Having devoted many words on this blog to pointing out David Cameron’s failings, it seems fair to point out how well he has done with regard to Libya in the last few days.
It looked highly unlikely a few days ago that the UN would agree to the approach the Prime Minister has just set out in the Commons, not least because of all the signals coming from the US Administration that a no-fly zone was unworkable and/or limited in its potential impact.
But it seems to me the government took a view fairly early on that we had a duty to do more than issue words of condemnation, and he and his team, and President Sarkozy’s and his, have just kept plugging away at the arguments, and have prevailed. Sometimes leaders have to make big calls and take difficult decisions, not always knowing the consequences.
He cannot know the full consequences of the approach he has just set out. But listening to his statement to the Commons, it was hard to disagree with any of it. It was an important moment, and hopefully one that will help herald real change in Libya. Nobody can be certain of that. But we can be certain that without the action agreed at the UN, the chances of Gaddafi getting away with it were a lot higher.