Home / Robert Farley / France Rides to the Rescue?

France Rides to the Rescue?


I have also been hearing some arguments to this effect:

Let’s make something clear, the civil war in Libya will not end in a stalemate. The French will likely intervene with ground forces and topple the Gaddafi regime, and they will probably do it within a month. It is quite possible that they will do so with Italian help. President Obama has fervently wished for America to be just one of the boys; in the end, this may be a case of wishing for something so much that you get it. America has abrogated the role of global marshal that it assumed after World War II. Every posse needs a Marshal to lead it. The French will likely pick up the tin star they found lying in the street of the global village.

I, for one, am not even mildly bothered by the idea that the United States is abrogating the role of “global marshal” on this point, although I also rather strongly disagree with elements of the characterization.

I should also note that a French seizure of Tripoli and overthrowing of the Gadhafi government isn’t the worst case in this scenario. Blasting away at Libya for three years while the rebels get their act together is likely to be worse in terms of human and material cost, and isn’t much less likely to result in a bloody insurgency.  But I also doubt that the French have any solid idea about what they’re getting themselves into.

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