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View Diary: Why is Chris Hedges calling for "boots on the ground" in Libya? (72 comments)

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  •  One way to look at it. Another way is this effort (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Claudius Bombarnac

    has seen the largest, most integrated and despicable propaganda effort by the western governments and their media ever seen.  Alot of the negative information about NATO and Rebel actions coming out is simply ignored or categorized as Gaddafi propaganda.  20,000 sorties and nearly 9K bombing missions and we hear virtually nothing of the damage or casualties.  
    Wait and see, what the hell else are we supposed to do, all become NATO cheerleaders?
    Just once I'd like to hear the views of supporters relative to why the Neocons are so much in favor.  

    S.A.W. 2011 STOP ALL WARS "The Global War on Terror is a fabrication to justify imperialism."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:57:57 AM PDT

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    •  what about the 70 days or more where (0+ / 0-)

      gaddafi loyalists held misrata under seige, constantly pummeling it with katyusha rockets, mortar shells, tank fire and snipers.

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:09:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  proof is in the pudding. (0+ / 0-)

      if libyans were so incensed about nato bombings, (and if there had been more support for gaddafi,) the rebels wouldn't have been able to roll into tripoli as easily as they did.

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:13:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You guys really like to play up NATO bombing (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      stolen water

      don't you? You do know that they have only dropped bombs in about 20% of their strike, what you call bombing, missions don't you? A strike mission means they go out armed but 4 out of 5 times they come back without attacking anything, at least that was the ratio last time I checked  which was in July.  See How Many Libyans has NATO Killed? That means they "dropped bombs" about 1800 times. As of June 29, when I was preparing that diary, US planes had dropped a grant total of 132 "bombs." Not exactly Rolling Thunder.

      Now let's look at recent air activity.

      Strike sorties conducted 15 SEPTEMBER: 40
      Key Hits 15 SEPTEMBER:
      In the vicinity of Sirte: 1 Military Storage Facility, 2 Armed Vehicles, 1 Tank, 4 Multiple Rocket Launchers, 8 Air
      Missile Systems.
      In the vicinity of Waddan: 1 Multiple Rocket Launcher.
      In the vicinity of Sebha: Several Armoured Vehicles, 1 Multiple Rocket Launcher, 1 Tank, 5 Armed Vehicles.
      Strike sorties conducted 16 SEPTEMBER: 43
      Key Hits 16 SEPTEMBER:
      In the vicinity of Sirte: 5 Command and Controle Nodes, 3 Radar Systems, 4 Armed Vehicles, 8 Air Missile
      Systems.
      In the vicinity of Hun: 4 Anti Aircraft Guns.
      Strike sorties conducted 17 SEPTEMBER: 42
      Key Hits 17 SEPTEMBER:
      In the vicinity of Sirte: 2 Command and Control Nodes, 4 Multiple Rocket Launchers, 1 Armed Vehicle, 4
      Surface to Air Missile Systems.
      In the vicinity of Hun: 9 Anti Aircraft Guns.
      In the vicinity of Al Jufra: 1 Command and Control Node, 1 Vehicle Storage Facility.
      In the vicinity of Sheba: 1 Armed Vehicle, 1 Armoured Vehicle, 1 Multiple Rocket Launcher

      This is the data from NATO and as far as I know no one as even accused them of falsifying data let alone proving it. So rather than throw around terms such as "massive bombing" and "carpet bombing" try to have a sense of prospective. The truth is the number of civilians killed by NATO operations over Libya probably numbers less than a few hundred.

      For me, its not about neo cons or any Americans, it's about the Libyans. I guess you could say I became a "cheerleader" for the Libyan uprising before I published my first diary about on Jan 18, 2 months before NATO involvement.

      And I didn't drop my support for their struggle when they made a "deal with the devil" that got them NATO air support without NATO ground troops, and almost certainly saved the lives of tens of thousands of Libyans, maybe hundreds of thousands. I don't know.

      We know what Qaddafi has done other places and they are still finding mass graves in the dessert and I fear will for some time. So how many Libyans do you think Qaddafi would have murdered by now it you and the other "anti-interventionists" had been successful in allowing him to use his air force, navy and heavy weapons without serious opposition?

      How about Syria? Aren't you happy that no one is even trying to protect the Syrian people from Assad's murderous assault? Can't you be satisfied with that bloodletting and let the Libyan people have their freedom.

      And the freedom is real to them. Have you noticed how Libyan tweets are starting to use their real names? I've so far not had to hesitate putting my name on everything I do, probably neither have you, so don't make light of what they have accomplished.

