UN Approves “All Necessary Measures” In Libya

Things are starting to move again:



The U.N. Security Council has approved a resolution to impose a no-fly zone over Libya and authorize “all necessary measures” to protect civilians from attacks by Moammar Gadhafi’s forces. The vote late Thursday was 10-0 with five abstentions, including Russia and China.

That’s about it so far. More as it develops. But expect bombs to fall soon.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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33 Responses to UN Approves “All Necessary Measures” In Libya

  1. Level_Head says:

    “WMDs? We don’t need no steenkin WMDs to go to war.”

    The situation will be tense, and it makes me think of a bit of humor “What comes before tense? Pretense.”

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  2. Thanks for your humor, Level Head, and thanks E.M. Smith for posting this topic.

    When I was a child everyone was talking about World War II, and I innocently believed that the war must be a very unusual state of affairs.

    Now, a bit older, I realize that wars have been on-going all my life.

    In my next life I may try to figure out why this occurs, if the human species has not already destroyed itself.

  3. Level_Head says:

    Here is the text of Resolution 1973:

    Note that it explicitly prohibits “boots on the ground” — their phrase “all necessary measures” is carefully “excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory.”

    It instructs all states to freeze Libyan assets and give them to the Libyan people:

    Affirms its determination to ensure that assets frozen pursuant to paragraph 17 of resolution 1970 (2011) shall, at a later stage, as soon as possible be made available to and for the benefit of the people of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya;

    No trial, no judicial proceedings needed. Rather high-handed of them, it seems.

    As is always the case for UN resolutions, this is one gigantic sentence. But it creates a very difficult situation for member states — essentially “Protect the people on the ground but don’t go there.”

    And I am troubled, knowing the UN’s proclivities in this area, about the likelihood of those seized assets becoming a bonanza of funding for Muslim Brotherhood groups.

    This is al-Ikhwan’s lucky year, it seems–with the US, the UN, the EU and OIC on their side now. It will be unlucky for other Muslims, and everyone else.

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  4. pyromancer76 says:

    I can’t imagine that anything the UN — global elitists not elected — puts its mind to will come out well for anyone, except as Level-Head says for islamists (they have the most money in the chase these days, unless the Chinese are going to gain something from this action. The facts show that it (UN effort) is all crooked from stem to stern.

    The Irish (Celtic) in me says give both sides a shillelagh (both equal fire and air power) and let them have it out. It is all tribal anyway, unless my emotions have run away with me. However, seems like it is very late in the game to be “intruding”. Better the result stays within the indigenous population rather than ordered by some corrupt UN kleptocrat.

    I once was a supporter of (and taught about) the human rights council, successor to the human rights commission, founded out of the passionate concern about genocide (WWII). Then I researched what the UN did with that designation — including putting Gadhafi among other despots on the commission. Unspeakable truths of thuggism (and cronyism) parading around as “human rights”. (I have been reading about how much money Khaddafi has been given to Harvard Profs — and others academics — to tout “wonderful Lybia”.)

    I can’t imagine I would support anything the UN does these days. Let’s spend our resources helping Japan.

  5. John F. Hultquist says:

    This is just a hunch but the US military and CIA likely have a map location programmed in to a cruise missile for any spot in Libya that extends 20 feet in the air or into the ground. That we did not use these days ago says more about someone’s world view (or lack thereof) than anything else.

    Type the following into a Google search box

    rawanda “never again”

    and 1,140,000 results are returned.

  6. Ken McMurtrie says:

    Plenty of unkowns, plenty of doubts, plenty of questions.
    On the one hand this resolution effectively places Libya and the UN member states on a war footing. It will be difficult to enforce a no-fly limitation without some UN representative force violating its own rule. If Gadhafi sends out a bomber or ground-strike aircraft, what can the UN do? If it is shot down, even from a missile fired from outside the country’s borders, the resolution is broken by the UN. If missiles don’t count, Gadhafi can still use them himself.
    On the the hand, if no use of airpower is the result, Gadhafi’s forces are still able to fight for the “government”, presumably at a relative disadvantage, but maybe still winning. If not winning, then certainly prolonging the conflict.
    Either way the Libyan general population continue to suffer.

