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Obama hails death of Muammar Gaddafi as foreign policy success October 21, 2011


Link to this video

President Barack Obama hailed the lifting of the “dark tyranny” over Libya after the new government confirmed Muammar Gaddafi had been killed, issuing a warning to other dictators in the Middle East – and particularly Syria – that they could be next.

Although Obama did not name Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, it was he Obama had in mind when he said the rule of the iron fist in the Middle East is inevitably coming to an end. Those leaders that try to deny the push for democracy will not succeed, he predicted.

Obama was speaking in the White House Rose Garden after footage was shown worldwide of what appeared to be Gaddafi’s bloody corpse. “One of the world’s longest-serving dictators is no more,” the president said.

The Libyans had won their revolution and “the dark shadow of tyranny has been lifted,” Obama said.

Given the number of false claims in recent weeks that Gaddafi had been killed or captured, Obama was careful not to say categorically that he was dead.

Instead, he confined himself to a carefully chosen formula: “We can definitively say the Gaddafi regime has come to an end.”

He promised US help for Libya in establishing an interim government and in the holding of fair and free elections, but anticipated “difficult days ahead”.

The death of Gaddafi immediately raised speculation in the US that the same military model – the use of US air power combined with rebel forces on the ground and special forces from Europe – could be used again in Syria.

Vice-president Joe Biden described the military model as a “prescription” for the future, while White House spokesman Jay Carney, when asked about Syria, said Assad had lost his legitimacy to rule.

The former Nato commander, Wesley Clark, asked if the same strategy could be used in Syria, replied: “Could be.” He told CNN that every country had to be approached differently: “Syria is going to be different from Libya, but it shows Nato is capable of a sustained effort.”

Obama, facing re-election next year, chalked up Libya as another foreign policy success to place alongside the killing in May of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, the drawdown of most US troops from Iraq by the end of the year, and the first phase of a gradual pullout of troops from Afghanistan.

Secretary of state Hillary Clinton was caught on camera saying “wow” when shown a report that Gaddafi had been captured, though she immediately composed herself, adding it was unconfirmed.

Later, interviewed by CNN, Clinton said that if Gaddafi were still at large, it would have created continuing security problems because “he would try to marshal support, that he would pay for mercenaries, that he would engage and effect guerrilla warfare. So if he’s removed from the scene, there may still be those who would do so, but without the organising figure of Gaddafi, and that makes a big difference.”

Obama was criticised at the outset of the Libyan revolution by Republicans for being too slow to intervene, and by Democrats worried he was taking the US into another war. He faced opposition too from his then defence secretary, Robert Gates, now retired, who was reluctant to become engaged in another war, but Obama and Clinton overruled him. Gates at least won the argument that no US ground troops would be committed.

Obama’s approach to Libya was to provide US air power in support of the rebels but not putting US troops on the ground, leaving that to other countries, mainly France and Britain.

In the Rose Garden, he basked in his success: “Without putting a single US service member on the ground, we achieved our objectives, and our Nato mission will soon come to an end.”

Biden, speaking hours before Obama, adopted a clearly partisan approach to news of the dictator’s death, bluntly contrasting the apporach of the Obama administration to Libya with George Bush’s in Iraq.

“In this case, America spent $2bn total and didn’t lose a single life. This is more of the prescription for how to deal with the world as we go forward than it has been in the past,” he said, out on the campaign trail in New Hampshire.

He added that the the Obama administration had made the right decision in taking a secondary role to Britain and France in Libya.

Gaddafi is alleged to have been behind the Lockerbie bombing in 1988, and some of the the US families of those killed welcomed his death.

The Obama administration now faces a dilemma over whether to push for the Libyan convicted of the Lockerbie bombing, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, to be brought to the US. He was released from a Scottish prison after being diagnosed as dying of cancer. But the new Libyan government is reluctant to let him leave the country, and it could undermine the government in its early stages to bow to Washington over this.

The Republican House speaker, John Boehner, appeared to allude to this when he said today: “It is also my hope that the new Libyan government will work to resolve all issues associated with Gaddafi’s terrorism-sponsored activities. If they do those things, they will find us a willing friend and partner in the years to come.”

Other Republicans in Congress joined in welcoming news of Gaddafi’s demise. John McCain, one of the leading foreign affairs specialists in the Senate, and Obama’s opponent in the 2008 White House election, described Gaddafi’s death as “an end to the first phase of the Libyan revolution”, and urged increased US support for the fledgling Libyan government.

The Democratic chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee, John Kerry, a close ally of the president, said the US had “demonstrated clear-eyed leadership, patience and foresight by pushing the international community into action.”

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So Obama Has Decided He Wants His War… (Or Did Hillary Decide?) April 15, 2011

war

US President Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that NATO members are “sharing the same goal, which is to see the end of the Gaddafi regime in Libya.”

Muammar Gaddafi must withdraw from the Libyan political scene, believe Presidents of the United States and France Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy, as well as British Prime Minister David Cameron. Their joint article has been published in leading newspapers in the three countries.

