December 21, 2003


I Remember Muammar (WILLIAM SAFIRE, 12/22/03, NY Times)

As American tanks began to roll through Iraq to overthrow Saddam, Libya's longtime terrorist, Muammar Qaddafi, came up with a strategy to avoid being next on the regime-change list: pre-emptive surrender.

Nobody calls it that, of course. Diplomats and doves want to treat the dictator's epiphany as the result of patient negotiation stretching back for decades.

What's not to like about a week when Saddam Hussein, the French, the Germans, and Qaddafi all surrendered without a shot?

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 21, 2003 11:31 PM

Showing friend and foe alike that you are - indeed - fully serious in fighting terrorism has a coattail effect.

Posted by: John J. Coupal at December 22, 2003 1:47 AM

Safire does have a point, though.

Qaddafi's apparent about-face provides absolutely no reason for anyone who has not yet "gotten it" to change their minds.

I wonder constantly what it will take for such a revised view of events to occur.

And I despair that such people are so leveraged by a combination of their own righteousness and common sense, Bush's stupidity, their hatred of the US, etc., and their own willingness to give terror the benefit of the doubt while imputing the most terrible motives to America that makes such a change practically impossible.

Fortunately, there is enough critical mass in the US, at the moment at least, to pursue a policy of active self defense. This could conceivably change, perhaps quite quickly.

And it is, in fact, the issue over which the presidential elections of 2004 will be fought.

Posted by: Barry Meislin at December 22, 2003 3:48 AM

Correction: should have written, "Bush's 'stupidity,'"

Posted by: Barry Meislin at December 22, 2003 3:50 AM

To Barry's point - watching the media, Dems, and blog commentes (Paul) try to spin the Libya disarmament as a) not a big deal and/or b) nothing to do with Bush is pretty interesting.

Posted by: AWW at December 22, 2003 7:11 AM

The hard left is so blind and so wrapped around the axle that if Hu Jin-Tao, Robert Mugabe, Ayatollah Khameini, and the Myanmar generals crawled up the White House steps to atone for their sins, Bush would be vilifed for oppressing people of color.

The words freedom and liberal are fast becoming mutually exclusive; as George Will might say, the left loves the totalitarian more than they loathe the terror. And it seems to be getting more perverse.

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 22, 2003 9:54 AM