    Of course, if Gadhafi “agrees” to no air power, the way for the CIA and Israeli to infiltrate the country and assist the ‘rebels’ is made much easier and less risky, for them.

    Also, it wouldn’t be the first time that the US/UK violated a UN resolution on some pretext, maybe even if one Libyan aircraft takes to the air they will seize the moment.
    Or, does the resolution mean no-fly for Gadhafi but ok for the UN to “monitor’ the situation.

    Curious that Russia and China abstained when they could have vetoed the resolution. Basically a tacit approval in effect.

    Perhaps, it is just the UN’s way of showing that it exists and is demonstrating it’s usefulness. In reality nothing much is expected but they will have ‘tried’.

    @Oliver, On the subject of war in general – It seems that there are enough people who have the necessary built-in aggression to be prepared to fight and risk their lives for the psychopathic leaders who have no compassion, respect or understanding of human rights. I am at a loss to really understand why we must destroy each other. But, for sure, little good will result. Except, perhaps, in the eyes of those promoting population control.
    Of course, MUCH money is made by a few people.

  7. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    $1 bbl oil lets gooooooooooooooo

    Hey, why don’t they just attack Saudi. I mean that’s the country with no democracy? I guess it’s a bit hard to bomb it when you have an air base their and ex presidents are best mates with the non democratic regime? Saudi has only what 16-20million people, so easy to take and so much oil.

    Funny how nobody seems to care about the civil war in Ivory coast, guess Chocolate isn’t very important or doesn’t have the same profit margin.

    Rwanda 800,000 people + died, and nobody blinked. A few soldiers are getting killed in a civil war in Libya and its Ohhhhhhhhhh the humanity of it all….

    BTW Somalia also has some stuff going on, but the dumbed down war machine media is too busy pumping up Libya.

    Don’t worry, all you have to do is bomb it just like Afgan and Iraq and everyone is our friend there we’ll need no troops on the ground and if we did it’ll take 20 days to finish the war.

    I feel another 10 year war coming on. Why? Because $1 bbl oil while the price is high from instability makes lots of $$$$$$$$$$$$

    wooooooooo hooooooooooooo

  8. Ed Forbes says:

    another place in the world the US has no good reason to be.

    People get the government they deserve. They need to sort it out themselves.

    Apply this same logic of intervening in Libya to our own “war of northern aggression” and see where it leads.

  9. E.M.Smith says:

    I’ve shifted the blog wiget for “time” to be UTC.

    That may well screw up something or other, but at least I’ll not have to deal with daylight fraudulent time any more ;-)

  10. Ian W says:

    Well its a turn up – some years ago in Afghanistan when the Russians were occupiers, the US was working with and supplying Al Qaeda to overthrow the Russians.

    Now in Libya, the US is working to support the Al Qaeda supported ‘rebels’ to overthrow Gadhafi. I wonder if the CIA will start supplying Al Qaeda with Stinger missiles again?

    This whole mess has not been thought through.

    There is definitely more to coordinated ‘days of rage’ from Wisconsin to London and Bahrain than our main stream media can understand.

  11. oldtimer says:

    As of my (UK) lunchtime the Ghadaffi regime has declared a ceasefire and accepted the need for humanitarian aid etc etc. This is to be expected. The UN resolution is an open invitation to Ghadaffi to do just this. It buys him time.

    In the UK Parliament this am Cameron said this resolution was there to “save lives” and the NFZ was there to help this, but with conditions – no foreign boots on the ground, no mercenaries and an arms embargo. It seems these conditions apply to both the regime and the opposition.

    Cameron said, and has said, that he wants Ghadaffi out. It is not obvious that this resolution will do that. Whatever passes for regime change or “facilitating dialogue to lead to the political reforms necessary to find a peaceful and sustainable solution”, as the resolution states, will rest with the UN Special Envoy, “the Committee” (which seems to be the “Security Council of the African Union Ad Hoc High Level Committee”) which in turn will be assisted by an as yet unstaffed eight strong “Panel of Experts”. They obviously expect this to take a year if not more – clause 24 refers to “an initial period of one year”.

