arabs, etc., etc. The hypocritical [Edited] and liars who try to smear the name of MY people with their lies and bullshit have nothing but “Hamas! Hamas! Jews to the gas!” and a record of murder and assault in Europe, and intimidating Jewish students all over campuses in the United States, Canada and Europe to show for their lies. This especially includes the Queers for Palestine, who bring the level of liberal idiocy to its height by advocating the “rights” of scum who would murder off gays.

    There’s plenty of proof of what savage animals the Arabs have been. And there are plenty of indications of what savage animals the terrorists manipulating the “Palestinian” Arabs want them to be.

    And now the Persians are inciting Arabs even further with a forthcoming movie indicating how the 12th Imam is just around the corner.


  • iball

    Ruvy #26

    “On the one side is this ghoulish bastard with a record of 42 years of terrorism.”

    That’s 23 years less than Israel.

    Obama – just another war criminal.

    I’d like to see the headline:

    “Coalition War Crimes Trial to Begin”

    News at 11.

  • Actually, the cited War Powers Resolution requires a president to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action and forbids armed forces from remaining for more than 60 days.

    Since the Libya action in no way seeks the overthrow the United States, gives aid or comfort to our enemies, or injures the country to the profit of an individual or group, the definition of high crimes and misdemeanors has not been met.

    Therefore, your quod erat demonstrandum is inaccurate.

    Oh, by the way, Iraq did not attack us. Neither did Afghanistan.


  • Glenn McGahee

    Not exactly original although I certainly don’t mind seeing Obama’s rhetoric replayed for his supporters. However, the mik carton idea is not exactly original since we’ve recently all seen the ad with the donkey on the side of the milk carton. More original thought please.

  • Anthony G

    I could argue how the AIDs initiative directly affects our interests to include security for the better but I doubt it is an argument either of us want to get into.

  • Clavos

    It is the way I am, Anthony. But, I didn’t criticize the AIDS initiative, I just didn’t support it. I don’t support sending any of our money elsewhere while there still are Americans who need it.

  • Anthony G

    And to Clavos: “Did you ever support anything W did? I didn’t. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I supported an American presdet on anything. Oh wait, I did like Reagan — mostly.”

    You know there is alot of people like you in the States. You love to dislike and throw salt on anything a leader does. You mentioned before that the only thing you supported out of El Bicho’s reduced list of W’s accomplishments was the overthrow of Saddam….what about the AIDs initative? How can someone critisize this? It must just be the way you are.

  • Anthony G

    Thanks RJ….I was going to look for some quotes that Obama made while President Bush was in office but no need now you put them here.

    I really didn’t like how it took Obama ten days after the fact to address the nation about our involvment in Libya. I really believe he made a mistake by not doing that right away. I think you could have a lot more support from the American people if he did so.

  • Baronius

    No, YOU’RE the hypocrite!

    Oh, wait, have we stopped playing that game?

  • Clavos

    Fair enough, EB.

    As I said above, I didn’t support W overall, although I exaggerated when I said I didn’t support him on anything;
    of those you mentioned, I supported only the overthrow of Saddam, and agree that it was badly bungled.

    But then, I don’t support much that’s done in DC — either by the reps or the dems — I don’t see a lot of difference between them.

  • El Bicho

    “Did you ever support anything W did?”

    Off the top of my head, I was fine with the money he sent to Africa to help combat AIDS, the overthrow of Saddam (though he completely bungled the way he went about it), and his immigration reform sounded good on paper but the devil is in the details. I am sure there are more if I had a list of accomplishments

  • ….regarding … Ruvy – It would seem from his analysis of the situation in Libya, that the only positive solution there would be simply to obliterate the entire population, as none are apparently worthy of drawing breath.

    Baritone, my analysis would be for you Americans and everyone else to stay the hell out of Libya altogether. I let G-d judge who is worthy of drawing breath. That’s His job, not mine. Since there are no Jews living in Libya (they were driven out by the ghoulish bastard, Qaddafi), the Arab terrorists there can kill each other off, and I won’t even fart with regret over it. But why should we get our hands messy over them?

    Strikes me from reading your comments you need some pain-killers – badly. Only a man in pain would assume that six million people are not fit to draw breath – or project that assumption upon someone else.

