March 30, 2011

Gingrich Explains Shifting Positions on Libyan Kinetic Action
— Ace

At Hot Air.

His major claim (which he previously stated) is that his analysis was always according to the situation presented by President Obama's haphazard, slapdash decision-making.

He began by not encouraging a no-fly zone or direct military action. When Obama flipped a coin and decided it was a new national foreign policy imperative that "Qadaffy must go," he then supported the establishment of a no-fly zone and taking Qadaffy out while he was weak. Based, he says, on the changed situation that the foreign policy prestige of the US was now placed on a reckless bet against Qadaffy -- having made the bet, we now have to win it. Or, as he says, "if you ask me if we should jump in the lake, I'd say no. But now if we're in the lake, if you ask me to swim, I'd say yes."

His current position -- that we shouldn't have intervened directly -- is based, it seems, on two different beliefs: First, in accord with his originally announced statement, that the US should just not intervene directly. Second, based on Obama's Jenga-based foreign policy declarations -- if the president has taken the one decisive goal off the table (removing Qadaffy from power), then the military action is designed only to produce stalemate and civil war, not a stable and positive situation, and thus, minus that critical goal, the original position of non-intervention is reinforced.

The video he's released compiling a series of past statements doesn't exactly prove that was his thinking; the past statements are consistent with this narrative, but do not prove that was his thinking all along. Gingrich is a smart man and knows how to articulate his thinking clearly -- if this was his thinking all along, you'd usually expect a quick wit like Gingrich to say so.

On the other hand, the charge against Gingrich here is that he is playing partisan games with foreign policy, and the past statements do tend to show evolutions in thought -- and hesitancy. That's forgivable, I think; my own thinking on this changed (and, who knows, could change again).

But it's hard for Gingrich to push his central critique that Obama's making this up as he goes along, reversing past statements and generally guilty of muddled, rudderless thinking when Gingrich himself hasn't been coherent and firm throughout this.

I don't think someone changing their mind is necessarily a bad thing. But it does make it harder for Gingrich himself to carry this particular brief against Obama.

Posted by: Ace at 06:00 AM | Comments (67)
Post contains 435 words, total size 3 kb.

1 hmmmmmm

Posted by: elspeth at March 30, 2011 06:00 AM (0AkWH)

2 I of Newt is toast he should just shut up and go home.

Posted by: Vic at March 30, 2011 06:01 AM (M9Ie6)

3 I haven't listened to a thing Newt has said since he decided it was a good idea to sit on the couch with Nancy.  He needs to GO.AWAY.

Posted by: Tami at March 30, 2011 06:03 AM (VuLos)

4 He was probably too busy "loving his country too much" to really think things through.

Posted by: taylork at March 30, 2011 06:05 AM (5wsU9)

5 And people pay attention to Gingrich, why, exactly?

Makes as much sense as listening to Allahpundit.

Posted by: Rob Crawford at March 30, 2011 06:08 AM (IuKAf)

6 Gingrich 2012- 'Cause picking up chicks has gotten slow since I left Congress

Posted by: Damiano at March 30, 2011 06:08 AM (3nrx7)

7 This does make Newt look like an insincere opportunists, but when I think about how he slept with those women--cheated on his wives--just out of his love for me, for us, for our great nation....How can not forgive him and vote for him for President next year?

Posted by: Kasper Hauser at March 30, 2011 06:09 AM (HqpV0)

8 If you have to explain it...

Posted by: AoSHQ's worst commenter, DarkLord© at March 30, 2011 06:09 AM (GBXon)

9 Gingrich 2012- 'Hey, Hannity still like me'

Posted by: taylork at March 30, 2011 06:09 AM (5wsU9)

10 Newt, you have a new explanation? Go tell Nancy Pelosi. No one serious cares. At any rate it will be mildly amusing when you lose your nomination bid. If anyone notices.

