It appears that a United Nations-sanctioned air strike has begun in Libya. One of the planes doing the shooting is American, but a French plane took the first shots and the British military is also involved. It does appear we have learned something as a country, in that this truly appears to be an international coalition. What I see, however, is American military involvement in another Middle Eastern country.
Right or wrong, we are involved once again in being the world’s police. Why is that our role? Yes, conditions are horrible in Libya. Yes, innocent citizens are being harmed by their own government. Yes, something should be done about it. But were all other options exhausted? It this the last resort? Will this ultimately solve the problem or will it only make matters worse?
The U.S. is not the lead nation this time but our involvement may still lower our status in the world court of public opinion. We don’t have to make decisions based on international popularity but we certainly do have to live with the consequences. When I finally take my dream trip to Italy, a place which is much closer to the action than the state of Maryland, I do not want to be a target just because I am American. More important than that, I don’t want to see more American military lives lost in the name of dealing with another nation’s problems.