“Get out”: Libya’s deputy UN ambassador says Qaddafi must go; Update: Qaddafi to speak soon?

posted at 4:15 pm on February 21, 2011 by Allahpundit

Not the first defection among Libya’s diplomatic corps today, and surely not the last. Whether this is motivated by genuine concern for the protesters or simply finger-in-the-wind political positioning in anticipation of regime change, I don’t know, but things must be awfully dodgy in Tripoli if guys like this are now willing to go on camera to denounce the monster-in-chief. I wish I could dispense with the usual blog schedule and follow this story all day, but Wisconsin beckons; if you’re jonesing for minute-by-minute updates, stick with the liveblogs from Al Jazeera, the Guardian, and the BBC. Twitter’s hashtag page on Libya is also worth monitoring; it updates automatically and very quickly, so it’s less minute by minute than second by second.

The post of the day thus far on this topic comes from Victor Davis Hanson, who eloquently captures the profound, sinister Pyongyang-ish weirdness of Libya under Qaddafi. The country has been so comprehensively devastated that it’s hard to imagine what will replace him; there seem to be no functioning civic institutions, including sanitation, capable of picking up the slack. Could be that there won’t be a central government at all in the near term, with Libyans resorting to a more provincial tribal existence until international agencies can lend a hand. VDH:

It was like no other country I have ever visited: wet garbage and sewage in the streets; an oil-exporter with massive pot-holes and no asphalt to fix them; almost every room, office, or hallway in Tripoli with peeling paint, exposed wiring, and something broken; the airport a disaster; almost every human action a possible violation of some government statute.

And, of course, Gaddafi’s picture was everywhere — sometimes as the protector of Islam, sometimes a sort of new-age Stalin, sometimes as the spiritual leader of black Africa, always presented with a nauseating green backdrop. In fact, books, shirts, even simple packaging was green. Citizens were terrified and talked in whispers, often relating some of the strangest rumors imaginable: past calls to burn all violins, past calls for every citizen to raise chickens, past calls for bonuses for marrying black African nationals.

Another trenchant point from Hanson: Oil-rich Libya sits right next door to oil-poor Egypt, whose military surely wouldn’t mind endowing itself with another fabulously lucrative industrial racket. Getting rid of Qaddafi may be just the first taste of war in Libya’s future.

As I write this, the only significant action by the U.S. regarding wholesale slaughter of demonstrators has been yet another statement of grave concern along with the surreal assurance that they’re analyzing yesterday’s speech from Qaddafi’s son — the one where he all but threatened civil war — for signs of “meaningful reform.” Note to State: The Qaddafi family’s idea of “meaningful reform” evidently involves military jets dropping bombs on civilians. In fact, precisely because it’s come to that, I’m seeing calls on Twitter and at the Corner for the U.S. and NATO to declare a no-fly zone over the country to keep Qaddafi’s bombers grounded. If that’s going to happen, though, it had better happen soon. The latest rumor is that a full-blown air assault on Benghazi is in the works. Exit question: Does that mean targeting groups of protesters? Or … leveling the city?

Update: There’s no way to tell what’s true and what’s rumor at this point, but Al-Arabiya says Africa’s version of Kim Jong-il will be stepping to the mic shortly.


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Exit question: Does that mean targeting groups of protesters? Or … leveling the city?

I’d say the former.

The city’s an important port for the country and it would be hard to ship oil out or important supplies in if they destroyed too much of the infrastructure there.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:18 PM

“Er um uh, I’ve always hated Gaddaffi. Yeah… that’s the ticket…”

Akzed on February 21, 2011 at 4:20 PM

for the U.S. and NATO to declare a no-fly zone over the country

Would we have to fly around France to get there?

pedestrian on February 21, 2011 at 4:20 PM

WTH is going on in the ME? Could this spread to South America please? Pretty please?

44Magnum on February 21, 2011 at 4:20 PM

Has BHO said anything?

d1carter on February 21, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Time Person of the Year: person, couple, group, idea, place, or machine that for better or for worse, …has done the most to influence the events of the year.

The “winner”?

