Why oh why oh why is John McCain on yet another Sunday show? What gives him any credibility on opining on the Middle East, especially when he appears determined not to learn any lessons from our existing fubars in the region?
In calling for the no-fly zone, McCain told "This Week" anchor Christiane Amanpour, "We can't risk allowing Gadhafi to massacre people from the air, both by helicopter and fixed-wing [aircraft]."
Amanpour pointed out that Secretary of Defense Robert Gates had recently noted that imposing a no-fly zone over a country as large as Libya would be a significant endeavor.
"If it's ordered, we can do it. But the reality is there's a lot of, frankly, loose talk about some of these military options," the secretary said on Capitol Hill on Wednesday. "And let's just call a spade a spade: a no-fly zone begins with an attack on Libya to destroy the air defenses. That's the way you do a no-fly zone."
McCain noted that, "these air assets that Gadhafi has are not overwhelming."
If the U.S. gets involved, Amanpour asked, is that taking sides?
"Clearly," McCain said, "we are on the side of the rebels. We have called for Gadhafi's removal – that's the President of the United State's policy. I want to emphasize: ground intervention would not be appropriate – certainly not at this time.
"A ground intervention by the part of the United States could be very counterproductive," he said. "But we can assist in a lot of ways: humanitarian, intelligence, providing them with some training and other things we can do as they form up a provisional government in Benghazi."
So how can the U.S. push Gadhafi to leave?
"I hope that Gadhafi understands the inevitability of --" McCain began to say.
"But he hasn't shown much indication to us," Amanpour interjected. She sat down with the Libyan leader last Monday.
"Oh, I agree with you," McCain said. "He's insane. But perhaps the people around him would begin to depart the sinking ship."
"Again," he added, "by a no-fly zone, by declaring our support for a provisional government, perhaps, which is being formed up now – there is a lot of steps we can take."
How exactly does Grampy McCrankypants think you create a no-fly zone? Just declare it and be done with it? It has to be enforced. And that takes troops. And support crews. Do we actually need yet another front? Why exactly hasn't McCain learned that American intervention actually works against our vital interests? New Obama Chief of Staff Richard Daley has figured it out and says that Gadhafi isn't the only insane one when bringing up no-fly zones.
Well, you know, lots of people throw around phrases of "no-fly zone," and they talk about it as though it's just a game on a video game or something, and some people who throw, throw that line out have no idea what they're talking about. Bob Gates understands the difficulty of going to war. This is a man who spent his -- almost his entire life working for the government. He, he knows the difficulty of war and the challenges, as does Admiral Mullen. So when, when people comment on military action, most of them have no idea what they're talking about.
Would that John McCain acted so cautiously before committing other people's children.