Libyan Trick or Treat

There’s no apparent reason to continue NATO’s air mission in Libya beyond Halloween, said Lt. Gen. Ralph Jodice, allied air component commander for NATO’s southern region, Monday. Jodice told the Daily Report that “we do not have any ongoing planning at all for anything post-Oct. 31,” including air sovereignty patrols or continuing intelligence-surveillance-reconnaissance missions. None have been requested, he noted. Jodice said NATO headquarters has been working with the new Libyan civil aviation authorities, the International Civil Aviation Authority, and other agencies “to make sure that the airspace is ready for the Libyans to take over” after NATO’s mission is complete. As to whether it’s safe enough for NATO to conclude Operation Unified Protector, Jodice said “we continue to monitor the situation. . . . But we don’t see . . . anything that would be gained from continuing the fight.” NATO has faith in Libya’s National Transitional Council “that they’ll address any internal security problems” after NATO withdraws top cover, he said.