Is the President Reading Angry Bear?
AB, late Thursday:
If you want to stop a dictator from killing his people, freeze any of his personal assets that are held out of the country.
In cases where the dictator is likely to fall, it sends a clear signal to other countries. (In cases where the dictator is likely to succeed, the worst case scenario is that banking relationships will be damaged, a consideration that the domestic government would have considered before making the decision to freeze the assets in the first place.)
The purpose of financial in lieu of military intervention is to balance the tradeoff. A dictator whose funds will remain unencumbered no matter how many of his people he kills will not change his behavior. A dictator who stands to lose a large (and increasing) portion of $70 billion faces a scenario where extending his time in office may well appear too costly.
Treasury, Friday night:
On Friday evening, President Obama took decisive steps to hold the Qadhafi regime accountable for its continued use of violence against unarmed civilians and its human rights abuses and to safeguard the assets of the people of Libya.
The President issued an Executive Order freezing the assets of Muammar Qadhafi and four of his children, as well as the Government of Libya and its agencies, including the Central Bank of Libya and the Libyan Investment Authority – the country’s sovereign wealth fund.
I report. You decide.
Heh. I love it!
good show, ken.
now, if he’d only read my stuff.
Of course he reads AngryBear. He’s a smart guy (he doesn’t always go deep into the comment threads).
Good thing you are giving advice to the good guys, unlike Daniel Davies who advised Mubarak (now we know that Mubarak reads D squared digest)
Mubarak is even more attentive than Obama. Said armed orifices arrived in Tahrir square within the day.
Great post man!
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It is past due for a president to rescind NSC 68, and decide that the DoD sledge hammer is no longer a tool for dealing with the issues of the world.
You’re kidding I hope. All of Europe (and more importantly the Swiss government) froze all of the Libyan assets on 2/23. The Americans just followed suit.
The Swiss and other EU countries have also frozen the assets of Mubarak. That was done a long time ago. As of this AM the US has failed to act.
Possibly you should write a blog on Egyptian hot money and see what happens..
I like how freezing dictators’ assets prevented WWII, toppled Hitler, Khomeini, Idi Amin and brought peace, democracy, light and free twinkies to all those poor benighted people who suffered under those regimes.
A sense of humor is a terrible thing to waste.
Thanks, bkrasting. Now that Europe and the US have seized all Libyan assets abroad, not just those held in Ghaddafi’s name, they are perfectly positioned to give or deny financial viability to any new Libyan regime. Still no chance for the Libyan people to choose freely, they have to choose some set of people to whom the US and the Europeans will release the money.
coberly, Yea, I came over here to tell Ken no because if he read you and Bruce he would be less clueless.