During his press conference today, President Obama tried browbeating Congress into supporting his intervention in Libya. Apart from his legal justification for keeping US troops involved, which struck me as flimsy, Obama cited Qaddafi’s dictatorial regime and his behavior and support for terrorism as reasons the US should help “the Libyan people.” He went on to cite his own calls for Qaddafi to step down and urged Congress to send a unified message so that Qaddafi would do so. That brings me to the headline questioning how naive the president is. He seems to really think that a very half-hearted NATO non-war by committee plus the power of his own voice will be sufficient to knock a dictator, who Obama admits is a ruthless sort, from his throne.
Problem: That only works with our allies who happen to be dictators. Dictators who hate us tend not to listen to us.
And for a bonus: Everything Obama says about Qaddafi was true of Saddam Hussein, ten times over, but Obama opposed the war to oust him. And he still isn’t doing a thing to oust Syria’s Assad, who is more of a menace to the region and the world, and to his own people, than Qaddafi has been for years. This glaring double standard badly undermines Obama’s position on Libya, but he doesn’t seem to see it. Or he doesn’t think we do. Or he just doesn’t care.