Wednesday, March 16, 2011


I believe that it would be a big mistake for us to get involved militarily in the fighting in Libya. The Libyan civil war is not really our business, and the great beauty of the whole Arab Awakening has been that it has been entirely home grown and Arab led. If the American military starts shooting and bombing people, that purity is destroyed and the legitimacy of the movement undermined.

And I also think we should not start shooting or bombing people in Bahrain, where they Emir has declared martial law and sent his army, backed by troops from Saudi Arabia, to disperse the protesters. But the Emir of Bahrain is supposed to be our friend, and we station our Fifth Fleet in his country to defend him and his oil against Iran and other enemies. Why aren't we leaning on him to make concessions? Surely there are quiet ways we could make it clear to him that some move toward greater rights for Bahrain's Shi'ite majority is the price for our continued support.

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