Libya … and a question of honor

Big news today in north Africa. After 42 years, it looks like Moammar Gaddafi is about to be overthrown. The rebels went into Tripoli faster than thought possible, and now, it’s an urban war, with the remaining Gaddafi loyalists holding out, some fighting to the end.

Reports are scattered. Some say the rebels have caught a few of Gaddafi’s sons. Others indicate the rebels aren’t in as strong a position as they say they are. What is known is that rebels raided Gadaffi’s daughter’s house and Moammar, for now, is nowhere to be found.

So, given all that, you’d think there would be jubilation in the land, right? Obama earlier seemed to get us in another Arab/Muslim war while we’re already tied up in Afghanistan and Iraq. But instead of having the U.S. take the lead, the ones doing the planning have been the British, the French and the Qataris. The U.S. under the NATO umbrella flew airstrikes and provided intelligence, which made the jobs of the allies and the rebels much easier. We’re not bogged down in another war, no U.S. military casualties and it’s not a battle on our tab.

So what’s to criticize? Roll Call chimes in:

Top Republicans criticized President Barack Obama on Sunday for not moving quicker on Libya but lent their support for U.S. military action, even as they strongly urged the administration to expand the mission to remove dictator Moammar Gaddafi from power. …

“I’m glad we’re finally doing something,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on “Fox News Sunday.” “I don’t know how many people have died as we wait to do something, and I thank God for strong women in the Obama administration. I don’t know what finally got the president to act. But I’ve very worried that we’re taking a back seat rather than a leadership role.”

Obama “waited too long, there is no doubt in my mind about it,” Senate Armed Services ranking member John McCain said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “But now, it is what it is. And we need, now, to support him and the efforts that our military are going to make. And I regret that it didn’t — we didn’t act much more quickly, and we could have.”

OK. So Lindsey Graham and John McCain are saying Obama didn’t act quickly enough to end the reign of a murderous dictator. Well, I’m sure if either of them had gotten within a hundred yards of Gaddafi, they would have made the ultimate sacrifice and taken him out themselves.

No one would accuse them of doing anything that would appease the madman. Like this, for instance:

I’m guessing most of us don’t speak Arabic. But those folks in the clip, shaking Gaddafi’s hand two years ago, on Aug. 14, 2009, are Republican senators Susan Collins, Joe Lieberman and … wait for it … Lindsey Graham and John McCain.

Well, that doesn’t mean anything, I’m sure they were laying down the law and telling Gaddafi that if he got out of line, America would snuff him like a bug. Here’s a USA Today report on the tongue lashing:

A delegation of U.S. senators led by John McCain met with Libya’s leader Friday to discuss the possible delivery of non-lethal defense equipment.

The visit and Washington’s offer of military equipment was another sign of the improving ties between the former longtime adversaries.

“We discussed the possibility of moving ahead with the provision of non-lethal defense equipment to the government of Libya,” McCain said at a news conference. He gave no details on the kind of military equipment Washington is offering.

Non-lethal military equipment? Isn’t that an oxymoron?

But back to the point. Words escape me on McCain and Graham. No, scratch that. Here are the words: “They are without honor.”

2 thoughts on “Libya … and a question of honor

  1. Pingback: John McCain’s bitter Libya spin « The Fifth Column

  2. Pingback: Doubletalk | Opinion Analysis Babel

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