NATO Makes Libya Safe For . . . Al Qaeda

Hey, way to go Obama, Mission Accomplished!

Al-Qaeda flag flies high on top of Benghazi courthouse

The black flag of al-Qaeda has been put on top of a courthouse in the Libyan city of Benghazi, further raising concerns that the country could turn into a Muslim extremist entity.

“There is no God but Allah” was written in Arabic on the flag raised above the streets of Benghazi, considered the heart of the Libyan revolutionaries who toppled Muammar Gaddafi’s regime.

See also:
Flying proudly over the birthplace of Libya’s revolution, the flag of Al Qaeda
Libya: Al Qaeda flag flown above Benghazi courthouse
Islamists fly Al Qaeda flag in Libya
Libya: Flying Al Qaeda Flag, Rumored To Be Imposing Shariah Law
Al-Qaida plants its flag — literally — in Libya
Al Qaeda flag atop Benghazi courthouse fuels Libyan Islamisation fears
Libya: Is al-Qaeda the Main Threat in the Aftermath of the Revolution?
Anti-Qaddafi Forces Flew al-Qaeda Flag During Siege of Sirte
What have NATO and Obama wrought in Libya?
Libya’s turmoil, al-Qaida presence ‘no surprise,’ says White House [VIDEO]

How did we ever get from hunting down al Qaeda all over the world to providing them with air support and handing them control of countries?

/I suspect the will not turn out well for the West

Comedy Gold Power

Did she really say this [expletive deleted] with a straight face?

Clinton: US using “smart power” for Libya, Syria

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton defended the U.S. response to crises in Libya and Syria on Tuesday, saying the Obama administration is projecting “smart power” by refusing to act alone or with brute force to stop autocratic repression in the two countries.

. . .

Clinton said Libya was a study in the use of “strategic patience,” whereby the United States resisted the impulse for immediate intervention and instead helped to build support for the country’s nascent opposition, which the U.S. now recognizes as Libya’s legitimate government. She said the unprecedented NATO-Arab alliance protecting civilians on the ground was a key result of the tactics of smart power.

“This is exactly the kind of world that I want to see, where it’s not just the United States and everybody is standing on the sidelines while we bear the costs,” she said.

In Syria, Clinton said Washington had adopted a similar stance. The administration has imposed sanctions to protest a ruthless crackdown on reformers but has thus far resisted calls to make an explicit demand for President Bashar Assad to step down, something it did with Qaddafi.

Clinton said it would be a mistake for the administration to demand Assad’s ouster on its own because it wouldn’t be effective given Washington’s long-strained ties with Damascus and limited U.S. influence and trade with Syria.

See also:
U.S. taking “smart power” approach to Libya, Syria
Clinton: Libya, Syria show ‘smart power’ at work
Clinton: Libya, Syria show ‘smart power’ at work
Clinton: Libya, Syria show ‘smart power’ at work
Clinton: Libya, Syria show ‘smart power’ at work
‘Smart power’ at work, says Hillary Clinton
Clinton defends U.S. response on Syria
Clinton Passes Up Chance to Call on Assad to Step Down as Obama Remains Silent
A Conversation with Secretaries Hillary Clinton and Leon Panetta

Let’s recap: for months now, we’ve been bombing the [expletive deleted] out of Libya, a country that isn’t a direct threat to U.S. national security, killing civilians, destroying infrastructure, and backing a “rebel” movement containing elements of al Qaeda. That’s “smart power” and “strategic patience”, check. Meanwhile, Bashar Assad in Syria, a dictator in a country with plenty of American blood on its hands and a huge threat to U.S. national security, is killing civilians on a daily basis, with a death toll totaling in the thousands, and we’re doing nothing, because our relationship with Syria is “strained”. That’s also “smart power”, as well as “protecting civilians”, check.

What manner of counterproductive, nonsensical bull[expletive deleted] foreign policy is that? Smart Power my ass!

/are you seriously telling me that we have to put up with these moronic clowns for another year and a half?

How’s Your Kinetic Military Action Going Samantha?

Hey, check out our U.S. allies in Libya. It’s bad enough that they’re militarily inept and have dragged us, willingly, into an expensive quagmire, but now they’re killing each other!