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:20:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  NATO ran out of bombs... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BigAlinWashSt
        As of June 29, when I was preparing that diary, US planes had dropped a grant total of 132 "bombs."

        That is complete bullshit. If you have read the reports, some targets received 10 or more individual hits during an attack.

        NATO running out of bombs in Libya
        Published April 16, 2011

            Less than a month into the Libyan conflict, NATO is running short of precision bombs, highlighting the limitations of Britain, France and other European countries in sustaining even a relatively small military action over an extended period of time, according to senior NATO and U.S. officials.

            The shortage of European munitions, along with the limited number of aircraft available, has raised doubts among some officials about whether the United States can continue to avoid returning to the air campaign if Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi hangs on to power for several more months.

        Libya Mission Cost at $550 Million for U.S. Forces So Far

        Mar 29, 2011
        The U.S. launched 192 Tomahawks in the first 10 days,

        Here's a link
        Action by international forces
        for a better perspective on the amount of bombs/missiles NATO has dropped in Libya. I leave it to you to estimate the tonnage. Keep in mind that one plane can carry multiple bombs and rockets as well as cannon. There have been over 300 cruise missiles launched from ships/submarines in the Mediterranean from all NATO forces..

        •  132 targets were hit, not count cruise missiles (0+ / 0-)

          AFRICOM spokeswoman Nicole Dalrymple said in a statement on June 29th. “As of today, and since 31 March, the U.S. has flown a total of 3,475 sorties in support of OUP. Of those, 801 were strike sorties, 132 of which actually dropped ordnance.”  That was only 16.1% of the 4,963 strike sorties conducted by NATO as of June 29th with a total of 132 targets being hit.

          Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

          by Clay Claiborne on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:10:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You are attempting to rationalize and minimize (0+ / 0-)

            the impact of NATO's devastation on the country. Your post only reflects on how many strike sorties were made by US forces - forces who were not supposed to be dropping bombs according to Obama's statements.

            The US used their B2 stealth bomber for several sorties. Here's their payloads (note the quantities of bombs these massive aircraft can carry):

            Armament:

                2 internal bays for 50,000 lb (23,000 kg) of ordnance.[55]

                80 × 500 lb class bombs (Mk-82) mounted on Bomb Rack Assembly (BRA)
                36 × 750 lb CBU class bombs on BRA
                16 × 2000 lb class weapons (Mk-84, JDAM-84, JDAM-102) mounted on Rotary Launcher Assembly (RLA)

            Here's a typical "strike sortie" by 3 B2 bombers:

            B-2 stealth jets return after epic 11,500 mile journey to bomb Libyan aircraft shelters
            March 21, 2011
            They dropped 45 satellite-guided bombs weighing 2,000lbs each

            Canada alone dropped hundreds of bombs before they ran out in late April and they only had 6 planes (each could carry up to 9 weapons depending on type).

            You are attempting to have us believe that all of NATO had less than a few hundred bombs and rockets.

            Denying truth with misleading information does not help your cause in the long run.

    •  former military intel officer pat lang (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Clay Claiborne

      has a blog where veterans discuss their experiences. here one explains that x number of sorties doesn't always mean a target was engaged.

      http://turcopolier.typepad.com/...

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:52:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A very informative piece, thanks (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        stolen water

        I would just like to point out his conclusion:

        If anyone still harbors thought of the victorious rebels marching into Tripoli behind a steamroller of airpower, the numbers game should disabuse them of this vision.

         Modern tactical airpower is precise, surgical, and deadly, but the support of the type being provided—numerically small and tailored to limit collateral damage—is not going to provide an offensive advantage for the under-trained and under armed Libyan rebels. They may still win, because if the support missions continue, they are a kind of safety net, but it may take a very long time. The alternative is that an attack against a legitimate command and control target may provide a de facto decapitation, and a swift end.

         That would be luck. Otherwise we surely must be thinking about someone’s boots on the ground if we continue to expect a military solution to the situation.


        Guess he was wrong about "boots on the ground" This was a Libyan victory.

        Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

        by Clay Claiborne on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:21:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Very good piece - it speaks the truth (0+ / 0-)
          They may still win, because if the support missions continue, they are a kind of safety net, but it may take a very long time. The alternative is that an attack against a legitimate command and control target may provide a de facto decapitation, and a swift end.

          Note that this was posted May 2, 2011. NATO started using Apache strike helicopters for close air support on May 4.

          It still took 6 months of NATO attacks to gain Tripoli and the fighting is still not over. This is a long time. Obama said Libya action would last 'days, not weeks'.

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