March 1st, 2011
06:00 PM ET

Should the U.S. do something to protect Libyans from Gadhafi?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The humanitarian crisis in Libya could quickly escalate into a full-blown catastrophe.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/images/03/01/art.gadhafi.jpg caption=""]
Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi has made it clear he will not be forced out of power. He continues to attack and kill his own people who dare to protest his dictatorship. It's estimated more than 1,000 people have been killed so far. The country has sunk into a civil war that has caused tens of thousands to flee to the Libyan-Tunisian border.

And it's getting worse by the day. So what's the United States, the world’s only superpower, to do?

After days of not saying much while Americans were evacuated, the White House has started to talk tough, saying all options are on the table with respect to Libya.

The U.S. has frozen $30 billion in Libyan assets. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has met with top diplomats to discuss possible next steps.

Today, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said he is positioning two naval warships in the Mediterranean near Libya. He said the focus is on humanitarian assistance and evacuations, and there has been no authorization for use of force.

In a piece for the UK Telegraph, foreign affairs analyst Nile Gardiner asks whether tyrants even fear the United States anymore. He writes, "Just a few years ago, the United States was genuinely feared on the world stage, and dictatorial regimes, strategic adversaries and state sponsors of terror trod carefully in the face of the world's most powerful nation. Now Washington appears weak, rudderless and frequently confused in its approach."

Here’s my question to you: Should the U.S. do something to protect Libyans from Gadhafi?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Marvin in Polo, Missouri:
No, they seem to be doing quite well on their own. If the leaders of the opposition ask publicly for our help we would then be justified in doing so, otherwise it would be construed as the Americans attacking another Muslim country.

Paulo in Oregon:
Enforcing a no-fly zone would be a good first step, arming the rebels an excellent second, and hanging the consequences a necessary third. Innocent people are being slaughtered while wise men ponder. If acting now is not who we are, then who are we?

Unfortunately, countries like France, China and Russia do not come forward during such times to take steps to protect innocent people from being killed by their own people. Yet, they will hide behind the U.S. and criticize us for whatever actions we take. The UN really does not have much credibility and effectiveness. We need to do the right thing rather than standby and watch the slaughter of innocent people.

Harold in Anchorage, Alaska:
Humanitarian aide, yes. Diplomatic pressure, of course, But no acts of war. We have plenty on our plate right now.

Ed in California:
Let the British do it. Gadhafi's their buddy. Didn't the British let out that "dying" terrorist, who flew off to a hero's welcome in Libya? Doesn't the British government get most of their oil from there? So let them deal with him.

Ron in Miami, Florida:
Jack, the United States should stay out of this, condemn the violence, and let the UN send food and medical aid. If the Libyans want freedom, they will need to shed their own blood to achieve it.

The U.S. government has enough to do protecting us from ourselves, which includes not getting into all the world's conflicts.

Filed under: Middle East
soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. John Cook

    For the first time since Paul Wolfowitz first opened his mouth in public I find myself agreeing We should recognize the temporary Government and ask them what help they need but agreeing with a person that signed the PNAC agreement one has to wonder why he might speak with such logic.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  2. John from Lafayette

    I may go as far as putting In a No fly-Zone In so the Libyan people wouldn't have too worry about being attack from the sky. But no more than that. Unless Ask by the Libyan people Provisional Government and ask to do so on TV so the rest of the middle east can hear It.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  3. Stephen G

    The US has sponsored this dictator. We are the reason he has held onto power for so long, and why he is incredibly wealthy while his people just get by. The protest signs read "go out US". The world should stand by and not become involved beyond humanitarian purposes. The Libyans need to be allowed to form a government representative of them, and them solely. THIS is democracy.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  4. Jeff, Chicago IL

    Jack, I think they've got it under control. The US should provide humanitarian aid, food, medicine, and shelter in the interest of fostering peace and cooperation in the region. Any military action on our part will be viewed as usurping the right of Libyans to total self-determination. Although on the other hand, we couldn't have done it 200 years ago without the French.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  5. George S

    I'm getting tired of the ripping of Obama for not being 'tough' enough on Llibya. What is he supposed to be doing that he isn't already? haven't we learned the painful lesson that there is a limit to our ability to impose our power without drastically negative consequences for all involved? (see iraw). We must get off this quick draw, send in the marines mentality. Tthe Libyan people don't want it and Americans certainly don't want it. It is an international crises that needs ot be handled by the international community, of which, finally, we are trying to be a part instead of being the lonesome cowboy.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  6. Christian Miner, Ph.D.

