Friday, April 8, 2011

Remotely see a rebel victory in Libya

It is unlikely that the rebel forces managed to overthrow the Libyan regime of Colonel Muammar Gadhafi, considered the chief of U.S. Africa Command, Gen. Carter Ham. Asked at a Senate hearing on the chances that the Libyan opposition to "fight their way" in Tripoli and replace Gadhafi, Ham said, "evaluate this as a low probability." Ham estimated that the air strikes launched by the international coalition on March 19 helped "significantly reduce" the regime's ability to target civilians, with the exception of the city of Misrata.

This town is under rebel control, but it is under attack by forces loyal to the regime. Gadhafi's government has faced since the February 15 rebellion that turned into civil war, and from the March 19 attacks is the subject of an international coalition air strikes. Ham said the current impasse is not the preferred solution "in Libya but that the result looks" more likely "now than at the beginning of the season.

However, he pointed to overthrow Gadhafi was not part of a mission organized by the UN to protect civilians, and that the U.S. government wanted to rely on diplomatic means, inter alia, to force him to relinquish power. His comments underscore a growing concern in Washington and in European capitals about the risk that the fighting in Libya stagnate, firmly in control with Gadhafi in Tripoli and the loosely organized rebels without ability to reverse the tide, even with protection air power of the Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Ham said the government wants to use diplomacy and sanctions to force Gadhafi output and warned that the U.S. had already tried the "regime change" elsewhere. "We have some history in trying to apply military force for change regime in which we have been less than successful, "he said, referring to Iraq.

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