Earlier today, ThinkProgress exposed that Newt Gingrich completely reversed his position on Libya. On March 7th he criticized Obama for not acting on Libya and said he would “exercise a no-fly zone this evening.” This morning Gingrich said, “I would not have intervened.” Watch:
What’s followed has been a series of convoluted and contradictory explanations. The latest is a first person statement posted to his Facebook page. The thrust of his Facebook post is that he believes Obama should not have publicly stated that Qaddafi needed to go on March 3:
On March 3rd, President Obama said publicly that “it’s time for Gadaffi to go.”
Prior to this statement, there were options to be indirect and subtle to achieve this result without United States military forces. I made this point on The Today Show this morning, saying “I would not have intervened…there were a lot of other ways to affect Qaddafi…I would not have used American and European forces.”
The president, however, took those options off the table with his public statement.
But in February, Gingrich said precisely the opposite on Fox News. He very clearly stated that Obama should publicly support the ouster of Qaddafi. From Politico on February 22 (text and video):
“If you are the Libyans…you are able to to suppress your people and the American government stays quiet”
“I wish the administration — the Obama administration was as enthusiastic about democracy in Libya and in Iran and in other countries as it was in Egypt, which was our ally.
“Qadhafi’s been our enemy for years. This is an opportunity to replace that dictatorship, and I think the United States ought to be firmly on the side of the Libyan people in replacing this administration.“