    This will run and run. Short of Ghadaffi being bumped off or deposed, I would not be surprised if he is still around in one years time while the UN continues to look for “peaceful and sustainable solution”.

  12. PhilJourdan says:

    I think it is just too late. Gaddafi has pretty much tamed the rebels. Like all things UN, it is a symbolic gesture signifying nothing.

  13. pascvaks says:

    As Mother Nature says: “Anything that goes up must one day come down.”

    Wonder what we had to give Russia and China to make this little “Permission Slip” happen?

    Anyone who thinks the UN is good for anything is very likely to believe anything at all. Save us all from mindless people.

  14. Level_Head says:


    Well its a turn up – some years ago in Afghanistan when the Russians were occupiers, the US was working with and supplying Al Qaeda to overthrow the Russians.

    Well, this certainly is not true; you’ve reversed the order of events a decade apart. Surely not just to make the US look bad?

    When the Soviets invaded, President Carter decided to launch covert ops (CIA) in Afghanistan in cooperation with Saudi Arabia, Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries, who sent money, equipment and fighters, and helped facilitate transport and passports. (We had just lost a war and had no appetite for another one.)

    But you cannot have the US, in 1979, “working with and supplying” an organization created about ten years later. Once the Soviet Union collapsed, these hot-headed and now-dangerous radicals fresh from victory were not welcome back in their home countries, and the US just sort of “lost” their passports.

    And in-country, the “foreign” Arabs from the Middle East clashed increasingly with the Pashtun locals, and these factions ultimately coalesced into the Northern Alliance (locals) and MAK groups becoming the Taliban. While the name “al Qaeda” got its start about the time of the fall of the Soviet Union, bin Ladin himself was moving around a lot — remember we attempted to extradite him from the Sudan, and he worked out a non-aggression pact with Saddam Hussein and was offered a base in Iraq.

    Al Qaeda was created a decade after the US began this process. Nor do I blame Carter for Usama bin Ladin, though Carter’s influence and funding by the Saudi’s was large then and remains so today. People’s decision to kill and use terrorism is their own responsibility.

    And al Qaeda was not the creation of poor people; bin Ladin had lots of money and the Saudis and others continued to supply lots of funding. He was mentored by a Muslim Brotherhood scholar to pursue the global caliphate, and is a “creation” if you would of MB, not the United States.

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  15. PhilJourdan says:


    Actually Carter did nothing except cancel our participation in the olympics. Indeed, not even Reagan did much. If you remember, it was rep. Charlie Wilson who managed to sneak some money into the budget for stingers and such.

  16. Level_Head says:


    Actually Carter did nothing except cancel our participation in the olympics

    As much as I am not a fan of Carter, are you seriously suggesting that he did NOT authorize the CIA to perform covert ops in Afghanistan, and did NOT help put together the funneling of Middle Eastern fighters into that country in response to Russia’s incursion? The budget increased later, but it was begun before Charlie Wilson was even involved. Remember his complaint that the Carter CIA effort was “understaffed”?

    I’m aware of “Charlie Wilson’s War” — and that book also plays with the timeframes for dramatic purposes:

    By the end of 1993, in Afghanistan itself there were no roads, no schools, just a destroyed country — and the United States was washing its hands of any responsibility. It was in this vacuum that the Taliban and Osama bin Laden would emerge as the dominant players. It is ironic that a man who had almost nothing to do with the victory over the Red Army, Osama bin Laden, would come to personify the power of the jihad.

    The problem with this is that by 1990, Usama bin Ladin was already involved in covert operations against the US, and had recruiting offices in mosques in New York. Just because he became more “famous” later doesn’t mean that he “emerged” later.

    But we’re fairly far off-topic from our host’s post.

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  17. PhilJourdan says:

    Level_Head – you mistake the workings of a bureaucracy with an intentional action by a man. The CIA was of course involved. They are involved in Libya now as well as virtually every other nation. However their normal shenanigans is not an overt exercise by Obama now, or Carter then.

