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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 09:26 PM
Original message
Libyan Revolution Day 65
Edited on Fri Apr-22-11 09:57 PM by joshcryer
Links to sites with updates: AJE Live Blog April 23 (today) AJE Twitter Dashboard The Guardian Reuters Telegraph feb17.info Libya Alhurra (live video webcast from Benghazi) libyafeb17.com

Twitter links: Ayman Mohyeldin, with AJE Ben Wedeman, with CNN tripolitanian, a Libyan from Tripoli Brian Conley, reporter in Libya FreeLibyanYouth, Libyan advocate LibyaFeb17.com twitter account ChangeInLibya, Libyan advocate

Useful links: feb17voices Current time in Libya Prayer times in Libya

Day 64 here.

Marching On in Libya, for the revolutionaries!


Ajdabiya honours fallen British photojournalist

Photograph: Sue Turton (?)


Ajdabiya honours fallen British photojournalist
They didnt name a street after Tim. Instead they chose the biggest square in Ajdabiya. If the rebels win this war, it will be forever known as Tim Hetherington Square.

Hes not alone. Theres a Sarkozy quarter too. But everyone still left in this devastated city now knows who Tim was, where he died and why he will always be remembered here.

This mild-mannered photojournalist made quite an impact on Dr Suleiman Refardi, the leading surgeon at Ajdabiyas main hospital. Many journalists have visited him in the past month. Its about the only place that stayed open whoever was in control of the streets.

Before the doctors and nurses left their posts to march to the square to commemorate it in Tims honour, the doctor remembered his professionalism: Tim Hetherington was one of the people transmitting the light of truth. The camera of Tim Hetherington is as strong as any cannon on the front. We have named the square after this hero and I now consider Tim as one of our martyrs.



Libyan Rebels Buoyed by Strategic Win
...

"The dogs are fleeing, the insurance building is ours," a jubilant 32-year-old fighter, Nouri Misrati, told a wounded comrade recovering from shrapnel wounds in a hospital room Friday.

...

Still, its capture sends a message to the city's residents and the rest of Libya that in the face of long odds, rebel fighters in the city are slowly making gains.

...

The Libyan rebellion, started in mid-February, picked up steam in Misrata as the weeks drew on. Finally, on March 16, Col. Gadhafi moved to decisively crush it. He sent a column of dozens of tanks into the city. They rolled down Tripoli Street, the commercial heart of Misrata, firing rounds in every direction, residents said.

...

On April 3, just days after the visit by the Wall Street Journal reporter,the opposition forces struck back, executing an operation that stands as an example of rebel fighters' ingenuity here. They drove massive dumptrucks filled with sand onto Tripoli Street, parked them perpendicular across the thoroughfare, and blew out their tires so they couldn't be moved. The trucks sealed off the main thoroughfare at both ends preventing resupplies from reaching Col. Gadhafi's forces.


Note: link is behind a paywall, google the title of the article to get full access.

Libya army may quit Misrata fight due to airstrikes
TRIPOLI, April 22 (Reuters) - Libya's deputy foreign minister said on Friday Muammar Gaddafi's army may quit fighting in Misrata because of NATO airstrikes and allow local tribes to lead the fight against rebels.

Khaled Kaim said the army was meeting with local tribes who would try to talk to the rebels first. If dialogue fails, the tribes would fight the rebels in Libya's third largest city.

Kaim told reporters that the tribes had told the army: "if you can't do it, we will do it."

"Now there is an ultimatum before the Libyan army. If they can't resolve the problem in Misrata then the people from the region... will move in," he said.

"The tactic of the army is to have a surgical solution but with the (NATO) airstrikes it doesn't work," he said. "The situation in Misrata will be eased, will be dealt with by the tribes around Misrata and the rest of Misrata's people and not by the Libyan army."


This is a surrender, whatever Gaddafi loyalists there were when this shit began two months ago I highly doubt there are many left now. BTW, Gaddafi's army "surgical solution" = indiscriminate shelling with cluster bombs.


...

Mr. Hasadi dismisses the idea that Al Qaeda will somehow take root amid the Libyan unrest.

I thought badly of the US before, thats true, says Hasadi. But thats changing now theyre standing with us against Qaddafi.

He says jitters about pious fighters from Derna seeking to impose on Libya the harsh brand of Islamist rule favored by Al Qaeda just play into Qaddafis hands.

Qaddafi likes to try to make us out to be Al Qaeda, to discredit us, says Hasadi. What do I want? Three basic rights: a constitution, freedom, justice. No more one-man rule. Is that what Al Qaeda wants? Really, having a beard and being a Muslim doesnt make you Al Qaeda.


Ahh, I'm afraid Mr. Hasadi doesn't understand how racist the west can be toward Muslims.

Growing discontent, armed attacks in Tripoli
TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) -- Moammar Gadhafi's opponents unfurl a rebel flag from a highway overpass in the dark and speed away. On the outskirts of the capital, masked protesters denounce the Libyan leader, then quickly disband. The pop of gunfire is heard almost every evening, some of it, according to dissidents, from sneak attacks on army checkpoints.

Furtive resistance is the best those seeking Gadhafi's ouster can muster, under the heavy weight of fear in the most important stronghold of his rule. But the fact that such small-scale actions are taking place at all is a sign that activists are still trying to bring the rebellion to the capital, even after Gadhafi's forces gunned down demonstrators two months ago.

If confirmed, the reports of sporadic shooting at security posts could mark a significant shift away from peaceful protest, signalling the desperation of regime opponents in Tripoli.

At the same time, major disruptions in daily life - a result of international sanctions and the exodus of hundreds of thousands of foreign workers - will likely erode support for the regime. The price of cigarettes has doubled. Drivers wait hours to fill up gas tanks, with lines of cars snaking around city blocks. Large crowds form outside bakeries that can no longer keep up with demand.





Click here for updated map


Video of the convoy sent to take Benghazi, taken from a dead soliders cell phone (shows how massive the operation was): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwWwOeZqz6M

Sky News went with Gaddafi minders to find a "civilian town bombed" only they were never shown any such thing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-O5KJavfiQo

TNC presser talking about various details of the revolution (thanks to Waiting for Everyone): http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Topic on the women of the revolution, dispels myths that they are treated poorly: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Videos to bring the Libyan Revolution into context:

The Battle of Benghazi: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0vChMDuNd0

BBC Panorama on Libya Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AyaPnMnpCAA

BBC Panorama on Libya Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMzwQvcx62s

Tea of Freedom Song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WD5tu5bJWKc

Latest indiscriminate shelling in Misurata: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wop3C4zrPXI

Text of the resolution.

