NATO facing only bad choices in Libya

Rick Moran
At some point, it is very possible that a majority of NATO states will simply refuse to continue to support the air bombardment of Gaddafi's forces and the rebels will be forced to negotiate with the dictator.

Reuters:


Many NATO members refuse to go beyond enforcing a U.N.-mandated no-fly zone to attack Gaddafi's forces, despite the urging of the United States, France and Britain, who all want to see Gaddafi removed from power.And some of those who allowed a U.N. Security Council resolution on Libya to pass say that it is being misused to provide military cover for the rebels -- even though fighting now appears to have stalemated on a frontline just west of Ajdabiyah in eastern Libya.

[...]

But Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Western air support was allowing the Libyan opposition to refuse to sit down to negotiate.

The U.N. Security Council never aimed to topple the Libyan regime," he said in Belgrade.

"All those who are currently using the U.N. resolution for that aim are violating the U.N. mandate. It is crucial to establish a ceasefire."

NATO also appears to be moving toward putting some combat troops in the field:

Even the advocates of more robust attacks on Gaddafi's forces have insisted they will not deploy ground troops.

But the European Union outlined a tentative plan on Monday to do just that to protect aid deliveries to Misrata and elsewhere if requested by the United Nations.

Any EU mission could involve hundreds of military personnel securing transport of supplies directly to Libya, in particular Misrata, and helping to supply food and shelter to refugee camps on the Tunisian and Egyptian borders.

It will start by "protecting aid deliveries." Then, they will have to protect aid workers. Will they finally give in and supply troops to overthrow Gaddafi? It appears very possible that they will.




At some point, it is very possible that a majority of NATO states will simply refuse to continue to support the air bombardment of Gaddafi's forces and the rebels will be forced to negotiate with the dictator.

Reuters:


Many NATO members refuse to go beyond enforcing a U.N.-mandated no-fly zone to attack Gaddafi's forces, despite the urging of the United States, France and Britain, who all want to see Gaddafi removed from power.

And some of those who allowed a U.N. Security Council resolution on Libya to pass say that it is being misused to provide military cover for the rebels -- even though fighting now appears to have stalemated on a frontline just west of Ajdabiyah in eastern Libya.

[...]

But Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Western air support was allowing the Libyan opposition to refuse to sit down to negotiate.

The U.N. Security Council never aimed to topple the Libyan regime," he said in Belgrade.

"All those who are currently using the U.N. resolution for that aim are violating the U.N. mandate. It is crucial to establish a ceasefire."

NATO also appears to be moving toward putting some combat troops in the field:

Even the advocates of more robust attacks on Gaddafi's forces have insisted they will not deploy ground troops.

But the European Union outlined a tentative plan on Monday to do just that to protect aid deliveries to Misrata and elsewhere if requested by the United Nations.

Any EU mission could involve hundreds of military personnel securing transport of supplies directly to Libya, in particular Misrata, and helping to supply food and shelter to refugee camps on the Tunisian and Egyptian borders.

It will start by "protecting aid deliveries." Then, they will have to protect aid workers. Will they finally give in and supply troops to overthrow Gaddafi? It appears very possible that they will.