Libyans take journalists on a guided tour of destroyed buildings where Moammar Gadhafi had his base in Tripoli.
By David Gergen, CNN Senior Political Analyst June 8, 2011 11:10 a.m. EDT
Are we seeing Gadhafi's final days?
Cambridge, Massachusetts (CNN) -- Four months after he began ruthlessly repressing dissent in Libya, Moammar Gadhafi appears to have entered his final days. Dead or alive, he seems very much on the verge of giving up power -- perhaps as early as this weekend, perhaps a little longer. That proverbial noose we have heard so much about is finally strangling his regime. NATO forces have not only called in helicopter gunships but have also intensified bombing to terrifying levels -- just recently, as many as 10 or 12 explosions a night were heard in Tripoli; yesterday, the rubble bounced even higher, with more than 80 bombs raining down on the capital in full daylight. Much of Gadhafi's compound is gone and he is a "fugitive in his own capital," according to The New York Times. Not surprisingly, the circle around him is now crumbling. Generals and civilian officials alike are defecting in growing numbers. He still retains the loyalty of some tough troops, but it is difficult to see how they can hold out much longer.
Financial and diplomatic pressures are escalating, too. It has been significant that in recent weeks, both the Russian and Turkish governments have turned against Gadhafi remaining in charge. We have not yet heard much from talks with a special Russian envoy who arrived in Libya this week to try to mediate an end, but he very much bears watching. The fall of Gadhafi will not be the end of the story, of course. U.S. intelligence sources continue to tell American journalists that they know less about the rebels than they would like. Nation-building could be expensive and, as we have seen in Egypt, could well lead toward a government that is less friendly than we would like.
Even so, Western governments -- especially the French and British, but let us be honest, the Obama administration as well -- will have earned considerable credit if Gadhafi is brought down. The Brits and French led the way in forging an international coalition, and their military forces have been more effective than skeptics expected. As for President Obama, he took an unorthodox approach to the episode, applying military might up front but then carefully drifting back to let others do the heavy lifting -- and keeping the U.S. boots off the ground. I was among those who would have preferred stronger, more assertive American leadership, but if Gadhafi falls, Obama will have bragging rights that his way worked better than critics like me thought it would. Obama still has to prove that his leadership will create jobs and economic growth. But bin Laden and Gadhafi both? Not bad for a summer's work, not bad at all.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of David Gergen.
Not Bad At All? How About Great Judgment
Wow, Mr. Gergen, it almost sound as if your attempting to give President Obama a "Compliment"!
In my opinion, Obama is the "Perfect President" for the state that America is in right now, and has been for the past 2.5 years, in that, Obama's Character has allowed the world leaders to shake off the past trust concerns associated with our past Presidents.
Obama brought the exact type technological knowledge necessary for the position of President at this specific time and if you compare him to his challenging opponent of "Mc Cain & Palin", otherwise known as "Grandpa & Dummy", it would be impossible to imagine the type of job the two Republicans would have done with the same conditions walking into office 2.5 years ago.
Equally, each and every existing Republican that has entered the 2012 Presidency do not have the "Character or Judgment" required to address the current conditions that exist within the U.S. today, nor do any of the Republican candidates have the degree of respect from the world leaders that is explicitly necessary for the issues that are currently taking place.
Russia is talking with the U.S. and getting them on board to deal with Gadhafi was truly a political win that no other candidate can do, even today. Israel is an issue that no past President have been able to resolve and Obama has handled that scenario well also.
Remember, Obama voted against allowing the Bush Admin the power to take this country to war, which 98% of all other reps voted in favor of, and the results of the unnecessary war continue to burden this country today, and in my opinion, the money waited on that war is criminal and should be fully investigated, but, not 1 of the 98% who voted in favor of allowing Bush the authority to go to war has the character to initiate war crimes against Bush because they will have to take responsibility for their own lack of judgment.
Not Bad At All, I'd say that President Obama has done a "Magnificent" job, as compared to our past 4 Presidents, none of which, had the type of character or judgement skills to have to deal with the multiple issues that this country has had over the past 56 months. Regarding our jobs and economy issues, if anyone truly believe that any other human being can or could do a better job at getting this country out of the dungeon that was created by Bush and the Republicans, I'd call them all a lie.
The President guides the countries moral direction, and at this current political climate, I wouldn't trust any Republican or any other Democrat to do the job, especially with all the Lobbyist that purchase votes with impunity today. The "Go Along Get Along Good Old Boy Network" has finally put this country on the brink of destruction. It's time to transition from the 2 party ideology.
No, Mr. Gergen, I'd say that President Obama has done a "Magnificent" job so far and I truly believe that no other President, for the next 6 years, will be a better than Obama.
It's the public that should hold themselves accountable for electing all of the existing representatives who are of one ideology, corrupt and immoral. To vote for a person who ends up stealing, lying, misleading or refuses to work on the behalf of their constituents is the fault of the people who allowed themselves to be fooled by people of, obvious, bad character.
Regarding the future issue associated with Israel, the walls are closing on Israel, and to have remained arrogant for the past 10 years and refusing to seek some sort type of deal has put themselves in an untenable position, and the results cannot drag the U.S. down with them. It's called "Failed Leadership" when a leader is bigger than the issue of his people. I will not stand by and allow this country to condemn Obama for being a leader with empathy because he will not get on board of the old ways boat that Israel have been sailing for 40 years. I'd equate it to the U.S. still living with the 1970 life style standards of accepted racism.
Perhaps Gergen, your starting to see the light, and if so, be strong, express yourself and stop being a good old boy.
In My Opinion