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The Death of Gaddafi

I don’t want to celebrate the death of Muammar Gaddafi even though he was responsible for the Lockerbie bombing, one of the worst acts of terrorism (other than 9/11).

But I do want to point out something hypocritical.

When Obama decided to help out the Libyan rebels who were fighting Gaddafi, he was repeatedly criticized by the Republican presidential candidates. Mitt Romney said “It is apparent that our military is engaged in much more than enforcing a no-fly zone. What we are watching in real time is another example of mission creep and mission muddle.” Michele Bachmann said “President Obama’s policy of leading from behind is an outrage and people should be outraged at the foolishness of the President’s decision.” Herman Cain wrote “I’ve said many times before that US intervention in Libya is inappropriate and wrong. The US does not belong in this war.”

But somehow Obama managed to help the rebels bring down a repressive dictatorship and advance the fight against terrorism, without getting us into a protracted war (like Bush did in both Afghanistan and Iraq). In fact, we didn’t even send in any of our troops to Libya. Likewise, Obama managed to get Osama bin Laden, the perpetrator of 9/11, something that Dubya totally failed at.

So now that Obama has managed to strike back against two of the worst terrorists in our history, do you think the Republicans will give him some credit? And do you think the people claiming that Obama hasn’t accomplished anything will change their tune?


© Nick Anderson



  1. Ongoing Headache wrote:

    It’s instances like this that always make me think of the same thing image in my head: I imagine an outspoken republican candidate (or FOX news commentator making some ridiculous comment to drum up anger against Obama, lets say…”its been two years and still Obama has not found bin Laden, just risking the lives of our troops for his liberal agenda.”

    Cut to next morning same pundit/ republican opening the morning paper to see bin Laden has been killed. Response, “crap.”

    Is this person really that concerned about the “American people” (or insert usual over used line)? Or just concerned about how their poll numbers will drop?

    Utterly ridiculous.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 11:03 am | Permalink
  2. Paul T wrote:

    I really do hope the republicans and Fox News keeping digging the hole deeper for themselves on this one.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 11:23 am | Permalink
  3. Jeff wrote:

    I don’t think the GOP will give Obama any slack for his role in Gaddafi’s death. They’ll say the same thing they said about bin Laden: Obama didn’t pull the trigger. An interesting thought, since no President (that I know of) has ever directly killed someone while in office.

    I think that Obama deserves a lot of credit for the work he’s done to help, not just Americans, but everyone being oppressed or attacked. He just announced that all troops in Iraq will be withdrawn by the end of THIS year, which is something that Bush said would happen and that he never seemed to get around to.

    Obama’s policy of fighting with brains instead of brawn seems to be paying off very well. He’s saving American lives by bringing troops home, and will save money as well. He won’t be celebrated by the Right, but he should be acknowledged as a successful President in this regard.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 11:40 am | Permalink
  4. PatriotSGT wrote:

    Gaddafi is gone and credit goes to the Commander in Chief along with the leaders of the other countries who participated. What happens from here remains to be seen. I suspect we really don’t have a plan going forward, just like in Iraq. Libya is very similar to Iraq but with many more tribal divisions like Afghanistan, which mightmake it difficult to form a cohesive government.
    I praised the President when he committed to this action and glad it concluded without a major cluster. I also praised him for the Bin Laden mission. He does deserve credit for both, because both could have gone very wrong. I’m also ecstatic that we are leaving Iraq, good for us and them, I just wish we left earlier. Now we need to get out of Afghanistan and the the misssion will be complete. Keep it up Mr. President.

    However, I still have many disagreements with his domestic policy.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Permalink
  5. Duckman wrote:

    Troops were there…you just dont know about it 😉

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Permalink
  6. Arthanyel wrote:

    PSgt – well said. This is what makes me so angry with the wingnut crowd – there are so many things on which you can legitimately take Obama to task, why focus on ludicrous propaganda? And that’s what wrong with the government today – we expect people to have legitimate differences of opinion on how to address issues, and to have real differences in what we think ARE the issues (and especially, in the prioritization of which ones to address first) but the reflexive immediate attack when Obama or a Democrat does ANYTHING is ridiculous.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 1:10 pm | Permalink
  7. ebdoug wrote:

    What is wrong with the government today is simple: Income distribution. We are number 5 in the most skewed income distribution. The money is in the banks, put there by the rich who can’t hide it under their mattresses. Put money in the hands of people who need to spend it to live. Do it by giving them jobs in this country so they aren’t depressed. I learned early on that people who don’t have jobs are depressed. I knew right away in 2008 that the carnage of families being killed by family members who were out of work was going start. Republicans have no plans for jobs, just hot air.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 1:50 pm | Permalink
  8. In so many ways, I could have accepted these wars. Of the three, only one was for the right reason. I could have accepted thrashing Iraq… back when the Kurds were being slaughtered. When we let that injustice go, we lost the justification. I could accept teaching the Taliban that tyranny isn’t an acceptable government, but that’s not why we were there.