How will a no fly zone work? AJE reports: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWEwehTtK2k

Canada: Canada to send six CF-18s for Libya 'no-fly' mission Norway: Norway to join military intervention in Libya Belgium: Belgium ready for a military operation in Libya Qatar and the UAE: Run-up for Western worlds next military commitment ... with unusual support Denmark: Denmark ready for action against Gaddafi France: Following U.N. Vote, France Vows Libya Action Soon Italy: Italy to make bases available for Libya no-fly zone-source United Kingdom: Libya: UK forces prepare after UN no-fly zone vote United States: Nations draw up plans for no-fly zone over Libya Jordan: Military strikes on Libya 'within hours' Spain: Spain Expected to Join NATO No-fly Zone Enforcement over Libya

"One month ago (Western countries) were sooo nice, so nice like pussycats," Saif says in a contemptuous sing-song tone."Now they want to be really aggressive like tigers. (But) soon they will come back, and cut oil deals, contracts. We know this game." - Saif Gaddafi


(Yeah, Saif, as if you weren't "cutting oil deals, contracts" with western states. Who are the 'tigers' now? Bombing your own people.)

A Legal War: The United Nations Participation Act and Libya
The above link is to an overview of why Obama's implementation of the NFZ and R2P is perfectly legal under the law. I will not post it entirely here, however, all objections come down to the misinformed position that Obama, by using forces in Libya, was invoking Article 43 of the United Nations. This is wrong. Obama invoked Article 42, which does not require congressional approval to implement. Proof of this is that Article 43 has never been used.

It goes like this: The US law (Title 22, Chap. 7, Subchap. XIV 287d) grants the President the right to invoke UN Article 42 without authorization, the War Powers Act (Title 50, Chap. 33 1541) grants the President permission to act without authorization under "specific statutory authorization" which, by definition, is what 287d does. 1543 of the War Powers Act requires the President to report to Congress, which he did. One can argue all day and night about the legality of the War Powers Act, doesn't change the fact that under the law as it is written, the President acted within the law.


March 10 7:28pm Saif al Islam Gaddafi says "the time has come for full-scale military action" against Libyan rebels. He goes on to say that Libyan forces loyal to his family "will never surrender, even if western powers intervene".


Libyan Karzai? Chalabi? Forget it
Fortunately, the Council wasn't made-in-the-USA or manufactured by another foreign power. Rather it came into existence, a month ago, at Libyans' own initiative, soon after the winds of revolutionary change blew Libya's way, and after its people rose to the occasion with pride and courage.


Getting Libya's Rebels Wrong
Don't buy Qaddafi's line: The rebels aren't al Qaeda.


Who Are the Rebels?
During weeks of reporting in Benghazi and along the chaotic, shifting front line, Ive spent a great deal of time with these volunteers. The hard core of the fighters has been the shababthe young people whose protests in mid-February sparked the uprising. They range from street toughs to university students (many in computer science, engineering, or medicine), and have been joined by unemployed hipsters and middle-aged mechanics, merchants, and storekeepers. There is a contingent of workers for foreign companies: oil and maritime engineers, construction supervisors, translators. There are former soldiers, their gunstocks painted red, green, and blackthe suddenly ubiquitous colors of the pre-Qaddafi Libyan flag.


A vision of a democratic Libya
The interim national council, formed by opposition groups in Libya, has said it will hold free and fair elections and draft a national constitution. Here is its eight-point plan in full.



Mohammed Nabbous, killed by Gaddafi's forces while trying to report on the massacre in Benghazi

"I'm not afraid to die, I'm afraid to lose the battle" -Mohammed Nabbous, a month ago when all this began


I'm struggling to come up with something to say about this man. I was not aware of the Libyan uprising until I saw Mo's first report, begging for help, posted here on DU. I was stricken. Here was a man giving everything he had to explain a situation that clearly terrified him, I would not call him a coward in that moment, but you could see the fear in his eyes, and desperation in his voice. For 30 days Nabbous would spend many hours covering the uprising in Benghazi. For many nights I would go to sleep with the webcast of Benghazi live on my computer screen, looking to it occasionally to be sure it was still 'there.' Mo treated the chat room as if we were his friends, and in some way, we were. I never signed up to LiveStream to thank him for all his work and it seems somewhat shallow to do so now, given that I was a lurker for so long. Ever since I took over posting these threads "Libya Alhurra" has been linked as a source of information. It wasn't until last night, when I posted, and twitter posted on Mo's adventures out into Benghazi to try to determine the truth of the situation, that Mo's webchannel became a hit, over 2000 people were watching him stream live. This was curious to him because he'd done many reports like this in the past but he appeared somewhat bemused that the view count exploded as it did. Last night Mo became a star. This is a man who first started out with a webcast replete with fear and desperation finally overcoming that aspect of himself and losing that fear, to become someone who was a fighter for the resistance just as much as those who held the guns. Reporting on the front lines of Benghazi became his final act, and for that he should never, ever be forgotten. I'm so sorry Mo that I never got to know you better.

Mo's first report, which many of you may remember, begging for help: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38EXALI60hg

Mo's last report, a fallen hero trying to spread the word to the world: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ecu_iWLn-rg

Mo leaves behind a wife who is with child, she had this to say about the No Fly Zone and R2P UN resolution:

We started this in a pure way, but he turned it bloody. Thousands of our men, women, and children have died. We just wanted our freedom, that's all we wanted, we didn't want power. Before, we could not do a single thing if it was not the way he wanted it. All we wanted was freedom. All we wanted was to be free. We have paid with our blood, with our families, with our men, and we're not going to give up. We are still going to do that no matter what it takes, but we need help. We want to do this ourselves, but we don't have the weapons, the technology, the things we need. I don't want anyone to say that Libya got liberated by anybody else. If NATO didn't start moving when they did, I assure you, I assure you, half of Benghazi if not more would have been killed. If they stop helping us, we are going to be all killed because he has no mercy anymore.


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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 09:27 PM
Response to Original message
1. Current time in Libya, 4:27am Saturday, April 23
Sorry for getting on late guys, long long day.
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 09:32 PM
Response to Original message
2. Libyan ground forces degraded by up to 40 percent - U.S.
Edited on Fri Apr-22-11 09:32 PM by joshcryer
Libyan ground forces degraded by up to 40 percent - U.S.
(Reuters) - Coalition air strikes have degraded Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's main ground forces by 30 to 40 percent, but the conflict is becoming deadlocked, the top U.S. military officer said on Friday.

"It's certainly moving towards a stalemate," said Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, addressing U.S. troops during a visit to Baghdad.

"At the same time we've attrited (degraded) somewhere between 30 and 40 percent of his main ground forces, his ground force capabilities. Those will continue to go away over time."

He said the fight had become much harder as the Libyan military changed tactics, trying to appear like rebels to avoid being targeted. He said the battle was already "very much stalemate-like in the vicinity of Ajdabiya and Brega."
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 09:40 PM
Response to Original message
3. Audio: Guardians Xan Rice about the oppositions significant gains in Misrata
Edited on Fri Apr-22-11 09:40 PM by joshcryer
Audio: Guardians Xan Rice about the oppositions significant gains in Misrata
The opposition in Misrata has made some significant gains, driving back Gaddafis forces from several tall buildings in Misrata. The Guardians Xan Rice is in Misrata and has seen the badly damaged eight-storey office block that was home to a large number of Gaddafis snipers until yesterday. Xan witnessed the remains of their presence, such as thousands of bullet casings, discarded uniform and, chillingly, graffiti promising never to forgive the citys people and to return and punish them.

Its a big thing for the opposition fighters to have driven out the snipers from this building.


Audio at link.

