Was Obama Stampeded into War?
(The American Conservative) -- by Patrick J. Buchanan --
...Last week, Sen. Jim Webb questioned Gen. Carter Ham, head of the U.S. Africa Command.
As neither the United States, nor its citizens, nor any U.S. ally had been attacked or imperiled, Webb asked, what was the justification for the U.S. attack on Libya, whose government, Gadhafi’s government, the State Department still recognizes as the legitimate government of Libya?
“To protect lives,” was Ham’s response.
Yet, as last week brought news of the slaughter of 1,000 civilians by gunfire and machete by troops loyal to Alassane Ouattara, the man we recognize as the legitimate president of the Ivory Coast, a question arises: Why was a real massacre in West Africa less a casus belli for us than an imagined massacre in North Africa?
Was Obama stampeded into war by hysterical talk of impending atrocities that had no basis in fact?
That is the issue raised by columnist Steve Chapman, that ought to be raised by a Congress that was treated almost contemptuously, when Obama launched a war without seeking its authorization.
On March 26, over a week after he ordered the strikes on Libya, hitting tanks, anti-aircraft, radar sites, troops and Gadhafi’s own compound in Tripoli, 600 miles away from Benghazi, Obama told the nation he had acted to prevent a “bloodbath” in Benghazi.
“We knew that if we waited one more day, Benghazi — a city nearly the size of Charlotte — could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world.”
White House Middle East expert Dennis Ross reportedly told foreign policy experts: “We were looking at ‘Srebrenica on steroids’ — the real or imminent possibility that up to 100,000 people could be massacred, and everyone would blame us for it.”
A hundred thousand massacred! And our fault? But that is seven times the body count of Katyn, one of the Stalinist horrors of World War II. Was Benghazi truly about to realize the fate that befell Carthage at the hands of Scipio Africanus, at the close of the Third Punic War? How did the White House come to believe in such a scenario?
In this low-scale war, the cities of Zwara, Ras Lanuf, Brega, and Ajdabiya have changed hands, some several times. Misrata, the only rebel-held city in the west, has been under siege for seven weeks.
Yet in none of these towns has anything like the massacre in the Ivory Coast taken place, let alone Srebrenica. The Guardian’s Saturday report read, “Fierce fighting in Ajdabiya saw at least eight people killed.”
Yemeni President Saleh’s security forces killed six times that many civilians just to break up one rally in his central square.
True, on March 17, Gadhafi said he would show “no mercy.” But as Chapman notes, he was referring to “traitors” who resisted him to the end. And Gadhafi added, “We have left the way open to them.”
“Escape. Let those who escape go forever.” Gadhafi went on to pledge that “whoever hands over his weapons, stays at home without any weapons, whatever he did previously, he will be pardoned, protected.”
Perhaps Gadhafi is lying. But there is, as yet, no evidence of any such slaughter in any town his forces have captured. Nor do the paltry forces Gadhafi has mustered to recapture the east — Ajdabiya was attacked by several dozen Toyota trucks — seem capable of putting a city of 700,000 to the sword.
With the Libyan war now seemingly a stalemate, and pressure building for the United States to renew air and missile strikes, and train and equip rebel forces, Congress needs to learn how we got into this mess.
Was Obama stampeded into this war by the panic and hysteria of his advisers? Because, quite clearly, he did not think this thing through...MORE...LINK
Chris Moore comments:
A few short paragraphs from Wikipedia tell people everything they need to know about Obama’s handler Dennis Ross:
During President Jimmy Carter's administration, Ross worked under Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz in the Pentagon. There, he co-authored a study recommending greater U.S. intervention in "the Persian Gulf Region because of our need for Persian Gulf oil and because events in the Persian Gulf affect the Arab-Israeli conflict." During the Reagan administration, Ross served as director of Near East and South Asian affairs in the National Security Council and Deputy Director of the Pentagon's Office of Net Assessment (1982–84).If these people are so interested in "humanitarianism," how is it that their interventions inevitably end in mass slaughter, massive war-footing Big Government centralization, massive wealth transfers from average Americans to the military-industrial complex and the "national security" state, and massive nullification of Constitutional and individual rights?
Ross returned briefly to academia in the 1980s, serving as executive director of the Berkeley-Stanford program on Soviet International Behavior from 1984-1986. In the mid-1980s Ross co-founded with Martin Indyk the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)-sponsored Washington Institute for Near East Policy ("WINEP"). His first WINEP paper called for appointment of a "non-Arabist Special Middle East envoy" who would "not feel guilty about our relationship with Israel."...
In the summer of 1993 President Bill Clinton named Ross Middle East envoy. He helped the Israelis and Palestinians reach the 1995 Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip and brokered the Protocol Concerning the Redeployment in Hebron in 1997...
In their 2006 paper The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy, John Mearsheimer, political science professor at the University of Chicago, and Stephen Walt, academic dean of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, named Ross as a member of the "Israeli lobby" in the United States...
This is all just another Marxist/Keynesian Big Government power grab/theft and fraud racket using "humanitarianism" as window dressing -- the classic neolib/neocon modus operandi.