Posted by: George Orwell at March 30, 2011 06:09 AM (AZGON)

11 Why should I care about Gingritches flip-flops?

He's not running things, and he's not the voice of the Republican party.  He's also highly unlikely to receive the Republican presidential nomination.

So right now he's just a partisan pundit.

To the extent that he's been flip-flopping, its certainly nowhere near the ping-pong like action of someone like Joe Biden.

 

Posted by: looking closely at March 30, 2011 06:09 AM (PwGfd)

12 Drowning man flailing. 

Posted by: wildwood at March 30, 2011 06:10 AM (VSWPU)

13 I don't like Porky but I do like his lake metaphor. I would add to the metaphor that you would swim but you don't have to do the butterfly stroke just because the person that threw you in the lake demanded you do it.

Posted by: polynikes at March 30, 2011 06:10 AM (iRWGZ)

14 It's a little too early in the day to be this confusing...but this type of intellectual dithering plays right into the Left's favorite mantra; we can't tell what Gingrich's position is because is changes so often- like he changes wives.

Posted by: Marcus at March 30, 2011 06:12 AM (CHrmZ)

15
Makes as much sense as listening to Allahpundit.


Who only has to link to me 358 more times, and I'll let him nuzzle my meaty thighs...

Posted by: Meggy.Mac at March 30, 2011 06:12 AM (gQLr2)

16 Newt who? Go try to sell some more books on hannitys show. Oh yea and diaf.

Posted by: Evil libertarian at March 30, 2011 06:12 AM (XV/Eq)

17 I said a flip flop, the flippie, the flippie
To the flip flip flop, ah, you dont stop


Posted by: The Sugar Newt Gang at March 30, 2011 06:13 AM (YvNBz)

18
Gingrich is a lightweight and a poser.

Rudy Giuliani, for example, is far better than Gingrich on everything. For instance, here's Rudy on Obama's war on Libya:

"To say that he has a policy, even like an Obama Doctrine, is really just a fawning on Obama.  There's no doctrine in this.  Here's the doctrine, if France wants us to do it, if the UN wants us to do it, if the Arab League wants us to do it, then we'll do it, that's the Obama Doctrine."

Bam!

Posted by: Soothsayer, Republican Whip at March 30, 2011 06:13 AM (uFokq)

19

I have to be honest. I didn't even read it.

Why not? Because nothing he says at this point can change my opinion of him as a fast-talking, bandwagon-jumping, political whore who cannot be trusted.

Posted by: Whatever! at March 30, 2011 06:13 AM (LyOUH)

20 [Facepalm.] Newt needs to go back to teaching history. He can appear on wonkish panels every now and then to satisfy his desire to be noticed.

Posted by: joncelli at March 30, 2011 06:15 AM (RD7QR)

21 Why does Gingrich's views on Libya gain so much attention?

It's convenient filler?

Posted by: AoSHQ's worst commenter, DarkLord© at March 30, 2011 06:16 AM (GBXon)

22 Newt is a weather vane. Meh. Get lost, loser.

Posted by: eman: Japanese Babe Rescue Team at March 30, 2011 06:16 AM (T0S5U)

23 There is only one man who can set this country on the right path. A man who who would gladly leave his twelfth wife for Nancy Pelosi. A man who changes positions on Libya more than he changes wives. A man who will protect us from the twin threat of militant secularism and militant Islamism. That man's name? Newton Leroy Tinkerbell Gingrich, Esquire. Vote Newt '12!

Posted by: Your RINO Philosopher Kings at March 30, 2011 06:16 AM (qMwda)

Posted by: maddogg at March 30, 2011 06:17 AM (OlN4e)

25

Newt needs to increase his speaking fees, it's an election year next year...

It seems like this has been SOP every four years.

Posted by: Ben at March 30, 2011 06:17 AM (wuv1c)

26 O/T:  ahem (clear throat)   Hear ye hear ye CNBC has announced that they are awaiting an address by his majesty, BO, president of the US regarding HIS energy policy.  The address shall commence momentarily

Posted by: . at March 30, 2011 06:20 AM (k1rwm)

27 Newt 2012 - Because McCain's message was too clear.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) at March 30, 2011 06:21 AM (8y9MW)

28 Gingrich 2012- If you like your kinetic military action, you can keep you kinetic military action.

... Unless you don't like it, then we can call it something else and I will blame Barack.

