I originally posted this on 19 June 2011. I guess it was far more of a omen then I knew.
Its 10:21 am
Just read that two US lawmakers, Democrat Dennis Kucinich of Ohio and Republican Walter Jones of North Carolina have filed suit against President Obama over the Libyan war.
At first glance it seems to be a grandstanding political, ploy but is it? Maybe not. The fact is this,there was and is NO way for NATO to stop anyone,even Libya, in a international intervention. The defenses of the NATO powers have been cut to the bone so badly that Great Britain,once the world’s formost naval power,doesn’t even have a active aircraft carrier!
The force arrayed against Libya that NATO has projected is token at best with many nations not even able to send a full squadron of fighters because of budget cuts. This means in EVERY single incident the US is going to have to be a “partner”. And this isn’t right…we have already spent over a Billion dollars on Libya and lost a F-15SE. Even now today,the vast majority of combat planes are ours. Britain,which along with France,started this dog and pony show,already is running dangerously short of men and planes that can help pull its share. The MoD has already retired its Harrier and GR.3 Tornado Force and ONLY because of this crisis,has spared a single Nimrod MRA4 maritime and ASW plane that would have help the UK have a long arm counter-attack against submarines. And just a few months ago,the Royal Navy deactivated thier one active aircraft carrier,the Ark Royal. So other then a handful of fighters being flown from the French carrier,all of NATO’s flights are coming from Italian bases. This is a very expensive way to conduct a limited engagement as you have to put more planes in the air for longer flights and shorter combat time over the targets. Now while Libya really has no air defenses worth talking about ,the fact that NATO is not landing ground forces means that Gaddafi’s forces only have to outlast NATO’s attempts to stop his troops. While the Libyan infantry isn’t well trained or has modern armor,on the whole,its still better armed then the rebels.
The rebels have captured air assets but have had limited sucess with many of the copters and jets being shot down in Blue on Blue encounters,Libyan Air Force shootdowns and in at least 2 cases,kamikaze attacks on Libyan army barracks.
The attack that killed one of Gaddafi’s grandkids was by a rebel jet being flown into a barracks.
But as the headlines have faded away,a glaring problem has arisen…the flights to support the rebels have slowed dramatically,it seems that the NATO forces are running OUT of ammo! Fighting a 3rd rate military!
And of course,who are they coming to for more??? The US of course.
As I’m writing this,the Dutch government has decided to cut 19 more combat aircraft from its air force,they now have 68 F-16s in front line squadrons and also have decided to eliminate thier armor! No more tanks….
We are being lulled to sleep over here by being the world’s policeman. While NATO countries have continued to slash and gut thier military spending (only 4 of the 27 NATO allies spend the required 2% of thier GDP on defense as outlined in the treaty itself).
As the rhetoric heats up over the legal question about us conducting this 3rd war,the REAL question we need to address is this….if the NATO allies are not going to pull thier weight in thier own defense,they sure as hell shouldn’t ask us to support an misadventure like Libya and maybe the US really needs to rethink its role in NATO. We are supposed to help budget 50% percent of NATO’s needs….its now at 75% and climbing!