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Passions in Poetry

Libya

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Bob K
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50 posted 10-21-2011 02:27 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     I'm happy that Kadaffi is gone.  I am not happy that the President funded a covert war against congressional wishes to achieve that goal.  I may have disagreed with the congress's basic decision, and I did, but I am against the whole notion of the imperial presidency.  Exercised by the right or the left, it is still not what I think we should be doing.  Were we in an actual emergency, such as having to make a decision about a reaction to a first strike with weapons of mass destruction on the US with a clear origin, then I think the situation would be different; we already have policy guidelines worked out for that, and the administration would simply be carrying those out.  But to initiate or help initiate hostilities is a very different thing.

     I think the President was in the wrong, even though I confess I'm pleased with the outcome.  I think that it's the same sort rogue policy that the last President Bush used to push us into a war with Iraq, though some of the finesse points were probably better handled by Bush, who did some really ugly political arm twisting that at least offered the appearance of legality.  The Democrats had the option of losing all grip on power for at least one and possibly more elections or going along, and the went along.

     What the democrats need is a politician with the genius of an LBJ these days who doesn't get so carried away he ends up in his own version of Vietnam, thank you all so very much for asking.

     What about that do you find so disagreeable, LR?

     The President's politics were ineptly done, though the goals might have been good.  

     Skip the crow and simply pass the ketchup.
Huan Yi
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51 posted 10-21-2011 04:38 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


Wait 12 months


.
Local Rebel
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52 posted 10-21-2011 05:01 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

For the next election?  

Bob, yuck.  Ketchup without crow?  is just ketchup.  want fries with that?
Bob K
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53 posted 10-21-2011 05:11 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Wooly mammoth and a side of fries, please.
Local Rebel
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54 posted 10-21-2011 06:33 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Bob,

Shorthand;

UN
Nato
Senate Ratified treaties
Legal
Resolution
NATO command
Objective: protect civilians
Rebellion suceeds
Witch is dead

Took less than half the time it took the Republicans to impeach Bill Clinton.

investment--under 2 billion

Priceless
Bob K
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55 posted 10-21-2011 08:12 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Thank you.  Cogent, to the point, reasonable.  Much appreciated.
Denise
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56 posted 10-21-2011 09:17 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

A foreign head of state was beaten to a bloody pulp, dragged through the street and then shot in the head, after being captured alive, dazed and with a concussion, not offering resistance, and begging for his life, all captured on video. This followed a U.S. drone attack on his convoy, which was only meant to disable it, because if he was targeted for death by the drone attack itself it would have killed him, that's how accurate they are. Can't technically have that though, since that would be against the law.

I guess we are to believe that NATO forces are so inept that they lost control of the 'situation' and Gadhafi unwittingly fell into the hands of the rebels.

I believe that this was all orchestrated by the 'powers-that-be' behind the original invasion for the desired outcome that was realized. They didn't want him taken alive. They didn't want a trial. They didn't want due process.

Whomever is responsible for this barbaric fiasco has no moral authority to speak against dictators or terrorists.

I don't see any reason for celebration.

After he was dead his body was thrown on top of a vehicle and was driven from town to town on display. His corpse is currently in a restaurant meat locker until it is decided when and where he will be buried.

No word yet from the White House on the importance of observing the Islamic tradition of the ritual of body preparation and immediate burial as there was with Bin Laden.

Local Rebel
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57 posted 10-21-2011 10:05 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

[Edit Comments should be limited to the posts, not the posters. - Ron]

[This message has been edited by Ron (10-22-2011 10:11 AM).]

Denise
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58 posted 10-22-2011 01:36 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Now it appears that Yemen is next on the list to receive our 'help'.
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/10/21/statement-press-secretary-passage-un-security-council-resolution-2014
Huan Yi
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59 posted 10-22-2011 01:37 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15412845


There seems to be a certain unease across the pond . . .

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15392189


It will be intersting what happens in Africa
now that a favorite son is gone.

Meanwhile in Syria . . .


.
Balladeer
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60 posted 10-22-2011 02:16 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Meanwhile, in Egypt.....
Bob K
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61 posted 10-22-2011 04:01 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Uh, guys. . . .

