One of the key arguments for America not being the world’s policeman is that constant intervention leads to too many unintended consequences.

Libya is a perfect example.

President Reagan was right when he called Muammar Gaddafi the “mad dog of the Middle East,” and yet in recent years many in Washington have gone out of their way to support the Libyan dictator.

What kind of American “leader” would do such a thing? How about 2008 Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain. Reports The American Spectator’s Doug Bandow:

“It turns out that (McCain) was for dictatorship before he was against it… Two years ago Sen. McCain was hanging out with the ‘Colonel’ he tweeted about as ‘interesting’ urging arms sales. According to a new cable released by WikiLeaks:

‘In the meeting, Muatassim Qadhafi, the Libyan leader’s fifth son and national security adviser, requested U.S. assistance in obtaining military supplies, both lethal and non-lethal… The cable indicates that McCain was the dominant voice among the congressional delegation in a push for military hardware for Qadhafi.’

‘Sen. McCain assured Muatassim that the United States wanted to provide Libya with the equipment it needs for its … security,’ according to the cable.

McCain said that he understood the need for Libya to upgrade its existing ranks of C-130 Hercules aircraft. Libya had bought eight of the military cargo aircraft in the 1970s, but as bilateral relationships with the United States deteriorated, a ban of arms sales prevented the aircraft from being moved to North Africa. McCain pledged to do what he could to move the issue forward in Congress.”

No doubt, McCain would have considered those in Congress who opposed strengthening Gaddafi’s military capabilities “isolationists” for not wanting to aid our Libyan “ally”—just as McCain today considers those who opposed Obama’s intervention in Libya to topple Gaddafi “isolationists.”

For McCain (and Presidents Bush and Obama) the worst thing the US could do is not get involved. And yet our recent help in overthrowing Gaddafi might have actually helped Al-Qaeda. Reported CBS News in March:

“Former CIA officer Bruce Riedel (told)… the Hindustan Times: ‘There is no question that al Qaeda’s Libyan franchise, Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, is a part of the opposition. It has always been Qaddafi’s biggest enemy and its stronghold is Benghazi. What is unclear is how much of the opposition is al Qaeda/Libyan Islamic Fighting Group – 2 percent or 80 percent.”

Why would we ask the U.S. military to help people in Libya that we ask them to fight in other countries? Vice President Dick Cheney once said that if there was a 1% chance Iraq had WMDs the US must attack. If there is even a 2% chance the US is helping Al-Qaeda in Libya, why would we do it?

Rebel leaders themselves have admitted that Al-Qaeda is among their ranks. The Telegraph ran the headline in March “Libyan rebel commander admits his fighters have al-Qaeda links,” reporting:

“Mr al-Hasidi insisted his fighters ‘are patriots and good Muslims, not terrorists,’ but added that the ‘members of al-Qaeda are also good Muslims and are fighting against the invader.”

This is foreign policy schizophrenia. From the very beginning, Ron Paul has consistently said we should not get involved in Libya’s internal affairs because nothing good can come of it. Nothing good continues to come of it.

So who was right about intervening in Libya? The Bush administration? President Obama? John McCain?

Or Ron Paul?


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