Thursday, June 30, 2011

Now what?

So it looks like "Regime Change From 30,000 Feet" didn't work out quite like it was planned...
Four months on, the rebels are not capable of supporting themselves, McGregor said. They are out of fuel, oil production has shut down, and they have few available resources. They will soon face even shortages of food and water, McGregor said.

President Barack Obama faces pressure at home to withdraw U.S. forces. There is debate, too, in Europe over the expensive air campaign.

The war may have been morally right, but NATO, said McGregor, is facing a conundrum.

Now what? Just say "Hey, Muammar, just kiddin'! Seriously, we were just funnin' ya. No hard feelings? We're going home now; our new ambassador will be there in the morning."?

Seriously, say what you will about the Neocons' adventures in Southwest Asia, they changed the heck out of some regimes*. To my knowledge, only once in the history of modern warfare has a country called it quits due to airstrikes without a single hostile boot on their soil, and that took a pair of atomic bombs, which is a level of escalation that Qa.. Kha... Gadhafi just doesn't really rate, actually.



*Personally, I don't think Iraq should have ever happened and Afghanistan should have been a punitive expedition where we toppled the Taliban, shot up the countryside, and tossed the keys to the country to whoever wanted them, along with a note that said "Don't make us come back here."

25 comments:

RobertM said...

And it's fair to point out that the Japanese got their butts kicked off of almost every other island in the Pacific before we bothered to drop The Bomb right on their heads.

Anonymous said...

What next?

SEAL Team, SEAL Team through my window, SEAL Team, SEAL Team through my windown, to buy a piece of candy.

Shootin' Buddy

Bram said...

The nuclear and fire-bombing of Japan was preceded by 3 years of losses stretching from Midway and Guadalcanal to Okinawa (technically Japanese soil).

They also saw their Manchurian army crushed by the Soviets. By continuing the war, the Japanese would have faced invasion and occupation by not only Americans but Russian and maybe Chinese troops. We would be talking about North and South Japan today if they had waited.

Leaddog said...

Missing the point.

Why have the toys if you can't play with them?

Playing with them supports the beast and keeps cash flowing to the military-industrial complex that pour $$$$ into congressional districts and campaign coffers all over the US.

Not about saving or protecting anything except PTB's buddies, walets, and votes.

Tell me I am wrong, and prove it, please, I have been trying not to believe it for years and it is not working...

Bob said...

I have to agree on your views of Iraq and Afghanistan, with the proviso that I'd have employed neutron bombs in A'stan to hurry things along and lessen the waiting period for the new owners to move in.

Anonymous said...

You know, if a politician of any stripe would publicly and convincingly recite that little footnote of yours, he/she'd be telling me all I need to know to have my vote.

AT

wv: change...ha!

Boat Guy said...

+1 on the neutron bomb. We should have -and use - them.
I'll differ on both Iraq and A-stan from the standpoint of "killing them there rather than havng to kill them here".
We'll still wind up tossing the keys in A-stan and whoever gets them WILL make us come back (or rather more likely we'll just go butt-up in submission as "policy" by then), but Iraq is a better place - for us and the Iraqis - now than it was. Speaking of neutron bombs though, we should probably consider Iraq and A-stan as the "short and over", split the bracket and smoke the mullahs in Iran

Anonymous said...

Okinawa was actually a Japanese prefecture, thus we sort of actually did put boots on their soil, although I would admit that's sort of like saying some invader taking Hawaii occupied part of the United States--true, but very much a technicality.

Mike James

Bubblehead Les. said...

Yeah, those Nukes worked so well that Truman disarmed us, thinking that Air Power with Atomic Weapons would bring about World Peace. Then Korea happened....But hey, Operation Rolling Thunder sure stopped those North Vietnamese, didn't they? And I'm SURE that if we just keep using Predator Strikes, those pesky Taliban will just roll up their Prayer Rugs and go back to their Poppy Fields, right?

Oh well, I'm sure the C-in-C will come up with a Brilliant Military Strategy soon. Probably he'll have a news conference, tell the world He Won Single Handily (just like he did in Iraq and Afghanistan), and stop supporting the Libyan Non-War. After all, all that time he spent watching the Military Forces sunning themselves on the Wakiki Beach while growing up in Hawaii made him the Greatest Military Mind since Alexander.

perlhaqr said...

Afghanistan should have been a punitive expedition where we toppled the Taliban, shot up the countryside, and tossed the keys to the country to whoever wanted them, along with a note that said "Don't make us come back here.

I thought we should have just located a round dozen Al Qaeda camps in rural Afghanistan and nuked them right about 18 Sept 2001. Yeah, it's expensive. Yeah, it's overkill. But it would neatly underline "we're crazy, don't fuck with us." I believe the "don't make us come back here" could remain unspoken, yet still be understood at that point.