  • Clavos

    Tunnel-vision inflexibility, sure. Vast reserves of negative energy, definitely. But not racial prejudice.

    True, handy, you never have.

    As to the tunnel vision and negativity: Yep. Absolutely.

  • Clavos

    then why did you spell it with two?

    You’ve such a brilliant mind, EB. Much smarter than I. Touché.

    If there was ever a time on this site you supported any thing Obama has done as President or even had a positive thing to say about that man, I certainly don’t remember seeing it.

    Actually, early on in the campaign, I did say he was an impressive speaker. Of course, that was before I realized it was all bullshit. Well-delivered bullshit still smells. Anyway, you’re right, but the fact that you are doesn’t invalidate my argument that it’s a neat trap the lefties devised.

    Did you ever support anything W did? I didn’t. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I supported an American presdet on anything. Oh wait, I did like Reagan — mostly.

  • If impeaching a president really were all that cut and dried, none of them would ever make it through their terms of office.

    As far as I can tell, the last president nobody tried to impeach was Ford, and that was probably only because he wasn’t in office long enough to piss anyone off sufficiently.

  • El Bicho

    “First, amendment only has one M, y’all.”

    then why did you spell it with two?

    As far as “being knee-jerk opposed to everything the man does,” you set yourself up for that. If there was ever a time on this site you supported any thing Obama has done as President or even had a positive thing to say about that man, I certainly don’t remember seeing it.

  • I would never accuse you of racism, Clavos. Never have. Tunnel-vision inflexibility, sure. Vast reserves of negative energy, definitely. But not racial prejudice.

  • And, for clarity: I am ambivalent about the air strikes in Libya, not blindly supportive. Just as I was ambivalent in 2003 about Iraq.

    But a ground invasion and occupation with regime change as an explicit goal, opposed by most of the rest of the world, is far different from a targeted air campaign to prevent a slaughter, in which much of the rest of the world, including Arab states, are giving their support.

    And the idea that any president, of either party, would ever be impeached for this type of limited action involving no ground troops is wack partisan provocation, nothing more.

  • Clavos

    First, amendment only has one M, y’all.

    Second, the lefties first accused we who are opposed to much (but not all) that Obama has done of being racists, and against him because he’s Black (although, as Ruvy pointed out not long ago, he’s actually an Oreo — no racism intended or implied; it’s a term used by Blacks in lieu of the old “Uncle Tom” epithet, and certainly applies to Mr. Obama.)

    Now, when we oppose the prez, the lefties accuse us of simply being knee-jerk opposed to everything the man does, as B-tone does in #25.

    Both of these accusations are nifty (from the leftie POV), because, by definition, they invalidate virtually all criticism of Mr. Obama for whatever reason, as long as it’s coming from a righty.

    Pretty cool, guys — well done!


    Wish we’d thought of that…

  • Defensive much?

    I haven’t read MMFA [MediaMatters] for quite a while. I don’t require outside help to reach the patently obvious conclusion that if we had a Republican president bombing Libya, this article would not have been written.

  • Bar – This particular thread is a relatvively small microcosm of the Politics section of BC.

    Just a note regarding the ever endearing Ruvy – It would seem from his analysis of the situation in Libya, that the only positive solution there would be simply to obliterate the entire population, as none are apparently worthy of drawing breath. The 6 million people of Libya are seen by Ruvy as either backers of Khadafi or other terrorist organizations, so to hell with them all. If you look at the world through Ruvy’s eyes, it’s all so simple. You’re either for Israel, or you’re against Israel. (And, by his count, there are damn few of the latter.) Those for Israel should live long and prosper. Those against should simply die. End of problem.


  • Baronius

    “The radical right is joyously spreading their wings in triumph and are now going full bore to dismantle anything and everything that Obama says or does or thinks.”

    A couple of left-leaning BC’ers have expressed this sentiment. But if you look at this thread, there have been four conservatives to post, and while RJ and Clavos took the anti-Obama position, Doug and I didn’t. While I may suspect RJ of taking his position either out of partisanship or the desire to tweak the Dems for their inconsistency, I’m not sure enough to accuse him of it. And let’s face it, Clavos doesn’t like anything. (No disrespect, bro.) Likewise, I’m sure the Dave/Kenn libertarian crowd opposes this intervention, and such opposition would be entirely consistent with their beliefs.