Libya rebel leader Younes killed, Benghazi wobbles

That Abdel Fateh Younes, the longtime enforcer for Muammar Qaddafi whose stunning defection to the Libyan rebellion in February was an early indication of the depth of the challenge to Qaddafi’s regime, is dead, you can take to the bank. General Younes had been head of the embryonic rebel army from practically the moment he’d switched sides.

As far as the rest of the story – who killed him, when, precisely where, and why – all remains murk and conjecture, created by cross-cutting rivalries within the rebellion and the often misleading and contradictory way that Libya’s Transitional National Council (TNC) communicates with the press and the Libyan public.

See also:
Libyan Rebels Military Leader Killed in Mysterious Circumstances
Libyan Rebels Say Military Chief Shot Dead
Libyan rebels say their military chief is dead
Libyan rebel chief dead
Libyan rebel leader Younis shot dead
Death of military chief weakens Libyan rebels
US says commander’s mysterious killing is another challenge for Libyan rebels fighting Gadhafi
Libyan rebels in disarray after mysterious killing of leading military commander
Commander’s Killing Creates Challenges for Post-Al Qathafi Libya
Libyan Rebel Leader’s Death Fuels Fears Of Fracturing
Libya: Who Killed Abdel Fattah Younis, the Rebel Leader?
Who killed Abdel-Fattah Younis? Death of military chief worries Libyan rebels’ Western backers
Killing of general risks Libya rebel split
WRAPUP 7-Mystery surrounds killing of Libyan rebel army head
Libyan rebels ‘killed their own leader’
‘Double agent’ Libyan rebel leader Abdel Fattah Younis shot dead
Editorial: Body blow to TNC
Libya: Thousands Attend Abdel-Fattah Younis Funeral, But Death Remains Unexplained
Funeral Held For Libyan Rebel Military Chief

Let’s recap, we can drop thousands of tons of bombs on Libya, kill civilians, destroy infrastructure, and yet Muammar Gaddafi is still alive and well, thumbing his nose at Obama. Meanwhile, our Libyan allies, the Transitional National Council (TNC) are busy killing each other and they have no hope of ever sacking Tripoli. So, The Beat Goes On, a stalemate and, adding insult to ridiculousness, the U.S. taxpayer is stuck picking up the tab for this “Three Stooges go to war” farce.

/where’s Samantha Power been these last few months, anyone seen her, she’s got a hell of a lot of explaining to do?

Definitely Not Mission Creep In A Not War

There’s nothing to see here, move along, it’s all just part of enforcing the U.N. mandated humanitarian no fly zone to, ahem, protect civilians. It’s definitely not ramping up NATO offensive military operations in support of one side in a civil war.

Liam Fox denies Apache strikes are a change of tactics

The Apaches hit targets near the Libyan town of Brega during the latest wave of Nato strikes against forces loyal to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, the MoD said.

The Defence Secretary, epeaking at a security forum in Singapore, said that the use of British Apache attack helicopters in Libya was a logical continuation of the Nato-led military operation against Muanmar Gaddafi’s forces and did not mean that fighter jet attacks had failed.

“It’s not plan B at all,” said Dr Fox.

“The use of the attack helicopters is a logical extension of we have already been doing. We already have fast jets in action, this gives us a chance to target new targets in a way we weren’t able to do.

See also:
NATO uses attack helicopters for first time in Libya air assault
British, French helicopters strike Gadhafi troops
U.K., French helicopters strike Qaddafi troops
NATO Attack Helicopters Strike Libya Targets for First Time
NATO helicopters hit targets in Libya
Combat helicopters enter Libya fray
British, French helicopters strike Gadhafi troops
Army Apache helicopters launch first British helicopter strikes in Libya against Gaddafi’s forces
British Apache helicopters strike Gaddafi’s forces for first time
Night strikes by French Tigre helicopters
NATO launches helicopter strikes in Libya

So now NATO is using attack helicopters, where the hell in U.N. Resolution 1973 is that authorized? The current NATO operations are now way beyond what was ever intended or mandated by the original, authorized, humanitarian U.N. mission. Seriously, can ground troops be far behind the attack helicopters?

