Libya: Revolutionaries Learning On the Job

Jacky Rowland of Al Jazeera took a close look at fighting around Ras Lanuf. Gaddafi’s bombers attacked an oil-storage facility and she approached to take a close look. Gaddafi’s boys moved in and so did the revolutionaries. It was rockets versus mortars and she left quickly during a lull… Her conclusion is that the revolutionaries actually can give a little Hell to Gaddafi’s forces. If only it weren’t for the bombers.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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2 Responses to Libya: Revolutionaries Learning On the Job

  1. It might depend on whether the world will stand by if Gaddafi beseiges Benghazi. Even if the world cared nothing for lives, the world cares enough for the oil to intervene. Gaddafi shelled/bombed oil installations. I think the world does care about lives and no one is likely to object if UK/France/USA/Italy crater some runways and strafe columns of Gaddafi’s forces. Whoever attacks the other has a long vulnerable supply line in Libya. If a few thousand rebels caused Gaddafi a week’s delay at Ras Lanuf and Zawiyah, Benghazi will be able to resist for months, plenty of time for the world to respond and revolutionaries to get organized. Gaddafi is just digging a deeper hole for himself and his regime. If anyone was willing to let him walk before, I expect nothing short of life in prison would be widely acceptable soon.

  2. ChrisTX says:

    Honestly said, I have my doubts that Libya’s revolution is going anywhere. The rebels have lost ground for serveral days now, and Az Zawiyah seems to have been sieged successfully by Gaddafi’s troops.

    Plus, the aircraft are overrated. Even if there was a controlled airspace preventing his bombers to take off, this wouldn’t stop helicopters nor the actual slaughtering, which is still caused by the infantry.

    After all, the international community can’t do much due to China’s seat in UNSC as well as a fly ban requiring action against ground-to-air AA systems.

    Personally, I don’t expect the rebels to stand a chance, due to the simple lack of training. Most rebels receive a training similar to this: “This is a Kalashnikov AK-47. You insert the magazine here, safety lock is there.”
    Gaddafi’s Khamis-guard and even his mercenaries are trained to *some* extend. Then, the rebels also lack military organization. Considering they’re not used to take orders in a military manner and not having any recon, there’s no real chance for them to win this one.

    The US might say they’d intervene; I am still sceptical of that one. Risking radicalization in Tunisia and Egypt? Unlikely.

    Lastly, even if the US, NATO, EU or UN intervened, who says it would stop there? In Yemen, the security forces changed their procedure replacing their rubber bullets with more ‘convenient’ full-metal jacket ones. Bahrain, Sudan, Jordania, the list is really long.

    And over the last few days, violent uprisings in Egypt between Copts and Muslims caused 11 deaths. I don’t suppose an intervention would help that cause either.

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