Details emerged this week about something that has happened in the chaos that has been Libya over the past few months.
20,000 brand new, Russian made and supplied, man portable anti-aircraft missiles are missing from warehouses in Libya. Uncle Mohammar had bought these lethal things over the past several years from our good friends in Moscow. Now, they have been stolen from unguarded locations by persons (at least publicly) unknown.
Speculation is either Iran or Al Qaeda got them, or maybe both. Either case is very bad news.
Man portable heat seeking missiles are terrorists' holy grail. A single person can operate it, and the weapon is capable of downing a jetliner from several miles away. The targeted aircraft won't know a thing until they are hit. Western governments all over the world have fought tooth and nail to prevent even a single weapon of this class from falling into terrorist hands. Now, we have the potential for 20,000 of them to be out there?
This should have been known about and dealt with. Western intelligence services had to know about the missiles' existence - you simply cannot hide a delivery of that many weapons. The locations where these weapons were stored should have been an A list target for US and NATO airstrikes early in the campaign.
IF the Obama Administration knew about these weapons prior to them being stolen, and they took no action to destroy them before they were stolen, that is stupidty and negligence of the highest order. If the Obama Administration didn't know about them, then there were some serious failures in the intelligence services - failures that need to be corrected, though it is far too late to stop this horse from escaping the barn.
The world just became a whole lot more dangerous.
10/24 Update - Ghaddaffi is dead, hunted down, captured, and executed. He certainly deserved it. But is Libya in a better situation now, at least as far as the rest of the world? The newly emerged leader of the rebels is a hard line Islamist, who has declared that Sharia law will rule the country. Any law currently on the books that conflicts with his interpretation of Sharia will be nullified. One of the first changes was to allow Libyan men up to four wives each. I'm sure Libyan women, who had just as much at stake in the rebellion as the men did, aren't feeling real good about this turn of events.
Couple this with what happened in Egypt, where a pro-Western government was overthrown and replaced with chaos run by the Muslim Brotherhood (also dedicated to a Sharia ruled state) and you've got the majority of North Africa now run by hard line Islamists. They join Iran and Pakistan. Turkey is moving that way. Syria teeters on falling, with Iran running the opposition. Iraq is shaky, and we're about to adandon it. Afghanistan is worse than shaky, and our current leadership shows no commitment to shoring it up.
Southwest Asia and the Middle East are well on their way to becoming a solid block of hard line anti-Western, very anti-US regimes, hell bent on making the world a radical Muslim paradise. How long will the Saudi peninsula be able to hold out against this wave? When will these radicals feel themselves powerful enough to try and push Isreal into the sea?
Oh, and by the way ... those missiles are still missing.
10/25 Update - The 'leaders' of pro-Islamic groups fighting to ascend to rule over Egypt have declared their intention of implementing Sharia law. The leader of one faction has gone as far as declaring himself 'The Enemy of Democracy" in a media interview. These groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood, are calling for violence against Isreal, and are believed to be behind several recent terrorist attacks in the area.
The Obama Administration's embracing of the Arab Spring, cheering it on without taking any action to help form the future is leading directly to the rise of radical Islam in multiple countries that were once allies of the United States, or at least under control.