Former CIA Official: US Could Send Troops to Libya

Wednesday, 20 Apr 2011 05:05 AM

By Hiram Reisner

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Former CIA official Michael Scheuer says he believes President Barack Obama could be “putting boots on the ground” in Libya, as air operations have done nothing to stop tyrant Moammar Gadhafi. Scheuer, who led the CIA’s Osama bin Laden unit, also told Fox News’ Neal Cavuto Tuesday the alternative for the United States and its allies is to give up trying to oust the Libyan leader.
 
“From the very start, Neil, you didn’t have to be a military expert to realize where this was heading — airpower never wins anything by itself,” Scheuer said. “The resistance is too weak to beat Gadhafi — you add those two things up, and the choice facing Obama and his colleagues in Europe is either putting boots on the ground to try to overthrow Gadhafi themselves, or to just give it up as a lost cause.”
 
Cavuto asked how likely is it that the allies fighting Gadhafi will be able to fulfill rumored discussions and instead find him safe refuge in another country.
 
“Well, they may well find a place in Africa that would be willing to take him, or somewhere else — perhaps Saudi Arabia,” Scheuer said. “But at the end of the day, Gadhafi is winning at the moment — he is not losing.
 
“And he has also three or four sons — if you take Gadhafi out, you also have to take out the whole family,” he continued. “And right now, their forces are pushing steadily toward Benghazi — and we are not getting any reports of ambushes, assassinations, or sabotage in the rear areas, which suggests that at least some of the Libyan population is pro-Gadhafi.”
 
Scheuer noted Gadhafi’s rule has benefitted some Libyans and others might be supporting the dictator to show defiance of western powers.
 
“All of the West’s airpower has not really put a dent into Gadhafi,” he said. “So I would think that there’s more people going to Gadhafi simply on a bet that the West doesn’t have the stomach to do what needs to be done, Neil.
 
“He is standing there as the one leader of the Arab world who says: ‘No, I`m going to stay here — this is our government — I was recognized by the U.N., I had a U.S. ambassador here, until they decided to overthrow me,’” Scheuer added. “And there is a certain amount of pride that wells up in the Muslim world when somebody finally stands up to this intervention by the West.”

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