Let's not be hasty, eh?
France's foreign minister on Friday ruled out launching air strikes or sending troops on the ground to tackle Islamic State in Libya, but said it could help secure the U.N.-brokered national unity government in Tripoli.
It seems like only five months or so ago that France declared itself at war in response to the Paris slaughter:
"France is at war," Hollande told a joint session of parliament at the Palace of Versailles, promising to increase funds for national security and strengthen anti-terror laws in response to the suicide bombings and shootings that killed 129.
"We're not engaged in a war of civilisations, because these assassins do not represent any. We are in a war against jihadist terrorism which is threatening the whole world," he told a packed, sombre chamber.
Parliamentarians gave Hollande a standing ovation before spontaneously singing the "Marseillaise" national anthem in a show of political unity following the worst atrocity France has seen since World War Two.
I thought France should have taken charge of the Libyan Sector of the war on ISIL.
But that was then. The French sang. Lit up the Eiffel Tower in the tri-colors of France. Wept for the dead. Resolved to wage war this time. And dropped a few bombs in Syria.
And now, when Libya threatens to be a terror haven to push terrorists and migrants into Europe?
Well, sending troops on the ground and launching air strikes in Libya to destroy ISIL there is simpliste, eh?
Nuance requires France to let America--or anybody but them, I guess--do the job while complaining that we aren't doing it right.
UPDATE: There is a lot of nuance to overcome, in both Europe (and among those who think like them) and in Islam.
UPDATE: More nuance that doesn't help solve the problem.
UPDATE: Our enemies aren't much on nuance, after all.
You really should read Strategypage on a daily basis, if I haven't mentioned that lately. I may disagree from time to time, but they approach the issues the right way.
UPDATE: Not all is lost in France if Bernard-Henri Lévy has any impact on the debate there:
[We] must acknowledge that two Islams are locked in a fight to the death, and that because the battlefield is the planet and the war threatens values that the West embraces, the fight is not solely the Muslims’ affair.
Once we do that, we must devote ourselves to identifying, untangling, and exposing the networks of Islamic hate and terror with the same energy and ingenuity that are now being applied to unraveling the global schemes of tax evaders. How long will we have to wait for the Panama Papers of Salafism? What is stopping the great newspapers from flushing out from the dark web the Mossack Fonsecas of global jihad and its criminal offshore companies?
We must also aid, encourage, and ideologically arm Muslims who reject the Islam of hate in favor of an Islam respectful of women, their faces, and their rights, as well as of human rights in general. Is that not what we did in the not-so-distant past with regard to the brave people we called dissidents in the Soviet world? And were we not right, at the time, to ignore those who told us that the dissidents were a minority who would never, ever, prevail against the granite ideology of communism?
Yes. We are unfortunately collateral damage in a Moslem civil war to define Islam. We owe it to ourselves and the vast majority of Moslems who would simply lead their lives in peace to fight the jihadis and help the non-jihadis win that civil war.
Sadly, just as the Cold War template saw Westerners make excuses for the communists and their bloody record of rule, so too do Westerners make excuses for the jihadis, implying that jihadi rage is the authentic form of Islam that we must not oppose lest we be considered "Islamophobic."
UPDATE: So much for Jes Suis Charlie. That's over now in Europe.
Enjoy the replacement Jes Suis Sorry.