     It sounds as though you have a theory about all this.  It also sounds as though the theory goes back two years.  Perhaps I am wrong about this.  If I wanted to be partisan, my theory would go back to our invasion of Iraq post 9/11.  We might also try our first Gulf War if you wanted.  You can make a Democratic case or a Republican case, I believe, and certainly with the notions of spreading democracy around the Middle east that were circulating in Neo-con circles prior to Gulf War Two, the notion of this being a natural outcome of a planned policy is not unreasonable.

     I think that it may also be somewhat beside the point.  I think that we simply don't unbderstand the region, either the middle east or Africa, and that all oif us are more or less echoing partisan points of view on the subject without much real understanding, and that if we're going to talk about it, it might be worth doing some reading on the middle east and on africa and on what's brought them to the current situation.

     This doesn't mean anybody has to give up their politics; I'm reasonably sure that there are pretty good experts on Africa and the Middle east who try to keep their politics out of their writing, or who build an accurate picture, if from one political vantage point or another.  The point is to get some sort of perspective on what's gone on historically, how it affects what's goingf on now and where we should go in the future.

     Does anybody have any ideas for decent books or articles that I might have a look at, or that anybody else might find of interest?

    

    
Essorant
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62 posted 10-22-2011 04:18 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

I am very glad for the victory in Libya.   They had every right to end Qadhafi's life since he had committed it only to continued cruelty, threats, and the destruction of others' lives.  He chose not to end violence until violence ended him and now it has. His death means the freedom from his cruelty and the hope for a better life for Libya because it is, and that is a victory that everyone in the world should celebrate.
Balladeer
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63 posted 10-22-2011 04:52 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I agree, Ess. I shed no tears for Qadaffi being out of power, Like Denise, I do not share in the joy and celebration of his torture and murder to get it done, but what's done is done.

Hopefully, Libya will find a better path and not turn into Egypt. There we supported rebels we knew little about and things there have gotten even worse, according to many. A segment on 60 Minutes showed how horrible the conditions are now, with the intimidation, murders, rapes and other atrocities that continue under the new rule.

Let's see what happens....
Local Rebel
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64 posted 10-22-2011 05:12 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

I think we have to be cognizant to the possibility that the door has been opened in Lybia for a crazy, despotic, brutal dictator to come to power who may perpetrate acts of terrorism against the west.
Local Rebel
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65 posted 10-22-2011 05:13 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Oh, wait....
Denise
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66 posted 10-22-2011 07:46 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

I think what they had a 'right' to do, Ess, since he had been taken alive, was to facilitate his being taken into custody to have him held over for trial.
Bob K
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67 posted 10-22-2011 08:13 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     I don't feel happy about the man's death, I feel diminished by it.  I'm glad he's not running things; I don't feel that he seemed to be helpful for the country, and I know he wasn't great for us.  What was started in Egypt seemed to come to a crashing halt in Egypt, at least for now, and I wonder what it will take to get it moving again.  I wonder, now that Kadaffi's out of power, what will replace him, and whether we will be happier with it than we were with Kadaffi.

     Mike mentioned something that I didn't agree with in another thread about having a plan when you offer a criticism.  I still don't agree in general, but I can see how there's a piece of that that might apply here.  I wonder what thought we gave to who might replace Kadaffi we in the sense of the western alliance and the muslim states that asked for support here.  I wonder how this will shake out.

     I understand that to some extent it's all a throw of the dice, or "As God Wills it" as the devout would suggest in one faith or another.  I still wonder if somebody someplace war-gamed this out and what the results were.
Denise
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68 posted 10-22-2011 11:47 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

I imagine France, Great Britain and the U.S. each had their own motives for invading Libya and taking out Gadhafi. Each probably has their own idea of the perfect replacement.

If they can't come to some sort of gentlemen's (choke) agreement maybe they can each take turns invading each other to see who is the last one standing and the one who gets to make that decision.....after they finish invading the rest of the Middle East and the rest of the Continent of Africa, of course.
Huan Yi
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69 posted 10-23-2011 01:47 AM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


Qadaffi was no longer a threat
to us thanks to what's his name.