  • RJ

    Thanks for spreading the word, Ruvy.

  • I posted this article on my FB page and there has been quite a discussion going on there as well. For a lot of you, it would seem like an echo chamber (when do we get rid of Obama, how do we get to Israel, and how soon to get out of Obama’s clutches, etc), but the point is kind of simple. Obama acted in Libya illegally. So, now he is open to impeachment. Will it happen? Ain’t for me to say.

    Any action that might have been taken in Libya would have been bad news. On the one side is this ghoulish bastard with a record of 42 years of terrorism. On the other side are ghoulish bastards who are aligned with those who have a record of at least 40 years of terrorism. So any kind of intervention would have been – and remains – pointless. Which flavor ghoulish bastard do you like?

    From my point of view, Obama has pretty much served his purpose, so I take a longer view of all this. How he is gotten rid of is of little concern to me, so long as it is accomplished somehow.

  • I have no doubt that no matter what Obama did or didn’t do as regards Libya – or anything else for that matter – would have been lambasted here and by everyone who aligns against him.

    He has been accused of “dithering” and at the same time of acting too rashly – often by the same people. He would have been damned to hell and back had he okayed unilateral American military involvement. He would have been equally damned had he chosen to do nothing.

    Many of you believe that we lefties were too harsh on W. So, now that the shoe is on the other foot, you just can’t help yourselves. The radical right is joyously spreading their wings in triumph and are now going full bore to dismantle anything and everything that Obama says or does or thinks. You are all hell bent in taking this country back to some supposed “golden era” that never existed – perhaps something like the world of “Leave it to Beaver” and “Father Knows Best.”

    The actions of the UN, NATO and Obama may well have saved the lives of thousands of people. Yet all that matters here is the possible opportunity to GET Obama. The hell with any other consideration.

    And all the “constitutional” geniuses here – You prattle on about how sacred it is, how the very letter of it must be adhered to religiously – oh, excepting for those things you don’t like. “Those things, well either they’ve got to go, or we’ll just ignore them. And that’s okay cause we’re god fearin’ ‘mericans – we ain’t no pinko commie faggot, fascist, muslim, atheist, half breed Mau Maus.”

    Someone here at BC on another thread recently said that we should go back to the original constitution before any ammendments were dragged in. Well, that would have to include the Bill of Rights would it not? And that would, therefore, include the sacrosanct Second, wouldn’t it? I know that is rather an aside in all this, but, as I see it, it’s all of a piece.

  • RJ

    Excellent post, handyman. Ignore the facts presented and simply call me a hater and a propagandist.

    Still getting your talking points from MMFA, I see.

  • This article is not about RJ being in favor of or opposed to military action in Libya. It is about his [and many others’] reflexive disdain and even hatred for anything and everything Barack Obama does or says. The proper name for this sort of disingenuous accusation is ‘propaganda.’

    The president’s speech tonight effectively answered many/most legitimate concerns.

  • Baronius

    Pablo, I’m actually making the same point you are – a law that doesn’t square with the Constitution is invalid. I don’t see how the War Powers Act can be constitutional. It’s hardly fair to insist that the President uphold both the Constitution and a law that’s unconstitutional.

  • Anon

    The same mainstream media that televised the uprising in Egypt should provide the same coverage of the people in the US protesting.

  • pablo

    6 – Dr Dreadful
    Mar 27, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    No, the President hasn’t done anything impeachable. Because the United States is acting against Libya as a member of NATO, Article VI of the Constitution applies.

