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V For Vendetta , Live , Courtesy of The Egyptian People.
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Him



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mizike wrote:
Him wrote:
Parts of Iraq, mainly the kurdish parts, were quite happy with the U.S invasion. Not so much the case anymore. Much of the left has, I believe naively, lined up in support of a western imposed no-fly zone over Libya, which will mean bombings of the cities. It's a though situation no doubt, but can the civilian deaths that might be avoided by this really excuse the civilian deaths that will be caused by it? Not to mention the intervening powers do not have a very pleasant history in that particular part of the world. Up until very recently allying with Qadaffi for one thing.


It's awfully impressive that no civilians have been reported dead as a result of the air strikes to date. I have only heard of two villagers being wounded, but not fatally so.

I've been struggling with the Libyan situation. For me, the crucial difference is that:
1.) The Colonel has no popular support. This was clear during the protests and the subsequent defections of ambassadors and soldiers. It has become even more clear now that in a city of more than a million, no mass protests have emerges against the air strikes.

2.) This did not start out as an armed insurrection. It started out as mass protests. It was only after the Colonel made clear that he will gladly mow down his own people that the international community opted for intervention.


Now, there are other countries that fit a similar description which did not receive any assistance. I can't say if that's a good thing or a bad thing. I can't say that I think it's a good idea to allow a massacre. Intervention is not often a good option, but it seems nearly as justified in this case as it can be.

I found this to be a fairly informative article on the issue: http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/907/solidarity-and-intervention-in-libya

As for whetever Gaddafi has support or not is a very tricky issue, given the tribal loyalities that are at play here. AFAIK there has not been widespread dissent in his own tribe, and there still are others reportedly loyal to the regime.
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Him



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meanwhile in Bahrain: Diffrent kinds of intervention
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Last edited by Him on Tue Mar 22, 2011 8:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
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mouse



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that would be the ones he's got shooting the protesters, i'm guessing.
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

4 Times Journalists Held Captive in Libya Faced Days of Brutality
By ANTHONY SHADID, LYNSEY ADDARIO, STEPHEN FARRELL and TYLER HICKS Published: March 22, 2011
Quote:
As the four of us headed toward the eastern gate of Ajdabiya, the front line of a desperate rebel stand against the advancing forces of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, a car pulled up alongside.

“They’re in the city!” the driver shouted at us. “They’re in the city!” Lynsey and Steve had worried that government soldiers might encircle the town, trapping us, but Tyler and Anthony discounted it. We had covered the fall of two other rebel-held towns — Ras Lanuf and Brega — and each time, the government had bombed and shelled the towns for days before making a frontal, methodical assault.

When they did, rebels and journalists fled in a headlong retreat. If Ajdabiya fell, Colonel Qaddafi’s forces would be on the doorstep of Benghazi, the opposition capital, and perched on a highway to the Egyptian border, from where we had entered Libya without visas.

No one really knows the script for days like these, and neither did we.

As we left the town’s last traffic circle, heading for Benghazi, all of us saw the checkpoint in the distance. “I think it’s Qaddafi’s soldiers,” Lynsey said.

Our driver, Tyler and Anthony shook their heads, but within seconds, the reality dawned on us. Unlike the rebels in their mismatched uniforms, track suits and berets, these men were uniformed. Their vehicles were a dark army green, and they lined in the street in military formation.

By chance, we made it through the first line of soldiers, but not the second.

“Keep driving!” Tyler shouted at Mohammed, the driver. “Don’t stop! Don’t stop!”

Mohammed had no choice, and a soldier flung open his door. “Journalists!” he yelled at the other soldiers, their faces contorted in fear and rage. It was too late.

Tyler was in the front, and a soldier pulled him out of the car. Steve was hauled out by his camera bags. Anthony crawled out the same door, and Lynsey followed.

Even before the soldiers had time to speak, rebels attacked the checkpoint with what sounded like rifles and medium machine guns. Bullets flew around us, and the soft dirt popped. Tyler broke free and started running. Anthony fell on a sand berm, then got to his feet and followed Tyler, who, for a moment, considered making a run for it.

Lynsey instinctively clenched her cameras as a soldier pulled at them. She let them go and ran behind us. Soldiers tried to get Steve on the ground next to the car, and he pointed at the gunfire. They made him drop his camera, then he ran, too.

We made it behind a simple one-room house, where a woman clutched her infant child. Both cried uncontrollably and a soldier tried to console them. When we got there, soldiers trained their guns on us, beat us, stripped us of everything in our pockets and forced us on our knees.

