Here we go: US may consider putting troops in Libya

Gen. Carter Ham says it may happen. Ham was the commander of the Libya adventure until the US turned it over to NATO.

The United States may consider sending troops into Libya with a possible international ground force that could aid the rebels, according to the general who led the military mission until NATO took over.

Army Gen. Carter Ham also told lawmakers Thursday that added American participation would not be ideal, and ground troops could erode the international coalition and make it more difficult to get Arab support for operations in Libya.

Ham said the operation was largely stalemated now and was more likely to remain that way since America has transferred control to NATO.

Of course it's stalemated. The Obama administration decided to fight via steering committee, then NATO threatened to bomb both sides. The no-fly zone has actually grounded both Gaddafi's forces and the rebels, which means what planes the rebels do have, they can't use. And that's looking past the fact that the al Qaeda elements within the rebellion would probably misuse the planes anyway.

Obama has said several times that we won't put troops on the ground in Libya, but everything he says comes with an expiration date. Of more importance is the line drawn in the sand by Defense Secretary Robert Gates. When he declared last week that there would be no US boots on the ground to participate in the kinetic military action in Libya "as long as I am in this job," it looked to me like he was setting up his exit from this bizarre administration. We may know if he meant that soon.