Sunday, August 21, 2011

Bye-Bye Qaddafi

Text of President Barack Obama's statement on the rebel advances in Libya:

Tonight, the momentum against the Qadhafi regime has reached a tipping point. Tripoli is slipping from the grasp of a tyrant. The Qadhafi regime is showing signs of collapsing. The people of Libya are showing that the universal pursuit of dignity and freedom is far stronger than the iron fist of a dictator.

The surest way for the bloodshed to end is simple: Moammar Qadhafi and his regime need to recognize that their rule has come to an end. Qadhafi needs to acknowledge the reality that he no longer controls Libya. He needs to relinquish power once and for all. Meanwhile, the United States has recognized the Transitional National Council as the legitimate governing authority in Libya. At this pivotal and historic time, the TNC should continue to demonstrate the leadership that is necessary to steer the country through a transition by respecting the rights of the people of Libya, avoiding civilian casualties, protecting the institutions of the Libyan state, and pursuing a transition to democracy that is just and inclusive for all of the people of Libya. A season of conflict must lead to one of peace.

The future of Libya is now in the hands of the Libyan people. Going forward, the United States will continue to stay in close coordination with the TNC. We will continue to insist that the basic rights of the Libyan people are respected. And we will continue to work with our allies and partners in the international community to protect the people of Libya, and to support a peaceful transition to democracy.

(MSN blog)

(Photo of four dictators in better times (for them), by Sabri Elmehedwi/European Pressphoto Agency: New York Times Lede Blog)


  1. I can't wait to see his tombstone then we'll know how to spell his name.

  2. I assume it will be in Arabic, so you still won't know.

  3. CONCORD, NH (The Borowitz Report) – The mystery surrounding Col. Muammar Gaddafi’s whereabouts was resolved today as the dictator announced his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination in a town hall meeting in Concord, New Hampshire.In announcing his candidacy, the Libyan madman joins a Republican field which is believed to number in excess of seven hundred candidates.While some New Hampshire Republicans seemed surprised to see Col. Gaddafi shaking hands and kissing babies at the Concord town hall, an aide to the Libyan strongman said his transformation to GOP candidate made perfect sense.“In those final days in Tripoli he was becoming increasingly disconnected from reality,” said the aide. “So I think he’ll fit right in.”Mr. Gaddafi, dressed in his trademark yellow turban and matching robe, got mixed reviews in his first appearance on the campaign trail, with some New Hampshire citizens saying that his six-hour stump speech was badly in need of pruning.Additionally, some felt that his rhetoric needed to be toned down, especially his closing line about fighting for the Republican nomination “until the last drop of blood.”But others gave him high marks for his grasp of history and geography, which most agreed was stronger than Michele Bachmann’s.Perhaps underscoring the challenges that lie ahead for Mr. Gaddafi in his quest for the GOP nod, current polls show him in the back of the pack, leading former Senator Rick Santorum but trailing the pizza guy.“Unfortunately for Muammar Gaddafi, he might be out of step with the current crop of Republican candidates,” one pollster said. “There’s a perception that he’s too moderate.”

  4. They say that no matter who is nominated by either major party--even if it is Barry Goldwater for the Republicans or George McGovern for the Democrats--any major party candidate is guaranteed at least 40% of the vote. I wonder if Qaddafi would hit that threshold if the Republicans nominated him. I also wonder if Republican primary voters would dig the turban and the robe. Qaddafi would definitely stand out from the crowd.

    By the way, the statement about fighting until the last drop of blood is actually not that different from the line that Pat Buchanan used when he ran for the Republican nomination in 1996. He said he would fight until hell freezes over and then he would fight on the ice. Buchanan dropped out not too long after that.

  5. Pat was (is) good for a quote!