.
Bob K
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70 posted 10-23-2011 03:07 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     I was asking a set of serious questions.  I understand that it's difficult to think about them seriously because I am as partisan as anybody.  I'm not particularly fond of the US actions in Libya, although I think LR does offer a solid rationale.  The fact that I don't like it doesn't mean it isn't accurate; and the fact that it's accurate doesn't mean that I have to accept it.  Bah!

     Be that as it may, I don't understand enough about the Middle East and Africa.  I can fake it as well as anybody, but I don't feel I'm on solid ground with good information at my fingertips.  I can do a fair job of picking holes in discussions on the basis of logic and basic information, but what I'd like to know is if anybody has any suggestions for reading that might open up some sort of new understanding for me in terms of basic history and information.  John was able to reccommend some books like that on Stalin at one point.

     I know there are books on the Iranian coup that brought in the Shah in 1954 and on the Sykes-Picot treaty and on what happened in 1948 from a broader perspective than the one that we usually get here.  Does anybody know any titles?  

     I'm hoping we can get this off the level of Right Wing versus Left Wing and talk about what the actual history is and what we think possible solutions may be and what the possible blocks are to those solutions.
Local Rebel
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71 posted 10-23-2011 05:28 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

quote:

The Libyan government employed snipers, artillery, helicopter gunships, warplanes, anti-aircraft weaponry, and warships against demonstrations and funeral processions.[138] Security forces and foreign mercenaries repeatedly used firearms, including assault rifles and machine guns, as well as knives against protesters.


