The Campaign Spot

Why Do We Expect Restraint From a Murderous Madman?

Today Moammar Qaddafi responded to the violence in his country with an insane, rambing, endless speech in which he invoked Tiananmen Square, Russian tanks shelling the Duma, and the siege on the Branch Davidian compound, called the protesters “rats” and “cockroaches,” pledged to fight to the last drop of blood, and ordered protesters to surrender their weapons, saying there would be a “slaughter” and pledging to purge Libya “house by house” and “inch by inch.”

The man’s a lunatic, but his intentions seemed pretty clear.

Our scretary of state responds:

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Tuesday Libya must end violence against protesters seeking to end Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s 41-year rule and the United States would take “appropriate steps” in time.

“As we gain a greater understanding of what actually is happening — because you know, of course, that communication has been very effectively shut down and we are trying to gather as much information as possible — we will take appropriate steps in line with our policies, our values and our laws,” she told reporters during a news conference. “But we are going to have to work in concert with the international community.”

“We are obviously watching developments in Libya with grave concern. We have joined with the international community in strongly condemning the violence in Libya and we believe that the government of Libya bears responsibility for what is occurring and must take actions to end the violence,” Clinton said.

He just said he’s going to kill everyone who opposes him, which would appear to suggest he’s not that interested in “taking actions to end the violence.” Or, I suppose, in his his mind, the violence will end once he’s killed everyone who opposes him.


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