US to pull close air support aircraft out of Libya fight
I guess the administration got tired of looking like fools with all the talk of boots on the ground.
"Your timing is exquisite," Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said sarcastically, alluding to Gadhafi's military advances this week and the planned halt to U.S. airstrikes. "I believe this would be a profound mistake with potentially disastrous consequences." ...
Mullen and Gates stressed that even though powerful combat aircraft like the side-firing AC-130 gunship and the A-10 Thunderbolt, used for close air support of friendly ground forces, will stop flying after Saturday, they will be on standby. Mullen said this means that if the rebels' situation become "dire enough," NATO's top commander could request help from the U.S. aircraft. The U.S. also has used Marine AV-8B Harrier attack jets as well as Air Force F-15 fighters and B-2 and B-1 long-range bombers.
So the strategery today is to see if enough of the rebels die before we determine whether or not to support them? That's just genius. I suppose the strategery of tomorrow will be that we send in the Marines and then nuke Tripoli. In that order.
I'm obviously no fan of this mission, but that's mainly because I expected Obama & co to lead it badly. Bring me the head of Muammar Gaddafi and I'm as happy as anyone. But I never really expected Obama's bunch to be this inept, clueless and and simultaneously arrogant and stupid on every front. They rushed in, put the nebulous UN Responsibility to Protect ahead of our national interests, failed to consult Congress, have now told Congress to forget about being consulted in the future, and have waged a battle over what to call the war-we're-not-calling-a-war while playing word games with whether we have boots or other footwear on the ground. And now, a stuttering close air campaign that will end just a week after it started. Unbelievable.