Islam

aquaviva on February 21, 2011 at 4:22 PM

if they are threatening full born bombing, its time for the usa to intercede and cut that off. I know the left will scream blood for oil, but whatever.

rob verdi on February 21, 2011 at 4:22 PM

He had no problem when they were winning.

enginemike on February 21, 2011 at 4:23 PM

Has BHO said anything?

d1carter on February 21, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Not that I’m aware of. But we also need to hear from Hillary, Jay Carney, and everyone else in the administration who has their own take on the situation.

Doughboy on February 21, 2011 at 4:23 PM

the only significant action by the U.S. regarding wholesale slaughter of demonstrators has been yet another statement of grave concern

I get confused…is that better or worse then a stern warning…

right2bright on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

When they discuss “no contacts with The Regime” I can’t help but think they are discussing the President Diapers’ Whitehouse.

aquaviva on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

WTH is going on in the ME? Could this spread to South America please? Pretty please?

44Magnum on February 21, 2011 at 4:20 PM

Looks like a combination of “peasant revolts” over food prices and, in the case of Libya, long-standing resentments boiling over due to outside forces making the current regime more vulnerable than normal.

It’s already spread to South America, at least to Bolivia, though I don’t know if it’s spread to other countries such as Venezuela yet.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

“…with Libyans resorting to a more provincial tribal existence until international agencies can lend a hand.”

Isn’t that the desired existence of our environmental liberal extremists on the Left…?

… Maybe they should move to Libya and start living the dream.

Seven Percent Solution on February 21, 2011 at 4:26 PM

“Er um uh, I’ve always hated Gaddaffi. Yeah… that’s the ticket…”

Akzed on February 21, 2011 at 4:20 PM


HEH!!!
I guess we know how this is gonna turn out.

BigWyo on February 21, 2011 at 4:26 PM

If memory serves me didn’t Obama’s “people” sort of look the other way when they released the Lockerbie bomber? I seem to recall something like that,so he probably doesn’t care about Qaddifi.

sandee on February 21, 2011 at 4:27 PM

I sure am glad we are still drilling for our own oil…

… Oh, wait!

Seven Percent Solution on February 21, 2011 at 4:28 PM

Please, someone place these in order of priority, I think I have most of the actions that Obama is capable of taking.

grave concern
stern warning
grievance
admonition
harshly worded memo
upset
looking into the situation
not satisfied
Let me be clear

right2bright on February 21, 2011 at 4:28 PM

Has BHO said anything?

d1carter on February 21, 2011 at 4:21 PM

He and Leon Panetta are waiting to receive their intel briefings from CNN, MSNBC and al Jazeera.

catmman on February 21, 2011 at 4:32 PM

Related: Ace of Spades has a quote from a ship near Benghazi that says oil rigs in the region are currently on fire.

Not good.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:33 PM

David Cameron declares regime response is ‘appalling and unacceptable’

Where are Obama’s balls?

Schadenfreude on February 21, 2011 at 4:33 PM

Link to the Tweet on the burning wells

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:34 PM

All this stuff going down and we have a president, VP and secretary of state out of MAD magazine.

Hening on February 21, 2011 at 4:35 PM

Pan-Arabia led by Persian Iran here we come!

I try to imagine the pressure the media would be putting on any other former President if things like this were happening during their terms.
Obama is given a pass…..again.

albill on February 21, 2011 at 4:35 PM

I am sure that the Obama administration is in deep thought to determine every possible outcome and then cycle them to the media on a daily basis.
Then when the crisis is over, CNN can say that flip-flopping worked.

Electrongod on February 21, 2011 at 4:35 PM

right2bright on February 21, 2011 at 4:28 PM

You forgot “orderly change”.

Schadenfreude on February 21, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Has BHO said anything?

d1carter on February 21, 2011 at 4:21 PM

No, he is taking today off. It is ‘his’ day.

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:38 PM

In fact, precisely because it’s come to that, I’m seeing calls on Twitter and at the Corner for the U.S. and NATO to declare a no-fly zone over the country to keep Qaddafi’s bombers grounded.

there’s some US Navy pilots that would just love to splash some Libyan attack A/C. cut ‘em loose.

ted c on February 21, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Nober turns in his grave, again.

Schadenfreude on February 21, 2011 at 4:39 PM

Nobel, sorry, Sir.