Posted by: Damiano at March 30, 2011 06:22 AM (3nrx7)

29 awaiting an address by his majesty, BO, president of the US regarding HIS energy policy. It's Bush's/the oil companies'/the GOP's/somebody else's fault. Wanna see my awesome brackets?

Posted by: Bambi -- look, a squirrel! at March 30, 2011 06:23 AM (RD7QR)

30 Gingritch himself has more or less said that the only reason he "runs" for President is to increase his audience.

Nothing wrong with that, per se, but it does make it hard to take him seriously.

Posted by: looking closely at March 30, 2011 06:23 AM (6Q9g2)

31 Newt, you sly political animal, you..... Posted by: maddogg at March 30, 2011 11:17 AM

Hell, Newt was probably under so much pressure because of his work trying to save the country, he threw ol' Nancy down on the couch right after the cameras quit rolling.

Posted by: huerfano at March 30, 2011 06:24 AM (2pEj7)

32 Dibs on Newt's eyes for my potion.

Posted by: Christine O'Donnell at March 30, 2011 06:24 AM (xs5wK)

33 I have a few problems with Newt, the biggest one is this myth he's managed to spread about himself that he's some policy genius.  If nothing else, this PR debacle should put lie to that little story.

Newt- If you're serious about running for '12 (Please, God, no.) you really need to be more on-target in your statements.  It wouldn't have hurt for you to hold off a day or two, get some real information, and then make a statement in which you clearly also link it to the situation as you understand it.

THEN when new information comes up and you change positions, it's not waffling, it's a considered change in light of new information.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) at March 30, 2011 06:24 AM (8y9MW)

34

Notice... all Newt's statements are based on POLITICS, not Principles...

And because Politics change, where Principles do not... we see him flipping and flopping and trying to spin himself into sounding reasonable and decisive.

Its a Global Warming Nancy on the Couch moement all over again... all Politics...

And I for one, do not think we need a Politician without principles in charge of our country... we already have one.

Posted by: Romeo13 at March 30, 2011 06:25 AM (NtXW4)

35 Gingrich/ Murkowski 2012: Hope Hookers and Change Blow

I'm Charlie Sheen and I declare this ticket- WINNING!

Posted by: Damiano at March 30, 2011 06:25 AM (3nrx7)

36 >>>Newt, you have a new explanation? In fairness, it's not a "new" explanation; it's an elaboration of his previous offered explanation.

Posted by: ace at March 30, 2011 06:26 AM (nj1bB)

37 Newt Gingrich is to GOP pols what Ted Baxter was to news anchors. It would be funny if todays's political reality were a comedy show in the 70's. Right about now he makes me gag, but not in the comedic sense, more like a purging reflex.

Posted by: ontherocks at March 30, 2011 06:26 AM (HBqDo)

38 And I am moving my over/under as to when Newt drops out of the GOP Nomination race to 27 hours after the Iowa caucus.

Posted by: Mallamutt at March 30, 2011 06:26 AM (OWjjx)

39
The video he's released compiling a series of past statements





Bets on if any of these vid clips feature a couch?

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at March 30, 2011 06:27 AM (9daa6)

40 #20 "Because nothing he says at this point can change my opinion of him as a fast-talking, bandwagon-jumping, political whore who cannot be trusted."

Same here.
I have to agree with him about the "March 3" demarcation, where Obama publicly announced that QDaffy must go.

I would have, at the request of NATO (and/or the 'Arab League') not vetoed a no fly zone.  I would not have openly supported one, either.

Once the resolution was established, I would have used whatever resources necessary to implement a no fly zone.  That's where we seem to be today.

