25 March 2011

The Libyan intervention: a hypothesis

So, you may be asking yourselves, WTF? Indeed, in the light of past experiences in Iraq and the current migraine of Afghanistan, WTFF? I propose the following, which - a first for Ockham's Razor - may err on the side of attributing long-term intelligent cunning to officials. The only reason I am persuaded it may be the case is because the French are involved and the Enarques are good at this sort of thing:
  • Since the Franco-British Saint-Malo Agreement in December 1998, the only two European powers with the capability, the experience and the will to mount military interventions overseas have been looking for ways to harmonize their armed forces with an eye to joint operations.
  • Although the EADS (Airbus) A400M debacle is one of the fruits of the new Entente Cordiale (which predates Saint-Malo), the more recent manifestation was the British decision to go ahead with building the French-designed CVF aircraft carriers without making provision for the aircraft that will fly off them and with the proviso that only one of them will be used by the Royal Navy.
  • The deal seems to be that the aircraft carriers will be equipped with the French Rafale M, and that the French will operate the other carrier, something they need to do because the Charles De Gaulle is an embarrassing lemon. The Rafale for CVF trade-off may even be an outright quid pro quo.
  • What the Entente Cordialers have needed is a conflict where French and British interests are sufficiently aligned to demonstrate that the whole is stronger than the parts. Libya fits the bill in spades.
  • Both governments have shamelessly fellated Colonel Daffy in order to win privileged contracts for their respective oil companies. Those contracts (and commercial and diplomatic relations generally) are in the balance. Both Paris and London came off the fence early and have been very, very anxious to establish good relations with whoever takes over from Daffy.  
  • Bombing the crap out of Daffy's Praetorian Guard is likely to win largish brownie points with the successor regime, meanwhile Special Forces are on the ground to try to make sure the winners are not the Islamofascists.
Then there is a sub-hypothesis that it is very much in the US interest that the Franco-Brits should at least assume the role of world policeman in their own back yard, which would explain why The One took a back seat in the negotiations leading up to the UN Resolution while preparing to take out Daffy's air defences so that the Yurrupeans could then go in and do the dirty work.

As I said at the beginning, I feel almost apologetic for suggesting that there has been joined-up thinking in this matter, but contrary to my natural inclination I think there may have been.


  1. That all seems pretty plausible to me, but forgive my naivety for still being shocked that such matters could be the catalyst for war.