Libya: A morass of justifications, objectives, and scope

President Obama's speech on Monday did nothing to explain why the United States has launched its war in the Middle East

Edward Morrissey

Earlier this month, Hollywood honored the brilliant British film The King's Speech, which told the story of a head of state overcoming a debilitating stutter to lead a nation at war, with an Oscar for Best Picture. Unfortunately, President Obama failed to overcome his administration's debilitating stutter on Libya and the Middle East with his speech Monday night.

First, this address to the nation was overdue by 10 days. After sending the American military to war in Libya on March 18, the president then flew to South America for several days and talked trade rather than war. He became the first commander in chief in memory to leave the country in the first hours of a new war for an unrelated tour, and the first in memory not to speak directly to the American people to explain why he put men and women in harm's way in a new foreign adventure.

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Edward Morrissey

Edward Morrissey has been writing about politics since 2003 in his blog, Captain's Quarters, and now writes for His columns have appeared in the Washington Post, the New York Post, The New York Sun, the Washington Times, and other newspapers. Morrissey has a daily Internet talk show on politics and culture at Hot Air. Since 2004, Morrissey has had a weekend talk radio show in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area and often fills in as a guest on Salem Radio Network's nationally-syndicated shows. He lives in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota with his wife, son and daughter-in-law, and his two granddaughters. Morrissey's new book, GOING RED, will be published by Crown Forum on April 5, 2016.