At this point in time, my opinion is that the U.S.A. should paraphrase Ben Franklin, and announce "Here's your no fly zone, if you can keep it" to all other parties involved.  Further participation would require further resolutions, which would involve the other parties paying for further support.

In other words, I'm not all that concerned about a group of Al Qaeda rebels getting massacred by a brutal dictator.  The innocents will end up getting killed regardless of who is in power six months from now.

Posted by: jwb7605 at March 30, 2011 06:28 AM (Qxe/p)

41 This situation can be saved by two things.

1.  The U.S. Navy or Air Force nails Qaddafi.

2.  The conflict in Libya draws terrorists to the fight, much like Iraq and Afghanistan have preoccupied the goat-fuckers for 10 years.

It is in our best interest to prolong the internecine warfare in the Arab world.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo (NJConservative) at March 30, 2011 06:29 AM (LH6ir)

42
Gingrich/ Murkowski 2012: Hope Hookers and Change Blow



Who?

I think you spelled that name wrong.

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at March 30, 2011 06:29 AM (9daa6)

43 @uFokq,

You are a strange and disturbed person.

Welcome home!

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo (NJConservative) at March 30, 2011 06:30 AM (LH6ir)

44 "...if the president has taken the one decisive goal off the table (removing Qadaffy from power), then the military action is designed only to produce stalemate and civil war..." -Ace

We're aiding and abetting an unknown outcome.  In effect, we have no foreign policy and Obama/Clinton has broken this country's stupid meter.

Posted by: Old Sailor at March 30, 2011 06:31 AM (/Ft4q)

45 Newt and Nancy sitting on the couch = Sofa King Over.

Posted by: wildwood at March 30, 2011 06:33 AM (VSWPU)

46

This is why legislators make poor executives.  Their opinions shift so much to form a consensus in order to get the majority on board.  Don't hate them for that, it's what they are.  Sort of like the scorpion.

That's also one of the (many, many, many) reasons Obama sucks so badly.  He's trying to get things done the way he knows how: going with what is popular.

(When not voting 'Present', that is...)

Posted by: Warthog at March 30, 2011 06:33 AM (WDySP)

47 Posted by: democracy for all at March 30, 2011 11:29 AM (uFokq)

We have an early lead for threadwinner...

Posted by: AoSHQ's worst commenter, DarkLord© at March 30, 2011 06:35 AM (GBXon)

48 Don't hate them for that, it's what they are.  Sort of like the scorpion.

Why not?  I hate scorpions, too.  They're like 8 legged, ground-based hornets- they're just mean.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) at March 30, 2011 06:36 AM (8y9MW)

49
But it's hard for Gingrich to push his central critique that Obama's making this up as he goes along, reversing past statements and generally guilty of muddled, rudderless thinking when Gingrich himself hasn't been coherent and firm throughout this.

It is one thing to make it up as you go along if you're Ace of Newt or even myself. It is another thing entirely if you're getting daily military and intelligence briefings from reputable sources.

Then there's that whole "fog of war" thing.

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie © at March 30, 2011 06:41 AM (1hM1d)

50 Newt needs to just STFU and go away.... he had his chance and he blew it completely back in the 90's.

he's not so much a has been as he is a never was.

Posted by: redc1c4 at March 30, 2011 06:42 AM (d1FhN)

51
It is in our best interest to prolong the internecine warfare in the Arab world.


Yes. And we should sell weapons and amunition to both sides. Remember your Rules of Acquisition:

Peace is good for business.
War is good for business.

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie © at March 30, 2011 06:43 AM (1hM1d)

52 I lack sufficient middle fingers to make this entirely clear, but:  Shut up and go away Newt!!!

Posted by: s☺mej☼e at March 30, 2011 06:47 AM (WbnbO)

53 Stop picking on my buddy.

Posted by: Dede Scozzafava at March 30, 2011 06:48 AM (oDMwn)

54 Tell Perfesser Buonaparte his fifteen minutes are up.

Posted by: Ken at March 30, 2011 06:48 AM (hBOZg)

55 Who cares about this tool?

Dude needs to needs to shut his pie hole, and go back to being an "author" of crappy, ghost-written, speculative fiction.