    Do you have any earthly idea how much the U.S. Marines aboard the 6th Fleet want to do this thing? Semper Fi.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  7. Bob in Kansas City

    Yes, but only with the same number of troops went onshore with on D-Day in France....if not then stay out of it and let the Libyans settle it among themselves.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  8. Lisa

    I support the Libyans in their fight for freedom but we cannot protect or defend the entire world. Our ATTEMPT to do this has resulted in a military budget that is greater than all the others in the world combined and debt we can no longer ignore

    Others in the world need to step up and help .... Let the Australians or Germans or Japanese – they dont spend what we do or have the debt we do, maybe they can afford it.

    March 1, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  9. crimsonofsam

    We'll be damned either way.Where is the new world leader...China?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  10. Earle Richmond

    No more wars except to defend our shores. We are overextended militarily. We are already upside down in debt. The American people have sacrificed far too much for international corporations, big banks and the oil companies. But, arming the oil executives and dropping them off on the beaches of Libya would be O.k. with me as long as they pay for their weapons. Also, no air or naval support.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  11. AJ

    People fighting and dying for democracy and freedom.....DUH! 200+ years ago did France not come to our aid and help us build America! We have no greater duty in our role as the world leader than to support Libyans, albeit in concert with the U.N. and NATO.
    Rocky Hill, CT.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  12. Amanda

    NO!!! We need to take care of ourselves for a change. Who cares what other nations think of us. This is none of our business and we need to keep our noses out of it. We are in debt. 2 ENDLESS wars still going on.. Nobody elected us the worlds savior... And who would pay to save them? We would just borrow the money from China again...

    March 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  13. Sally

    This is a no-win situation for Obama and for America. If he uses military force and Libyans die, America will be blamed for intervening in another country's sovereign affairs. If he lets Libyans sort this out for themselves and Libyans get annihilated, he will be accused of standing by while another Rwanda occurred. A good option might be for Obama to assemble some sort of UN-backed coalition to establish no-fly zones backed up with military force.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  14. Steve

    The U.S. should not meddle in the affairs of other countries. This is a civil war, and we have no reason to interfere.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
  15. Jan Boyd

    Yeah, we could "protect" them right out of their oil like we protect other Mideast countries.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
  16. jean2009

    Jack it looks like a lot of Libyans are doing a pretty good job on their own without our assistance. Should we send in troops that will open us up to a mess like Iraq...no. We bombed Iraq back to the stone age. Guess who will be stuck with the bill for rebuilding. I can see helping people and providing food, medicine, but sending in troops....no way.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  17. Lora McWilliams

    No. We've lost too many boys/men for the sake of some other country's 'liberty'. In the meantime, the American people lose more and more liberties to protect these countries. I'm tired of them hating on us. After all, most of the world views us as the Ugly Americans.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  18. Munir Jojo-Verge

    The U.S. by itself should never feel free to act militarily. If the U.N agrees, after all other measures failed, then a multi-national force should act, but only as a "Peace keeper"....As leaders of the free world we don't want to get rid of a dictatorship with another type of forced government brought by us!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  19. SImon st johns

    Perhaps the presence of the Enterprise, (same ship from the Gulf of Sidra Incident) and her escorts enforcing a no fly zone would send a much stronger and forceful message to Ghaddaffi Duck. Since the British RAF and the German Luftwaffe are already engaged in operations to rescue their people from Libya, then why not? The Libyan military is hardly a threat to most nations nowdays, they can't even defend themselves from themselves with equipment left over from the 1980s...In fact, mybe Malta might mount a military operation of its own and probably suceed in ousting Mo.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  20. Proud to be American