/just how kinetic does a humanitarian kinetic military action have to get before one may dare call it direct, offensive, one sided, military intervention in a civil war?

These Are Not The Gaddafis You Seek

Remember boys and girls, Obama specifically said we are absolutely NOT targeting Moammer Gaddafi. But hey, Obama never said anything about not blowing up his children and grandchildren.

Gadhafi’s youngest son killed in NATO airstrike

A NATO airstrike Saturday night killed the youngest son of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi and three of his grandsons at his son’s home in Tripoli, the Libyan government said.

NATO hadn’t confirmed late Saturday that it carried out the airstrike that killed Seif al-Arab Gadhafi, 29. Regime officials said that Moammar Gadhafi and his wife were visiting the home when it was struck, but both were unharmed.

See also:
One of Gadhafi’s sons killed in NATO airstrike, Libyan official says
Gaddafi’s Son ‘Killed In Nato Air Strike’
Saif al-Arab Gaddafi Killed in NATO Air Strike
Libya says Gadhafi survives NATO missile strike
Gadhafi’s youngest son killed in NATO airstrike
Was Gadhafi the real target of strike that killed his son?
NATO confirms strike but not Gadhafi’s son’s death
NATO confirms Tripoli raids but not Gaddafi son’s death
NATO denies targeting Gadhafi family in Tripoli airstrike

NATO denies targeting Gadhafi family in Tripoli airstrike, really? Oh, I sse, it must have just been an incredible coincidence that the Gadhafi family just happened to be where NATO called in an airstrike. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the U.N. resolution authorize a no fly zone to protect innocent civilians against airstrikes? Did I miss the part where it authorized NATO to blow up Gadhafi’s grandchildren, in their own home?

I’m sure this incident will really bolster our image across the Muslim world. and Russia was already pissed off about the previous NATO airstrikes targeting Gadhafi.

/as for me, the stench of impending blowback is making me queasy

These Are Not The Drones You Seek

Mission creep, what mission creep? Who are you going to believe, Robert Gates and Obama or your own lying eyes? Why, exactly, are we in Libya again?

U.S. will deploy Predators in Libya

President Barack Obama has given U.S. forces the go-ahead to use armed Predator drones in Libya after forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi changed their tactics in the fighting there, Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced Thursday.

“It’s an evolving situation. We saw an opportunity here and recommended it to the president. He took it,” Gates told reporters at a Pentagon briefing.

However, Gates said the use of the drones did not indicate that the U.S. was being sucked back into a military campaign that Obama has promised will be handled chiefly by other NATO countries and allied forces.

“This is a very limited addition on our part, but it does provide some additional capabilities to NATO,” Gates said. “I don’t think there’s mission creep at all….The primary strike role has been turned over to our allies, our friends.”

Now remember boys and girls, providing “additional capabilities to NATO” is not, I repeat, IS NOT mission creep. Um, it’s been at least a couple months now, whatever happened to “days, not weeks”?

See also:
U.S. begins using Predator drones in Libya
U.S. Launches Drone Strikes in Libya
Obama authorizes Predator drone strikes in Libya
US deploys armed drones over Libya
Obama Approves Use of Predator Drones in Libya
U.S. Sends Predators to Strike Qaddafi Troops Fighting Rebels
Libya: US sends armed drones to shield rebels
Pentagon: Robot War Over Libya Begins in 3, 2, 1 …
US begins using armed drones in Libya
U.S. introduces armed Predator drones in Libya

Of course, the U.N. resolution we’re operating under only authorizes humanitarian efforts, so I’m sure these armed Predator drones will only be used to deliver food to civilians and stuff like that.

The Council stressed the need to intensify efforts to find a solution to the crisis that responded to the legitimate demands of the Libyan people, noting actions being taken on the diplomatic front in that regard. It further demanded that Libyan authorities comply with their obligations under international law and take all measures to protect civilians and meet their basic needs and to ensure the rapid and unimpeded passage of humanitarian assistance.

In that connection, the Council specified that the flight ban would not apply to flights that had as their sole purpose humanitarian aid, the evacuation of foreign nationals, enforcing the ban or other purposes “deemed necessary for the benefit of the Libyan people”.