Ian said...

I sometimes wonder if the Democratic Leadership ever realizes why we have five seperate branches to our military... I mean, if you took a survey of the senior staff at the White House, they'd probably tell you that the Marine Corps exists to provide fancy dress-uniform guards at state dinners, the Air Force exists to chauffer POTUS around, the Navy is there to give Congress something to throw money at, and the Coast Guard exists to repress the poor undocumented immigrants... and the, um, Army, uh... Bush did it?

Don M said...

My recollection is that Yugoslavia/Serbia also surrendered from mere air strikes in the Clinton Administration.

He also used the air strikes to defeat his real enemy: The Republicans.

Anonymous said...

One person has a point above. After the Japanese told us they were ready to surrender, what would it have said if we dropped a third Nuke on Tokyo...

It would have said what the Japanese said when they murdered half a million Chinese at Nanking or 100,000 Filipinos at Manila after the surrender. Keep in mind that more US soldiers died on the Bataan Death March than died in combat on Bataan before the surrender. With the Japanese, the killing started with the surrender.

Ian Argent said...

So you nuke Tripoli and Benghazi, and what's left?

Lewis said...

Uncle Nico says, "If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared."

But that was a long, long time ago.

Anonymous said...

Bill Clinton's Serbian Adventure was hailed as the only war ever won soley by air power.

Not much of a war if your asking.

Gerry

Pathfinder said...

@Ian Aregent - shouldn't the question "So you nuke Tripoli and Benghazi, who'd notice?"

And I just wanted to point this out. If we leave (we being NATO and bho), then I think it needs to be said that NATO and bho would have LOST to Qa.. Kha... Gadhafi.

Helluva track record for the 2012 elections, no?

Anonymous said...

In WWII, 17% of the Filipino population was killed by the Japanese.

That is second to the European Jews who had 50% murdered.

The good thing about Iraq: it was a place that flipped from Terrorist Supporting to Terrorist fly paper. Jihadi wannabes from all over the world went to Iraq to be killed, and we had the help of the Iraqi Arabs who could recognize them by their different speech, dress or mannerisms. That took some pressure off moderate Muslim governments from Morocco to Indonesia.

Anonymous said...

Nuke it from orbit. Its the only way to be sure.

Anonymous said...

A cat that sits on a hot stove will never sit on a hot stove again...


or a cold one.

Sure, we were unlucky that Truman drew the wrong conclusion from the success of nuclear weapons. On the other hand perhaps we were lucky that Stalin did too. That is why he arranged for Koreans and Chinese to die in Korea.

James Nelson said...

As a self taught military historian, i.e. no degree, I have to believe that our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan were designed by idiots. Even a cursory overview of the history of that part of the world would shown the stupidity of what was planned and screwed up, I mean carried out.
Ah the hubris of the ruling class, and I include the military brass who are supposed to have some understanding of military history.

Anonymous said...

Well besides all the fun of dissecting the nuances of what Tam had to say about bombing an enemy into submission is exciting and all, I think what needs to be pointed out is that NATO is getting it's ass handed to 'em by LIBYA. Seriously, I think that's about the saddest thing I've heard in almost a decade. To call Libya a third world country would be overly generous and the mere thought of them holding NATO in check is almost surreal. I mean, come on, the threat of NATO kept the Russians from invading Europe for over a generation and now they are getting the what to and where for from LIBYA. It's like I went to sleep and woke up in Bizzaro World...

Ian Argent said...

It's because no-one is trying. If NATO was serious, we'd have sent in the marines, with backup from the euros, starting with the italians (then being closest). Or at least operators with designators and air support with LGB. This nonsense of being able to hit targets without intel and in support of a ground element with little heavy weapons or coordination, and no logistics to speak of is ridiculous.

Gnarly Sheen said...

This kind of impotent, detached, and uncommitted military "action" reminds me a lot of the last Dem president's attitude towards Somalia. The same type of action which convinced a certain now-fish-shit terrorist that America was afraid of real military action.

O needs to quit playing grabass and get something done. See it through to the end, or don't bother.

Justthisguy said...

I remember reading John Donovan's post about his talk session with W. The Donovan said he told W. that the Second Iraq War was a Bad Idea. Jerry Pournelle, and I, were of the same opinion.

There was, of course, no change in the program after that.

Why, oh why, do we go halfway around the planet, spending money we don't actually have, and our best blood which we can ill spare, to chase silly Neo-Jacobin willofthewisps?

I really do want to kick me some New York Trotskyite Neocons right in the solar plexus. And the kidneys, and the ribs, and the liver, and the face, and...n.