Regime Change "Through Non-Military Means"? - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Regime Change “Through Non-Military Means”?
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President Obama, this evening:

Of course, there is no question that Libya – and the world – will be better off with Gaddafi out of power. I, along with many other world leaders, have embraced that goal, and will actively pursue it through non-military means. But broadening our military mission to include regime change would be a mistake.

The task that I assigned our forces – to protect the Libyan people from immediate danger, and to establish a No Fly Zone – carries with it a UN mandate and international support. It is also what the Libyan opposition asked us to do. If we tried to overthrow Gaddafi by force, our coalition would splinter. We would likely have to put U.S. troops on the ground, or risk killing many civilians from the air. The dangers faced by our men and women in uniform would be far greater. So would the costs, and our share of the responsibility for what comes next.

To be blunt, we went down that road in Iraq. Thanks to the extraordinary sacrifices of our troops and the determination of our diplomats, we are hopeful about Iraq’s future. But regime change there took eight years, thousands of American and Iraqi lives, and nearly a trillion dollars. That is not something we can afford to repeat in Libya.

Hmm. True, we don’t want another commitment on the scale of the Iraq War. But tell me more about these “non-military means.” Because if regime change is the stated goal of US policy, but not the goal of military action, I’d like to know how exactly these non-military means are going to meet up with the desired ends. In a speech that ran over 3000 words, I don’t think the President quite got around to explaining that key point.

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