I don’t know, what supposedly started out as a limited “kinetic military action” sure as hell seems to have blossomed over the weeks into the United States and NATO openly taking sides in a Libyan civil war.

/how is that not mission creep?

Is It A Draw?

Seriously, do we have any sort of endgame plan here?

Libyan Conflict Seen as Stalemate

Both the Libyan government and rebel leaders outwardly express confidence their side will prevail. But behind the scenes, concerns are rising that the eight week conflict may be at a stalemate.

Government forces continue to besiege the western rebel city of Misrata, and remain just outside Ajdabiya, a key eastern town that has changed hands numerous times.

. . .

Whatever their popular support, the rebels have been unable to make much headway on the battlefield. Their farthest drive was under the aerial protection of a mission led by the U.S., France and Britain. Those gains have been reversed during the time NATO has been in charge of the campaign.

See also:
Gadhafi military hurt, but prospect of stalemate looms, official says
Libya stalemate could thicken fog of war for NATO
EU concern at prolonged Libyan war
US Commander Sees Libya Stalemate
US General: Libya stalemate more likely now
New Battles in Libya, Strains in NATO Campaign
NATO urged to press harder in Libya as battles continue
Will Libya stalemate force US out of its back-seat role?
U.S. Faces a Libya Stalemate, What are its Options?
Libya stalemate appears to be emerging: U.S. general
With Libya a stalemate, removing Gaddafi the fastest way to end the fighting

These have to be just about the most bizarre rules of engagement for a war, oops, sorry, I mean kinetic military action, that I’ve ever seen. What is it, exactly, that we’re trying to accomplish in Libya? If we’re trying to get rid of Gaddafi, let’s back the “rebels” all the way and get it over with. This strange maintenance of an ongoing “status quo”, where attrition is killing human beings on both sides, on a daily basis, is totally perverse.

/not to mention that this ineffective, half ass “quasi-military intervention” is wasting a lot of U.S. taxpayer money, money we don’t even have to spend, and it’ll continue to do so for as long as this standoff farce continues

A Kinetic Military Action By Any Other Name

Oh look, they put lipstick on the Operation Odyssey Dawn Pig, like no one will notice.

NATO in Libya: ‘Unified Protector’ hides divisions

The codename for NATO’s operations in Libya, “Unified Protector”, hides internal divisions that the alliance battled hard to overcome before taking on the mission.

The 28-nation military organisation is finally fulfilling Washington’s wishes, replacing the United States at the helm of all operations in Libya and is expected to be fully up and running by Thursday.

But to get to this point, the alliance had to ease Turkish concerns about the scope of the bombing campaign against Muammar Gaddafi’s forces and convince France that NATO should be in command of operations.

Germany was opposed to any military intervention from the outset, refusing to vote for the UN Security Council resolution that authorised “all necessary measures” to protect Libyan civilians.

Despite the squabbles, NATO is enforcing an arms embargo and a no-fly zone, and it finally agreed on Sunday to take over the riskiest mission: preventing Gaddafi loyalists from massacring the population.

See also:
NATO Assumes Command of Libya Operations
Nato takes over air war
NATO Operation Unified Protector against Libya Making Use of Greek Bases in Crete, the Peloponnese
NATO assumes full command of Libya operations
NATO takes control of Libya air operations
LIBYA: NATO assumes ‘sole command’ of coalition air operations
NATO Launches Operation Unified Protector & No Fly Zone Blockade
NATO takes charge of Libyan effort
NATO Assumes Full Command of Operations in Libya
Operation Unified Protector Factsheet
Operation Unified Protector

Dressing it up with a new name and putting a NATO fig leaf on the United States’ intervention in the Libyan civil war doesn’t hide the fact that Obama totally owns this kinetic military action and, so far, it’s not going well at all. The “rebels” Obama has decided to back in this all Libyan conflict are infused with al Qaeda and they can’t fight worth [expletive deleted]. If it weren’t for a highly publicized display of inept confusion, we’d have nothing to show for our efforts to date.