    Dread, you are just plain wrong that a treaty once ratified by the congress and signed by the President either trumps or ammends the constitution as per the supreme law of the land. Perhaps you can (you can’t because it does not exist) a supreme court decision which rules as you claim.
    ANY act of congress, and a treaty is an act of congress must from its inception comply with the constitution, if it does not it is null and void.
    This was made quite clear in REID V. COVERT, 354 U. S. 1 (1956).
    Your assumption and claim is absurd on its face. Suppose the congress passed with a 2/3 majority a treaty with another country on as in the case of NATO a group of other countries that in one way or another made it a crime to express oneself freely as guaranteed the the 1st amendment. Are you actually suggesting as per Article 6 of the US constitution that this would now be the law of the land?
    You are just plain wrong Dread, and perhaps you should stick to the lovely nuances of British Law as your field of expertise pal.

    pg 317 – “The Life and Selected Writings of Thomas Jefferson,” A. Koch & Wm. Peden, Random House 1944, renewed 1972. Jefferson also said in a letter to Wilson C. Nicholas on Sept. 7, 1803, Ibid. pg 573
    “Our peculiar security is in the possession of a written Constitution. Let us not make it a blank paper by construction [interpretation]. I say the same as to the opinion of those who consider the grant of the treaty making power as boundless. If it is, then we have no Constitution.”

    Excerpt from a letter from U.S. Senator, Arlen Specter, (R. Penn.) to constituent, November 3, 1994.
    “Dear Mr. Neely:

    “Thank you for contacting my office regarding the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. … I have signed on as a cosponsor of Senator Bradley’s resolution [SR 70, which urges the president to seek the advice and consent of the Senate for ratification] because I believe that the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child is an appropriate step in the direction of promoting the well-being of children throughout the world. [he goes on to mention concerns that the treaty would subjugate familial and parental responsibility to an international entity, which he denies]

    “… Secondly, the Convention would not override the U.S. Constitution; rather, as in the case of any treaty, any provision that conflicts with our Constitution would be void in our country… ”
    So how about it Dread? Show me some case law. I am all eyes.

    Baronius I am surpised at you, you freely admit that the president is violatiing overtly the supreme rule of law on a an issue of major importance, concerning the power to kill other human beings unlawfully, yet you would not impeach for this breach. Amazing.

  • Baronius

    I’ve never seen a decent argument in support of the War Powers Act. It seems to be a usurpation of the powers of the President by Congress. It would take a president and a congress of great courage to repeal it or amend it into something appropriate; for the most part, presidents just ignore it. I could never support the impeachment of a president on the basis of a violation of the War Powers Act.

  • stephen michael slee

    A number of things first terrorists flew planes into the two the twin towwers i remember the day then kings cross and the bus and others around the world for me thats where it started i dont know what the west done to prevoke the attacks but Mr bush said something like we will leave no stone unturned and hunt them down its not over yet as for the impeachment thats for the big wigs of congress to sort out we cant live our lives with the threat of terrorism over us and also america taking the lead roll that some are ranting and raving about america is the worlds super power that i personaly look up to but china is seconed and india is third these where communist states i dont even want to think about it swings and round abouts the tables will turn democracy and jobs jobs jobs.

  • R.J. Moore II

    “its a bit deep for me i used to serve 20 years or so ago my comments!yes maybe we had no right invading/no fly zone/un passed/ but at the end of the day dont you think an oppressive regime to be supressed and democracy to prevail.”

    You mean, like Iraq?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    No, they would not be shocked – except by the fact that we can do what we are able to do in the modern world.

    There’s many liberals who are up in arms about Obama’s bombing of Libya….but I’ll believe that Republicans are serious about the need to get Congress’ approval first when THEY protest their own president’s military actions taken without Congressional approval as many Democrats are doing now with Obama.

  • Our Founding Fathers would be shocked by President Obama’s actions. Presidents Washington, Adams, and Jefferson indeed engaged in undeclared wars. However, they certainly had Congressional approval.

  • Socrates

    Actually, the president can order the troops to go anywhere he wants them to, because he’s commander in chief. All the legislative branch does is fund the troops.

    Anyway, the US has to stop trying to be the world police. Americans are so stupid.

  • Nice job, RJ. Oh, lawyers like to weasel out of everything. That’s what G-d invented them to do. But every now and then you get these “facts on the ground” that all the smoke-blowing and bullshitting by lawyers just can’t hide or get around.

  • zingzing

    “For example, the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 passed both houses of the Congress by rather wide margins.”

    on trumped-up nonsense, you must admit…

  • RJ


    The US did not begin its involvement in Libya under the umbrella of NATO. If you recall, Germany did not support the UN resolution that called for a no-fly zone. It only became a NATO deal after the fact.