Schadenfreude on February 21, 2011 at 4:39 PM

I get confused…is that better or worse then a stern warning…

right2bright on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

and, is it memo format…or what?

ted c on February 21, 2011 at 4:39 PM

Here’s some info on those ships in the suez…
http://apollospaeks.blogtownhall.com/

wi farmgirl on February 21, 2011 at 4:40 PM

The fools, even on Fox, think this is Obama’s day.

Schadenfreude on February 21, 2011 at 4:40 PM

Has BHO said anything?

d1carter on February 21, 2011 at 4:21 PM

maybe another “let’s not jump to conclusions on this” equivocal statement… perhaps..?

ted c on February 21, 2011 at 4:41 PM

Looks like a combination of “peasant revolts” over food prices and, in the case of Libya, long-standing resentments boiling over due to outside forces making the current regime more vulnerable than normal.

It’s already spread to South America, at least to Bolivia, though I don’t know if it’s spread to other countries such as Venezuela yet.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Thanks Teke.

44Magnum on February 21, 2011 at 4:41 PM

So if we send students to D.C. and have them protest and over turn cars, Obama will flee to Venezueala? He says if a dictator becomes unpopular, time to move on.

seven on February 21, 2011 at 4:41 PM

Sounds like this one is just about over. I read that Q. fled Tripoli.

AnninCA on February 21, 2011 at 4:42 PM

Welcome to Barry’s vision for America!

SouthernGent on February 21, 2011 at 4:42 PM

Where is Hillary’s boss, the Leader of the Free World, during all this Middle Eastern upheaval?

Saturday, he stepped in to help coach his 9-year-old daughter Sasha’s basketball team while she went on a skiing vacation to Vail, Colorado with her mother and sister.

No one is reporting what he did yesterday. He probably watched the NBA All-Star Game.

And he’s, reportedly, having a quiet President’s Day.

How…comforting.

kingsjester on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

Good grief AP, do you think anyone in this administration has the guts to call for a no-fly zone? I keep telling myself there are career State Dept. folks who know what the heck they are doing but I’m not very convincing.

Cindy Munford on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

It would help to know who the rebels are and what they actually want before intervening on their behalf.

There isn’t always a silver lining behind a dark cloud. Sometimes what’s back there is much, much worse.

sharrukin on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

Looks like a combination of “peasant revolts” over food prices and, in the case of Libya, long-standing resentments boiling over due to outside forces making the current regime more vulnerable than normal.

It’s already spread to South America, at least to Bolivia, though I don’t know if it’s spread to other countries such as Venezuela yet.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

I am suspicious of the ‘food prices’ reasoning. I’d like to see some real data on the retail prices of foodstuffs in the ME, with histories. It sounds too much like the usual pap from those that want to blame the West for anything bad that happens.

slickwillie2001 on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

Where are our Generals? The Joint Chiefs?

WTF.

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Time to call in Captain Kickass to solve this problem!!!!

search4truth on February 21, 2011 at 4:45 PM

It would help to know who the rebels are and what they actually want before intervening on their behalf.

“There isn’t always a silver lining behind a dark cloud. Sometimes what’s back there is much, much worse.“

sharrukin on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

Isn’t that POTUS’s job to know through taking counsel from his Military?

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:46 PM

I am suspicious of the ‘food prices’ reasoning. I’d like to see some real data on the retail prices of foodstuffs in the ME, with histories. It sounds too much like the usual pap from those that want to blame the West for anything bad that happens.

slickwillie2001 on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

It depends on what other factors could be.

I wouldn’t put it past Iran et all to be inciting revolution in the other ME countries, either for control or to jack up oil prices, but it looks they’ve got their own hands full right now.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:47 PM

Isn’t that POTUS’s job to know through taking counsel from his Military?

