Secondly, when attempting to save American lives, the US military often makes the decision to attempt a rescue when little is known and danger is high. I recall shortly after the raid to kill bin Laden, there were American forces in Afghanistan who were pinned down and receiving enemy fire from multiple sources and the military sent in a couple of helicopters with a lot of Navy Seals and other special forces as well as regular forces to attempt a rescue. As it turns out, the rescue was successful but one of the helicopters went down and over a dozen Americans were lost in that crash including many special ops. There were no reprecussions to the administration in that case - there was no finger pointing saying that lives were foolishly lost trying to save other lives. This is what American special forces do for a living and they are a special breed of person who thinks nothing of risking their own life in order to save a fellow soldier or fellow American.
And again, to suggest that the strongest military in the world, one that spends about $700 billion a year, could not launch some type of counter offensive against a rag-tag bunch of Gaddafi hangers-on is to insult the professionalism and great skill of America's forces.