Who Will Command the War on Libya?

Obama Vows 'Handover,' But to Whom?

Speaking in Chile on Monday, President Obama promised that the US command over the Western attack on Libya would be transferred in a “matter of days.” Exactly whom he intends to transfer it to, however, is unclear.

So far, the whole “coalition” that President Obama is referring to seems to begin and end with Britain and France. Qatar is expected to join in soon, in some very limited fashion, but the Arab League has already condemned the bombings. Norway is also planning to deploy a handful of planes.

British Prime Minister David Cameron is calling for NATO to take over, but many of NATO’s member nations aren’t even involved in this war, and member nations like Germany and Turkey seem to want nothing to do with the conflict. France has also expressed concern that NATO’s control would damage Arab public opinion over the war.

The problem of who exactly is supposed to be in charge is compounded by myriad disagreements over what the goal is supposed to be. The Obama Administration was quite eager to jump into this war after the UN vote, but it seems there was almost no consideration of what would happen after it started.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.