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View Diary: Republicans plan their October Surprise. Obama, and Pentagon, may well be planning a different sort. (221 comments)

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  •  I admit that I cannot see the logic.... (1+ / 0-)
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    divineorder

    ...in your statement. How does whatever work Obama did to protect the people of Benghazi*, protect the innocents of Libya from US drone strikes?

    *BTW: what political cost did Obama pay, to protect the people of Benghazi? IIRC, it was French President Sarkozy who stuck his neck out: risking the lives of French airmen to start the NATO intervention on 19 March.

    The French plane fired the first shot in Libya at 1645 GMT and destroyed its target, according to a military spokesman.

    French planes also flew reconnaissance missions over "all Libyan territory", French military sources said earlier.

    Around 20 French aircraft were involved in Saturday's operation, the Reuters news agency reports.

    French jets "destroyed a number of tanks and armoured vehicles", a defence ministry official told Reuters, adding that he could not immediately confirm the number.

    Other air forces and navies are expected to join the French.

    The US would use its "unique capabilities" to reinforce the no-fly zone, said US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, warning that further delays would put more civilians at risk.

    Pull yourself up by your Mittstraps: borrow a few million dollars from your parents!

    by xynz on Tue Oct 02, 2012 at 04:57:48 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  First, I never suggested the use of drones. (3+ / 0-)

      Second, here is a link to the Mchael Lewis Vanity Fair article.

      The president may not have been surprised that the Pentagon hadn’t sought to answer that question. He was nevertheless visibly annoyed. “I don’t know why we are even having this meeting,” he said, or words to that effect. “You’re telling me a no-fly zone doesn’t solve the problem, but the only option you’re giving me is a no-fly zone.” He gave his generals two hours to come up with another solution for him to consider, then left to attend the next event on his schedule, a ceremonial White House dinner.
      [snip]

      Obama made his decision: push for the U.N resolution and effectively invade another Arab country. Of the choice not to intervene he says, “That’s not who we are,” by which he means that’s not who I am. The decision was extraordinarily personal. “No one in the Cabinet was for it,” says one witness. “There was no constituency for doing what he did.” Then Obama went upstairs to the Oval Office to call European heads of state and, as he puts it, “call their bluff.” Cameron first, then Sarkozy. It was three a.m. in Paris when he reached the French president, but Sarkozy insisted he was still awake. (“I’m a young man!”) In formal and stilted tones the European leaders committed to taking over after the initial bombing. The next morning Obama called Medvedev to make sure that the Russians would not block his U.N. resolution. There was no obvious reason why Russia should want to see Qad­da­fi murder a city of Libyans, but in the president’s foreign dealings the Russians play the role that Republicans currently more or less play in his domestic affairs. The Russians’ view of the world tends to be zero-sum: if an American president is for it, they are, by definition, against it. Obama thought that he had made more prog­ress with the Russians than he had with the Republicans; Medvedev had come to trust him, he felt, and believed him when he said the United States had no intention of moving into Libya for the long term. A senior American official at the United Nations thought that perhaps the Russians let Obama have his resolution only because they thought it would end in disaster for the United States.
      [snip]
      The next day he flew to Brazil and was there on the 19th, when the bombing began. A group of Democrats in Congress issued a statement demanding Obama withdraw from Libya; Ohio Democratic congressman Dennis Kucinich asked if Obama had just committed an impeachable offense. All sorts of people who had been hounding the president for his inaction now flipped and questioned the wisdom of action. A few days earlier Newt Gingrich, busy running for president, had said, “We don’t need the United Nations. All we have to say is that we think slaughtering your own citizens is unacceptable and that we’re intervening.” Four days after the bombing began, Gingrich went on the Today show to say he wouldn’t have intervened and was quoted on Politico as saying, “It is impossible to make sense of the standard of intervention in Libya except opportunism and news media publicity.” The tone of the news coverage shifted dramatically, too. One day it was “Why aren’t you doing anything?” The next it was “What have you gotten us into?” As one White House staffer puts it, “All the people who had been demanding intervention went nuts after we intervened and said it was outrageous. That’s because the controversy machine is bigger than the reality machine.”

      "I cannot live without books" -- Thomas Jefferson, 1815

      by Susan Grigsby on Tue Oct 02, 2012 at 06:08:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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