Andrew C. McCarthy @ NRO:
I wonder if the jihadists of eastern Libya are still “heroes” to John McCain. That’s what he called them — “my heroes” — after he changed on a dime from chummyQaddafi tent guest to rabid Qaddafi scourge.
See, the senator and his allies in the Obama-Clinton State Department had a brilliant notion: The reason the “rebels” of eastern Libya hated America so much had nothing to do with their totalitarian, incorrigibly anti-Western ideology. No, no: The problem was that we sided with Qaddafi, giving the dictator — at the insistence of, well, McCain and the State Department — foreign aid, military assistance, and international legitimacy. If we just threw Qaddafi under the bus, the rebels would surely become our grand democratic allies.
This, of course, was a much more sophisticated theory than you’d get from lunatics like Michele Bachmann. Sit down for this, because I know it’s hard to believe anyone could spout such nutter stuff, but Bachmann actually opposed U.S. intervention in Libya. She claimed — stop cackling! — that many of McCain’s heroes might actually be jihadists ideologically hostile to the U.S. and linked to groups such as al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the terror enterprise’s North African franchise. She even thought — yeah, I know, crazy — that if Qaddafi were deposed, the heroes would get their hands on his arsenal, ship a lot of it to AQIM havens in places such as Mali and Algeria, and maybe even turn rebel strongholds such as Benghazi into death traps for Americans.
Good thing we listened to McCain, no?
This week, while the guys the senator and the Obama administration aligned us with in Libya (and would like to align us with in Syria) were busy taking Americans and other foreigners hostage in Algeria, in addition to using Qaddafi’s arsenal to fight the French in Mali, McCain was working his magic in Cairo.
An unfortunate hiccup: McCain and his entourage, including fellow Libya hawk Lindsey Graham, showed up on President Mohamed Morsi’s doorstep just as it was revealed that Morsi, while a top Muslim Brotherhood official in 2010, had inveighed against Jews, calling them “blood-suckers” and “the descendants of apes and pigs” and claiming it was incumbent on Egyptians to “nurse our children and our grandchildren on hatred” toward them.