Years after the Afghan and Iraqi adventures, regime change has not lost its charms. Unlike in the past, this time the experiment may have a better chance. In Libya, there is a broad swathe of citizens who desire to see the end of their ruler.
The regional environment, too, seems propitious. An AFP story on Monday said the Arab League supports a no-fly zone, reminiscent of a similar arrangement over the Kurdish part of Iraq. If a domestic insurrection removes a dictator, it has a better chance at garnering support in the Arab world. The US understands this. Instead of committing its troops, it has requested Saudi Arabia to supply weapons to the Libyan opposition.
If change succeeds, it will open an interesting phase in global politics: the much-maligned neoconservative idea of linking the internal structure of states with their external behaviour will finally gain the legitimacy that it has sought for long.