Max Boot writes that “it’s only a matter of time” before Qaddafi falls. Well, yes, but the question is how much time. The rebellion has made some important advances, but every day that Qaddafi still rules Tripoli has consequences elsewhere.
US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice sent this tweet this evening:
Some countries using Libya as excuse to avoid the real issues we face in Syria – an argument that strains credulity, not to mention morality
What’s interesting about this is that she could just as easily be talking about the debate within the Obama administration as the debate at the UN. As this BBC dispatch noted a couple weeks ago:
When Washington looks at Syria today, it fears a repeat; long drawn-out international pressure with no clear outcome.
There is no suggestion whatsoever that anyone would consider military intervention in Syria but the US and Europe, their hands full in Libya, are wary even of a purely diplomatic quagmire.
If the last dictator you called on to step down is still standing, there is some logic in being reluctant to call on another one to step down. While Rice has a point that this isn’t a great excuse for inaction, certainly a resolution sanctioning the Assad regime would have more impact after Qaddafi falls than it would before. Let’s hope Qaddafi’s time runs out soon.
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