    Absolutely not. We should focus all our efforts in the U.S. economy. Nothing else comes close in terms of importance, especially Libya.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  21. Matt

    Historically though one thing than can unite a regime collasping from internal revolt is an invasion by another nation (Iran during the Iran-Iraq war for a quick example). Gadaffi is rambling like a madman about Americans blah blah and the last thing we'd want is to give him the distraction he needs. The country will fall on its own; all we need to and should do is support the new government afterward. However supplying and supporting rebels in the nation should be considered, and offering asylum to those requesting it should be done. We cannot let Gadhafi butcher his people, but we cannot afford any sort of occupation whatsoever, so we need to support Libyan protesters without an actual invasion.

    Galveston, Texas

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  22. Glen Seth Arnold

    The United States must protect those Libyans who otherwise would be slaughtered by Gadhafi. We sit on the sideline too long and many die unnecessarily. Let's make a decision, Washington, D.C. Administration... the time is at hand!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  23. Pablo

    US is to lead consensus with other nations, not to act alone. Freezing assets, no fly zone, support the cities that have already been freed. stop arm sells to Libya's goverment. No american ground troops should be send unless the UN approves that.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  24. Dave

    Jack-we are not the world police and i don't see anyone offering to help us with our messes. Let these nations pay for our help.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
  25. Jason

    A tough question. If we indeed stand for people’s freedom to demonstrate and petition their governments for change and are willing to act with something like a no-fly zone (an entirely justifiable action), where do we draw the line? A small time dictator like Gadhafi offers up an easy response. However, does anyone think that the Saudi government would do anything different than Gadhafi should its people protest the utter oppression there? Would we enforce a no fly zone in SA if the royals started bombing their own people? Considering they are our dealers for our gross addiction to the almighty barrel, my guess is no.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
  26. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    I can still see the people there cheering and having a good time when the PanAm 903 bomber was returned to Libya, no let them fight it out and then make sure that no other arab country goes in and tries to take over.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  27. Adriana

    The world should provide humanitarian assistance however should allow Libya & its citizens to fight "their " civial war.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
  28. Troy Hawkins

    We have to deal with realities. We are still stuck in Bush's quagmire of Iraq plus we are still are trying to finish what Bush did not finish in Afghanistan. This doesn't even begin to cover the financial disaster Bush and Republicans caused. How can we step in? We can only step in so much into the world's problems. We are not the world's police or the world's guard dogs. I hate to see people mercilessly slaughtered. but we have to take care of our out citizens first.Other countries have militarily also. Why doesn't China.Germany or France step in for once? They want to be power houses well with the good comes the bad let them help clean up some of the messes. This is part o why the deficit is so high we are always playing world police. We should only step into Libya if Oil prices get too high and it will damage our economy worse.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
  29. Rosemary LaFollette

    I think giving more arms and ammunition to Libyans (as Great Britain is doing) and humanitarian aide (as France is doing) are good concrete aids we should DO. The words are important about our outrage; but Libyan who are more than willing to 'do this for themselves' would appreciate actual aide. I don't know why we seem frozen in place?

    Lehigh Valley, PA

    March 1, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  30. Harold, Phoenix,AZ.

    Why? We have watched the slaughter of thousands in Darfur, is it they have no oil? Let me be clear, we don't care if there is nothing to gain.

    My question is do we crank up the war machine? We are presently only involved in two wars. Do we need a third?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  31. james in greenville nc

    Only if we pull the troops out of Afghanistan.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
  32. Monica, NJ

    If we can get in and get out quickly, white taking out Gadhafi, then yes, but only if our presence is wanted by the Libyan people. How to gage that I'm not too sure. We went into Afghanistan and Iraq...how does our government pick and choose? I don't know. I do think it is encouraging that these people want their freedom and want to be a part of the free world. Less places for terrorists to plan and train is a good thing.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
  33. Dave Brownlow

    The better question is whether we should follow the path of the Libyan people and do something to protect America from the gang of cutthroats that has overthrown our government.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
  34. Alla Darwish

    Nothing! leave them alone!!! and leave the entire arab nations alone!!!!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  35. Tracy


    The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq cost 1 billion dollars a day. For 10 years. If these wars were ended, US would see large reduction in spending. Ya think? These wars contributed to most of the debt.

