It looks as though eastern Libya will slide into the Mediterranean under the sheer weight of western journalists assembled in Benghazi and Misrata. A tsunami of breathless reports suggests that Misrata is enduring travails not far short of the siege of Leningrad in World War 2. The reports have been seized on by Obama, Cameron and Sarkozy to raise the ante on Mission Odyssey Dawn. In their joint newspaper column published both sides of the Atlantic they now say that to leave Gaddafi in power would be an “unconscionable betrayal” and speak of Misrata as enduring “a medieval siege.” Not yet, surely. A medieval siege was something that usually lasted at least a year, in which the city’s inhabitants were reduced to eating rats, then each other, and the besiegers all succumbed to plague.
Maybe it will turn out that way, with reporters eying each other from a gastronomic perspective and wiring Ferran Adria, seeking recipes for preparing Haunch of Hack sous vide. “So long as Gaddafi is in power, Nato and its coalition partners must maintain their operations so that civilians remain protected and the pressure on the regime builds,” write the three leaders. This is not Mission Creep but, once again, Mission Leap, way beyond the UN mandate.
Read more here: Alexander Cockburn: What’s Really Going On in Libya?.