Chilling article. Gaddafi's forces are the epitome of evil.
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 09:42 PM
Response to Original message
4. Al jazeera has released footage showing opposition forces seizing Libyan-Tunisian border post (AJE)
Libya rebels seize border post - video
Footage has emerged of armed fighters opposed to the continuing 42-year-rule of Muammar Gaddafi seizing a border post along Libya's national boundary with Tunisia.

Gaddafi's troops initially fled into Tunisia, but later returned to Libya, said Tunisian state TV.

Waheed Burshan, a Tunis-based political activist, tells Al Jazeera's Nick Clark about the scene at the Wazin border crossing.
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 09:57 PM
Response to Original message
5. Ajdabiya honours fallen British photojournalist
Ajdabiya honours fallen British photojournalist
They didnt name a street after Tim. Instead they chose the biggest square in Ajdabiya. If the rebels win this war, it will be forever known as Tim Hetherington Square.

Hes not alone. Theres a Sarkozy quarter too. But everyone still left in this devastated city now knows who Tim was, where he died and why he will always be remembered here.

This mild-mannered photojournalist made quite an impact on Dr Suleiman Refardi, the leading surgeon at Ajdabiyas main hospital. Many journalists have visited him in the past month. Its about the only place that stayed open whoever was in control of the streets.

Before the doctors and nurses left their posts to march to the square to commemorate it in Tims honour, the doctor remembered his professionalism: Tim Hetherington was one of the people transmitting the light of truth. The camera of Tim Hetherington is as strong as any cannon on the front. We have named the square after this hero and I now consider Tim as one of our martyrs.
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meow mix Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 10:06 PM
Response to Original message
6. k&r
go rebels, tighten the noose
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On the Road Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 10:29 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Amen, Brother!
If Misurata has borne the brunt of the shelling and survived, and rebels have captured mountain towns in the West, I think the tide has turned. There are too many forces at play against Qaddaffi from him to survive in the long run. They'll find a way to get him.
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 10:38 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. I think the rebels would've cleared the buildings of snipers...
...but it remains to be seen if Gaddafi's forces withdraw due to the airstrikes. If so, then the international community would have ended a protracted battle that would've lasted for months if not years.
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Cognitive_Resonance Donating Member (733 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 10:40 PM
Response to Original message
9. The end of the Qadaffi regime will come suddenly. Thankfully, I think it's closer than many realize.
There's very little popular support for the regime. It can unravel at any moment.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 11:18 PM
Response to Original message
10. US acknowledges missteps in handoff of Libya to NATO
(The comments to this article are really stupid)

By John T. Bennett - 04/22/11 12:41 PM ET
Flournoy said those early bumps in the road have been ironed out, adding the mission now is working very smoothly. The Pentagon official made the remarks in a wide-ranging interview with Charlie Rose on PBS.

....

Its a mixture of people. Many of them have had experience, you know, in government before as former ministers. A number of them are prominent leaders of civic society, said Flournoy, who sought to provide a detailed description of anti-Gadhafi forces.

As for rebel fighters, she said, there are a number on the military side that are actually defectors. They switched sides from the regime once it began attacking the population they couldn't abide it.

Administration officials have been very impressed with opposition members ideas about fashioning a new Libyan constitution and forming representative bodies, said Flournoy, who is considered a dark-horse candidate to replace Defense Secretary Robert Gates when he retires this year.

http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/157327-us-of...
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 11:21 PM
Response to Original message
11. Doctor in Misurata loses his children but works to save others
By Leila Fadel, Friday, April 22, 7:21 PM

Ali Abu Fanas walks through the Hikma Hospital with a quiet sadness. Around him, the injured are brought in on truck beds, ambulances and civilian vehicles. The 51-year-old anesthesiologist helps heal their wounds to forget his own.

Here in Misurata, where Moammar Gaddafis forces have been indiscriminately shelling, mortaring, rocketing and shooting civilians in a bid to wrest control from the rebels, Fanas lost his children. They are four of the more than 1,000 people thought by doctors to have been killed during the two-month siege.

On March 21, Mothers Day in the Arab world, Lutfiya Ali begged her husband to take the family to her parents house for a visit. Bored and tired of being holed up in the house with four kids for weeks on end, he agreed. The children Salem, 15, Hawa, 11, Fatima, 7, and Adam, 3 piled into the back of the car.

But on the way, the family found itself in the middle of a battle. Bullets flew through the street.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/doctor_in_misurata_...
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 11:41 PM
Response to Original message
12. 'Deadliest day' in Syria uprising (88 killed)
'Deadliest day' in Syria uprising
At least 88 people are reported to have been killed in Syria in the bloodiest day since the uprising began, as security forces use live ammunition and tear gas to quell anti-government protests across the country, according to Amnesty International, the London-based rights group.

Syrian activists sent Al Jazeera a list naming 70 people from across the country who they said had been killed by security forces during the "Great Friday" protests.

Fifteen of the deaths took place in Izraa, near the flashpoint southern town of Daraa, according to the list.

Deaths were reported in Douma and Zamalka, near Damascus (see this video posted from an unknown source from Zamalka).


Twitter is awake with this, many saying this is the point of no return, that Syria is about to become another Libya, effectively.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 11:53 PM
Response to Original message
13. Libya: our teams on the ground are educating communities about the risks from landmines and unexplod
Since 11th April, our teams on the ground in Libya have been actively educating local populations at risk from landmines and unexploded ordnance, in order to save lives and prevent serious injuries.

Handicap International carried out an evaluation mission in Libya between 15th and 23rd March, which gathered consistent reports on the presence of large numbers of explosive remnants of war (artillery shells and mortars, rockets, missiles, landmines and unexploded grenades). The level of contamination suggests that major demining operations will be necessary at the end of the current hostilities.

In the meantime, lives are at risk. There is an urgent need to disseminate information and educate local populations about the danger posed by unexploded weapons, in order to protect civilians caught up in the conflict.

On Sunday 10th April, three of our experts in the risks posed by unexploded devices arrived in Benghazi, in the north of Libya. They have begun hiring a team of some 10 Libyan staff to run risk prevention activities targeted at communities under threat. Our teams are teaching people to:

http://www.handicap-international.org.uk/resources/late...
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-22-11 11:57 PM
Response to Original message
14. Libyan Choice: Starve or Run
by Simba Russeau, April 23, 2011

CAIRO Rights groups have condemned the indiscriminate attacks on residential areas in Misrata, that have worsened an already dire situation.

Libyas third-largest city Misrata has been a major battleground between pro and anti-Gadhafi forces to secure control over this major Western Libyan port, which not only connects Tripoli with Gadhafis home town Surt but could also become the main line of division between east and west should the country be partitioned.

At least eight civilians were reportedly killed on Apr. 14, including an Egyptian migrant worker preparing for evacuation from Misrata, after Soviet-designed Grads hit the residential area Qasr Ahmed. An attack on the Zawiyat el-Mahjoub medical clinic left another four wounded.

.....

