With the end game in Libya still unclear, President Obama said Tuesday that Col. Moammar Khadafy's grip on power cannot last much longer.Obviously it hasn't "filtered" to him yet since his forces are beating the snot out of the rebels according to the latest reports.
"The noose has tightened around him," Obama told CBS News.
"Khadafy's camp, people around him, are starting to recognize that their options are limited and their days are numbered," he said.
"But that information may not have filtered to Khadafy yet."
Libyan rebels have withdrawn from the oil town of Ras Lanuf under bombardment from Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's forces, exposing their weakness without Western support.Now if you're this rag-tag rebel bunch of guys who we can't even identify, do Obama's empty words provide any comfort for you? Especially with such clear, decisive statements such as this?
The rapid reverse comes just two days after the rebels raced westwards along the coastal road in pursuit of the Libyan dictator's forces.
The government army had seen its tanks and artillery demolished in five days of coalition aerial assault in the town of Ajdabiyah, but now appears to have regrouped.
Col Gaddafi's troops first ambushed the insurgent convoy outside the leader's hometown of Sirte, then outflanked them through the desert, a manoeuvre requiring the sort of discipline entirely lacking in ragtag rebel force.
On the offensive, government tanks and artillery have unleashed a fierce bombardment on towns and cities, forcing the rebels to flee.
The tactic appears to have worked once again in Ras Lanuf, an oil terminal town 230 miles east of the capital Tripoli.
"Gaddafi hit us with huge rockets. He has entered Ras Lanuf," rebel fighter Faraj Muftah told Reuters after pulling out of Ras Lanuf.
The United States and France have raised the possibility of arming the rebels, though both stressed no decision had yet been taken.Well, gee, thanks for clearing that up, Colonel Obama. If I were a rebel on the run, hearing that you're neither ruling it in or out really provides a clear picture on what my options are. Let's see, should I stay where I am and have huge rockets rain down on me or should I wait around for a guy more interested in watching basketball before I clear the hell out if I want to live.
"I'm not ruling it in, I'm not ruling it out," US President Barack Obama told NBC overnight.
This is what it's come to. I firmly believe Obama has spent more time working on his NCAA picks and watching games that he has being briefed on developments in Libya. What other explanation is there? We have an obvious vacuum of leadership and the world sees this.
Putting aside Libya for a minute, what do you suppose the folks in Syria and elsewhere are thinking when they see this vacillating jellyfish offering up this nonsense?
Obama appears to be hesitating about which side to take, with signs that he might give the tyrant the benefit of a doubt. That would be a mistake.Of course such obvious humiliation and fecklessness didn't prevent Obama's pom-pom media for celebrating his masterful foreign policy, but they can't sustain much longer pretending one thing is happening while our eyes tell us a completely different story.
Obama adopted such a position during the pro-democracy uprising in Iran in 2009. That made it easier for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to consolidate its coup and impose Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as president for a second term.
Obama at first tried the same approach in Tunisia and Egypt, by supporting the despots -- but finally wound up siding with the people. As a result, America lost on both scores. By abandoning well-established allies, it was accused of being a fickle friend. But the switch to the people's side came too late to enable the United States to claim a share in ending the dictatorial regimes.