Secretary of State says Kaddafi is not legitimate

“Qaddafi has lost the legitimacy to govern, and it is time for him to go without further violence or delay,” Mrs. Clinton told reporters after a special meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council.
NYT, March 1

Excuse me, I’m sorry for asking such a silly and naive question, really I am, but since when does the United States have the right to declare who is the legitimate ruler of a foreign country—a country, moreover, with which we are not at war and with which we have diplomatic relations? Kaddafi has been the dictator of Libya for over 40 years, and we never challenged his legitimacy before, even when we bombed him in 1986. What gives us the authority to do so now?

—end of initial entry—

Gintas writes:

What’s to stop America? Are we not the nation of nations, standing astride the earth, making and breaking nations? Are we not the law, the last word made flesh?

I’m sitting here praying, “God, please stop us.”

Greg W. writes:

It’s never been hip to challenge Kaddafi before, and Obama is a hipster. With the uprisings all over the Middle East, the Obama administration thinks it can glom on to the movements by supporting the citizens’ unrest, and the Muslim world will in return like us (or Obama) once the ruling class is kicked out of power. This is pretty typical political opportunism in my eyes. It’s of course na├»ve to think siding with the hip Facebook and Twittering Muslim youth will in turn bring future friendly relations between Middle Eastern (or North African) nations and the U.S. As soon, or if, the new politicos take over, they will hate us just the same once they realize how much we are in their business, or press them to let us stick our fingers in their pie.

James P. writes:

Robert Conquest referred to Stalin as “Breaker of Nations“—perhaps Hillary Clinton now wants to claim that title.

Paul K. writes:

It’s clear that President Obama has held Kaddafi in contempt for a long time. For example, in the photo of their meeting in July 2009 at the G8 Summit, while our president is giving the Libyan dictator the two-hand clasp, he is hardly bowing at all.


LA replies:

That’s shocking, that a U.S. president would be so arrogant as to greet a Third World dictator and show no respect, no deference at all. Not only does he not bow, he doesn’t even nod his head, but instead stares brazenly into Kaddafi’s face. I’m embarrassed for my country. No wonder Obama feels no compunction about declaring Kaddafi illegitimate and telling him to relinquish power.

Michael S. writes:

Hillary Clinton’s basis for calling Qaddafi’s regime illegitimate is based on the Classical Realist approach to International Affairs. “Classical realists are concerned with the condition of legal sovereignty, which describes the basis of a state’s authority over its territory and people and conversely, the absence of authority over territory, people, or events in other sovereign states.”

LA replies:<
P> I don’t think Hillary has ever been linked with the Realist school of foreign policy.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at March 01, 2011 02:40 PM | Send

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