"No one should be selling these arms to Libya. Within the context of the Middle East, HRW has been advocating for countries in the region to ratify the conventions in hope that more leaders will understand the long-term impact cluster munitions had following the 2006 war in Lebanon," adds Morayef.

http://original.antiwar.com/simba-russeau/2011/04/22/li...
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 12:46 AM
Response to Original message
15. Libya is the least of our Middle East worries
Libya is the least of our Middle East worries
The eyes of the world are on the battle for Libya. It's undeniably a compelling drama: spirited but untrained rebels, plus NATO airstrikes, pitted against an eccentric dictator with a cinematic wardrobe.

But it's the wrong drama to worry about. The brutal truth is that Libya doesn't matter very much. It's a desert backwater of 6 million people with little influence over the rest of the Middle East.

...

The outcome of the unfinished revolution in Egypt will affect the prospects for democracy across the region. The outcome in Yemen, where al-Qaida's most dangerous branch is headquartered, is important to the struggle against terrorism. A change in Syria, Iran's closest ally in the Arab world, would upend the balance of power on Israel's northern borders.

And then there's the Persian Gulf kingdom of Bahrain, where troops from Saudi Arabia and other Sunni Muslim countries have intervened to quell a Shiite Muslim uprising. It might seem odd to include a power struggle in a quasi-country of half a million citizens on a list of major strategic issues, but the crisis in Bahrain qualifies.


Excellent article.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:20 AM
Response to Reply #15
19. I think that Libya is very important.
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 01:21 AM by tabatha
The existence of a monster wielding so much influence in Africa, sets the bar very low for Africa and Arab countries.

How much better would it be for a country like Libya to be a beacon of enlightenment and freedom that other African and Arab countries would try to emulate.

I have read and heard from Libyans every day, constantly for the last couple months, and I have to say, that they are a very impressive people. With the fear and repression lifted, I believe that they would shine and provide an excellent example that would shame other countries still under the yoke of oppression.

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MedleyMisty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 10:46 AM
Response to Reply #15
33. Libya is very important to the Libyans
And Egypt is important to the Egyptians, and Yemen is important to the Yemenis, and Syria is important to the Syrians, and Bahrain is important to the people in Bahrain.

And they are all important to me, because humans are important.

I am feeling a great rage towards people who put some game of politics over humanity.
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inna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:01 AM
Response to Original message
16. these threads definitely have a tragi-comical value to them
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:09 AM
Response to Reply #16
17. Yeah, the anti-Libyan drive bys are pretty tragic.
I don't laugh too much about them, though.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:16 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. Yep, there is so much comedy
in the tragic, wanton destruction of life.

The scenes of brutality being meted out with sophisticated weaponry by Libyan security forces against their own civilian population make God weep. With every blow they strike, each human rights abuse they perpetrate, they bring shame on Africa, Archbishop Tutu said.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 02:18 AM
Response to Original message
20. The moment a Libyan sniper targeted two Mailmen, firing a bullet that tore into rebel guide's side
(Well written story)


The first shot missed. But the sniper was only finding his range he made no mistake with the second.

The target one of thousands of civilians now armed and determined to drive Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi from power didnt stand a chance.

Thrown into the air, his body convulsing as if charged with an electric shock, the rebel fighter then slumped to the ground. As he cried out in pain, his comrades carried him away through a maze of bombed-out alleys and side streets. Then, as we crouched behind a wall on the other side of the street, watching the fighting rage, the sniper turned his sights on us.

Abu Baker, a rebel fighter and the Mails temporary guide, doubled over beside me, blood oozing from a bullet wound in his side. As he was helped back down through the alleys for emergency first aid, Gaddafis men decided to finish off the job - firing a rocket-propelled grenade at us.


Wounded: Abu Baker doubles up in pain after being shot. It remains unclear what happened to him after being taken to hospital.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1379409/Libyan-...


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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 03:57 AM
Response to Original message
21. Peter Bouckaert, from Human Rights Watch, says tipping point is near.
8:46am A Libya expert and rights advocate has told Reuters news agency on Saturday that the wall of fear protecting Gaddafi may soon crumble. Human Rights Watch emergency response director Peter Bouckaert said:

I think that we are reaching a tipping point. From our discussions with people in many of the western cities, they are waiting for the moment to join the protests.
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cali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 04:12 AM
Response to Original message
22. thanks for these threads, josh
as you know, I disagree with this intervention. That doesn't mean that I don't hope for the best for the people of Libya. I must confess that I fear seeing your Libya thread on day 300 or 500.
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 06:46 AM
Response to Original message
23. How 'rebel' phone network evaded shutdown
How 'rebel' phone network evaded shutdown
Telecoms engineers in eastern Libya have managed to outwit government moves to sever the region's communications.

Evan Hill in Benghazi Last Modified: 23 Apr 2011 08:06

On February 17, Ahmed el-Mahdawi's duty engineer called him from the Libyana mobile phone companys switch room in Benghazi's Fuihat neighbourhood. Military and internal security forces had begun brutally repressing anti-government protesters in Libya's second-largest city, and gunfire rang out through the darkened streets.

"Ahmed, it's dangerous, I'm going home," the man said.

Ahmed told him to go. The man closed down the office, locked the door and left. The team would return five days later. In the meantime, protesters overthrew the city's military garrison and ousted forces loyal to longtime Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. Hundreds of civilians were killed and injured.

As the violence raged, Gaddafi's regime severed eastern Libya's communication with the outside world, blocking internet access and international phone calls. News of the brutal crackdown leaked out through rare satellite Internet connections that allowed residents to make intermittent Skype calls, MSN chats, and sometimes upload mobile phone videos. Occasionally, an international call connected to a voice in Benghazi.

...

http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/features/2011/04/2...


This may seem like a version of earlier reports of how the network was restored, but it's not. Good story by one of the best.

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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 07:08 AM
Response to Original message
24. Tripoli witness: Tales of defiance and a mystery man
Tripoli witness: Tales of defiance and a mystery man
BBC News Africa 21 April 2011 Last updated at 10:29 GMT

Tales of fleeting acts of defiance and a mysterious hooded rebel momentarily lift the spirits in a city of fear, as one resident in the Libyan capital, Tripoli - who does not want his name to be used for security reasons - explains.

I have come across some interesting and amusing analogies for this conflict in the past week.

"The opposition is singing along to the tune of 'Hit the road, Jack', while the regime's ruling family rocks on to the tune of 'Should I stay or should I go'," one musical analogy goes.

Another is: "It's like a bad round of poker. The winning hand is bluffing until the last minute when he reveals his true cards, but his opponents around the table are well aware of the ruse throughout the game."

...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-13154055

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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 07:42 AM
Response to Original message
25. Libyan soldiers say army retreating from Misrata
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 07:46 AM by Iterate
Libyan soldiers say army retreating from Misrata
Sat Apr 23, 2011 11:36am GMT

MISRATA, Libya (Reuters) - Libyan troops captured by rebels in Misrata said on Saturday the army had been ordered to retreat from the western port, marking a possible shift in a two-month revolt against leader Muammar Gaddafi.

The Libyan government said earlier NATO air strikes meant it no longer made sense for the army to fight in Misrata and local tribes would take over the battle in Libya's third largest city.

"We have been told to withdraw. We were told to withdraw yesterday," one army soldier, Khaled Dorman, told Reuters.

