Thursday, March 31, 2011
Libyan Rebels Advancing -- to the REAR!
Libyan Rebels Advancing -- to the REAR! A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet I watched a couple of commentators gently arguing with each other, a few days ago, about who was winning the fight in Libya. The commentator from the left proclaimed the rebels were winning and she was interrupted by the commentator from the right who asked the piercing question: If they are winning why are they going in the wrong direction? He went on to say the rebels were going east while Gaddafi and his troops were in the west. I had to laugh as I remembered the expression coined during the Korean conflict (WAR) when American troops were in retreat from the communist Chinese troops. The US commander declared his troops were not retreating; they were simply advancing in another direction. While we armchair generals assess Obama's efforts at playing soldier, we would find it amusing were it not for the fact that lives are being lost in a cause that, without troops on the ground, is already a lost cause. Any military veteran can tell you that superior air power will enable a force to clear a piece of ground of the enemy. But air power, alone, cannot secure that piece of ground. It requires troops on the ground, infantry, artillery, etc to hold that piece of real estate. The same applies to a country. Obama's War in Libya is already a mess. In my time in the military we had what was known as a SNAFU. Interpreted it is an acronym that stands for: "Situation Normal -- All F**ked-up!" Later, as things got worse, the term FUBAR came into use. It, too is an acronym which stands for: "F**Ked-up Beyond All Recognition!" What we are seeing in Libya is a SNAFU quickly turning into a FUBAR! FUBARS occur when you have commanders at the top who haven't a clue what they are doing. They tend to always make the situation, whatever it is, worse! A couple of two-man teams from the military base near me, here in North Carolina, could relieve the world of a madman, in a few days, and the thorn in the side of the world would be removed. Many lives would be saved. These men are specially trained to do those "wet" jobs and like ghosts never leave any provable evidence of their ever having been there -- thus, providing the President with "plausible deniability." Contrary to what you may have heard, or read, or been told, there is no US law forbidding the killing of the leader of another country. There is only a presidential directive, or executive order, which can be changed by the issuance of another directive from the then serving President. So far Obama's War resembles a dog chasing its tail. It is furiously going round and round but making no discernable progress -- at all. So -- now that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization -- NATO -- has the reins (NATO is simply another name for the US military when it doesn't want the world to know that it is controlling the on-going unpopular military action in which the US is deeply involved.) The 28 members are tying themselves in knots trying to decide whether to arm the rebels or not. My guess is -- eventually, NATO WILL arm the rebels and send in advisers and dig themselves deeper into the mire that is Obama's War. All this shortly before ground troops hit the Libyan beaches to liberate that country. The toppling of Gaddafi will be quickly followed by stratospherically expensive "nation building." Yeah. As a retired US general said recently, "I've seen this movie before." It is all too familiar. Allow me to inquire -- isn't it reasonable to determine WHO, exactly, the so-called rebels ARE before we begin airdropping weapons to them? You'd think we would have learned our lesson in Afghanistan. We armed the Taliban only to have them use those weapons against US troops decades later. Common sense and the history of the region would certainly cause one to be leery of arming a force that may be our friend today and our enemy tomorrow. We are already getting reports out of Libya that a number of the rebels are affiliated with al Qaida. It would be reasonable to believe there are contingents of the Muslim Brotherhood within the ranks of the rebels as well. Shouldn't this be a HUGE FLASHING CAUTION SIGN? As we said above, Obama's War is quickly turning into the fabled FUBAR from its current SNAFU condition. I might point out that this sort of mess is the risk America takes every time it elects a President with no military service in his, or her, resume. Maybe the Republicans ought to be looking within the ranks of the military for a presidential candidate to run against Obama in the 2012 election. I mean -- what would it hurt? As of this writing, none of the current crop of candidates, or would-be candidates, has a snowball's chance of claiming victory over Obama in 2012. J. D. Longstreet