Today's decision by the U.S. to appropriate some of the new Predator drones to help aid reconnaissance may actually be the key note to help bring this new war in Libya to a quick end.
Predator drones are unmanned airplanes that are operated remotely by a user in a safe zone. They are smaller, cheaper, and safer to use for the purpose of recon and locale mapping--and in fact, they do it far better, with more accurate information, due to their extremely tight turning circle, compared to the fighter jets usually assigned to the job.
And the purposing of these drones could not be better--the most effective device in our arsenal, actually, aiding the hodge-podge, loosely-organized and poorly-equipped rebels. Using fighter jets to provide this data would have been a hopeless drain on the main military provider in this war--us.
Until now, Moammar Gadhafi has had all the tanks and military machines of the home team at his disposal, and using them against the hapless, hopelessly outnumbered rebels, who have literally been backward-engineering their weapons by disassembling the shooting mechanisms from any war machines (helicopters, tanks, even jets).
It really has been looking like some strange middle-eastern mixture of the A-Team, MacGyver, the Mythbusters, and some weird, backwoods twice-removed uncle whose mainstay is making PVC potato rifles on the weekend.
But another quality aspect of the Predator drones will prove to be their ability to be maneuvered into tighter, smaller, zones, and--by very nature of their size, plus the newer, higher-resolution imaging technology they provide--separate the most minute factions of bad guys from the good guys, fighters from civilians, right down to the individual.
The most inspiring insights into overall character of the anti-Gadhafi rebels comes when you make that final Quantum Leap and see how closely their general character actually resembles some other rebel forces we're all more than familiar with--those depicted by George Lucas in his classic Star Wars series.
This explains why this is such a good decision--actually, it may be one of the best decisions affecting our involvement in a mid-Eastern war made by any of our last five administrations--a quick, financially prudent, modern, and entirely uniquely effectual appropriation, exemplifying the term.
With real-time re-con data provided by these drones, any small band of rebels can have a well-deserved unfair advantage over an entire battalion of overly-equipped outgoing warmonger droids--and out him quickly, decisively, and to the benefit of all.
If he realized how impressive and useful this data will be, he might even surrender tomorrow. When that reality is forced upon him in a few days, he will quickly see how useless his greater numbers and strengths are, and that he has one of two basic choices--to give up, or disappear completely. If we continue to press on with this one, and especially if NATO does not screw matters up by politicizing control issues to an adverse degree, the Libyan revolt will end more decisively and quickly than even the recent Egyptian one.