Lying in the back of a pickup truck, he was among 12 wounded soldiers brought to a hospital for treatment in Misrata. Blasts and machine gun fire were heard in the distance.

...

http://af.reuters.com/article/libyaNews/idAFLDE73L0NL20...

Fairly rich in content for a Reuters piece. All of it relevant, except for the bit about McCain, who is irrelevant.

Edit link for final wrapup
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 08:26 AM
Response to Original message
26. Syria Live Blog - April 23
Syria Live Blog - April 23
By Al Jazeera Staff CC-BY-NC-ND

3:42pm
Naser al-Hariri, a Syrian member of parliament, has resigned his post in protest at the killing of demonstrators.

"After I have failed to protect my sons from the treacherous shots there is no point in me staying in parliament. I announce now that I am stepping down," he told Al Jazeera.

3:31pm
In Deraa, an eyewitness has told Al Jazeera he saw military and plain clothes security kill five people around the state hospital before breaking in and carrying out the wounded on stretchers.

Al Jazeera has heard repeated accounts of Syrian security breaking into hospitals and clinics to take away dead bodies and the injured to military hospitals in an apparent attempt to cover up casualty figures.

3:29pm
More on the violence in Douma:

Syrian military police, identifiable by their red berets, fired from a 4x4 vehicle in Douma, killing two mourners at a funeral for two pro-democracy protesters, several eyewitnesses said.

The eyewitnesses said the car drove by as mourners were leaving the cemetery and military police opened fire randomly on them.

There have also been eyewitness reports of snipers on the roof of the court building and the military security headquarters in Douma.

3:25pm
Reuters reports that three people have been killed in the firing on a funeral in the Barzeh district of Damascus, citing a local rights campaigner.

3:16pm
More from Al Jazeera's staff on developments in Izraa, where eyewitnesses now put the number of people killed at five:

Army and security personnel have shot at mourners in Ezraa killing five people and wounding several others, said an eyewitness present at the funerals.

"I saw four of the dead myself. They had been shot in the chest," he said.

The eyewitness estimated a huge crowd of up to 100,000 had gathered in Izraa from towns and cities nearby, including Sanamein, Nawa, Daael and Daraa, where the uprising began.

The funeral had begun after noon prayers and security personnel had opened fire on the crowd without warning from the Masakin Bridge, said the witness. Human rights activists have documented the names of at least 20 people killed in Izraa on Friday, including a 70-year-old man and a 10-year-old boy.

3:11pm
Here is that eyewitness account from Al Jazeera's correspondent in Izraa, of the funeral procession there being fired upon.

"I was travelling north to south on the main Damascus highway that runs from Damascus to Amman, and about 20km before the border, there's an overpass that connects Izraa to the town of Deraa. On that overpass, people were marching and we were sort of warned off on that highway, people stopping, pulling us over to the side of the road. And about 50 metres in front of me you could see the overpass - people marching - and they were met with a hail of gunfire, many people certainly wounded directly in front of us, cars turned around, and I can tell you it was an incredibly chaotic scene, and it seems as though pretty much everyone down here in the southern part of the country is now carrying weapons. It is unclear who was firing at whom, that's part of the confusion ... but clearly a very violent incident now being carried out here in the south of the country.

"It seemed pretty clear to me that this was a funeral procession crossing over the overpass, and they were met with gunfire as I said. It was unclear which direction the gunfire was coming from. I did not see anyone returning fire, I only saw fire in one direction. But as I said, the road has been completely cut off, and there is now a very heavy army presence along the highway.

"Pretty much all of the side roads that lead into the towns to the east and to the west of the main highway ... have been cut completely off by the army.

"I think it's pretty clear now that the government feels that the eyes of the world are elsewhere, and that this is the best way to deal with what they are calling an armed insurrection ... we saw this yesterday, and clearly we're seeing this again today. The government was clearly anticipating funerals like this, and clearly was anticipating that violence could break out at these funerals, people are obviously very angry because they've had family members who have been killed, and I think the government was anticipating violence, but what I witnessed was a clear, brutal use of force on behalf of the security forces.

"Medical personnel could not get to this overpass, because of the situation.""

3:01pm
Al Jazeera's correspondent has just been live on Al Jazeera describing a chaotic scene outside Izraa. His comments to follow.

2:52pm
Syrian state television has just run a 'Breaking News' text ticker saying that the government "regrets" US President Barack Obama's statements condemning the violence, saying that his statement is not objective.

...much more...

http://blogs.aljazeera.net/live/middle-east/syria-live-...
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 08:59 AM
Response to Original message
27. 'It was really like hell'
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 09:00 AM by Iterate
CNN Video
Added On April 22, 2011
A witness to some of Friday's deadly protests in Syria tells AC360's Anderson Cooper the protests will continue.

http://cnn.com/video/?/video/bestoftv/2011/04/22/ac.syr...

ETA - includes amateur video from the scene of protests.
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 09:12 AM
Response to Original message
28. @AlmanaraMedia: Gaddafi cousin in Cairo selling off government stock
Almanara Libya

On Saturday 23rd April 2011, @AlmanaraMedia said:

#Libya

Ahmed Gaddaf AlDam the cousin of #Gaddafi who is now in #Cairo is selling the shares of the companies that belong to the Libyan government that are in Egypt, and is transferring the money to Tripoli.

At the beginning of the Revolution, Ahmed Gaddaf AlDam said he will not work with the Libyan government any more after the news of him trying to get mercenaries for Gaddafi.

23/04/2011
13:00 (Libya Local Time)

http://www.twitlonger.com/show/a1ej3a
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al bupp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
29. German Press Agency: Libyan rebels suspicious over army's exit from Misurata
German Press Agency: Libyan rebels suspicious over army's exit from Misurata
By Kate Thomas and Nehal El-Sherif Apr 23, 2011, 12:49 GMT

Cairo/Benghazi (dpa) - The Libyan rebel council on Saturday questioned the legitimacy of the Libyan government's statement that its forces are fully retreating from the western city of Misurata.

A spokesman of the Benghazi-based Interim Transitional National Council (ITNC) told the German Press Agency dpa that it does not have faith in the regime's claims.

'With the introduction of predator drones, Gaddafi has realised that the game has been stepped up one more notch,' said rebel spokesman Mustafa Gheriani. 'The ITNC would love to see Gaddafi forces completely retreat from Misurata, but we are not optimistic.'

Libyan Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled Kaim said that after weeks of fierce fighting with rebels, government forces would withdraw from the area around Misurata, and the local tribes would be left to settle the issue, either by force or negotiations.

