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Thread: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    The more I'm hearing and reading that the rebels consist of a lot of al-Qaeda, the more I'm convinced to just leave these people to figure this out for themselves.

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    Quote Originally Posted by Erod View Post
    The more I'm hearing and reading that the rebels consist of a lot of al-Qaeda, the more I'm convinced to just leave these people to figure this out for themselves.
    No one knows for sure. Problem is Gaddafi claims so, so automatically the accusation looses a lot of credibility. You have to also factor in that the people of Eastern Libya are of a different tribe than Gaddafi, and have been in conflict with his tribe and the other major population group of Libya for hundreds of years.

    Now is it possible that there are AL Q from Eastern Libya? Of course there is, but there are Al Q from everywhere.. US, UK, Israel, you name it. Chances are also good that Gaddafi himself sent people on Jihad against American interests in Afghanistan and Iraq and used the cover of Al Q as an excuse.

    Basically we do not know.
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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    IMO, this exercise risks becoming a case study of bad leadership and communication, if increasingly urgent corrections (mission definition + consistent message articulation) are not made.

    First, the risks involved illustrate exactly why national interests, not emotional impulses, should drive the application of military force. America's, France's, and the UK's providing weapons to the anti-Gadhafi forces (my preference) would have entailed no commitment from states such as Germany who possibly have even fewer interests in Libya than the U.S., France, or UK.

    Second, I believe the military mission should not be widened beyond an NFZ. Tactical air strikes aimed at helping the anti-Gadhafi forces should not be furnished. Such a move is not justified by critical U.S. interests (nor those of the other Western states participating). The revolution should be waged, won, or lost by Libyans.

    Third, in my opinion, maintaining a strong and effective partnership with Germany is far more important than any of the stakes involved in Libya. In terms of the national interest, there is no contest whatsoever, even if the worst-case scenario of a complete Gadhafi victory materialized. Dependable allies are extremely valuable. Partners who join "coalitions of the willing" do so only because some temporary cause brings them together. What they bring to bilateral relations is far short of what reliable allies offer. While I'm not yet sure of where things stand vis-a-vis Germany, I am fully aware of its consistently-articulated positions on the issue and strongly believe NATO as an organization should not take a formal role given Germany's needs.

    Fourth, communication has to be clear, consistent, and focused to be effective. To date, the communication has been muddled, inconsistent, and anything but focused. Different leaders are saying different things. Some leaders are even saying different things to different audiences or at different moments. There remains no succinct definition of the mission at hand, much less one that has had any staying power. The gap between rhetoric/policy and actions has created a genuine credibility problem.

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    Yeah, if all thats going on, we should pull out.

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    Germany was never involved, so there leaving isn't really important. That said, the inability to get a unified command together is pathetic. NATO is the wrong organization to use as many member states have doubts and Libya is outside the traditional mission scope. The French have the right idea in creating a separate unified command.

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    Yeah, if all thats going on, we should pull out.
    that's what she said

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    With respect to Germany, The New York Times is now reporting:

    Germany, already at odds with its European allies and Washington over its decision not to support a United Nations no-fly zone over Libya, said on Wednesday it was withdrawing four vessels from NATO operations in the Mediterranean because it did not want to be dragged into a military role in the region, Defense Minister Thomas de Maizière, said on Wednesday.

    The decision means that Germany will withdraw two frigates and two support vessels with a total of 550 sailors from NATO’s command and place them under its own orders. It was made after the NATO secretary general, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, announced that the alliance would monitor sea traffic in the region and intercept vessels suspected of carrying illegal arms or mercenaries to Libya.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/24/wo...24germany.html

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    First, the risks involved illustrate exactly why national interests, not emotional impulses, should drive the application of military force. America's, France's, and the UK's providing weapons to the anti-Gadhafi forces (my preference) would have entailed no commitment from states such as Germany who possibly have even fewer interests in Libya than the U.S., France, or UK.
    That seems like a quagmire. The rebels are a disorganized mess. Who will provide the training, transportation, and distribution of the weapons? How will we prevent the weapons from falling into the wrong hands or being targeted by frauds and conns? Its a logistics nightmare!! Whereas air power from remote sea or land bases is fully under our control and at our discretion.


