In the headlines: ‘my Dear Obama, our son’, French flying over Libya, Obama in Rio

Headlines today:
Gaddafi patronizes the POTUS:
‘To my Dear Obama, our son’, says Gaddafi, defending attack on rebels

Defending his decision to attack rebel cities, Gaddafi told Obama, “Al-Qaida is an armed organisation, passing through Algeria, Mauritania and Mali. What would you do if you found them controlling American cities with the power of weapons? What would you do, so I can follow your example.”

WSJ:
French Jets Fly Over Libya as World Leaders Meet

NYTimes:
France Sends Military Flights Over Libya

FP:
How Obama turned on a dime toward war

Congress was not broadly consulted on the decision to intervene in Libya, except in a Thursday afternoon classified briefing where administration officials explained the diplomatic and military plan. Rice was already deep in negotiations in New York.

Obama’s Tuesday night decision to push for armed intervention was not only a defining moment in his ever-evolving foreign policy, but also may have marked the end of the alliance between Clinton and Gates — an alliance that has successfully influenced administration foreign policy decisions dating back to the 2009 Afghanistan strategy review.

Article 1, Section 8 of the US Constitution states,

The Congress shall have Power…To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

Heritage yesterday asked Five Questions Obama Has Not Answered on Libya

Here are just some of the fundamental questions the Administration has failed to answer as our military stands on the brink of a new and costly commitment:

So far, the only firm commitments are a naval blockade, AWACS for air traffic control, and signal-jamming aircraft. U.S. officials said that it would probably take several days for a full operation to be undertaken and that President Obama had not yet approved the use of U.S. military assets. Will he? Will the U.S. be using military force against Libya?
If establishing a no-fly zone in Libya is so vital to U.S. national security, why did the Administration waste a week getting approval from the U.N.?
Imposing a no-fly zone entails substantial costs for U.S. armed forces and risks diverting scarce U.S. military and intelligence assets. Will the vital missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, and the Horn of Africa suffer?
Are the rebels free of terrorist elements, and what precautions will we require them to take to ensure that weapons we supply are not sold or diverted to other groups?
Will we rule out supplying arms (“Stinger” anti-aircraft missiles, for example) that could pose a potent threat to U.S. forces if they end up in the hands of terrorists?

Obama’s in Brazil, taking a trip that should have been scheduled two years ago. I am glad he’s finally gone to Brazil.

US President Barack Obama  introduces his family as they arrive in Brasilia, Brazil, on Saturday.

His weekly address touched on the topic,

Obama should be creating a much more business-friendly environment for trade with Latin America, and instead of giving lip service, can easily approve the free trade agreements with Colombia and Peru, and possibly one with Brazil. That would increase America’s competitiveness within the hemisphere.

He and Dilma did not hold a joint press conference, just a press announcement, because Dilma doesn’t take questions:

a press officer in the Brazilian foreign ministry says Rousseff just doesn’t take questions. “It’s not her way. She didn’t do it with the prime minister of East Timor either,” the press aide said.

Hundreds of miles away, Brazil Sends Forces to Jirau Dam After Riots

Brazil’s federal government Friday authorized the presence of national security forces in the Amazon state of Rondonia after riots at the Jirau dam site halted construction on the 3,450 megawatt dam.

Brazil is one of the five nations that voted to abstain on Thursday night’s vote before the U.N. Security Council.

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