View 684 Monday June 18, 2011
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I was interviewed by Glenn Reynolds on The Last Shuttle: http://www.pjtv.com/?cmd=mpg&mpid=86&load=5745 ·
Obama’s War continues in Libya with both sides claiming victory. Obama and some NATO allies proclaimed the rebels as the recognized and legitimate government of Libya. In retaliation Qadaffi took a victory lap with Mission Accomplished parades in various parts of the country he still holds, celebrating his continued rule. Some of the ceremonies were elaborate. Meanwhile the rebels celebrated the successful retention/re-conquest of the port of Brega in the province of Cyrenaica over in the eastern part of Libya, far from Tripolitania where Ghadaffi pretty well rules; considering that NATO has given them total air supremacy and a great deal of air support, the only surprise here is that it has taken the rebels so long to retake Brega. Perhaps they have decided that it is more effective to fire their weapon in the general direction of the enemy rather than in the air in exuberation.
Brega is about 100 kilometers east of Marble Arch, the jumpoff point for British Forces in the game Afrika Korps. The Marble Arch was built by the Italian colonial authorities to mark the border between Tripolitania and Cyrenaica provinces of Libya and also as a sort of celebration of the creation of Libya as an actual nation.
Probably the most objective reporting coming out of Libya is from Al Jazeera:
africa/2011/07/2011718131010939797.html, which reports that Brega has changed hands several time. Al Jazeera has not declared a winner here. It reports that rebel advances in the west out of their Tripolitanian enclave of Misratah have been indecisive, and
Russia criticised the United States and other countries on Monday for recognising the rebel leadership as the legitimate government of Libya, saying they were taking sides in the rebellion to oust Gaddafi.
"Those who declare recognition stand fully on the side of one political force in a civil war," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters in Moscow.
The US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced recognition of the rebels on Friday during a meeting of the international contact group on Libya in Turkey.
While the US, UK and France have taken a stronger line towards Gaddafi, Russia and China have taken a softer line, with both countries not attending the contact group meeting.
In a speech on Saturday, Gaddafi described the rebels as traitors and rejected suggestions that he was about to leave the country.
Most of the world sees the Libyan war as a test of the power and will of Western Civilization. The President of the United States, once said to be the most powerful nation in the world, indeed in the history of the world, has made the overthrow of Qaddaffi a major goal; but as the world watches, weeks go by. The United States lets it drag on, breaking things and killing people but accomplishing little else. Libya is not recovering. There is no major economy. There is merely a slow grind, life with land mines and snipers, neither peace nor war in the rebel areas; in Qaddafi’s areas there is mostly stability but one never knows what NATO will consider an important target.
Our strategy seems to be to continue to borrow money so that we can keep on breaking things and killing people, mostly Khaddafi supporters but sometimes rebels (we apologize and borrow more money so that we can pay reparations). We have recognized a rebel “government” but no one can name its leaders or what its objectives are other than turning Khadafy and his sons out (dead or alive; alive they are to be sent to a court in Holland). We have made no deals with these rebels regarding being repaid for our efforts. We don’t have oil deals.
President Obama has not stated his goals in Obama’s War.
In the old League of Nations world, Libya might become a mandated territory under some colonial power which would try to establish rule of law and some kind of orderly means for changes in government. That won’t happen now, although it is probably the best thing that could happen to Libya. In a real world in which things are left to their own devices, Libya would break into at least two nations, Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, as it was before Italy united those former provinces of the Ottoman Empire. That would leave the interior desert Fezzan to fight over, but the break would be at Marble Arch, which is, not astonishingly, about the dividing line between Loyalist (Qadafi) forces and rebels.
In a world of US realism, the United States might make the rebels a deal: We will throw out Khadaffi and we will establish a government under US supervision with a US – or possibly British – Resident Advisor. That will endure for ten years. During those ten years we will develop oil resources. We take 60%. That’s half for development and 10% to repay ourselves for the costs of your liberation. We will deal with Khadaffi as we choose: possibly we will hang him, but we reserve the right to use silver bullets. You will get Delta Force and the SAS for as long as it takes to throw the Colonel out and restore order, then ten years of occupation by constabulary. We will also provide security of your borders in the event that your neighbors find the attraction of your oil coupled with your military helplessness irresistible. Now go find someone willing to sign this agreement. We will recognize him as President. Have a nice year.
Of course President Obama won’t do that. What he will do is not at all clear, but it probably involves continuing to borrow money so that we can go on breaking things and killing people.
The budget Kabuki continues.
The Republicans want to get out with a whole skin. They don’t know how.
The Democrats want new taxes; they prefer it if they can blame those new taxes on the Republicans.
The Tea Party Independents continue to be disgusted – and they are the key to the Presidential Election. They abandoned the Democrats for Reagan. They abandoned the Republicans for Clinton after Bush pledged “No New Taxes” and flipped them the bird with his “Read My Hips!” tax raise. They abandoned the Democrats for the Gingrich Coup when Clinton showed that he was a New Democrat in name only. They abandoned the Republicans after the Great Republican Spending Spree that followed Newt Gingrich’s resignation. They went for Obama in hopes of Hope and Change, and they abandoned Obama and the Democrats in the 2010 election.
The Country Club Republicans want to continue their ruling class collaboration with the Democrats, and do not seem to understand that the American Middle Class has had enough of the Kabuki Dance.
And the beat goes on.
For what it is worth:
‘Irrefutable’ proof of Obama forgery
Document details show typewriter had variable type way back in 1961?
As for me, I don’t think it is worth much. I include it mostly as a curiosity. Irrefutable Proof that this document is a forgery does not prove that Obama was not born in Honolulu. It would say a lot about the competence of the intellectuals who were put in charge of making this issue go away.
Worth Your Time
These are open tabs in my Firefox. They have been recommended, I opened them for a look, promptly lost the recommendation in the vast swim of stuff that comes in, and now there are far too many open tabs. I need to close them which will result in their being lost. given the flow of information around here. There’s no optimum solution to this, but one thing I can do is just make a list of places you might find it worth while to visit. I had intended to write comments, and indeed I reserve the right to do so in future, but I do have to clear some space in my tabs, and I seem to be falling further and further behind.