Tyler’s hands were bound by a strip of a scarf. A soldier took off Lynsey’s gray Nike shoes, then bound her with the shoelaces. “God, I just don’t want to be raped,” she whispered to Steve.

“You’re the translator!” a slight soldier screamed at Anthony. “You’re the spy!”

A few seconds passed, and another soldier approached, demanding that we lie on our stomachs.

All of us had had close calls over the years. Lynsey was kidnapped in Falluja, Iraq, in 2004; Steve in Afghanistan in 2009. Tyler had more scrapes than he could count, from Chechnya to Sudan, and Anthony was shot in the back in 2002 by a man he believed to be an Israeli soldier. At that moment, though, none of us thought we were going to live. Steve tried to keep eye contact until they pulled the trigger. The rest of us felt the powerlessness of resignation. You feel empty when you know that it’s almost over.

“Shoot them,” a tall soldier said calmly in Arabic.

A colleague next to him shook his head. “You can’t,” he insisted. “They’re Americans.”

They bound our hands and legs instead — with wire, fabric or cable. Lynsey was carried to a Toyota pickup, where she was punched in the face. Steve and Tyler were hit, and Anthony was headbutted.

Even that Tuesday, a pattern had begun to emerge. The beating was always fiercest in the first few minutes, an aggressiveness that Colonel Qaddafi’s bizarre and twisted four decades of rule inculcated in a society that feels disfigured. It didn’t matter that we were bound, or that Lynsey was a woman.

But moments of kindness inevitably emerged, drawing on a culture’s far deeper instinct for hospitality and generosity. A soldier brought Tyler and Anthony, sitting in a pickup, dates and an orange drink. Lynsey had to talk to a soldier’s wife who, in English, called her a donkey and a dog. Then they unbound Lynsey and, sitting in another truck, gave Steve and her something to drink.

From the pickup, Lynsey saw a body outstretched next to our car, one arm outstretched. We still don’t know whether that was Mohammed. We fear it was, though his body has yet to be found.

If he died, we will have to bear the burden for the rest of our lives that an innocent man died because of us, because of wrong choices that we made, for an article that was never worth dying for.

No article is, but we were too blind to admit that.

Full Story: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/23/world/africa/23times.html?no_interstitial
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Monkey Mcdermott



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Him wrote:
Meanwhile in Bahrain: Diffrent kinds of intervention


That article uses the bold function in a random fashion.
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zeezee



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

uh, they're hot links, monkey
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2011 5:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Air raids force Gadhafi retreat, rebels seize east

By BEN HUBBARD and RYAN LUCAS, Associated Press – Sat Mar 26, 7:09 pm ET
Quote:
AJDABIYA, Libya – Libyan rebels clinched their hold on the east and seized back a key city on Saturday after decisive international airstrikes sent Moammar Gadhafi's forces into retreat, shedding their uniforms and ammunition as they fled.
Ajdabiya's initial loss to Gadhafi may have ultimately been what saved the rebels from imminent defeat, propelling the U.S. and its allies to swiftly pull together the air campaign now crippling Gadhafi's military. Its recapture gives President Barack Obama a tangible victory just as he faces criticism for bringing the United States into yet another war.
In Ajdabiya, drivers honked in celebration and flew the tricolor rebel flag. Others in the city fired guns into the air and danced on burned-out tanks that littered the road.
Their hold on the east secure again, the rebels promised to resume their march westward that had been reversed by Gadhafi's overwhelming firepower. Rebel fighters already had pushed forward to the outskirts of the oil port of Brega and were hoping to retake the city on Sunday, opposition spokeswoman Iman Bughaigis said, citing rebel military commanders.
"Without the planes we couldn't have done this. Gadhafi's weapons are at a different level than ours," said Ahmed Faraj, 38, a rebel fighter from Ajdabiya. "With the help of the planes we are going to push onward to Tripoli, God willing."
The Gadhafi regime acknowledged the airstrikes had forced its troops to retreat and accused international forces of choosing sides.
"This is the objective of the coalition now, it is not to protect civilians because now they are directly fighting against the armed forces," Khaled Kaim, the deputy foreign minister, said in Tripoli. "They are trying to push the country to the brink of a civil war."
Ajdabiya's sudden capture by Gadhafi's troops on March 15 — and their move toward the rebel capital of Benghazi — gave impetus to the U.N. resolution authorizing international action in Libya, and its return to rebel hands on Saturday came after a week of airstrikes and missiles against the Libyan leader's military.
The Pentagon said U.S.-led forces pounded Libyan ground troops and other targets along the Mediterranean coast and in Tripoli, Ajdabiya and the western contested city of Misrata in strikes overnight, but they provided no details on what was hit. A Pentagon spokesman, Navy Capt. Darryn James, says there were no Tomahawk cruise missile strikes overnight.
Altogether, the Pentagon said the U.S. military launched nearly 100 strikes overnight, just slightly higher than a day ago.
Airstrikes Friday on the city's eastern and western gates forced Gadhafi's troops into hasty retreat. Inside a building that had served as their makeshift barracks and storage, hastily discarded uniforms were piled in the bathroom and books on Islamic and Greek history and fake pink flowers were scattered on the floor.
Saif Sadawi, a 20-year-old rebel fighter with a rocket-propelled grenade launcher in his hands, said the city's eastern gate fell late Friday and the western gate fell at dawn Saturday after airstrikes on both locations.