According to the leaders, it is impossible to conceive the future of Libya in the power of one who tried to destroy his own people. NATO will pursue its operation in the Jamahiriya until Gaddafi leaves his post, the Presidents have announced. In their opinion, the international community should assist in the development of institutes of an open society in Libya.

Coffee Talk!

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Greed Wins Out: Libyan foreign minister Moussa Koussa Bought Off By West… April 5, 2011

Moussa Koussa

The United States on Monday lifted sanctions against former Libyan foreign minister Moussa Koussa, who defected to London on March 30.

The Department of Treasury said that two weeks after President Barack Obama imposed sanctions against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and the Libyan government in late February, the department designated Koussa for sanctions for being a senior official of the government of Libya.

“One of the intended purposes of sanctions against senior officials in the Libyan government was to motivate individuals within the Gaddafi regime to make the right decision and disassociate themselves from Gaddafi and his government,” the Treasury said in a statement.

Besides it is said that he worked for the CIA. Funny how it is OK to force someone to like democracy. That just makes democracy a jokecracy…

London, Apr 3 (ANI): Mousa Koussa, the former Libyan head of Intelligence who had defected to the UK last week, has been acting as a double agent for MI6 and the CIA for a decade, sources have claimed.

So this is no real news just a setup by the Western world to play games…

He was bought and paid for years ago. I do not call that defecting now. He defected 10 years ago…

Wake up world and smell the coffee…

Coffee Talk!

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Gaddafi ‘not at breaking point’ March 31, 2011

Pro-Gaddafi forces are locked in a pattern of advances and retreats in the east

Libya leader Muammar Gaddafi’s armed forces are not close to breaking point despite hundreds of allied air strikes, American military chiefs have said.

Adm Mike Mullen told a US Congress committee Col Gaddafi’s troops still had 10 times the rebels’ firepower.

At the same hearing, Defence Secretary Robert Gates reiterated the US would put no “boots on the ground” in Libya.

Rebels and pro-Gaddafi forces appear to have reached a stalemate in their fight for control of the country.

Neither side appears able to land a telling blow, or hold on to any territory gained.

Lockerbie link?

But the Gaddafi regime has suffered political setbacks.

The man designated to be Libya’s next UN envoy announced he would not take up the post, according to a statement given to media organisations.

Ali Abdessalam Treki, chosen to replace a previous envoy who defected, was quoted as condemning the “shedding of blood”.

In the run-up to military action, Robert Gates was publicly sceptical about no-fly zones, and here he looked and sounded like a man seeking to contain America’s involvement in Libya.

In unambiguous language, the defence secretary made clear that Nato is now in charge, that US spending on Libya will fall, and that other allies should take a lead in training the rebels.

Except, as Adm Mike Mullen acknowledged, Col Gaddafi’s forces retain a clear military superiority.

He said they enjoyed a 10-to-one advantage over the rebels in the number of tanks and armoured personnel carriers, and that the opposition ranks included only 1,000 military-trained fighters.

All of which invites the question: how to avoid a stalemate, or even outright victory for Gaddafi?

It was clear that the administration’s bet is that other members of Col Gaddafi’s inner circle will turn against him, short-circuiting the air strikes and fighting.

And Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa fled to the UK on Wednesday, with British officials saying he had quit his post.

Scottish prosecutors say they have made a formal request to interview Mr Koussa over the bombing of a jumbo jet above the town of Lockerbie in 1988.

He was head of Libya’s foreign intelligence at the time of the attack, which left 270 people dead. Many of those killed were Americans.

Meanwhile, the debate is still raging in Western capitals about how much help the rebels can be given under the terms of the UN’s resolution, which charged international forces with policing a no-fly zone and arms embargo.

In testimony to the House of Representatives’ armed services committee on Thursday, Mr Gates said the US would limit its contribution to providing capabilities other nations could not.

He said that included “electronic warfare, aerial refuelling, search and rescue, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support”.

But he added: “Deposing the Gaddafi regime, as welcome as that eventuality would be, is not part of the military mission.

“In my view, the removal of Col Gaddafi will likely be achieved over time through political and economic measures and by his own people.”

Mr Gates declined to comment on reports that the government had approved CIA deployments in Libya.

But he said there would be no troops on the ground, and that the US would be significantly decreasing its participation in the coming days.

Adm Mullen said the air strikes had wiped out between 20% and 25% of Col Gaddafi’s forces.

“We have actually fairly seriously degraded his military capabilities. That does not mean he’s about to break, from a military standpoint, because that’s not the case,” he said.

Nato, which took sole command of international air operations over Libya on Thursday, said it was strongly opposed to arming the rebels.

The alliance also said it was investigating reports of civilian casualties in Western air strikes on Tripoli.

Earlier, the top Vatican official in the Libyan capital, citing witnesses, said 40 civilians had been killed in strikes by Western forces on the city.

The uprising against Col Gaddafi’s regime began in mid-February, with protesters spurred on by the ousting of neighbouring long-time rulers in Tunisia and Egypt.

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International sanctions against Gaddafi regime March 18, 2011

U.S. President Barack Obama said on Friday that the ceasefire in Libya must be implemented immediately otherwise there will be “consequences” for Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

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