The New York Times reported today what should not have been hard to predict. The US has advisors on the ground in Libya.
This is the way it started in Vietnam too. We escalated to trainers and before we knew it we were in for a whole lot more. But probably not this time.
From the evening television reports, the rebels do not have a chance against any type of regular Army. They race around in civilian vehicles during the daylight and then head home to rest at night. Kadafi’s forces are far more organized and are repelling the rebels. If the west does not do something quickly, there will be no rebel territory to defend.
The question of the day, however, is can these US advisers (said to be CIA or CIA contractors) tilt the battle alone? One task they are said to be providing is forward observer air guidance. In short, they are telling coalition planes which vehicles belong to Kadafi’s troops and which ones do not. It was easy with tanks because only Kadafi had them. Now Government forces are using civilian vehicles too. It is hard to tell from the air who has the white hats and who has the black ones.
These are dangerous times. For sure we have gotten here in a much more reasoned way than when we invaded and occupied Iraq. That still does not mean we will not get sucked in and find the same results.
It is time to support the President (for say 3 months) and then decide if the view is worth the climb.