"All of Ajdabiya is free," he said.


Full Story: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110326/ap_on_re_af/af_libya
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Mizike



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Almost done.

Quote:
TRIPOLI, Libya — Rebels surged into the Libyan capital Sunday night, meeting only sporadic resistance from troops loyal to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi and setting off raucous street celebrations by residents hailing the end of his 42 years in power.

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bitflipper



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darqcyde wrote:
Air raids force Gadhafi retreat, rebels seize east

The question looming in my mind is "So what happens after the 'victory'?"

The U.S. has incredibly well-equipped military forces; any time we step into a fight, it's pretty much a foregone conclusion that we will have decisive victories in short order. That doesn't "win" wars, though, and it doesn't bring peace to unsettled regions, it doesn't repair and build infrastructure, and it doesn't make things any better for those who have to suffer in those regions where we go bombing and invading, no matter how strategic or surgical our strikes may be.

Don't get me wrong: I firmly support our troops, I accept the decisions of our President and Congress (though they may be rather bitter pills to swallow, at times), and I'm a fairly far cry from being liberal.

But I can't help but notice that so many actions in which we have involved ourselves since the end of WWII have resulted in early, rapid, decisive "victories" followed by years of long, drawn-out guerilla fighting with no real result other than the destruction of other nations' lands and resources and severe drains on our own economy as well as unpalatable and often unacceptable losses among our own service- men and women.

Sun Tzu stated it clearly: the purpose of war is to break your enemy's will or ability to fight. That's it; there's no "victory" involved. And, frankly, I don't see the U.S. as being capable of doing that, these days. It would require us to countenance a savagery on our part that I don't think we're willing to live with, yet nothing less will break the will of the enemy we choose, and no amount of "surgical" strikes will cripple the enemy sufficiently to remove his ability to fight. And, honestly, I don't think I would be as willing to support my government if we were to choose a course of action sufficiently brutal to break an enemy's will and/or ability to fight back.

So, what will come after we depose Qaddafi and destabilize Libya? Do we really think the rebels will be able to establish a nice, happy, wealthy, comfortable nation in the wake of the destruction? Or, are we going to replace Qaddafi with another King Idris who'll live in his gold-domed palace while his country-men live in shanty-towns beyond his palace walls without health care, education, or sanitation? We may not want to admit it for the sake of political expediency, but Qaddafi actually did improve conditions in his country.

I think that, once again, we're patting ourselves on the back way too soon, and stepping in and causing a much greater mess than we claim to be fixing, because we haven't looked at the likeliest results of this action.
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Mizike



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's best not to comment on a story when you are totally ignorant of the details. A better approach would be to ask question so that you can become better informed.

"We" did not (and will not) depose the Colonel. NATO only provided airstrikes on armored columns and No Fly Zone support. And they provided that with miraculously few civilian casualties.

The Libyan TNC did all the work. They even complained that they wanted NATO to be a bit more involved, but they were (wisely, I'd opine) rebuffed.

And saying that a country is better now than it was in the 70's is not exactly a powerful statement. Iran is better off now that they were in the 80's. That doesn't mean that they wouldn't have been better off without the Revolutionary Guard running around disappearing people in the middle of the night.
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bitflipper



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mizike wrote:
"We" did not (and will not) depose the Colonel. NATO only provided airstrikes on armored columns and No Fly Zone support. And they provided that with miraculously few civilian casualties.


The New York Times, in the article cited by Mizike wrote:
President Obama said Sunday night that Colonel Qaddafi and his inner circle had “to recognize that their rule has come to an end” and called on Colonel Qaddafi “to relinquish power once and for all.”


