According to the BBC, some people in high places hold that an arms embargo on Libya prevents supplying the revolutionaries. I disagree. The UN resolution 1973 allows for “all necessary means” to protect civilians. That could/should include arms. Otherwise Gaddafi can back his tanks into residences and keep firing as long as they have ammunition. It takes boots on the ground with useful tools to stop that.
The problem in Iraq and Afghanistan is that allies disrupted the army and were too slow to replace it leaving a vacuum for chaotic forces. The forces allied against Gaddafi and protecting civilians should immediately provide:
- training in infrantry operations, command and control, communications and weapons systems,
- an abundance of small arms, ammunition, anti-tank weapons, radios, range-finders, lasers, and equipment for desert and night-time operations, and
- close air support with laser-guided munitions and cannon so that Libyans on the ground can direct bombardment and identify hostile tanks/armour/guns/snipers.
Where possible, Libyans should be seated in planes to communicate with forces on the ground and identify targets while minimizing collateral damage. Some guy in a plane at 10km is not going to have sufficiently detailed information and current information to engage targets properly without better communication with people on the ground.
Without radical change there is a great chance of stalemate with possibly years of civilian casualties. Do these people not remember Viet Nam and Iraq? Either take decisive action or go home.