Lieberman: Libya mission sets precedent
March 27th, 2011
11:41 AM ET
12 years ago

Lieberman: Libya mission sets precedent

Washington (CNN) - Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee Sen. Joe Lieberman said if Syrian President Bashar al-Assad attacks his own people, an international coalition should intervene as they did in Libya.

"If Assad does what Gadhafi was doing, which is to threaten and go house-to-house and kill anybody who's not on his side. There's a precedent now that the world community has set in Libya. And it's the right one," Lieberman, I-Connecticut, said on "Fox News Sunday." "We're not going to stand by and allow this Assad to slaughter his people like his father did years ago."

Protests in Syria over political and economic grievances were reportedly met Friday in Latakia, Daraa and Sanamen with open fire from government security forces and armed gunmen, leaving dozens of casualties.

Lieberman said Assad now has one choice: "To negotiate with the freedom fighters in Syria to create an entirely different government there."

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the United States deplores the violence in Syria, but does not expect intervention in the Middle East country.

"There's a difference between calling out aircraft and indiscriminately strafing and bombing your own cities, than police actions which frankly have exceeded the use of force that any of us would want to see," Clinton said Sunday on the CBS program "Face the Nation," comparing the situations in Syria and Libya.

Clinton said Syria's future remains unclear, but added there are reasons to be optimistic.

"There is a different leader in Syria now. Many of the members of Congress of both parties who have gone to Syria in recent months have said they believe he's a reformer," Clinton said.

Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona said that given the apparent success thus far in Libya, "this is a moment of historic proportions."

"This will give us a golden opportunity to help with democracy and freedom throughout the Arab world," McCain said on "Fox News Sunday." "It's going to be very complicated and complex in that some of these countries that have never known a modicum of democracy, or even national unity. Egypt is the key. Do not take our attention off Egypt, the center of the Arab world."

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Joe Lieberman • John McCain • Libya
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Larry L

    Joe is correct, but he's become a one-trick pony. I would be ashamed of myself to vote against a person because of their religion, but Joe only seems to consider the well being of Israel in his decision-making process. I want leaders who think of America's interests before that of their religious homeland. How many American lives would he sacrifice for that cause?

    March 27, 2011 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  2. willie floyd

    Thankfully these decisions are not upto you Mr. Lieberman. Keep quiet and let our true leader take care of it. He's done quite well without you or any of your Rep. buddies.

    March 27, 2011 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  3. Rachel

    Excuse me, sir, but we are NOT the world's cops! Shame on your imperialist, war-mongering delusions.

    March 27, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  4. MAC

    Just because Obama is an intellegent, that does not make him a good leader. He is our other Prof. President just like Wilson. Jobs come from the private sector not more public employees and with the uncertainty of this President and the deficit and taxes, business is skeptical about expanding and hiring. The taxpayers should not be spending over 300 thousand for 50 thousand a year job like the last stimulous. No wonder we are a debtor nation and going broke.

    March 27, 2011 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  5. Peter E

    For decades we have ignored Gadhaffi. President after president paid some lip-service against him. Reagan dropped a few bombs, but then never followed up. He just let Gadhaffi be and do whatever he wants. As time went on we even warmed up to this dictator. George W. Bush even re-opened normal diplomacy and trade with Gadhaffi.
    But I am sure all of those decades of letting that madman do whatever he wanted must ALL be Obama's fault somehow...

    March 27, 2011 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  6. Limbaugh is a liberal

    Hey, at least Obama shows SOME support for the people of all these countries. Republicans HAVE SAID they would prefer to keep these tyrants in power because they fear that the people would choose a self-determining Islamic republic instead of a puppet government 'democratically' selected by the US.

    March 27, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  7. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Can't wait until you are gone, you little weasel!

    March 27, 2011 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  8. Lustful Patriotism

    Good thing Joey LIEberman is going going gone. Now maybe he can go be a senator for Israel or even better become another entertainer on Faux Noise with Silly Sarah the Alaskan grifter.

    March 27, 2011 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
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