    These wars are not being fought to protect Americans. They are being fought for oil and Iridium. US is in these countries until "favorable" governments are set up in them. So oil companies and mining companies can set up there. After all, they do not want a repeat of Chevron and Venezuela.

    These wars are immoral. American service men and women are being killed and maimed as are the civilians caught in the crossfire.
    Meanwhile, programs to help the poor and middle class in this country are being cut. So the rich can get richer.

    The wars need to be stopped.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  36. calaurore9

    Why would any crazy despot fear the U.S.? With the exception of CNN, they see that all our press focuses on are nutty Hollywood stars. They don't perceive that there's much American interest in world events at all, let alone saving people from delusional dictators.

    Carol in Northampton MA

    March 1, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  37. Jason

    Yes, but make it quick!! Maybe a few cruise missiles in Tripoli.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  38. Adam

    In retrospect, one could argue that whatever the reasons for us going into Iraq were publicly – privately we as Americans were hoping to 'push' stable, peaceful democracy in the Middle-East.

    In Libya, we see a natural 'pulling' toward such a paradigm shift.

    If we are willing to run up our debt and ask soldiers to fight and die to PUSH such an agenda – we damn well better be ready to support the people on the other end who would help us PULL it in Libya.

    Adam – Gaithersburg,MD/Houston,TX

    March 1, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  39. Nathan

    I think we should enforce a no fly zone at a minimum; keep in mind that military action like that would only occur in a fantasy world where our conntry didn't waste money & time in countries that didn't pose a threat to our security like Iraq.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  40. Tareq Tejani

    How about protecting the iranians from Najad,how a bout protecting Tunisian,Yemenies and so on why the focus on Libya because of the oil again we shouldnt intefer in any countrys business we dont need new wars ,,we didn finsh the wars we started 10 yrs ago.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  41. Brandon

    The U.S. does NOT need to protect Libya or it's people. We have enough problems in this country to deal with such as The Economy, Welfare, Homeless and Starving people of our own. We seem to rush to the aid of other countries but do nothing to help our own people. What is our country thinking. Let them fight their own battles. We need to step it up here and get help for the United States.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  42. Sandra Suhr

    We lost all our credibility for humanitarianism when we invaded Iraq. With our record of torture, renditioning, inhumane treatments of detainees and other atrocities, perhaps aiding the Libyans for purely unselfish and humanitarian reasons might restore our standing in the world.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  43. Shirley

    Although I would like to help out the Libians the reality is we are already fighting a two front war and cannot risk opening a 3rd front. This country is not an endless supplier of military power and money.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  44. Frank

    No! The Libyans didn't lift so much as a finger to save us from Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld, so why should we save them from Qaddaffi?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  45. PiedType

    Harsh as it sounds, I think the US should stay out of events in Libya. It's not our fight and we don't need to risk getting sucked into yet another war.


    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  46. DevinJCan


    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  47. Burbank from CA

    No, not unless asked to do so and then sparingly if that. They have told the rest of the world they want to handle this on their own and I think we should respect that. We have already bankrupted ourselves with Iraq, it's not fair to the taxpayer to get involved in another war. Who do we think we are to position ourselves as the world's parent? I find this sort of arrogance both sickening and embarassing.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  48. Alan Taylor

    At this point I care less about what we do than how we are going to pay for it. If we are going to take military action, let's pass a tax in advance.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  49. Troy

    The United States simply doesn't have the resources to assist every nation that is encountering sociopolitical difficulties. It isn't fiscally responsible for us to get involved, when we have many people in our own country without decent food, healthcare, or shelter. I am glad that we are a nation that helps people out that are in need, but when will be the "right" time to help ourselves?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  50. Ross Fogarty