I'm having trouble reconciling these two statements, Mizike. On the one hand, you tell us that we have not and will not depose Qaddafi, yet, on the other, the article you cited states quite clearly that President Obama is all-but demanding Qaddafi step down, this coming after a week of U.N.-approved airstrikes that have driven Qaddafi back from the cities he had captured and held as Darqcyde informed us. That sure looks to me like we are trying to depose Qaddafi, even if it will be Libya's National Transition Council doing most of the legwork.

What about these events in Libya make them significantly different from our attacks upon Iraq (both Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom) and Afghanistan? Why should we expect the results to be significantly different, either?
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ShadowCell



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Demanding a leader's ouster is different from making it happen. Obama can demand Qaddafi's ouster 'til he's blue in the face; it's the Libyan rebels who will actually make it happen, if they do (and I'm still waiting for that to happen first; this ain't over 'til Qaddafi Duck is in handcuffs or in hell).
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bitflipper



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fair enough. But what about these snippets from the AP release:
Associated Press wrote:
"Without the planes we couldn't have done this. Gadhafi's weapons are at a different level than ours," said Ahmed Faraj, 38, a rebel fighter from Ajdabiya. "With the help of the planes we are going to push onward to Tripoli, God willing."
The Gadhafi regime acknowledged the airstrikes had forced its troops to retreat and accused international forces of choosing sides.
"This is the objective of the coalition now, it is not to protect civilians because now they are directly fighting against the armed forces," Khaled Kaim, the deputy foreign minister, said in Tripoli.

Have we actually gone beyond enforcing demilitarized zones and targeting armored columns to openly take sides in this civil uprising?
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ShadowCell



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes. Obviously. That's not news. In fact, we took sides on this before the bombing ever started, the same way we've taken sides on Syria even though we're not bombing Assad.

This still isn't simply a redux of Iraq, because the US has not committed nearly the same level of resources and manpower to the campaign in Libya, and the US isn't the only country taking part in this; the UK and France have been in on the whole thing too, even though the operation wouldn't be possible without US support. And more importantly, the US didn't concoct the civil war in Libya. It emerged on its own, and Qaddafi chose to answer the protests with violence, and the civil war had gone on for several weeks before other countries stepped in. In fact, the NATO bombing only started when Qaddafi's troops were on the doorstep of Benghazi, a city that was never very friendly to Qaddafi, the epicenter of the rebellion, and a city that stood a good chance of getting massacred in retaliation for the uprising. Obama himself cited the potential for a massacre at Benghazi as one of the reasons why he joined the bombing campaign.

So, now the war seems to be almost over. In Iraq, it was the US's responsibility to rebuild the country it wrecked, because it was the US that took down the old order. In Libya, it will be Libyans' responsibility to do that--because they're the ones who took down the old order. Other countries just saved them from getting wiped out and helped them along the way.
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Sam the Eagle



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bitflipper wrote:

Have we actually gone beyond enforcing demilitarized zones and targeting armored columns to openly take sides in this civil uprising?


Define "we".

- If by it you mean US political will, then no. It was tough enough to get UN to vote that one over. And for the US to go through UN's procedure at all is a novelty.

- If you mean NATO, then yes. There are few articles laying around on both Guardian and Le Monde, quoting both UK and French special forces were on ground to...help. That was a flagrant break of UN' recolution by the way.

Both newspapers were too saying (maybe the information was purposefully leaked) that both France and UK were short of supply/cash, and that Air support would not be able to got pas Fall. US, along with Italy, was clearly happy to let these two countries taking the front seats. As to why these two countries were willing to take the spotlights, it's a bit long and involved.

What turned the fight around was recent tribal recant of support. They were the ones controlling the road south of Tripoli. There was a former goverment official that left Tripoli's regime this Friday/Saturday, he was their representative.

Quote:
Would the rebels have made it so without NATO support? Would NATO have made it so without US support?


Sun Tsu isn't the proper strategist here, for this you need Karl Marx. The point isn't a military, but a political one. Assume NATO fails, then both UK and France will take the brunt of the backlash; it wouldn't be the first time Gaddafi uses state sponsored terrorism to make his point. Assume NATO succeeds, US will have a say in the incoming government; moreso because said government will change sponsor and look out for his military supplies elsewhere other than Russia.

The obvious "what's next" question is hard to answer. To me it looks like the political power will be split according to tribal' strenght more than any democratic rule of law.
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