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:46 PM

Except there isn’t a President in the White House. Instead there is a community organizer who is totally out of his depth and just making crap up as he goes along.

sharrukin on February 21, 2011 at 4:48 PM

another statement of grave concern along with the surreal assurance that they’re analyzing yesterday’s speech from Qaddafi’s son —

epic fail…

cmsinaz on February 21, 2011 at 4:49 PM

I don’t think Obama could stand up to his own pacifists to direct a no-fly zone over Libya. President Bush 41 or 43 would do what is right.

fourdeucer on February 21, 2011 at 4:51 PM

I was just thinking as I looked at the “Get Out” headline….can we use that on Obama? I would gladly spring for a first class, one way ticket out of the country if him and his fugly wife Michelle would never come back!

search4truth on February 21, 2011 at 4:53 PM

another statement of grave concern along with the surreal assurance that they’re analyzing yesterday’s speech from Qaddafi’s son —

epic fail…

cmsinaz on February 21, 2011 at 4:49 PM

It’s proving very difficult to find someone that speaks Libyan! Give the White House a break.

slickwillie2001 on February 21, 2011 at 4:54 PM

Has BHO said anything?

d1carter on February 21, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Do I have time for 9 holes or 18?

tommer74 on February 21, 2011 at 4:54 PM

Update: Qaddafi to speak soon?

“Bombers are in the air, suck it protesters!”

ThePrez on February 21, 2011 at 4:55 PM

Do I have time for 9 holes or 18?

tommer74 on February 21, 2011 at 4:54 PM

Or, “Can I take a big boy bubble bath in the Taft tub tonight and play navy”?

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:58 PM

O/T: Good G-d, they’ve signed his death warrant
ASIA NEWS FEBRUARY 21, 2011, 4:20 P.M. ET American Held in Pakistan Worked for CIA, U.S. Officials Say

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704476604576158393645440806.html?mod=WSJ_hp_LEFTTopStories#articleTabs%3Darticle

sicoit on February 21, 2011 at 4:59 PM

al jazeera live blog Libya

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:01 PM

times local Libya

February 21

11:46pm: Unconfirmed reports suggest the Migraha tribe has now abandoned Gaddafi. This follows the Tuareg and Warfela tribes who came out in support of the protests yesterday.

11:43pm: Al Arabiya reports Gaddafi will be delivering a TV address soon. If he does, you can bet we’ll be covering it on Al Jazeera English. Watch our rolling coverage by clicking here.

11:38pm: Gaddafi’s top aide tells Al Jazeera: To keep his seat and his power, Gaddafi will “stop at nothing”. Al Jazeera correspondent Rawya Rageh tweets: “Amazing interview on AJA now! Man who I always saw as Gaddafi’s shadow when I visited – now trashing the Libyan leader.”

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:03 PM

According to The Corner, we’ve got two carriers in the general neighborhood.

USS Enterprise is just south of the Suez and the USS Carl Vinson is in the Arabian Sea.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 5:04 PM

sicoit

diplomatic immunity…stretching rationale?

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:04 PM

Two of Libya’s air force pilots landed in Malta asking for refuge…were these the pilots that bombed Libyan citizens peacefully protesting?

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:06 PM

were these the pilots that bombed Libyan citizens peacefully protesting?

Word is that these two had been ordered to do the bombing and, instead, defected.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Oh, but Obama is the savior of Democracy. Because of his rebuke of Mubarak, Egypt is now a Democracy! Yes, now Libya on it’s way. Who’s next? I feel so much better knowing Obama is President….. I don’t need the sarc tag do I?

sandee on February 21, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:58 PM

I heard it was his turn to coach his daughter’s basketball team. Although she is out of town.

Cindy Munford on February 21, 2011 at 5:08 PM

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 5:04 PM
… “to the shores of Tripoli” …

It isn’t America’s battle, and taking charge of the Libyan population would be as problematic as taking charge of Haiti. Been there, done that, too.

Eisenhower warned America to not succumb to the military-industrial complex directing our international relations, causing wars that shouldn’t be ours.

George Washington warned America to not jump the gun joining into international frays where we actually do not belong.

It’s one thing to be sympathetic. But once “advisers” are sent in, as JFK learned the hard way, there’s no pulling back.

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:12 PM

Word is that these two had been ordered to do the bombing and, instead, defected.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 5:07 PM

That would be the pilots’ word. And who is debriefing the pilots, and the vested interests of the intelligence gatherers?

On a lighter tone, if TV shows projected scientific reality, there’d be tests verifying whether or not the bomb hatches have been used recently.

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Key West Reader on February 21, 2011 at 4:58 PM

I heard it was his turn to coach his daughter’s basketball team. Although she is out of town.

Cindy Munford on February 21, 2011 at 5:08 PM

Have we found something that Bammie can actually do right?

slickwillie2001 on February 21, 2011 at 5:17 PM

Q’Daffy Jr. says “WE have all the weapons.” yes, and soon your army will be turning those weapons on YOU.

Tony737 on February 21, 2011 at 5:19 PM

almost every human action a possible violation of some government statute.

There but by the grace of God go you and I. Oh, wait. It’s coming and is allowed by the commerce clause.

Kafir on February 21, 2011 at 5:21 PM

… the USS Carl Vinson is in the Arabian Sea. – Teke

And that’s all it would take to remove any military threat to the demonstrators.

Tony737 on February 21, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Will Qadaffi Duck be stepping to a mike in Libya or from Venezuela or some third country? While it would be great to see him go, what will replace him, as with Egypt, is also a matter of grave concern, to many people; but seems to be of little concern to those ‘smart diplomats’ in the Obama Administration.
Anyway, with all these openings for new leaders in the Mideast, perhaps we can persuade Barack to change offices and head out to head a country he really admires, instead of continuing to head the US.

eaglewingz08 on February 21, 2011 at 5:26 PM

It’s already spread to South America, at least to Bolivia, though I don’t know if it’s spread to other countries such as Venezuela yet.

teke184 on February 21, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Yes it has

Venezuelan legislature erupts into brawl

http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/news/2011/02/18/venezuela-student-hunger-strike-gains-momentum-meets-government/

What started off as a small hunger strike of Venezuelan students, is now growing as dozens of people have joined the protest demanding that the government let the Organization of American States investigate alleged human rights abuses under President Hugo Chávez.

William Amos on February 21, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Hope Khadaffy’s platform has a trapdoor.

That would be good noose.

profitsbeard on February 21, 2011 at 5:31 PM

I am suspicious of the ‘food prices’ reasoning. I’d like to see some real data on the retail prices of foodstuffs in the ME, with histories. It sounds too much like the usual pap from those that want to blame the West for anything bad that happens.

slickwillie2001 on February 21, 2011 at 4:43 PM

China breaking

The demand for food, meanwhile, has been growing, especially in big developing countries like China.

“Sixty percent of all soybeans traded in the world go to China right now,” notes the USDA’s Glauber. “Forty percent of all cotton goes to China, and … a fifth of all vegetable oil.”

This imbalance between tight supplies and growing demand inevitably pushes food prices up.

William Amos on February 21, 2011 at 5:32 PM

The Libyans need to be more specific which regime they are talking about …

tarpon on February 21, 2011 at 5:32 PM

What started off as a small hunger strike of Venezuelan students, is now growing as dozens of people have joined the protest demanding that the government let the Organization of American States investigate alleged human rights abuses under President Hugo Chávez.

William Amos on February 21, 2011 at 5:28 PM

You know what would be sheer entertainment?

If Qaddafi had fled to Venezuela and another Rebelution took place and he had to make a run for it with his buddy Chavez riding shotgun.

sharrukin on February 21, 2011 at 5:32 PM

slickwillie2001 on February 21, 2011 at 5:17 PM

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/02/19/obama-coaches-sashas-team-sasha/

I bet he had fun and I have to admit it’s a can’t miss for most people.

Cindy Munford on February 21, 2011 at 5:36 PM

But once “advisers” are sent in, as JFK learned the hard way, there’s no pulling back.

maverick muse on February 21, 2011 at 5:12 PM

That is certainly a valid point, it would be a tough call but that is what leaders do. In the case of Viet-Nam we did live to see the dominoes fall.

fourdeucer on February 21, 2011 at 5:39 PM

Can we at least take advantage of the turmoil to snatch-and-grab the Lockerbie bomber? Preferrably, without Barry’s knowledge.

Christien on February 21, 2011 at 6:13 PM

This man has more cajones than the Wisconsin state senators. If ‘Daffy survives this uprising, the poor ambassador won’t. But don’t worry folks – - he’ll have Hillary Clinton and the Smart Power team on his side . . . . . all the way to to the crypt.

kens on February 22, 2011 at 11:04 AM