    Right now, tue United Sports needs to sit tight and stop worrying about any other country but ITSELF! END of STORY!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  51. John In Bellevue, NE

    Dear Jack,

    I wouldn't waste ONE OUNCE, of American Blood, for ANY of them! In fact! I wish we could line ALL the Arabs up on ONE side and All the Jews up, on the OTHER side, give EACH side some short-range nuclear weapons and count to three!
    Those two have been hating and killing each other, over that barren strip of land, since the BEGINNING OF TIME! And they will be fighting and killing each other, when we're all dead and gone!
    There will NEVER be peace in The Middle East!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  52. Eileen


    The initial knee jerk answer to your question is CERTAINLY.

    However, we have US Citizens dying in the streets, some continuing to lose jobs, schools in danger of having no teachers and two political parties that can do NOTHING for any of the above mentioned citizens save throwing stones at each other.

    If we do anything for Libya, it will have to be in concert with the rest of the free nations of the world. We cannot afford to pay for the freedom of everyone in the world when our own citizens can't see the light at the end of the tunnel.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  53. Charles Baugh

    No troops. No weapons. No no-fly zone.

    Aid limited to evacuation and humanitarian aid.

    Honolulu, Hawaii

    March 1, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  54. mark from tx.

    NO, NO, NO. not unless libya pay us twice the value of what we spend on them in oil.(for every dollar we spend on them they pay us two dollars in oil) if we are going to be the world police we need to be paid first,fight later...

    March 1, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  55. Cynthia Fanguy

    No, the United States should not get involved in the political unrest in the Middle East. We cannot afford the wars we are in now. We need to protect our own borders and the people in this country. None of these countries want us there and never appreciate the extreme cost our beautiful country takes on to help the world. The people of these countries will never change their way of treating each other and us.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  56. Cathy

    No... with our current involvement in 2 other countries (Afganistan & Iraq) and our economic plight here at home, we cannot be the global savior.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  57. Betty Smith Tampa, Fl.

    Stay out of it! We don't have any money so why should we be posing as the worlds Big Brother. Spend our money here. Leave the Middle East and Libya to the Middle Easterners and Europe and Isreal. Concentrate on competeing with China! Create Jobs here shrink the Military.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  58. john j. grimes watertown, ma.

    The United States should cease it's meddling in the Middle East when we can't even take care of our own problems. The last time we instituted a no-fly zone was in Iraq which resulted in the shooting down of a civilian airliner and the deaths of over 200 innocent civilians. I voted for Obama because he said he would get us out of Iraq & Afghanistan which he has not done. Now he wants to start up another incident with Libya.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  59. Donna Madras

    No the people stated they don't want us and they know best. We should respect their wishes. They have been told for too long whats good for them. Lets respect them

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  60. Chris B

    Unfortunately countries like France, China and Russia do not come forward during such times to take steps to protect innocent people from being killed by their own people. Yet, they will hide behind the US and criticize us for whatever actions we take. The UN really does not have much credibility and effectiveness. We need to do the right thing rather than standby and watch the slaughter of innocent people. we also need to stop supporting all of these dictatorial regimes around the world on one hand and preaching democracy on the other.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  61. Bob - Eli Somalia

    Not yet. The rebels seem to be holding on and gaining so allow them to handle their own affairs for the time being.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  62. Pat Upthegrove

    I have 2 sons, 2 grandsons, and a granddaughter in service to our country. They, along with other courageous soldiers, have answered the call to protect us and our freedoms. I don't want to see any other brave Americans die in the middle of another country's civil war. Have we not done enough?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  63. Richard McKinney, Texas

    Jack most Americans do not even know where Libya is on a map if you were to show it to them and i doubt most Libyans know where America is on a map either. America is not the keeper of the world. We are one country among many and we are now a poor country that is ass deep in debt to other countries. No jack we don't need to help Libya. Their neighbors need to help them as they stand to gain or lose the most out of what Libya becomes.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  64. Robby Bowling

