Published April 08, 2011
They say no good deed goes unpunished. Well, the Libyan rebels are now complaining that NATO isn't doing enough to stop Qaddafi! I guess they expected us to topple Qaddafi and hand the country over to them; like we did when we toppled Saddam and tried handing Iraq over to NeoCon favorite Ahmed Chalabi. Or when we toppled the Taliban and handed Afghanistan over to Karzai.
They're griping that the ouster of Qaddafi is not happening fast enough to suit them. And they're getting worried it may not happen at all, and they'll be hung out to dry. Seems like the rebels wanted a revolution, but they just didn't expect they might have to die for it.
There are reports that Qaddafi is positioning his military in heavily populated areas. Of course he's doing that -- it's Qaddafi's checkmate move! He's using his own people as human shields. He knows NATO/U.S. will not bomb in areas where there might be civilian casualties; remember this whole operation was to protect the slaughter of innocents.
Qaddafi also knows that if he can hang on long enough in population centers he can win, since the only way to root him out of urban areas is with boots on the ground. He knows NATO/U.S. won't put boots on the ground, because they don't want "another Iraq," to quote President Obama.
Ultimately, somebody's boots are going on the ground if we're going to topple Qaddafi. He will not go willingly. No exile for him, because he's headed straight to the International Criminal Court, regardless of whatever assurances he's given by others.
Plus, trust me, Qaddafi is loving this. I've been reading those CIA personality profiles of the Libya's unpredictable leader since the 1970s. Qaddafi actually seems to think he's the Libyan Lawrence of Arabia -- a Bedouin desert warrior/king repelling christian crusader invaders.
The U.S. military knew this all along, which is why Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Admiral Mike Mullen, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, were both reluctant to go into Libya. Now it's finally dawning on the civilians in White House and State Department why these two experienced men had such big concerns. That's why you're starting to hear suggestions that we should arm the rebels, or that we might let Qaddafi stay if he promises to reform, or that we might be satisfied with a divided Libya.
Kathleen Troia "K.T." McFarland is a Fox News National Security Analyst and host of FoxNews.com's DefCon 3. She is a Distinguished Adviser to the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies and served in national security posts in the Nixon, Ford and Reagan administrations. She wrote Secretary of Defense Weinberger’s November 1984 "Principles of War Speech" which laid out the Weinberger Doctrine. Be sure to watch "K.T." every Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET on FoxNews.com's "DefCon3"-- already one of the Web's most watched national security programs.