  18. Level_Head says:


    Please look up “Operation Cyclone.” Please note which president signed the July, 1979 executive order to arm and train the insurgents. (We actually had, as you suggest, CIA involvement prior to July (going back about a year) but it was thin indeed. Operation Cyclone, 1979-1989, made this official policy of the United States. Reagan continued it, but Carter launched it. Even Wikipedia, famously defensive of Carter, records this.

    Try Chapter Nine of From the Shadows — the chapter is entitled “Carter Turns to CIA” and describes (with the preceding chapter) Carter’s launch of involvement in Afghanistan at the same time that his man Turner was gutting the intelligence agencies in general. We have never recovered from that blunder.

    Charlie Wilson was involved, but the world did not revolve around him. It’s a bit like the self-aggrandizement of Joseph Wilson, though the latter case was truly horrific. And the idea of supplying Stingers was not something Wilson was fond of or enthusiastic about — that idea came from elsewhere, even by his own admission.

    By coincidence, the gal who tracked down those Stingers — and who matched up the serial numbers and tied certain covert ops together — I had dinner with last Friday. The subject didn’t come up, but I’m aware of her background.

    Meanwhile, it seems that Gadhaffi is protesting his innocence, declared a “cease fire,” and is pulling a Saddam on the UN. Now, attempts to take out radar sites and such will look like raw aggression; he will get a little bit of sympathy.

    The UN is going to do something, no doubt — an even more strongly worded comment would certainly be likely. There is your ineffective bureacracy — and with the UN, I am glad that they are no more effective than they are.

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  19. PhilJourdan says:


    Again, I am not saying there is no program. Fine Carter signed it. he signed a lot of things (and we will forget about Wiki sionce they are useless unless you agree with their agenda). I will concede all your points. Yet you are missing mine.

    Carter did nothing. He talked a lot, but did nothing. Cylcone had no MONEY and therefore was as effective as Clinton and his aspirin factory. As Ten Bears would say – his words had no iron in them.

    Talk is cheap and that is what Carter was all about. Actions speak volumes and that is what Charlie Wilson did.

  20. Level_Head says:

    The links show that the US was not “working with and supplying Al Qaeda to overthrow the Russians” — and that al Qaeda came later, after the Soviets withdrew in 1988.

    The “World Press” link is hilariously wrong on many counts — but even it dates the formation of al Qaeda to the post-Soviet period:

    When the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan in 1989, it left Bin Laden’s now 10,000-strong force without any immediate work. Part of his men went home, with authorities in their respective countries labeling them undesirable elements. Bin Laden knew that unless he engaged another big power, his elite and expensive force would lose interest. Thus was born the Al-Qaeda organization, a pool of Afghan veterans that has grown over the years and now has a presence in about 50 countries.

    This was my point as well.

    Your rewriting of history to put al Qaeda back in the Carter/Reagan administrations is contrary to history — even such distorted history as the conspiracy links.

    I can understand the mistake — there’s a lot of bad information out there. And many who want to “blame” the US as much as possible. There’s enough stupidity — and as PhilJourdan indicated, inefficient bureaucracy — to go around without manufacturing more blame and rewriting history to do it.

    So what’s happening in Libya?

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  21. E.M.Smith says:


    As of my (UK) lunchtime the Ghadaffi regime has declared a ceasefire and accepted the need for humanitarian aid etc etc. This is to be expected. The UN resolution is an open invitation to Ghadaffi to do just this. It buys him time.

    Also remember that in Islam there is a long tradition of “ceasefire” and “truce” meaning “Time to rearm, reposition, refresh the troups, and lay the groundwork for the next assault”. Stems all the way back to some famous battle where Mohammed did exactly that, so now it has near religious significance.

    Any truce is just a “pause that refreshes” the war.


    “But we’re fairly far off-topic from our host’s post.”