More at: Monsters and Critics

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Turborama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
30. AJE: Libya rebels claim 'Misurata is free'
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 10:21 AM by Turborama
But apparently some people don't think it needed liberating from Gaddafi's 42 year long brutal regime: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 10:32 AM
Response to Original message
31. Documenting Conflict in Misurata, Libya Using High-Resolution Satellite Imagery
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 11:15 AM by tabatha
The present conflict in Libya began in mid-February 2011 as a wave of protests in cities across the country. In some cities, such as the eastern cities of Benghazi and Tobruk, protesters have taken over all aspects of local governance and remain in control. In other cities, such as the western city of Zawiya, military forces have reinstated the authority of the central government. The focus of this report is Misurata, Libya's third largest city, which is located on the northwestern coast of the country. Since early March, government forces and protesters in Misurata have continued to clash. Furthermore, since 23 March, Misurata also has been the target of airstrikes conducted by international forces. The conflict in Misurata has led to reports of heavy fighting, widespread indiscriminate shelling, and numerous civilian casualties. To investigate the veracity and details of these reports, Amnesty International-USA requested the assistance of the Geospatial Technologies and Human Rights Project of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Figure 1: Armored vehicles in front of the Misurata Central Hospital



http://shr.aaas.org/geotech/libya/libya.shtml

Nothing like hard factual evidence to counter the claims of "incubators".

Btw - the pdf link in that article is very interesting - it includes links to audsioboo and youtube pieces that correspond to the changes in Misrata buildings, streets, traffic, etc. Seems that Amnesty International-USA is watching all reports - citizen and otherwise, to document atrocities by Gaddafi and making sure that they can be verified by satellite imagery.
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 04:50 PM
Response to Reply #31
51. I just finished that whole thing...
...what it also underscores is that the Misrata 'tweeters' or info sharers were about 80% on the mark. I know people who denied that Gaddafi was bombing the markets ("rebel propaganda") but the images show, overwhelmingly, that he did attack the food markets. It's terrifying.
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al bupp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 10:34 AM
Response to Original message
32. Wired: Libyas Rebels Fight with Ancient, Useless Weapons
Libyas Rebels Fight with Ancient, Useless Weapons
By Spencer Ackerman April 21, 2011 | 12:30 pm

Those military advisers from France, Britain and Italy cant reach Benghazi fast enough. While Libyas rebels might have the zeal to fight Moammar Gahdafi, the weapons in their arsenal are laughable, pitiful or outright useless.

When the civil war started in February, anti-Gadhafi forces raided military depots in liberated areas like Benghazi. They emerged with lots of wheezing weapons: a Shilka ZSU-23 anti-aircraft gun that the Soviets stopped making in the 1970s and Dushka cannons straight out of the 80s era occupation of Afghanistan. Undeterred, rebels improved ingenious artillery delivery systems, like hooking up Grad rocket pods to a car battery and firing them using a recycled doorbell.

Then they got trounced by a far more professional loyalist military. Even while NATO planes still buzz overhead.

All this is enough to demoralize C.J. Chivers, the former Marine and badass New York Times reporter whos risking life and limb to report on the Libyan uprising. He tallies up such an thorough inventory of the rebel arsenal that hes practically auditing their quartermasters. And his findings are cringe-inducing.

More at: Wired Danger Room

The article does not paint a very encouraging picture of the state of weaponry among the rebels.
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Turborama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 10:46 AM
Response to Original message
34. 19 year old Libyan tells how he was forced to join Gaddafi's troops...
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 11:14 AM by Turborama
The article itself is a insight into what's been going on in Misrata and well worth reading in full, but this bit at the end is quite revealing with regards to who the revolutionaries are actually up against...



The 'grand lions' of Libya
Gaddafi's troops may be better armed, but rebels in Misurata say their morale is higher.
Ruth Sherlock

=snip=

In a Misurata medical clinic lays one of Gaddafi's fighters. The 19-year-old boy, who does not want his identity revealed, was a student of electrical engineering in Tripoli. When the fighting started and his lessons were cancelled he says he was forced to join Gaddafi's troops.

"We were kept locked in the camp and trained for two weeks and then they took us to the battalion," he explains.

Told only that they would be fighting foreign mercenaries, they were brought to Misurata, he recounts. When they came under heavy fire from the rebels, their officer turned and ran. The boy followed and says his own brigade shot him.

"The instructions were that nobody should go back. I lay on the ground bleeding for one-and-a-half hours," he says.

Full article: http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/features/2011/04/2...
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 11:01 AM
Response to Reply #34
35. One of the responses
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 11:03 AM by tabatha
I wonder if the responder would mind - probably not.

Qaddafi has had a long history of using mercenaries. For ground forces he will often use many men from Niger, Sierra Leon and other Sub-Saharan nations. For his air force he has/had conscripted Serbian pilots and he also had some Syrians until the NFZ was put in place (its a lot easier to bomb and strafe other people than your own), for command and control he has utilized the expertise of the Belarusians. He has close links with these regimes and they have similar despotic policies over their people. He has learned not to trust positions of power to his own people as he has been betrayed many times. Much of his weaponry has come from Serbia especially in the weeks prior to and just after the Feb 17 rising.

What the journalists have seen and have clearly repeated (so Im not sure how you missed it) is that they are constantly watched and essentially cordoned off in their hotel. There are no journalists freely roaming the streets of Tripoli as they have minders with them, so they cannot get a clear picture of what is happening and they cannot see any resistance as most of that has been carefully suppressed and in many cases brutally so, with estimates running up to 30,000- people having been spirited away by the security forces.

....

I think someone who was in Tripoli and escaped, such as my friend and others I know (I am Libyan, I have traded commodities with Libya for a decade, I have over 50 cousins there) have. Once out of the country, explained the situation. You can choose to believe the propaganda from Libya or you can open your eyes and see what is happening.

The Western forces are not angels as can be seen by the continued unjustified quagmire in Afghanistan, and the US certainly is culpable for thousands of needless civilian deaths, however, in this case Libya is fighting off a truly evil regime, and your very ingrained ideological stance does us no favours.
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 11:25 AM
Response to Original message
36. Libyan rebels rush aid to besieged mountain towns
Libyan rebels rush aid to besieged mountain towns
Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:33pm GMT

TUNISIA-LIBYA BORDER, April 23 (Reuters) - Libyan rebels rushed supplies on Saturday to remote mountain towns under attack by forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi, cheered by reports of gains for fellow fighters in the city of Misrata.

Two days after insurgents seized a remote border crossing with Tunisia and raised the pre-Gaddafi flag, people queued in cars to bring food and gasoline from the neighbouring country into the area known as the Western Mountains.

"The fact that we control this border gate means we have broken the isolation of the mountain region after several weeks," one rebel, who gave his name as Ezsine, said.

...

Residents and insurgents say pro-government forces have been bombarding Western Mountains towns, which joined in a wider revolt against Gaddafi's four-decade rule in February. At least 14,000 people have fled escalating violence there over the few weeks through the border crossing near the southern Tunisian town of Dehiba, saying the region faces worsening hardship with a lack of water, food and medicines.

...

Complete:
http://af.reuters.com/article/libyaNews/idAFLDE73M06F20...
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Turborama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 11:30 AM
Response to Original message
37. Worldwide Protests For Libya- Featuring 70 Cities (Video)
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 11:39 AM
Response to Original message
38. AJE: Fighting continues in Misurata
5:28pm
Al Jazeera's Andrew Simmons, reporting from Misurata, says the city has "not been liberated at this stage" despite certain claims being made by opposition forces and that "fierce fighting continues".

"I've been told by a number of opposition spokespeople in the past two hours, that they have made major gains and that's corroborated by other sources I've talked to.

