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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Nicholas Kristof's "Hugs From Libyans": A New Benchmark for Naivete

In an op-ed in today's New York Times entitled "Hugs From Libyans" (, Nicholas Kristof writes:

"This time my reporting persuades me that most Libyans welcome outside intervention."

It is hard to imagine that reporting from Egypt, as opposed to Libya itself, provides a credible basis for "persuasion". Moreover, Kristof's determination that "most" (51%?) Libyans support intervention rings hollow. There is still no description by Kristof of the opposing tribes involved in this conflict, but then how could such details find their way into Kristof's op-ed, given that Kristof is to be found in Cairo?

As observed in prior blog entries, Qaddafi's tribe, the privileged Gadaffa, are fighting those seeking a larger share of the pie. The Gaddafa, out to preserve their entitlement, couldn't give a fig about Qaddafi's sponsorship of terror or human rights atrocities. I can authoratively inform Kristof that "most" Gaddafa oppose intervention, and on my next journey to Tripoli, I will be certain to arrange a scientific poll.

However, I agree with Kristof that Qaddafi would have shown no mercy to those living in Benghazi, and intervention was mandated to avert a bloodbath.

"Hugs from Libyans"? Get real, Nicholas. This is still a tribal war, and when the fighting is over and the Gaddafa, Warfalla, Zawiya, Bani Walid and Zintan patch up their differences, my bet is that "most" Libyans will have forgotten this noble gesture and will revert to their prior hatred of the U.S.

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