    Seems to me it’s all connected… and you know my penchant for ‘end to end completion’… ;-)

    So from my point of view, it’s usefull ‘background” that helps in correctly predicting the “foreground”…

    “Charlie Wilson was involved, but the world did not revolve around him. It’s a bit like the self-aggrandizement of Joseph Wilson,”

    It’s also possible that there is a desire to deflect awareness from the “trick” to the “distractor”… Like all good magicians and illusionists, the CIA would be more than happy to have Charlie Wilson get the “glory” as a post facto illusion… Or put another way: In covert operations, you ALWAYS want something else that is logically “causal”, and NEVER want the audience to see how you did the trick…


    What exactly is the size of the “black budget” and how exactly was / is it apportioned to agencies and contractors in the field?

    See the problem? If it was authorized by the president, you can say nothing about what was, and was not, funded; only about what showed up on public budget reports. The rest is “classified”…

    I can’t say if “Carter did nothing” or not. (Though by all appearances you are correct and he did nothing) for the simple reason that in this kind of activity deception and indirection are the norm and funding and causality are hidden…

    So did he “do nothing” or was “something” competently hidden? Hmmmm….

    Part of why I love the “spy vs spy” game is that so much can turn on such small bits of data. It’s an ideal place for folks who survey a large turf and spot LOTS of small details and OOPARTS. Give me access to a military budget and I can tell you their capabilitys, deployments, strengths, weaknesses, and likely modes of action; and even make decent guesses about their speed and timing. That’s why black budgets are black.

    (And that, too, is why I’d said I could be comfortable at a desk in Langley… Were I running a spook shop, I’d have the Geek Devision and I’d actively recruit Aspes and even functional Autistics. Others have seen this potential, too, as it has figured in a couple of plot lines for movies – like the kid who broke the code in Mercury Rising where it’s stretched a bit too far… and in Asimov’s Mnemonic Service. The British used a ‘math test’ for recruting for code breakers at Bletchley Park that would preferentially find such ‘gifted’ folks But I digress…. ;-)

    At any rate, I’m not saying “you are wrong”, I’m just saying “I don’t see how you can know”…

  22. Level_Head says:

    One of the sort of mental misfires that happens is too-quick association in the mind of some author. For example, from the WorldPress link that Ian W supplied above, the opening words:

    Ironic as it may sound, Osama bin Laden, the most-wanted man in the world and the perceived symbol of evil, received his first lessons in the art of clandestine operations and subterfuge from the CIA.

    Rewind to the late ’70s. It was at the Jawora base near Host, Afghanistan, that U.S. intelligence set up a training ground to equip young men to fight a guerrilla battle against the erstwhile U.S.S.R.

    Two points. One, “the late ’70s” — i.e. Jimmy Carter’s administration. His public executive orders, the memoirs of the people involved, all indicate that he “took action” by getting the CIA involved in Afghanistan to arm and train insurgents. This article says the same thing.

    But it also makes the error of association. The CIA is spooks — so when they go to train warriors, the article assumes, they don’t train them to fight a guerilla war, they teach them “clandestine operations and subterfuge.” This looks bad, and suggests that the CIA taught bin Ladin how to infiltrate the US to attack us on 9/11.

    The testimony of the players, including bin Ladin himself, denies this — and it makes no sense. They had a war to fight, against a large conventional force operating in hostile terrain (in all senses). Unconventional warfare, guerilla tactics, specialized weapons and gear — everything involved in making life difficult for the Soviets — would be the topics of discussion. Not how to fool the US into teaching your people how to fly 757s. It would be many years before that plan care together — more than a decade after the Soviets pulled out and the US lost interest in Afghanistan.

    “OOh! CIA! They’re spooks! So they must only teach spook-tricks! So we taught Usama bin Ladin to be a spy! He was a VIP spy student!” That’s the thinking revealed in articles like the above.

    The article actually uses the “VIP student of the CIA” line — even though there were layers between the Americans and insurgents, as most of these Middle Easterners (including Usama bin Ladin himself) hated America and would not willingly have accepted their help or training.

    And as EM Smith says, black ops budgets are not public. One bit of recent irony, considering Carter’s decision to launch a covert war in Afghanistan: He said this in December 2010:

    “Anybody who has ever invaded Afghanistan has come out a loser, and I have serious doubts that we will prevail and overcome our goals,” Carter said.

