I have to say I was surprised last week that that Arab League said a no-fly zone was something that should be done.
And the UN acted quickly in taking up the issue and passing a resolution about the no-fly zone.
The U.N. vote on Thursday night was 10-0 with five countries abstaining including Russia and China. India, Germany and Brazil also expressed misgivings about approving military action.
Interesting that so many countries abstained. Yet at the same time any one of them could have voted no and scuttled the whole thing.
This from the US ambassador to the UN:
U.S Ambassador Susan Rice said the resolution “should send a strong message to Colonel Gadhafi and his regime that the violence must stop, the killing must stop, and the people of Libya must be protected and have the opportunity to express themselves freely.”
The problem of course is that Libya is not heading to the cease fire at all. It is moving with all deliberate speed to win the war before anything can be done against it. But the French have acted quickly:
French fighter jets streaking over Libya on Saturday bombed a military vehicle and walled off a 600-square-mile sanctuary over the eastern city of Benghazi in the first military engagements in support of the no-fly zone authorized two days ago by the U.N. Security Council.
The only way to stop this land grab is for swift action. I have to assume this will not be the last French mission in the next couple of days against Gadhafi's forces. The only way he'll learn anything is if his forces get a good kick in the teeth.
Gadhafi's government of course says the rebels are the ones breaking the cease fire:
Libyan government spokesman Ibrahim Musa said rebels, not government forces, were the ones breaking the cease-fire by attacking military forces, the Associated Press reported. “Our armed forces continue to retreat and hide, but the rebels keep shelling us and provoking us,” he said.
And that is just so believable.
The problem is that this might be too little too late. I hope not. It is time the Mr. Gadhafi is off the world stage.