/watch out for Obama’s Runnin’ Rebels, retreating soon to a city or town near you!

Operation WTF?

Gaddafi has to go, but we’re not targeting Gaddafi. WTF, what manner of confused, conflicting Obama clown posee cluster[expletive deleted] mission objective is this?

Obama insists Gaddafi ‘needs to go’

U.S. President Barack Obama has reiterated U.S. demands for Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi to step down, stressing that the goal of the international military operation in Libya was to protect citizens.

Speaking during a joint news conference with Chilean President Sebastian Pinera in Santiago on Monday, Obama said the UN-sanctioned operation was aimed at averting “the humanitarian threat posed by Col. Gaddafi to his people.”

The United States could not “simply stand by with empty words” while Gaddafi, who had “lost his legitimacy,” was “carrying out murders of civilians” and “threatened more,” the U.S. president said.

“It is U.S. policy that Gaddafi needs to go,” he added.

Gaddafi not on the target, mission is to protect civilians: US

The Obama Administration has reiterated that the Libyan leader Muammar Al Gaddafi is not on the target of the US-led coalition forces, whose mission is to take all necessary steps protect the civilian population of Libya.

“No”, said Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, Ben Rhodes, when asked if Gaddafi is on the target of coalition forces.

See also:
Obama Says Qaddafi ‘Needs to Go,’ Downplays Scope of Missile Strikes
Obama: Qaddafi must go, but current Libya mission focused on humanitarian efforts
Gaddafi must go: Obama
Why Colonel Gaddafi must go
If the goal is ‘Gaddafi needs to go’ Obama will have to commit more forces
Muammar Gaddafi not the target; strikes in Libya successful: US
Qaddafi Not the Target: Coalition
Gaddafi not on target list as multinational forces “degrade” Libyan air defense
Coalition Expands No-Fly Zone; Gaddafi Not a Target
UK armed forces head says Gaddafi not a target
Gaddhafi ‘not a target’: British military chief
Gadhafi Not A Target Of Western Airstrikes

Does Obama seriously think that Gaddafi will leave Libya just because Obama says he has to? Gaddafi isn’t going anywhere unless it’s through force or death. What kind of half ass military operation is this where we risk the lives of our men and women in uniform without a coherent plan to prevail, which would obviously include the objective of regime change in Libya? If Gaddafi is to be somehow left in power, what on Earth is the point of Operation Odyssey Dawn?

/when confronting a rabid dog, you shoot it, you don’t try to wipe the lather off its face

Moammar Fly, Moammar Die

Well, this could get interesting, it sure as hell took them long enough. Hopefully it’s not to late to save what’s still left of Free Libya.

U.N. approves no-fly zone over Libya; raids may begin Friday

The U.N. Security Council has approved a no-fly zone over Libya and authorized “all necessary measures” to protect civilians.

The resolution also calls for an immediate cease-fire and an end to all violence.

. . .

British and French warplanes could make initial air raids on Libyan positions as early as Friday, the BBC reports, citing senior U.N. sources. Arab allies might provide logistical support.

See also:
UN votes for air strikes on Libya as Gaddafi warns of reprisals if West attacks
UN Security Council allows ‘all necessary measures’ to protect Libyan civilians
Libya hints at ceasefire as UN Security Council votes to approve no-fly zone
U.N. Security Council approves no-fly zone over Libya to stop pro-Khadafy forces’ bombing of rebels
U.N. votes on Libya ‘no-fly zone’
Libya: UK forces prepare after UN no-fly zone vote
US readying plans to enforce Libya no-fly zone
Western, U.S. militaries prepare to intervene in Libya
What a no-fly zone, other Libya measures would mean
Making U.N.’s no fly approval count
Egypt Said to Arm Libya Rebels

“All necessary measures'” should provide for quite a show. It looks like the Europeans will be taking the lead, let’s see if they can do this right. It would be extremely helpful to the overall effort if air strikes and/or clandestine/special forces were tasked with decapitating the Gaddafi regime. Terminate the Colonel’s command, terminate the Colonel.

/as General Corman said, “he’s out there operating without any decent restraint, totally beyond the pale of any acceptable human conduct, and he is still in the field commanding troops”