    Carter was president when the Soviet Union invaded the Middle Eastern country in 1979, beginning what would be an almost decade-long military battle. The conflict escalated the growing Cold War tensions between communist-supporting and anti-communist nations.

    The U.S. invaded Afghanistan again in 2001 in an effort to weed out leaders of Al-Qaeda, the militant Islamist group that organized the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

    Carter thinks he did something — he thinks he invaded Afghanistan. While this overplays his role (as he is wont to do), I am amused at his tacit admission that he has “come out a loser.” That is one Carter assessment that I can agree with.

    But why, exactly, would we want to “overcome our goals”?

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  23. George says:

    “authorize “all necessary measures” to protect civilians from attacks by Moammar Gadhafi’s forces.”

    That is quite different than a “no fly zone”. That is taking on the responsibility of protecting the population.

    Also note that in the past, Afghanistan has been very successfully invaded. But only by ruthless invaders. Khan did not tolerate any resistance yet was quite accommodating when a population submitted. If your village offered any resistance, it was simply eliminated and then off to the next one.

    In a more modern sense, imagine if in response to some village harboring people who would attack our troops, we simply evacuated the town, brought in a dozen bulldozers, pushed the town into one huge pile and set it alight. On the other hand, you are quite generous and accommodating to villages that don’t shoot at you. Chances are you would only need to perform the “scrape and burn” process a very few times. Once word got around, when the bad guys arrived into town, the villagers would probably chase them out themselves.

  24. R. de Haan says:

    Ron Paul: Libya Air Strikes unconstitutional
    Only Congress can declare war

    Nigel Farage: EU has No Legitimacy or Consent to take Military Action

  25. Ken McMurtrie says:

    This thread is getting a bit too involved for me but I would like to suggest that a lot of confusion is arising from the use of the term “Al Qaeda”.
    It is seriously questioned these days as to the existence, at any time, of any real terrorist group calling themselves this name.
    The name itself was apparently coined from a translation of “database” of known terrorists.
    Perhaps it gets adopted by some terrorists to boost their image.
    As Bin Laden probably died years ago, the continued use of his name and that of Al Qaeda is considered by many to be false flag propadanda, generated by the CIA.
    If one substitutes ‘CIA’ in both cases, instead of ‘Bin Laden’ and ‘Al Qaeda’, the history will make more sense.

  26. George says:

    Ron Paul? “False flag”? Have the loonies arrived?

  27. Level_Head says:

    @Ken McMurtrie:

    Do you think that “Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’ is really “CIA Really in the Arabian Peninsula”? I think that’s CRAP. (Instead of AQAP.)

    ===|==============/ Level Head

  28. Ken McMurtrie says:

    Sorry EM., it seems I have created a problem.
    One which you don’t deserve. My apologies!

  29. Ken McMurtrie says:

    Into yet another war! UNBELIEVABLE!
    How the blazes can this be resolved without major civilian deaths and injuries? With remote monitoring and control how can targeting be accurate and effective?
    More collateral damage.
    For what price?
    For what gain?
    At what cost?
    Poor Libyans!
    Poor Americans – more citizen deprivation!

  30. E.M.Smith says:

    @Ken McMurtrie:

    You expect this to be resolved? /sarcoff>


    Nope. Just the normal “fog of war” artifacts.

    We really do not know much about Al Quada these days (though I have seen film of Bin Laden clearly using the works, and as I understand it, it means “The Base” or “The Foundation” and it was his idea…) nor Bin Laden.

    In the absense of information, speculation runs rampant. During ‘hot wars’ with active disinformation by all sides, it gets worse.


    There WILL be disinfo campaigns by both sides. Good luck sorting them out…

  31. Ken McMurtrie says:

    No EM, I do not expect it to be resolved.
    Similarly, Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Just losers all the way down the line, except for the oil industry, weapons manufacturers and financiers.
    (Probably the illicit drug industry will keep winning.)
    Humanity?, a one way trip down the drain!

  32. Francisco says:

    The head of a NATO “humanitarian” bombing mission instructs his pilots thus:

    “On your way in, you drop the bombs. On your way back, you drop the humanitarian aid”

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