I don’t know what any of this means. It’s from President Obama’s remarks today on Libya.
American leadership is essential, but that does mean acting alone. It means shaping the conditions for the international community to act together . . .
It is not an action that we will pursue alone. Indeed, our British and French allies and members of the Arab League have already committed to take a leadership role in the enforcement of this resolution, just as they were instrumental in pursuing it.
We are coordinating closely with them. And this is precisely how the international community should work, as more nations bear both the responsibility and the cost of enforcing international law.
Sorry, but the way this works is, we do our best to get as much international backing as we can, and then we go do the job with help from the British and token assistance from everyone else. Otherwise, the job will get bogged down in squabbling and the incompetence of the rest of our allies and friends who don’t know which end of a rifle to point toward the enemy and which to point at themselves.
We do the fighting and we put everyone else on latrine duty.
However, this notion of having the others PAY FOR THEIR DEFENSE is not a bad idea, though.
Such an obsession with equal opportunity war fighting has already helped cause us to delay making decisions and acting in Libya until it is perhaps too late. This could only come from a president who said this:
I believe in American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism.
Everybody is a winner, and everybody is a leader.