Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) has called on the United Nations to implement a no-fly zone over Libya, while several key Republican lawmakers have criticized President Barack Obama for his cautious approach to the conflict in northern Africa.
On March 16, Kerry, the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, urged the U.N. to quickly approve a resolution to end Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi's air strikes against opposition forces. He said that the international community "cannot watch from the sidelines" as the rebels' pursuit of democracy is "met with raw violence," quoted by The Boston Globe.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates has stated that attacking Libya's planes would be an act of war, the media outlet reported. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), on the other hand, has condemned Obama's lack of action in the face of human rights violations in Libya. He noted that the British and French governments support a no-fly zone.
"At least be as bold as the French,’’ said Graham, quoted by the news source.
On March 17, Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) said that Congress should be required to vote on a no-fly zone before the executive branch supports a U.N. resolution. According to The Hill, Paul, like Gates, believes that a no-fly zone is an act of war.
"You can't just all of a sudden turn a switch and say don't fly over Libya," said Paul, quoted by the news provider. "You have to bomb a lot of anti-aircraft sites and a lot of military establishment. So the war is on."