What's the mission? How do we know when we've succeeded? Are we even able to achieve success, whatever that may mean anymore? If winning isn't the goal (in a war, for God's sake), do we even have an "exit strategy"?
It's come to this: Nobody on the planet can explain our intentions in Afghanistan these days. Other than to suggest that we're there to track down and kill bad guys who cross over from Pakistan with the intent to do the locals harm. With an ever increasing number of bad guys showing up as we do their brothers ever more harm.
Where does that end?
At least George W. Bush had a plan. To kill them all. To protect us here at home.
But not Obama. "Surgical" is the tactical order of the day.
So why is he diddling with Afghanistan?
And, for that matter, Iraq?
And for that matter ...
No exitSo now we find ourselves mired in an internal struggle in Libya. To go along with our "war" in Afghanistan and Pakistan. And our ongoing ... mission? ... in Iraq.
An inconclusive slog in Libya.
The successful raid to take out Osama bin Laden was enough to eclipse another Western military operation that didn't go quite so well.
Last Saturday night, NATO bombed a compound in Tripoli that was said to contain a military center. Moammar Gadhafi was not killed, but his youngest son and three of his grandchildren reportedly were. His forces responded by shelling the rebel-held city of Misrata, where more than 1,000 people have died already.
That's emblematic of the NATO campaign in Libya, which was launched more than six weeks ago in the hope of stopping Gadhafi's war against the rebels who control much of the country. This effort has served to keep the rebels from being smashed, but it hasn't forced the dictator to give up the fight or flee the country.
Saturday's attack was hard to square with the UN resolution authorizing the outside intervention, which focused on protecting civilians from attack by establishing a no-fly zone. NATO and the United States have decided to interpret that mandate liberally, allowing them to hit "military" targets that may house Gadhafi — even as they insist they "do not target individuals."
Maybe killing him would be the domino that would cause his regime to come crashing down. But no one really knows. Failing that, the war has settled into an inconclusive slog that could go on a long time. [link]
America applauds Obama's decision to kill Osama bin Laden. Though more than a few of us wonder, given today's circumstances, why he bothered.