Who would have thought it: no less than the US, through Hillary Clinton, urging the world to wait out a UN-backed no-fly-zone on Libya.
This contrasts sharply with when her husband was President in 1999, when Nato was allowed to run rough-shod over the UN Security Council
by dropping bombs on Kosovo, without the backing of the Security Council.
Perhaps even more interesting is listening to this same Hilary Clinton talk about partners, including the Arab League, the African Union; the European Union;Nato; and the Gulf Cooperation Council!
I would have loved to hear in that list the AU-mandated Arab Maghreb Union, but that is okay.
Though I am impressed with Nato Secretary-General Rasmussen's claim that Nato will not act without the backing of the UN Security Council as well, I still have little regard for Nato, an alliance I believe has lost its raison d'etre. Still, hearing that list has given me hope that however and whatever people might feel about the utility--or lack thereof--of these groupings, they DO still exist and they are unlikely to break away anytime soon.
I just hope this Libyan crisis is a wake-up call for them to crank up what may just be the framework for the emergence of some kind of regional governance, where regional organisations are recognised as partners in the resolution of conflict -- everywhere!