Posted By RichC on March 21, 2011
The air assault on Libya on Saturday March 19th came as no surprise as the dictator Muammar el-Qaddafi continued to send his hired mercenaries into areas held by the rebels seeking freedom. The motivated, but under equipped rebels, are at a decided disadvantage when it comes to combatting Qaddafi’s military aircraft, tanks and heavy artillery; they have been pushed to near defeat making a final stand in Benghazi to the east. Prior to coalition airstrikes, it was looking as if the 40 year dictator was going to hang on to power. About the only surprise was how long it has taken President Obama, the UN and other western leaders to implement a no-fly zone over people struggling in the midst of a civil war.
On Sunday the air assault continued for a second day as President Obama visited South America without altering his schedule, although news coverage has been nearly non-existent regarding his trip – minus the criticism regarding taking a trip while he was waging war. Many, particularly Republicans, question the seeming lack of leadership and back seat posture being taken by Obama; I have a concern that there is a lack of a plan.
The White House brushed aside criticism that Mr. Obama was too slow taking action in Libya. As for the 2012 Republican presidential contenders, they were quiet on the topic of Libya, all except the former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was the only prospective candidate to issue a statement, criticizing the military action as “opportunistic amateurism without planning.”
As of this hour, late Sunday-early Monday, the U.S. has used primarily cruise missiles and B-2 bombers to target radar sites along with command and control locations along with the same from the UK. The French, Danes and Italians have jets in the air and have targeted Qaddafi’s heavy armory firing or threatening cities.
According to most military talking heads, the skies over Libya are now under coalition control, except for the mobile radar and anti-aircraft units with radar turned off. Of concern to most in the U.S. is the worry that we are getting involved in a war on a 3rd front, although Obama pledged that no American ground troops would be deployed to Libya.
A recent report indicated that the British targeted Muammar el-Qaddafi compound in Tripoli … “the compound may have been struck by missiles fired by British or French forces, which have taken the lead in the effort to halt attacks by Libyan forces against rebels seeking to topple Gaddafi. CNN quoted “coalition sources” in Washington as saying that the building was hit because it contained “command and control” capabilities.”