    We want do squat til it's to late. Sticks & stones will break their bones but words' well you get the drift. We have successfully made ourselves irrelevant and have CHANGE YOU CAN TO BELIEVE IN TO BLAME. The Eagle is grounded. Shame on us.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  65. Bob Murtha

    Yes, Jack, just what the secretary of defense has announced that we would do. No fighting. I'm sich and tired of all these hawks who can't wait to get more of oour kids killed while other countries of the world sit and let us do all the dirty work.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  66. Renee Peoria,Ill

    Yes. We've forced our way into enough countries for political and economic reasons, all too often with barely any hesitation. How about doing it for the right reason for a change. No occupation, just get in, help the Libyans, and get out. It would certainly help me feel a little less embarrassment about the obviously unjust wars the last administration got us into. Let's put our morals where our mouth is for a change.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  67. Lindsay

    We should provide humanitarian aid only,unless we're asked to intervene.
    We haven't had much success in intervening in disputes since WW11.

    The Libyan people don't seem to want foreign intervention. Many on twitter ask US NOT to step in. Also there are pictures of banners in Libya saying "No Foreign Intervention".

    But there are thousands on the borders with Egypt and Tunisia..We should help the refugees or the chaos might endanger 3 revolutions – Egypt, Tunisia and Libya

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  68. Susan from Idaho

    From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of.....send our boys in, it's way past time.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  69. Linda

    Obama is being very careful, rightfully so. If we take military action against Gadhafi, do we do the same for the Iranian protestors? That would be entering a hornet's nest!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  70. Jerry

    All the hawks want to send American GIs into Lybia to overthrow Gadhafi. They say 1000 Lybians have died so far, and 10,000 have fled the country. Why don't the 10,000 that fled the country pick up a gun and turn around and go fight for their own independence. We lost 50,000 in 3 days in a town called Gettysburg and how many did we lose fighting for our independence from Britian? Let the Lybians fight for their own independence. Even if we help them, they're not going to like us anyway.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  71. Cherilyn Nissen

    absolutely not. That is a revolution in their own country. If Libians in the USA are worried about their families, they will have to go on there own and fight and help.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  72. Jim Van Meter

    No, definitely no. We can’t save the whole world, we cannot afford to do this even though it might be the right thing to do.

    Jim Van Meter
    Rochester, New York

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  73. kazz

    If we do, it won't surprise me if everyone who said we should will complain that we did.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  74. Ghassan

    Jack I have always admired you and your comments. USA administration should do no more than it is doing at this time simply because this is the better way for everyone involved. Keep in mind it is better to be respected and loved than to be feared because the previous administrations have always somehow stood by these dictators we are now trying to get rid of which makes the present administration's cautious action the only action to take now.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  75. Emmanuel ogamdi Houston

    yes, The US should help libyans because people are being killed for no reason, that is a enough reason to help them.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  76. Angela Cassell

    Leave Lybia alone. It's not our country, it's not our issue and yes, I know all about their oil. Having been born in Alaska (pre Palin era) and having spent the better part of my life around the oil industry I know that Alaska and the Continental United States have MORE THAN ENOUGH OIL reserves to last an extremely long time – the oil industry just doesn't want you to know that. So, we actually have no real interest in Lybia, let it go. Get back to the business of figuring out how to take care of America and her citizens.

    Thank you
    Angela Cassell

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  77. jim grogan

    Should we help Libya? NO, absolutely not!!!!!!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  78. James from Virginia

    America should not get involved in Libya. If there is a humanitarian or even a military necessity for intervention there is the Arab league and others in the hemisphere with a vested interest that should be allowed to respond. our sending 3 warships to the coast implies that we will, by force, impress upon Libya what the world thinks we are intending to impress upon any nation we feel that it is in our interest to do so. So, after we eliminate another dictator that we either implanted, supported or allowed to exist unbridled, then we'll impose our will to usher in someone we feel WE are comfortable with. A military option is no option but, the military industrial complex and others with dollars signs in their eyes will impose their will and our sons and daughters will be in another far off place fighting for a reason they know not what other than it's their duty! Ridiculous. Enough is enough. We need to get our own house in order and not be the world's dictator!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  79. Dog and Pony

