Thursday, April 16, 2009

Correction... Ron

In today's Top of the Ticket blog (L.A. Times), it has a post with the "darling of Libertarians everywhere", congressman Ron Paul. It highlights his idea of hiring privateers to go after the pirates using the "... little-known power written into the Constitution called marque and reprisal." Thankfully, the post also links the associated article which cites the number of potential complications that could result when "... 100 American wannabe Rambos..." start patrolling the rather large body of water known as the Indian Ocean. Whether it gets traction with Congress or not, his lecture on the recent history of Somalia (and our involvement) that is part of his YouTube video had a glaring inaccuracy:
"... the foolish attempt... [video edit/break appears] ...and Clinton went into Somalia in the early 1990's, and a fiasco resulted. We got involved in a civil war there and supported one faction... and ah, and several of our helicopters went down and a dozen or so of our people were killed."
Too bad his memory fails here, or he mis-remembers the events on purpose. U.N. Resolution 794 is what instigated forces to intercede there. And, it was the Republican President George H.W. Bush, not Bill Clinton, who responded to that and initiated Operation Restore Hope. This is well documented in a number of historical books and web sites, as well as in Mark Bowen's excellent non-fiction book, Blackhawk Down, which includes a good chronicle of the background that lead up to the battle Paul mentions. I do hate it when politicians either screw up facts, purposely or accidentally, and the reporters fail to call them out for it.

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