    There hasn’t been a DECLARED war since WWII, but the Congress has certainly authorized military action numerous times since then. For example, the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 passed both houses of the Congress by rather wide margins. And the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists (which authorized the use of force in Afghanistan) passed almost unanimously in 2001. And etc.


    Thanks. I’m not sure if a few dozen communists holding up signs denouncing the US is comparable to tens of thousands of screaming protesters comparing the President to Hitler, but at least it’s good to know that they haven’t ALL mysteriously disappeared.

  • zingzing

    clavos: “…Or a trashing of our own sovereignty by submissively putting ourselves under the command of NATO?”

    come on, clavos. do you want the us to take full command and responsibility for this action, war, whatever it is? and what exactly is our sovereignty in libya? is it just because our army is over there that we suddenly have every right to call all the shots of all those who sent their armies? or should we all just be doing our own thing?

    what’s the point in having these kinds of organizations if we’re supposed to lead them all the time? and why should we be in charge? other nations seem quite happy to help out in a manner that has been democratically agreed upon by representatives of their nations.

    you make the us out to be some bully who can’t stand it if he’s not in charge of the sandbox. even if that’s pretty much the true state of affairs, it’s not a bad thing to defer leadership on something you’d rather not be doing in the first place.

    sounds to me like someone just wants to criticize obama. first it was why is he dilly-dallying around about libya? then it was impeach the man for going into libya unilaterally! now it’s what? he’s giving up total control of the situation? what about-face will happen next? stay tuned.

  • Confused

    Why are we fighting with Al Quada in Libya and against Al Quada in Afghanistan?

    Why are we supporting a corrupt government in Afghanistan and fighting a corrupt government in Libya?

    Why are we supporting King Faisal killing his citizens and fighting Moammar Ghadaffi when he kills his citizens?

  • Clavos

    …Or a trashing of our own sovereignty by submissively putting ourselves under the command of NATO?

    I now stand with Obama (biting tongue) — he’s right, America is NOT exceptional [anymore].


  • “It would be nice to see all those principled anti-war protesters demonstrating against an illegal war launched against an oil-rich Muslim country. Has anyone seen them lately?”

    Yes, here they are.

    Oh, and here.

    Glad to be of assistance, RJ. I could tell you were worried.

  • No, the President hasn’t done anything impeachable. Because the United States is acting against Libya as a member of NATO, Article VI of the Constitution applies.

    Now, whether the operation is a violation of the NATO Treaty is another matter entirely…

  • zingzing

    now congress hasn’t authorized a war since 1942, yet nearly every (or is it every?) president since that time has taken some sort of military action (with and without nato/un involvement) that did not fit the criteria of imminent threat or actual attack.

    are all those guys impeachable? i guess they are, by your reasoning.

    does nato/un involvement count for nothing? i guess not. clinton is impeachable for that thing in yugoslavia as well as fucking around and being a typical lying male about it.

    btw–nato took over command operations just a few minutes ago.

  • Doug Hunter


    Maybe, maybe not. Maybe the country will split in half, maybe a weak central government will allow Libya to become a breeding ground for terrorists. Who knows.

    In answer to the article, no, it’s not an impeachable offense because as with many constitutional issues lawyers will weasel their way out of the definitions by parsing each word into meaninglessness. Yes, they publicly admit it’s not an imminent threat. Yes, they publicly admit if not war, it’s at least a kinetic military action. Yes, the president authorized it. Yes, the war powers act says a president can’t authorize military action unless there is imminent threat. If it seems airtight that’s just because aren’t educated enough, a few years of law school would have you asking what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.

  • stephen michael slee

    its a bit deep for me i used to serve 20 years or so ago my comments!yes maybe we had no right invading/no fly zone/un passed/ but at the end of the day dont you think an oppressive regime to be supressed and democracy to prevail.

  • RJ

    51% of Democrats support the illegal war in Libya, according to Gallup.


  • R

    “A final thought: It would be nice to see all those principled anti-war protesters demonstrating against an illegal war launched against an oil-rich Muslim country. Has anyone seen them lately? Maybe we should put them on the side of a milk carton, because they seem to be curiously missing.”

    You’re implying democrats are fine with what the president has done. Get a clue. Unlike Mindless conservatives we actually have somewhat of a brain.