    I've been saying for over a year and I still say... We need another Ronald Reagan. NOW!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  80. Bob

    We got involved in Iraq to eliminate the problem of Saddam Hussein and we are still there and their "government" is still corrupt. We cannot afford another war in the Mideast. Let's get out of there and let them solve their own problems. If we would open up drilling in the US, we don't need their oil either. We shouldn't be the "caretakers" of the world.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  81. Mark Stuhlfaut

    No. The situation in Libya is a civil war. Remember Viet Nam? We should be ready to offer humanitarian assistance if called upon by the Libyian people, but let the Libyians take care of themselves. It will build their pride in their accomplishment.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  82. Dave in Cadillac, MI

    Jack, maybe great Britain should be making that decision. The deal brokered for the release of that terrorist bomber is proof enough that GB is involved with that nation.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  83. Harry Trulli


    We cannot be the World's policeman!

    We are over extended and if we follow a policy of rushing in where angels fear to tread, our enemies will deliberately goad us into this self destructive behavior whenever they can.

    Direct intervention would be stupid, but a little gun running probably would not hurt, and possibly save lives.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |

    Our military is involved in Afghanistan, Iraq, all over the world, we even still have tens of thousands of troops in South Korea, where the Korean war has never officially ended. Enough is enough.

    Our government has incredible debt, the financial resources are not there to resuce any other country. We came to the aid of Iraq and Afghanistan, and the people there arguably, hate us more now.

    Let some other great democratic power step in!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  85. Terry, Hoover

    No, it is time we stopped being the police for the world. It was the foreign adventures of our previous regime which spawned the economy and Federal fiscal crisis we now enjoy. The Republicans want to cut spending, this is an excellent area in which to start. Would we like it if the Taliban tried to free us from Obama? It is past time we started minding our own business and taking care of our own. It is none of our concern what other countries do to their people as long as American lives are not in danger.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  86. Emmanuel

    This is the same US who did nothing to prevent genocide in Rwanda or Sudan and has propped up numerous regimes throughout the years who have been brutal to their own people but subservient to us. The tragedies in those places saw many, many, more people killed than in Libya, Egypt, or Yemen. All of a sudden we have to actively support "freedom" in the Middle East so we will be "respected". Sometimes we have to be careful what we wish for!!!!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  87. Carl

    Yes we should help the people of Libya. in whatever way necessary to get Ghadaffi out. especially since he is killing his own people. 42 yrs of hell. Great opportunity for Libya, the Arab region and the USA.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  88. David Matthews

    The U.S. can hardly stop now. After decades of being the worlds police: how would it look if we didn`t help at a time like this?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  89. dan baxter

    Yes, we should do something. . .

    One Bomb will do it !!!!!

    We Know where he is and we can end with one strike. . .

    I really do not think anybody would be against it. . .

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  90. Ron Siegel

    tough choices, Damned if you do damned if you don't . Humanitarian aid would be a good start. It would be easier if the Republicans would stop critasizing the president long enough for us to speak with one voice. I hate to say this, but taking out Kadafee would probably save many lives. I know we can't do this but somebody could.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  91. Jo

    No!!!! I thought the US was broke?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  92. Ralph

    Quite frankly, the U.S. doesnt even know how to take care of its own citizens, why on earth would we want to be involved in another quagmire? We are currently engage in a conflict under false pretenses, losing precious blood and treasure, our economy is in the rocks, and 9% of our population are unemployed with the future forecast being nothing but grim news. We are in no condition to do anything.. The 'preliminary' FBI 6 month report from Jan. to June 2010 on violent crime as of now has almost 6K homicides across the country. The United States foreign and domestic policies has been far too often to the detriment of its citizens Period!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  93. Mari, Utah

    NO! We have enough to deal with. Anyone with a brain in their heads knows that Democracy and Freedom can not be imported, but must be born in the hearts and minds of the people!