"They have made major gains in the west of the city, and they have actually managed to get around the Gaddafi forces blocking them near the western gate and that is quite a significant development for the rebel forces," he said.

Listen to our correspondent's latest update below:

http://blogs.aljazeera.net/live/africa/libya-live-blog-...

or video only
http://youtu.be/5P76PKybW5o
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Yosarian71 Donating Member (185 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 02:19 PM
Response to Reply #38
46. Time for cautious optimism?
You never know with Gadhafi, but the retreat from Misurata does not feel like a tactical retreat. He may be running out of troops. Gadhafi's main army is pinned down in the east getting strafed by NATO and fighting the main Eastern Army. The Western Mountains are in open revolt, and it appears that Gadhafi is losing ground there. Unlike in the open desert, you never give up ground in urban warfare because it is so hard to get it back. Gadhafi has probably lost hundreds of troops in Misurata, and now he is giving up very valuable real estate, that will cost him dearly to take back. There is increasing guerrilla activity in Tripoli and Zawiya. The border crossing was liberated 2 days ago, and no attempt has been made to take it back. Zintan hasn't had a major counter-attack in a week or so. Now he is pulling back from Misurata?

Gadhafi may be pulling back, figuring that he can't take Misurata, but he can contain it. It is unlikely that the rebel forces there are capable of attacking out of the city. The western mountains are a problem, but he may have to write them off. He may be trying to hold the other big coastal cities in the West (Tripoli, Zawiya, a few others), and Sirte at all costs, and he might be able to force a stalemate, or at least buy time.

The western mountains may be the key for the rebels. The forces there seem to be fairly large, and capable of initiating offensive operations. It is going to be very difficult for the eastern rebels to bypass Gadhafi's main army, but they can pin it down and wear it out. If the mountain forces can continue to liberate towns, they would attract more volunteers, and potentially tip the balance.

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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 05:03 PM
Response to Reply #46
53. Time for caution anyway,
as I always figure there's time later for optimism if need be. I can't say that I've been deeply surprised so far except by Gaddafi himself. I know that he'll adapt, I know he'll be brutal and vengeful, but I still get shocked by the nature of it. I can never guess on the too-brutal or too-manipulative side of events.

I never bought into the idea that there was a stalemate. Maybe it could appear that way for people who only looked at headlines. When you think about it, in only one month there's been plenty of below-the-radar (so to speak) progress. I don't think it's useful to see it as some sort of classical civil war either. It has more of the characteristics of a war against an occupation army.

You reminded me of an idea to keep in mind, one that you touched on, just the sheer energy it takes to do something, the fuel, refining the fuel, food, lifting, walking, all of it. His troops have been going full tilt for two months. Most of the rebels have not, most are fighting only when they have to and only near home. Government troops need to be everywhere, and sometimes in force. That makes it a good idea to fight at south of Ajdabiya, not a liability as the press would have it. Besides, it's a long walk back to Sirte. Same sort of thinking applies to other places. That kind of effort can't be easily maintained.

In Misurata, he can't take the city. The FF might have overstated their case about controlling all of it, and a local Gaddafi commander might be in deep shit for pulling back somewhat (or just plain getting beaten), but one thing is clear: Gaddafi is no longer in complete control of what happens.

I don't know if that adds up to optimism, or if it's just physics and history.

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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 05:09 PM
Response to Reply #53
54. The latest reports indicate that Gaddafi told them "surrender or die, doesn't matter to us."
In effect, they were cut off (either with NATO firepower or the supplies just died out).
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Yosarian71 Donating Member (185 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 06:14 PM
Response to Reply #53
55. good point
Along those lines, one of the captured Gadhafi soldiers said he hadn't eaten in 5 days.

Modern armies can not "live off the land". Reading this, together with the parting on "surrender or die" comments from the retreating loyalists to those left behind, it looks like Gadhafi's army is under enormous stress. The eastern rebels should re-engage. Gadhafi's eastern army is something like 200+ miles of open desert from Sirte. Hard to keep it supplied.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 12:05 PM
Response to Original message
39. Libyan rebels firmly in control in mountainous west
By Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times

April 23, 2011
Reporting from Beirut
Moammar Kadafi's forces came by the thousands with tanks, armored vehicles and rocket launchers to quell an uprising in the forbidding Western Mountains region of Libya.

They left Zintan last month in a rout, rebels and Western journalists say, running through the woods as residents of the rebellious city pursued them using weapons and equipment seized from troops. It was a decisive battle that exposed the far western flank of Kadafi's security forces.

"What happened here was a beautiful thing," Milad Lameen, a 59-year-old former Libyan Airlines official and businessman who now serves as a political leader in Zintan, said in an interview conducted over Skype. "The equation was absolutely against us. But his troops and his mercenaries did not have a winning cause. We have a good cause."

While international attention has been focused on the rebel-controlled stronghold of Benghazi in eastern Libya and the besieged coastal city of Misurata, tens of thousands of Libyans have taken control of a mountainous region stretching about 100 miles from the Tunisian border toward the capital, Tripoli. The provisional government in the far west is in touch with the rebels in Benghazi but not under their authority.


Rebels demonstrate in Zintan in February. "What ignited this revolution were all the bad deeds Kadafi has been committing for 42 years," a political leader in the western city said. (Fred Dufour, AFP/Getty Images / April 23, 2011)

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-lib...
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 12:14 PM
Response to Original message
40. NATO military forces destroyed a Multiple Rocket Launcher (MRL)
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 12:15 PM by tabatha
23 Apr. 2011
Predator drones strike Qadhafi forces

NAPLES NATO military forces destroyed a Qadhafi regime Multiple Rocket Launcher (MRL) in the vicinity of Misrata at approximately 1100 GMT today. The strike was carried out by a Predator Unmanned Aerial Surveillance (UAS) weapons system provided to support Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR. The MRL system has been used against civilians in Misrata.

NATO has kept up a high operational tempo -- over 3,000 sorties since we took full command of the mission, almost half of them strikes. We have struck a broad range of targets across the country - tanks and rocket launchers, armoured vehicles and ammunition stores, command and control sites.

UNSCR 1973 authorizes all necessary measures to protect civilians under threat of attack.

http://www.nato.int/cps/en/natolive/news_72882.htm
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:02 PM
Response to Original message
41. Benghazi:Service Held for Combat Photographers and Doctor Killed in Misurata
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 01:03 PM by tabatha
This morning the bodies of Chris and Tim, along with that of a Ukrainian doctor killed in Misurata the same day, were blessed in a small, private ceremony at the Benghazi Medical Center, where the three spent the night.

The ceremony was organized by the British consular office here, and attended by about eight people. The blessing was administered by Sylvester Magro, the Bishop of Benghazi. Father Magro leads the Roman Catholic diocese of eastern Libya, a spiritual footprint remaining from the decades of Italian presence here.

The bishop was kind and soft-spoken, and clearly touched. He began by asking the Lord to, Hear our prayers for these, our brothers, who you have called in peace. His primary reading was a set of excerpts from the Gospel of John, Chapter 11, on the death and resurrection of Lazarus.

......

