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Libyan Airspace ‘Under Control’ As Two Sides Meet

Huffpost- First Posted: 03/25/11 08:48 AM Updated: 03/25/11 08:48 AM

BENGHAZI, Libya — France declared Libya’s airspace “under control” on Friday, after NATO agreed to take command of the no-fly zone in a compromise that appeared to set up dual command centers and possibly new confusion. Coalition warplanes struck Moammar Gadhafi’s forces outside the strategic eastern gateway city of Ajdabiya.

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Representatives for the regime and the rebels were expected to meet formally for the first time Friday, in Ethiopia, in what the U.N. described as a part of an effort to reach a cease-fire and political solution.

The overnight French and British strikes on an artillery battery and armored vehicles were intended to give a measure of relief to Ajdabiya, where residents have fled or cowered under more than a week of shelling and fighting between rebels and government troops. Explosions also could be heard in Tripoli, the Libyan capital, before daybreak Friday, apparently from airstrikes.

“Libyan airspace is under control, and we proved it yesterday, because a Libyan plane in the hands of pro-Gadhafi forces, which had just taken off from Misrata in order to bomb Misrata, was destroyed by a French Rafale,” Adm. Edouard Guillaud said on France-Info radio.

But the compromise that puts NATO in charge of clearing the skies still leaves the U.S. responsible for the more difficult task of planning attacks on Gadhafi’s ground forces and other targets.

Ajdabiya has been under siege for more than a week, with the rebels holding the city center and scattered checkpoints but facing relentless shelling from government troops on the outskirts. Residents are without electicity or drinking water, and many have fled.

The U.S. military said coalition jets flew about 150 on Thursday, about 70 of them with American planes.

“The operation is still focusing on tanks, combat vehicles, air defense targets – really whatever equipment and personnel are threatening the no-fly zone or civilians on the ground in such locations as Ajdabiya and along some other areas on the coast,” Marine Corps Capt. Clint Gebke told reporters from aboard the USS Mount Whitney.

The U.S. has been trying to give up the lead role in the operation against Gadhafi’s forces, and NATO agreed late Thursday to assume one element of it – control of the no-fly zone.

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Turkish TV: NATO To Assume Command Libya Operation

HuffPost

Posted: 03/24/11 04:03 PM

ANKARA, Turkey — NATO appeared on Thursday to move closer to assuming command of the military operation in Libya when Turkey’s foreign minister was quoted as saying an agreement has been reached.

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The alliance needs the approval of all 28 of its members in order to coordinate the operation, and Turkey had set conditions on that role for NATO.

“The coalition that was formed following the Paris meeting will abandon the mission and hand it over entirely to a single command system under NATO,” Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was quoted as saying by Turkey’s state-run Anatolia news agency.

“All of Turkey’s concerns, demands on the issue have been met,” he said, and NATO has promised to complete the work needed to take over the Libya mission “within one or two days.”

Earlier in the day, Turkey’s parliament authorized the government to participate in military operations in Libya, including the no-fly zone. Turkey is NATO’s only Muslim member.

Turkey’s government had insisted that any NATO mission, including the no-fly zone, must be restricted to protecting civilians, enforcing the arms embargo and providing humanitarian aid.

Davutoglu had said Wednesday that his country would not agree to a “framework that goes beyond this.” But Turkey also said it would contribute four frigates and one submarine to the NATO naval force that patrolling off Libya’s coast to enforce a U.N. arms embargo. Two frigates had reached the Libyan coast while two others were on their way.

In Brussels, NATO officials said the Military Committee – the alliance’s highest military body – met Thursday morning in Brussels to review plans to enforce the no-fly zone in Libya. The decision-making North Atlantic Council, consisting of envoys from all 28 member nations, was meeting later Thursday to review them.

It has been meeting for six straight days, but a series of disagreements, including whether NATO should have overall political control over the operation and how aggressive rules of engagement should be, have so far blocked an agreement.

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Nasrallah (source)

Hezbollah Leader Nasrallah Speaks in Solidarity with the Arab Spring, Equates Gaddafi with Israel

opednews.com By Mac McKinney

March 21, 2011 at 23:09:24

Hezbollah General Secretary Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah gave a powerful speech on the revolutions in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain and other countries on March 19th, picked up by Press TV. Nasrallah had plenty of criticism for the United States, of course (what else is new), but reserved plenty for all the tyrannies in the Middle East, welcoming their downfall. He reserved much of his scorn for Gaddafi, equating Gaddafi’s attack on his own people with the brutal Israeli attack on Gaza in late 2008-early 2009.

The above Press TV video was also posted at Information Clearing House, of which an excerpt of the accompanying text appears below:

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) – Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivers a televised speech on revolutions and unrest in multiple Arab countries:

-Our gathering today is to voice our support for our Arab people and their revolutions and sacrifices, especially in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Libya and Yemen.

-The value of this solidarity is moral, political, and ethical, and its effects are also moral. The origin of what is going on — which could decide the fate of an uprising here, a confrontation there, or a resistance there — the origin is the steadfastness of peoples, linked to their faith and high spirituality.

