So we finally have the approval to go in a impose a no fly zone in Libya, which has no chance of helping the rebels. In some revolutions, the people win, in most they don't. I think we've forgotten that lesson.
First up, if you haven't read Jim Wright's post on the difficulties of imposing such you should go do so (he gets into it halfway through the post).
Now, I'm not willing to say that it's all over but the crying in Libya, but it's pretty close. We're about a week away from having an effective shield in the sky, and that's if we start now.
So, you know that $6 billion we saved by cutting NPR, Planned Parenthood, School Lunch Program, etc, blah blah. Yeah. We just spent it. If it goes longer than a month, the discussion of if we're going to cut $60b or $20b is pretty well moot. Because we're about to piss away that amount.
I also think we've lost our collective minds, quite frankly. See, back at the end of the Cold War (sorry, had to giggle there for a few minutes) there was a lot of discussion about the US, being the "last superpower in the world" (there's that giggling again) should become of the "policeman of the world."
It was a plan so ridiculed that Paul Wolfowitz had to retire from the GW Bush administration. And while we like to say GW lost on his "read my lips" promise, he also lost on the fall out of that plan.
But now we have talking heads that somehow, while they "love this country" and "we can do now wrong" don't understand the basic concept of sovereignty. Part of it is they just want to say President Obama is failing and can't lead. See, we didn't immediately impose a no-fly zone, Obama's failure. Not that we didn't have casus belli and would have become international criminals for becoming the aggressor in the war (now, if our nationals would have been put in danger, we could have been able to go in an extract them). We didn't immediately fly in and control the problem with the reactor in Fukushima, so President Obama is a failure. Not that Japan is a sovereign nation with it's own legitimate government that would have to invite us in first. And they have, but only at the level we've provided. Our ships are off shore to aid in evacuation of our nationals if need be, and to provide the support the Japanese government asked for. As it is, look at the problems we're getting in with Pakistan for our drone attacks. Part of the Yemani uprising is because of our drone attacks (and if you aren't more worried about the Yeman uprising, you really aren't paying attention).
As a side note, I think it's hilarious the focus on "Qatar is going to help out with Libya. It's a Middle East country and they want to help." Um. First, I'll let you go look at a map. Then realize that the Qatar navy is a few rowboats. Also, Qatar isn't exactly a democracy (and it's the home to Al Jazeera). Even after a decade of these wars, people just don't know WTF their talking about.
Now, I do think it's a good thing that we're discussing just whom we should be supporting. But if the naysayers would have their way and we, as the US, would interfere everywhere they think we should, no amount of budget cutting would bring our debt under control. When we say we're spending our "Blood and Treasure" that isn't an empty phrase. This stuff costs money. Lots and lots of money. Not to mention that we would need a military at least twice the size of our current military. And we would be even more reviled he world over.
However, it doesn't stop people from beating their chests and declaring what we should be doing like drunken armchair quarterbacks.