Rebel fighter in hospital in Tripoli.
Amnesty International reported that writers, intellectuals and other prominent opposition sympathizers disappeared during the early days of the conflict in Gaddafi-controlled cities, and that they may have been subjected to torture or execution.[139]
Amnesty International also reported that security forces targeted paramedics helping injured protesters.[140] In multiple incidents, Gaddafi's forces were documented using ambulances in their attacks.[141][142] Injured demonstrators were sometimes denied access to hospitals and ambulance transport. The government also banned giving blood transfusions to people who had taken part in the demonstrations.[143] Security forces, including members of Gaddafi's Revolutionary Committees, stormed hospitals and removed the dead. Injured protesters were either summarily executed or had their oxygen masks, IV drips, and wires connected to the monitors removed. The dead and injured were piled into vehicles and taken away, possibly for cremation.[144][145] Doctors were prevented from documenting the numbers of dead and wounded, but an orderly in a Tripoli hospital morgue estimated to the BBC that 600700 protesters were killed in Green Square in Tripoli on 20 February. The orderly claimed that ambulances brought in three or four corpses at a time, and that after the ice lockers were filled to capacity, bodies were placed on stretchers or the floor, and that "it was in the same at the other hospitals".[144]
International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo estimated that 500700 people were killed by security forces in February 2011, before the rebels took up arms. According to Moreno-Ocampo, "shooting at protesters was systematic".[146]
Gaddafi suppressed protests in Tripoli by distributing automobiles, money and weapons for hired followers to drive around Tripoli and attack people showing signs of dissent.[147][148] In Tripoli, "death squads" of mercenaries and Revolutionary Committees members patrolled the streets, and shot people who tried to take the dead off the streets or gather in groups.[149]
The International Federation for Human Rights concluded that Gaddafi is implementing a strategy of scorched earth. The organization stated that "It is reasonable to fear that he has, in fact, decided to largely eliminate, wherever he still can, Libyan citizens who stood up against his regime and furthermore, to systematically and indiscriminately repress civilians. These acts can be characterized as crimes against humanity, as defined in Article 7 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court."[150]
Gaddafi continued these tactics when the protests escalated into an armed conflict. During the siege of Misrata, Amnesty International reported "horrifying" tactics such as "indiscriminate attacks that have led to massive civilian casualties, including use of heavy artillery, rockets and cluster bombs in civilian areas and sniper fire against residents."[151]
Executions of own soldiers
Gaddafi's military commanders summarily executed soldiers who refused to fire on protesters.[152] The International Federation for Human Rights reported a case where 130 soldiers were executed.[153] Some of the soldiers executed by their commanders were burned alive.[154]
Prison sites and torture
Gaddafi imprisoned thousands or tens of thousands residents in Tripoli. Red Cross was denied access to these hidden prisons. One of the most notorious is a prison which was setup in a tobacco factory in Tripoli where inmates are reported to have been fed just half a loaf of bread and a bottle of water a day.[155]
In late April, United States Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice alleged that soldiers loyal to Gaddafi were given Viagra and encouraged to commit rapes in rebel-held or disputed areas. The allegations surfaced in an Al Jazeera report the previous month from Libya-based doctors, who claimed to have found Viagra in the pockets of government soldiers.[156] Human rights groups and aid workers had previously documented rapes by loyalist fighters during the war. The British aid agency "Save the children" said it got reports that children were raped by unknown perpetrators, although the charity warns that these reports could not be confirmed.[157][158]
In Misrata, a rebel spokesman claimed that government soldiers had committed a string of sexual assaults in Benghazi Street before being pushed out by rebels. A doctor claimed that two young sisters were raped by five Black African mercenaries after their brothers joined the rebels. According to aid workers, four young girls were abducted and held for four days, and were possibly sexually assaulted.[159] In a questionnaire 259 refugee women reported that they had been raped by Gaddafi's soldiers, however the accounts of these women could not be independently verified as the psychologist who conducted the questionnaire claimed that "she had lost contact with them".[160] The validity of the rape allegations is questioned by Amnesty International, which has not found evidence to back up the claims and notes that there are indications that on several occasions the rebels in Benghazi appeared to have knowingly made false claims or manufactured evidence.[160]
Mercenaries
Soon after Gaddafi's government started to use force against demonstrators, it became apparent that some Libyan military units refused to shoot protesters, and Gaddafi had hired foreign mercenaries to do the job. Gaddafi's ambassador to India Ali al-Essawi confirmed that the defections of military units had indeed led to such a decision.[161] Video footage of this started to leak out of the country.[161] Gaddafi's former Chief of Protocol Nouri Al Misrahi stated in an interview with the Al Jazeera that Nigerien, Malian, Chadian and Kenyan mercenaries are among foreign soldiers helping fight the uprising on behalf of Gaddafi.[162] Defecting Libyan Deputy Ambassador Ibrahim Dabbashi called on African nations to stop sending mercenaries to defend the Gaddafi regime.[161]
In Mali, members of the Tuareg tribe confirmed that a large number of men, about 5,000, from the tribe went to Libya in late February.[163][164][165][166] Locals in Mali said they were promised 7,500 ($10,000) upfront payment and compensation up to 750 ($1,000) per day.[15][16] Gaddafi has used Malian Tuaregs in his political projects before, sending them to fight in places like Chad, Sudan and Lebanon and recently they have fought against Niger government, a war which Gaddafi has reportedly sponsored. Malian government officials told BBC that it's hard to stop the flow of fighters from Mali to Libya.[15] A recruitment center for Malian soldiers leaving to Libya was found in a Bamako hotel.[18]
Reports from Ghana state that the men who went to Libya were offered as much as 1950 ($2,500) per day.[161] Advertisements seeking mercenaries were seen in Nigeria[161] with at least one female Nigerian pro-Gaddafi sniper being caught in late August outside of Tripoli.[167] One group of mercenaries from Niger, who had been allegedly recruited from the streets with promises of money, included a soldier of just 13 years of age.[168] The Daily Telegraph studied the case of a sixteen-year-old captured Chadian child soldier in Bayda. The boy, who had previously been a shepherd in Chad, told that a Libyan man had offered him a job and a free flight to Tripoli, but in the end he had been airlifted to shoot opposition members in Eastern Libya.[169]
Reports by EU experts stated that Gaddafi's government hired between 300 and 500 European soldiers, including some from EU countries, at high wages. According to Michel Koutouzis, who does research on security issues for the EU institutions, the UN and the French government, "In Libyan society, there is a taboo against killing people from your own tribal group. This is one reason why Gaddafi needs foreign fighters,"[170] The Serbian newspaper Alo! stated that Serbs were hired to help Gaddafi in the early days of the conflict.[171] Rumors of Serbian pilots participating on the side of Gaddafi appeared early in the conflict.[172][173][174] A Belarusian told the Russian newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda that he and several hundred others from Belarus had been recruited to advise Gaddafi's forces before the civil war and most of them left since then, but some preferred to stay. According to the newspaper report, published in early April, the Belarusian advisers were paid about 2,450 ($3,000) per month, did not participate in combat, but crafted strategies to help Gaddafi's brigades.[175] Time magazine interviewed mercenaries from ex-Yugoslavia who fled Gaddafi's forces in August.[176]
On 7 April, Reuters reported that soldiers loyal to Gaddafi were sent into refugee camps to intimidate and bribe black African migrant workers into fighting for the Libyan state during the war. Some of these "mercenaries" were compelled to fight against their wishes, according to a source inside one of the refugee camps.[177]
According to numerous eyewitness accounts, mercenaries were more willing to kill demonstrators than Libyan forces were, and earned a reputation as among the most brutal forces employed by the government. A doctor in Benghazi said of the mercenaries that "they know one thing: to kill whose in front of them. Nothing else. They're killing people in cold blood".[178]