    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    Second, I believe the military mission should not be widened beyond an NFZ. Tactical air strikes aimed at helping the anti-Gadhafi forces should not be furnished. Such a move is not justified by critical U.S. interests (nor those of the other Western states participating).
    can you elaborate on how air strikes are not justified but flooding weapons into the hands of untrained and scattered forces is preferable?

    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    The revolution should be waged, won, or lost by Libyans.
    This contradicts your desire to furnish libyans with weapons. The airstrikes leveled the playing field. Its up to the libyans to fight the rest of the war for the government they deserve.

    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    Fourth, communication has to be clear, consistent, and focused to be effective. To date, the communication has been muddled, inconsistent, and anything but focused. Different leaders are saying different things. Some leaders are even saying different things to different audiences or at different moments. There remains no succinct definition of the mission at hand, much less one that has had any staying power. The gap between rhetoric/policy and actions has created a genuine credibility problem.
    I don't see how we can fix the opinions and politics of other nations.
    If you believe in the Supernatural then you can become a millionaire!

    Questioning or criticizing another's core beliefs is inadvertently perceived as offensive and rude.

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    Re: Obama' libyan coalition Falls apart

    Quote Originally Posted by scourge99 View Post
    That seems like a quagmire. The rebels are a disorganized mess. Who will provide the training, transportation, and distribution of the weapons? How will we prevent the weapons from falling into the wrong hands or being targeted by frauds and conns? Its a logistics nightmare!! Whereas air power from remote sea or land bases is fully under our control and at our discretion.
    Providing limited weapons (and I have made the point about limited weapons clear in a number of past messages on the topic), namely a modest number of anti-aircraft weapons, would be anything but a quagmire. Unlimited weapons would be an issue. One example where I specified the limited amount of weapons assistance is: http://www.debatepolitics.com/breaki...post1059346252

    can you elaborate on how air strikes are not justified but flooding weapons into the hands of untrained and scattered forces is preferable?
    Tactical air strikes are not justified, because the U.S. lacks the critical interests to become involved in military operations. Libya under Gadhafi does not pose an imminent and credible threat to the U.S., critical U.S. interests, or U.S. allies. Emotions are not sufficient to justify direct military intervention. Indeed, I believe the emotional urge "to do something" following the collapse of Somalia's dictator and evolution of a civil war was an example of a terrible decision to put emotions ahead of interests. The Cold War had largely wound down. Somalia had no geopolitical importance. The collapse of Somalia's dictatorship and jockeying of factions posed no threat to U.S. interests or allies. Sending troops there was, therefore, not anchored in critical U.S. interests.

    This contradicts your desire to furnish libyans with weapons. The airstrikes leveled the playing field. Its up to the libyans to fight the rest of the war for the government they deserve.
    There is no contradiction. In the former case, the Libyans would be waging the war all by themselves. In the latter, the U.S. and others are doing so to some extent.

    I don't see how we can fix the opinions and politics of other nations.
    I was talking about how the U.S. and other Western leaders were communicating their message concerning the mission, rationale for it, etc., not the politics of other nations.

    Clearly, the U.S. and West, cannot make democracy magically appear in Libya. That would depend on the Libyans themselves, their institutions, their laws, etc. That Libya has had a monarchy followed by a long period of authoritarian rule is no coincidence. It is a product of the country's institutions, structure, history, and dynamics. Even if the anti-Gadhafi revolution succeeded, the barriers to democratic governance would be very steep and democratic governance would not be the assured outcome. It might not even be the most likely one e.g., civil war might be more likely given tribal rivalries, the reality that Col. Gadhafi still enjoys significant support, etc.
    Last edited by donsutherland1; 03-23-11 at 04:49 PM.

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