Yeah, I salute you, Newt, for what you did in 1994, and I curse you for the way you fucked it in 1995.

Posted by: DelD at March 30, 2011 06:52 AM (oAZ1S)

56 Posted by: democracy for all at March 30, 2011 11:29 AM

Machines for sale has competition.

Posted by: huerfano at March 30, 2011 06:52 AM (2pEj7)

57 He's Karl Rove without the political instincts, bags of money and lack of ambition for elected office.

Posted by: A Balrog of Morgoth at March 30, 2011 06:53 AM (oDMwn)

58 49Posted by: democracy for all at March 30, 2011 11:29 AM (uFokq)

We have an early lead for threadwinner...

Posted by: AoSHQ's worst commenter, DarkLord© at March 30, 2011 11:35 AM (GBXon)

The problem, here, is that Soothsayer's pseudo-spam is so authentic that I reflexively scroll past it thereby missing the lulz should someone else fail to comment on it.

Posted by: Large McBighuge at March 30, 2011 07:04 AM (s5cUk)

59 Who likes this man other than his mirror? Why on earth does he think he can be elected? Go away, Newt. Please.

Posted by: ChristyBlinky at March 30, 2011 07:14 AM (oTjfX)

60 Jesus, he flip flops when he even thinks anyone's opinion has changed. Really, if he was so aware why the hell can't he sense that conservatives hate him?

Posted by: Gmac at March 30, 2011 07:19 AM (b1KSu)

61

I wanted a quick decapitation strike on Quadaffy citing his many acts of war against the US.  Consult with some leaders in congress and security types who don't run their mouths.  Screw the Arab League and UN. 

Instead we got a slow-motion, expensive-munitions-intensive so-called no-fly zone bound to produce yet another jihad against the US, aka naji kufr polytheist dogs.  All after the long alliance with al Qaeda types we call secular democrat reformers until they turn on us and, best of all, claim nobody could see it coming.

 

Posted by: Beagle at March 30, 2011 07:31 AM (sOtz/)

62

One thing I've learned through the years is that if you want to bag a Muslim strongman you need to do it before he can call in his tribal and  religious alliances, rally jihadi manpower and go to ground.  In Saddam's case, literally.   Ghadaffy was on the ropes for a few days but quickly rounded into fielding artillery and armored units. 

International posturing amounts to civil war/escape plan prep time.  

Posted by: Beagle at March 30, 2011 07:51 AM (sOtz/)

63 Don't like Newt. Not for a long time.

He is a politician willing to shift his stance to whatever he perceives is currently popular. Anyone can do that. Even I can do that. You could do that.

It is the easiest thing in the world to do.

Posted by: navybrat at March 30, 2011 08:39 AM (glOq3)

64 Newt isn't playing partisan games, he is playing newt games, just like the couch session with nazi pelosi.   And to think, I used to really like this guy (back in 1996,) and even defended him this century.

Posted by: kurtilator at March 30, 2011 08:53 AM (juh4Z)

65

Newt is a perfect example of the kind of bloviating hack we need to purge from the Republican Party. His personal morals and ethics torpedoed the last Republican land slide. A family values guy who re-wifes as often as Donald Trump.

Watching Hannity stick his tongue down Newt's throat several nights a week says what needs to be said about both of them.

Posted by: Johnnny Idaho at March 30, 2011 09:08 AM (QZj75)

66 Newt has no interest in furthering the GOP's -- or America's -- agenda. He has an overwhelming interest in furthering his personal agenda of being the Next Approved Conservative of the MSM. That fucker Buchanan can't live forever.

Posted by: richard mcenroe at March 30, 2011 10:07 AM (2n5kn)

67 thanks for your share!

Posted by: lingerie wholesale at April 01, 2011 03:46 AM (t86IJ)

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