    Libyans will either choose to fight for their Freedom or they wont. Its up to the Libyans to FREE their Nation from a tyrant!

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  94. Leland Bauck

    The US should not intervene with our military or secret service. This question is remarkably easy to answer. If the US gets involved and Gadhafi is removed from power, the legitimacy of the new government in Libya will be suspected of being a "puppet government" of the US. Did we learn anything from Iraq? Did we learn anything from supporting dictatorships in the interest of oil?

    Its clear – we don't get involved. We don't lose a single friend or family member in Libya.

    I have a new found respect for the people in the Middle East right now. They are showing the world they don't support such tyranny and oppression. Let them win their freedom and stamp out those who betrayed them and their country.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  95. Peter

    Yes, I believe US is already doing a lot to protect the Libyan citizens, short of a direct military intervention. Keep in mind, Libya is still a sovereign nation and their current crisis is an internal affair, with an anti Gadhafi opposition rising against the 41 years of dictatorship. Although a US military action might sound simple and tangible in the name of protecting human lives and rights, we have to consider the fact that our entrance into an internal turmoil would not be seen kindly by other Arab nations. I do believe only a unilateral agreement by UN would allow a coalition of military forces to protect Libyan citizens and oust Gadhafi, if he decides to commit a mass genocide upon his population.

    Peter from Chicago, Illinois

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  96. Cowlumbus

    No, because this isn't as simple as people fighting for freedom. This involves tribal grudges going back 1000 years. The only solution the Libyans will be happy with is one they come up with on their own. At a minimum, before a single U.S. military asset is committed to "fight for Freedom in Libya", the president and his advisors should take a class on North African tribes and their history. Remember when we invaded Iraq completely ignorant of the difference between Shiite and Sunni? Such folly should not be repeated.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  97. Kristine in British Columbia

    We are a global society now. Yes, of course the US should help, as all able countries should.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  98. Robin

    Hi Jack,your question is one that started to get to me big time today. Yes, the U.S. should get involved in helping the Libyans against Ghadafi. As a dual U.S./Canadian citizen living in Canada I'm going to send the message to Stephen Harper and the Canadian Government that we need to send at least some humanitarian aid. Our forces are already strained in Afghanistan but Canada always played a huge role in UN Humanitarian and Peacekeeping efforts in the past. Helping Libyans will also help the Egyptians and Tunisians who are already strapped and under new and tentative regimes.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  99. Ted Hogan

    No, it should be very limited in what we do in Libia. Why oh why do we have to get our nose in every damm thing that goes on in the world. We are way upside down in debt, got two wars, got military in almost every country in the world. The europeans should be doing most if anything that needs to be done. Verbal support, thats it.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  100. AC

    Protect Libyans from Gadhafi? I'm sure that's the last thing on the US government's agenda. The US knows Libya's opposition is weak and will take any opportunity to get a share of the country's assets (oil).

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  101. Kintur

    history says that all the countries/society rise to democrasy and freedom on their own by the power of the people. US, India, Egypt, Tunasia. We have our own house stading on very unstady wet land. At times taking no action may be wise action for our so called superpower with the debt equal to 100% of GDP

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  102. Kim NY

    Wouldn't it make sense to get our Americans out and our money too?
    We are literally supporting Regimes that are killing their people.
    We cut programs here in the US to support non-US people and then go back for more? Maybe our 'Regime' needs some advice along the lines of take care of our own and pass the word along.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  103. Marv in Oxnard, CA

    No, our leaders can not do anything right proven by our past history.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  104. Wes Thornton

    No, we already are in too many 'police' situations already, let Libya deal with Libya. I agree with the freezing of assets to hasten that mans exit, but the US shouldn't spend one dime or one drop of our blood to facilitate his demise.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  105. kev

    We can't agree on how to BALANCE OUR BUDGET much less save a country. That's what the United Nations is for. GOD Bless

    March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm |