LATEST UPDATE (8-25-11):
At the the opera they say it ain’t over till the fat lady sings. In libya, it can’t even begin to be over till Gaddafi crawls out of his hole or until he is pulled out. His loyalits are still resisting and he’s still issuing statements, according to reports, even though his command center/residence was taken over.
And one wonders if this will all devolve into a civil war.
Over the last 12 hours or so the story/rumor that is circulating concerning the apparent Libya rebel victory over Gaddafi, who served as a tyrant for more than four decades, is that a draft of a new “democratic” constitution is circulating and that it calls for the imposition of Sharia law.
I have to admit I know next to nothing about Sharia law, except basically I understand it is an Islamic religious code. Well if a nation is going to have an official religion, it seems logical it might well adopt that religion’s code.
I could no more deal with the imposition of Sharia law here in the United States than I could deal with the imposition of some Christian code of conduct based on the Old or even New Testament of the Holy Bible.
In the U.S., religious freedom, which includes the prohibition of a state-sponsored religion (and I would add, freedom from religion), is a fundamental part of our democracy. It would seem impossible to achieve anything close to our basic freedoms with the imposition of a religious law, even though much of our law is derived from religious moral codes of the past.
And that story or rumor about a pending imposition of Sharia law in Libya is just that, a story or rumor.
But again, my limited understanding is that there are various forms of Sharia law and that different people, that is different Muslims, interpret it differently.
Now that I think about it, Iraq, which we liberated and nation-built with so much cost in blood and treasure, now uses Sharia law. And so does our oil-rich “friend ” Saudi Arabia.
(From what little I do understand of Sharia it is not fun to be a woman where it is practiced, unless you like having no rights.)
While we have to hope that something good comes out of the Libya rebel cause, such as a Western-style democracy, I’m not sure it should make a lot of difference to any of us here in the Good Old USA. We have our democracy and a nice country — we need to take care of ourselves and let Libyans decide what they want to do.
And by the way, does it bother you as it does me when I see all those ignorant people shooting automatic weapons into the air in “celebratory fire”? BBC (a much better source of news than any of our outlets) did a little story on the dangers and the many deaths that idiot behavior causes.
Are those people really ready to take care of things for themselves?
My previous post from 8-23-11 follows:
Maybe there is hope that the Libya thing won’t turn into an Iraqi/Afghanistan/Vietnam quagmire after all — we don’t know yet.
Unlike the Republicans, I freely admit or concede our President Obama is looking pretty clever right now. I was critical of his move and method on Libya, thinking that although we (the U.S.) went in there, by air power, under the cover of NATO, we would be left holding the bag and it would all turn into a messy civil war, as is or was the case in Iraq and/or a seemingly unwinnable fiasco as in Afghanistan.
I was right in that it takes ground troops — air alone would not likely topple Gaddafi — but the troops were indigenous rebels, the way it should be I would think.
As of this writing, Gaddafi has not been captured yet, but reports are that fighting is intense around his palace or compound, I guess they call it (I thought he lived in a tent), and smoke can be seen coming from his residence.
UPDATE: Now at mid morning my time on the West Coast reports are that rebels have taken over his compound and have found some of his officially-stamped papers. No reports of Gaddafi’s capture yet. If he’s like Saddam Hussein, I’d day call Rotorooter.
It’s almost laughable how the Republican candidates have to say they are happy Gaddafi is out or almost out but refuse to give Obama any credit.
I don’t even buy that it could have come quicker with more U.S. help — I mean maybe it could have, but I have to admit Obama was wise not to make this an American war. He also knew that he could not afford to get into still another ground war.
Of course no one knows what will happen now. It could still turn into complete chaos.
But for now, with the Obama-ordered killing of Osama Bin Laden by U.S. special operations and elite forces and now apparently the downfall of Gaddafi, I’d say Obama is looking pretty good.
But the economy here at home and the question of whether the Republicans can field an acceptable candidate, palatable to the bulk of American voters, will likely decide whether Obama gets a second term.
I wonder what Assad in Syria is thinking about now.