This was the second service for Chris and Tim since their arrival in Benghazi port last night. Shortly before midnight a candle-lit public event was held at one of the local hotels, and attended by 35 or 40 people, including Christopher Prentice, the UK envoy here, and Chris Stevens, the American envoy. After each attendee was handed a lit candle, both men were invited to speak, and they did. Mr. Prentice noted in particular the powerful words of condolences he has heard from Libyans, who see Chris and Tim as heroes.



http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/22/service-held-...
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:12 PM
Response to Original message
42. NATO REPORT - April 22
Air Operations
Since the beginning of the NATO operation (31 March 2011, 08.00GMT) a total of 3,300 sorties and 1,373
strike sorties* have been conducted.
Sorties conducted 21 April: 152
Strike sorties conducted 21 April: 62
*Strike sorties are intended to identify and engage appropriate targets, but do not necessarily deploy munitions each time.

Key Targets and Engagements**
21 April:
In vicinity of Tripoli: 8 ammunition storage bunkers.
In vicinity of Misurata: 1 tank, 1 anti-aircraft gun.
In vicinity of Zintan: 1 military vehicle.
In vicinity of Ajdabiya: 4 tanks, 5 military vehicles.
In vicinity of Brega: 2 tanks, 1 multiple rocket launcher.
In vicinity of Mizdah: 5 ammunition storage bunkers.
In vicinity of Sirte: 4 military trucks.
**Key Engagements are not intended to give a complete account of all targets which were engaged.

Arms Embargo Activities
A total of 18 ships under NATO command are actively patrolling the Central Mediterranean.
40 vessels were hailed on 21 April to determine destination and cargo. 2 boarding and 0 diversions were conducted.
A total of 524 vessels have been hailed and 13 boardings and 5 diversions have been conducted since the beginning of arms embargo operations.

International Humanitarian Assistance Movements as recorded by NATO
Total of Humanitarian Movements***: 102 (air, ground, maritime)
Ships delivering Humanitarian Assistance 21 April: 10 in execution.
Aircraft delivering Humanitarian Assistance 21 April: 3
***Some humanitarian movements cover several days.

http://www.nato.int/nato_static/assets/pdf/pdf_2011_04/...

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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:39 PM
Response to Original message
43. Video: Gas lines in Tripoli 22.04.2011
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjZ3pZFmqno&feature=shar...

Shot with a covert "dashcam" this amateur video shows a tour of Tripoli on Friday. If I ever knew anyone who'd been in a line like that, they'd still be talking about it.
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Iterate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 01:47 PM
Response to Original message
44. Tweets from the Western Mountains
Edited on Sat Apr-23-11 02:01 PM by Iterate
http://twitter.com/#!/4Adam

Video about the ancient cities in the #Qalaa and #Yefren music http://bit.ly/hKtuBr #Nafusa
vor 13 Stunden

4Adam Adam
#Yefren's ancient towns #Flickr it! http://bit.ly/i6wBQ7 #Nafusa #Libya
vor 12 Stunden

4Adam Adam
#Nalut was shelled last night at 10:30 by Gaddafi's forces using Grad rockets damaged homes near the hospital #Nafusa #Libya.
vor 2 Stunden

4Adam Adam
#Yefren Sat. afternoon. Heavy shelling by Grad missiles hit areas in Atuzurayat, Taghma and Atugasro. Siad to be from East of #Kikla #Nafusa
vor 2 Stunden

4Adam Adam
G Forces kidnapped a Tunisian ctzn in #Yefren, was badly beaten then put on a military uniform & forced to go to Qaba'el. Safe now #Nafusa
vor 1 Stunde

4Adam Adam
#Nafusa: #Nalut: the rebels 2day managed to control the North gate of Takut town This'd secure #Libya #Tunisia border in Wazin from G forces
vor 48 Minuten

4Adam Adam
#Yefren: Gaddafi forces stopped shelling by Grad missiles an hr ago, but firing by AA guns still ongoing. Rebels show grt resilience #Libya
vor 29 Minuten

Hayat Libya
@LIBYA_WIN Hayat Libya
#Nafusa mountains under very serious threat of attack tonight as #Gaddafi forces are bringing over 150 cars filled with reinforcements @NATO
vor 36 Minuten via web
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 02:13 PM
Response to Reply #44
45. The second link took me to a Flickr Libyan group
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 02:51 PM
Response to Original message
47. Saleh leaving Yemen presidency
By MUNA KHAN
Al Arabiya with Agencies
Saturday, 23 April 2011

President Ali Abdullah Saleh of Yemen has agreed to a proposal by Gulf Arab mediators to step down within 30 days, and hand power to his deputy in exchange for immunity from prosecution, Yemens state TV said on Saturday evening.

His imminent departure from office made Mr. Saleh the third key Arab leader to step down in the face of social and political unrest in the Middle East and North Africa. The other leaders are Presidents Hosni Mubarak of Egypt, and Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia. Mr. Mubarak is under detention at a military hospital in the Egyptian resort of Sharm El Sheikh; Mr. Ben Ali is reported to be gravely ill in Saudi Arabia.

The protest movement demanding Mr. Salehs immediate departure said Saturday it also has agreed to the mediators proposal but with reservations. It objects to an article that gives parliament the right to reject the presidents resignation.

Members of the 68-year-old Mr. Salehs party, the General Peoples Congress, dominate the parliament. Mr. Saleh, who has been in power for the last 32 years, steadfastly refused to resign from the presidency in the face of more than two months of massive street protests against his authoritarian rule.

http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2011/04/23/146477...
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 03:05 PM
Response to Original message
48. Postcards from Libya (beautiful pics):
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Kurovski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 04:19 PM
Response to Original message
49. K&R. (nt)
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 04:31 PM
Response to Original message
50. Libya: 'If people in Misrata put down their guns, Gaddafi will kill all of us'
Libya: 'If people in Misrata put down their guns, Gaddafi will kill all of us'
The slight, smooth-cheeked young man sat patiently in the hospital reception as trolleys rushed by carrying the dead and wounded from the frontline. He had two crutches at his side. He had one leg.

His name was Hassan Ibrahim and he was born in 1992 in Misrata, Libya's third biggest city, home to more than 300,000 people. He was a first-year engineering student. He flipped open a laptop, and called up a picture taken on 18 March, a month after the uprising began, and the day when Muammar Gaddafi sent in five brigades to crush it once and for all.

Ibrahim had been on a street near the city centre with friends when a column of tanks suddenly advanced, firing. A shell exploded close to them. The photograph showed his torso, his right leg, and mangled flesh where his left thigh used to be. Bleeding heavily, he was brought to the private clinic that now serves as a trauma hospital. Doctors who a few weeks earlier had rarely seen a bullet wound had to make a quick decision. They amputated his left leg just below the hip to save his life. Ibrahim grimaced slightly as he stood up, and then said: "What happened to me is nothing compared to others who have given their lives."

This is the spirit of Misrata, a besieged city that has resisted everything that Gaddafi has thrown at it for more than two months, thanks to the solidarity and fierce determination of its people.
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joshcryer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 04:59 PM
Response to Original message
52. Day 66 here:
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