-You remember that during the July [2006] war, every word and statement in any state and anywhere in the world had its impact on the resistance, the people and the displaced.

-The same is the case with the Arab revolts. We tell them that we support them, that we stand by your side and we are ready to help you toward your interest and ours, with your and our capabilities.

-We have to stress that these revolutions are the will of the people themselves. Any accusation that the US manufactured and launched these revolutions is unjust speech toward these peoples, especially that we are talking about regimes which are allied with the USA, serve the American project and pose no threat to Israel.

(FULL TEXT CONTINUED HERE)

SOURCE

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Libya Military Intervention Could Last ‘Awhile,’ Top French Official Says

AP/The Huffington Post By RYAN LUCAS and HADEEL AL-SHALCHI  Posted: 03/21/11 08:46 AM

ZEITOUNIYA, Libya — The international military intervention in Libya is likely to last “awhile,” a top French official said Monday, echoing Moammar Gadhafi’s warning of a long war ahead as rebels said they were fighting to reclaim a city under the Libyan leader’s control.

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Burned-out tanks and personnel carriers littered one of the main desert roads leading from the Libyan capital. A power station hit by a shell on Thursday was still burning, its blackened fuel tank crumpled, with flames and black smoke pouring out.

Oil prices held above $102 a barrel after the second night of allied strikes in the OPEC nation raised fears of prolonged fighting that has already slowed Libyan oil production to a trickle.

Henri Guaino, a top adviser to the French president, said two nights of bombing runs and missile attacks had hobbled Libya’s air defenses, stalled Gadhafi’s troops and all but ended attacks on civilians. A cruise missile late Sunday blasted Gadhafi’s residential compound near his iconic tent, and fighter jets destroyed a line of tanks moving on the rebel capital.

It was not known where Gadhafi was when the missile hit Sunday, but it seemed to show that he is not safe.

Guaino, asked how long the allied efforts would continue, replied simply: “Awhile yet.”

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G: March 12, 2011

From what I can see, both the US and Israel have been using exotic electronic warfare weapons for many years, starting with the Shock & Awe campaign in Iraq and probably before that. The electronic war weapons that we hear about, like the THEL and what is called the Sunburn are probably only vague clues as to what the gubmint really posses. WMD’s is what they are, and probably a lot more scary than H Bombs. What in the world would cause the kind of destruction that melts the engine block in an automobile?

Personally, I doubt that Gaddafi has any WMD, but I don’t doubt that he is corrupt enough to make deals with younohoo…G:

Here’s what the gubmint admits to according to Space Daily. ABL Air Borne Laser

And this from Youtube youser 911InvestigationVids  EMP Weapons

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Muammar Gaddafi tells a Turkish television reporter a no-fly zone would show that the west wants to take control of Libya. Photograph: Str/Reuters

Gaddafi threatens armed resistance against no-fly zone

Imposition of no-fly zone zone in Libyan airspace ‘would prove west was trying to steal its oil’

Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has warned that the imposition of a no-fly zone in Libyan airspace will be met with armed resistance and taken as proof that western powers are trying to steal his country’s oil.

His defiant remarks came as pro-Gaddafi forces continued their assault on the city of Zawiyah and the country’s rebel leadership pleaded for the international community to close down Libyan airspace.

Britain and the US have discussed the creation of an internationally backed no-fly zone as a contingency plan in case Gaddafi refuses to step down in response to the popular uprising that erupted last month.

In an interview broadcast on Wednesday by Turkey’s state-run TRT news channel, Gaddafi said: “If they take such a decision it will be useful for Libya, because the Libyan people will see the truth, that what they want is to take control of Libya and to steal their oil.

“They want to take your petrol,” he said. “This is what America, this is what the French, those colonialists, want.” But he warned: “The Libyan people will take up arms against them.”

Barack Obama and David Cameron have agreed “to press forward with planning, including at Nato, on the full spectrum of possible responses, including surveillance, humanitarian assistance, enforcement of the arms embargo, and a no-fly zone”.

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Libyan rebels lose ground to Kadhafi forces

By Agence France-Presse via Raw Story
Monday, March 7th, 2011 — 8:33 am

RAS LANUF, Libya (AFP) – Libyan rebels ceded ground to Moamer Kadhafi’s advancing forces Monday as the United States came under increasing pressure to arm the opposition and the UN appointed a special envoy to Tripoli.

The rebels began pulling back from the key oil terminal town of Ras Lanuf on Monday as a fighter jet blasted defences on the edge of town, throwing up palls of smoke amid rumours that government forces were gearing for an attack.

Amid the bloodiest fighting of the three-week old conflict Sunday, the United Nations demanded urgent access to scores of “injured and dying” in the western city of Misrata and rebels were forced to withdraw from the front line at Bin Jawad, 30 kilometres (19 miles) west along the coast from Ras Lanuf.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon said Kadhafi’s foreign minister agreed to let a “humanitarian assessment” team visit Tripoli and he named former Jordanian foreign minister Abdulilah al-Khatib as special envoy to deal with the regime. Khatib was to undertake “urgent consultations” with the Tripoli government.

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