    But I can accept that getting a madman out of power is a good idea, and from every interview I ever heard, Gaddafi was freaking nuts. (Of course, I have to wonder how someone who seems to have only a partial contact with reality could also be in power, and stay there, for so long. So I have to assume that I don’t know all the story. But still, if he was half as nuts as he seemed to be, he needed to be removed from power years ago.)

    So, for the wars, we’re batting 0 for 3 for me: one too late and for the wrong reason, one a little late and for the wrong reason, and one far too late but at least for the right reason.


    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Permalink
  9. ebdoug wrote:

    Afghanistan: In the 1950s, women in Afghanistan wore poodle skirts. There were none of these Burquas. Women were Doctors, teachers, lawyers, etc. It was a modern country in the cities. In the 1980s, Russia invaded Afghanistan. There was some reason (access to seas?) that we did not want Russia to win in Afghanistan. We (The United States) hired the very bored Arabian Princes to go into Afghanistan as mercenaries to rid the country of Russia. they stayed behind to establish the Taliban. so we took away the rights of the people in Afghanistan. Women were stripped of all their rights including rights to health care. And we have no responsibility for the destruction to this country which we caused? As we did in Iraq,but they won’t come to terms on our help.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Permalink
  10. ThatGuy wrote:

    I think a big part of not wanting Russia in Afghanistan was to keep Pakistan safe. Pakistan was, and remains, essentially a US client state, while India gravitated slightly more towards the Soviet Union. Afghanistan is landlocked, so ocean access was not an issue, as the Russians still had (and still do, though only through a rather one-sided lease) control of Crimean warm-water ports.

    Anyway, I have to agree with PatriotSGT. The story of Libya remains to be written. If anything, a living Gaddafi was a rallying banner for the various factions in the country. As good, or acceptable, as it is to see a tyrant die, part of me thinks the real bloodshed is yet to begin. There will likely be purges of Gaddafi loyalists, then perhaps some generals or other former leaders who start to feel nostalgic for the Gaddafi days and start causing trouble.

    There is something to be said for the way NATO handled this from a distance, don’t get me wrong. I really doubt Libya will become an Iraq or Afghanistan type war (involving the US) in the near future. What I am worried about is long-term stability. I hope Libya figures itself out and that the suffering of its people will be over shortly, but calling this a Win right now is premature (not saying anyone here is doing that).

    Finally, IK is certainly asking a rhetorical question about Obama getting any credit from the GOP. It simply won’t happen. Even if a member of the GOP thinks Obama deserves it, they would be instantly crucified by their supporters and conservative media for even suggesting that Obama is human, much less that he has done something positive. The GOP is more likely to take the stance that Obama didn’t take the fight to Libya hard or fast enough, or that Libyan rebels could have done it on their own without us spending millions to assist them. Either way, Obama will get no credit from his neighbors across the aisle.

    Friday, October 21, 2011 at 5:59 pm | Permalink
  11. IL-08 wrote:

    As a progressive I certainly would have given credit to W…. IF HE EVER GOT ANYTHING RIGHT!!!!!!

    Saturday, October 22, 2011 at 9:29 am | Permalink
  12. David Freeman wrote:

    Actually, I believe W got exactly two things right during his presidency.

    The first was something he didn’t do. He did not blame the entire Muslim community for 9/11. He actually expressed that very well calling Islam a “religion of Peace” at a time when his base was calling for blood. I have to respect that.

    Unfortunately, I can’t remember the second thing he did right. I’m sure he did something else right, trust me, really he did.

    Saturday, October 22, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Permalink
  13. Arthanyel wrote:

    I don’t think that the vast majority iof Aemricans disagreed with going to war against Afghanistan. al-Qaueda was there, the Taliban were protecting them, and we wanted to strike back. We did it wrong, for too long, at too great a cost, but I don’t think it was the wrong thing to do at the time.

    So, David, that makes 2 things Bush did right.

    Actually, I suspect if I wanted to waste the time to dig through the archives there must have been several things he did right – but finding those needles in the “haystacks” of the manure from most of his actions, isn’t worth the effort.

    Saturday, October 22, 2011 at 9:29 pm | Permalink
  14. Iron Knee wrote:

    I think Dubya helped fight AIDS in Africa.

    Saturday, October 22, 2011 at 10:34 pm | Permalink
  15. David Freeman wrote:

    That was it! Aids work in Africa. Thanks IK, I was serious about Bush doing two good things and me not remembering the second.

    Sunday, October 23, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Permalink