On 19 March 2011 a multi-state coalition began a military intervention in Libya to implement United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973, which was taken in response to events during the 2011 Libyan civil war. That same day, military operations began, with US and British forces firing cruise missiles,[206] the French Air Force and British Royal Air Force[207] undertaking sorties across Libya and a naval blockade by the Royal Navy.[208][209][210]
Since the beginning of the intervention, the initial coalition of Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, Norway, Qatar, Spain, UK and US[211][212][213][214][215] has expanded to seventeen states, with newer states mostly enforcing the no-fly zone and naval blockade or providing military logistical assistance. The effort was initially largely led by France and the United Kingdom, with command shared with the United States. NATO took control of the arms embargo on 23 March, named Operation Unified Protector. An attempt to unify the military command of the air campaign (whilst keeping political and strategic control with a small group), first failed over objections by the French, German, and Turkish governments.[216][217] On 24 March, NATO agreed to take control of the no-fly zone, while command of targeting ground units remains with coalition forces.[218] The handover occurred on 31 March 2011 at 0600 GMT.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libya_Conflict



Balladeer
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72 posted 10-23-2011 06:23 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I feel fairly confident that, if one were to look, the same type  of report could be found about Saddam Hussein and his government.
Local Rebel
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73 posted 10-23-2011 06:54 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

SAddam Hussein was in a box.  

Defanged.

We had already done to him what we were doing to Gaddafi.  No fly zone, embargo.

Whatever the rebels did, or failed to do in the case of Iraq, was up to them.

I find it the right wing sour grapes pretty pathetic, that the political right HATES Obama so thoroughly it wont even give him a win on Lybia... the guy Reagan bombed.  
Denise
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74 posted 10-23-2011 09:28 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

The problem with the actions of Obama is that he acts without the authority of Congress and against the constraints of the Constitution effectively abolishing our system of checks and balances. If Congress had authorized our involvement in Libya then the 'blame' or 'credit', depending on one's perspective, would be shared. As it stands it rests solely with Obama.

When Reagan bombed Libya it was in direct response to a murderous act against American citizens. That wasn't the case here in this invasion.

It wouldn't be difficult for the U.N. to prepare a list of grievances against most countries in the Middle East and Africa. Should we invade all of them to depose their leaders?

Another problem I have with Obama is that he exerted his influence in the overthrow of Mubarek in Egypt which was a secular muslim country. Because of that it is now well on its way to becoming another Islamic state, if it isn't already. Christians are being slaughtered there by the Islamists. What is Obama's response to that outrage of crimes against humanity? Does he exert his considerable influence against the Islamist perpetrators of the violence, as he did against Mubarek? No, all he does is urge the Christians to practice restraint in responding to the persecution.

One man was just imprisoned for stating a secularist point of view on facebook, thus being charged with 'insulting Islam'. How's that 'democracy' working out?
 
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