Ten Days of Airstrikes Fail to Cripple Gaddafi's Forces

(New York Times) David D. Kirkpatrick and Kareem Fahim - As Gaddafi's militias beat back the rebels' advance in eastern Libya on Tuesday, it was clear that the last 10 days of airstrikes had failed to cripple his forces enough to erase their advantage in firepower. Nor have the strikes renewed the uprising that briefly threatened his stronghold in Tripoli four weeks ago. Gaddafi evidently trusted only two militias - with a total of about 10,000 men - to deploy against the rebels, said Henry Boyd, an analyst at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London. They are the 32nd Brigade, loyal to his son Khamis, and the Ninth Regiment, under the direction of another son, Muatassim. The big tribes close to Gaddafi have stayed more or less loyal to him in part because so many of their men enjoy the salaries and the prestige of high-ranking positions in the Libyan military.

2011-03-30 00:00:00

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