Libyan state TV has announced today that 37 billion sedative pills have been seized at a Libyan port; so now al Qaeda can no longer put pills in the the Nescafe of 17-year-olds, and Libya is saved!
Also today, the Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has said Libya is on the verge of civil war. What?! civil war is happening in Libya right now. It’s a war between 6 million united Libyans who want freedom (the tribal stuff is over-egged) and a lunatic with a small private army, an army that has many foreign mercenaries. No one is protesting in Tripoli and other government held areas, because as soon as they step out on the street they are being shot dead by Gaddafi’s private army (and many reports suggest that the bodies are being removed by Gaddafi’s goons so that there’s no evidence).
Gaddafi’s private army numbers about 10,000 men. Libya is a vast country, twice the size of France, and there’s no way that such a small force could regain control of it, because the regular military won’t do it. Take a look at the battles for Brega and its oil installations. Various reports have said that Gaddafi’s forces numbered 300 to 400. They were up against thousands of armed rebels in Brega and were soundly beaten. Gaddafi’s use of air power in the battle for Brega is also interesting: lone fighter planes have appeared and dropped bombs that were way off target. Likewise with the huge ammunition depot in the town of Ajdabiya, which is in rebel hands: four times now lone planes have appeared and tried to bomb the depot. The pilots have missed every time, on purpose, because you could only miss such a large and undefended target on purpose (it should be noted that the pilots and their families are undoubtedly under threat of death, and are forced to undertake these missions).
It seems apparent that those in the army, air force and navy who have not yet defected are not very keen to fight for Gaddafi. Latest reports are that the rebels are forming an army in Benghazi, with the intention of marching on Tripoli (if the rebels take Tripoli it will be the end of Gaddafi). I feel that this needs to happen sooner rather than later, not only to stop the slaughter as soon as possible, but also because the longer this goes on the more unstable it could become: Gaddafi could bring in more mercenaries to fight for him, or extremists could take advantage of the chaos, or the West might panic and take military action.
If Gaddafi is not taken out sometime in the very near future, what started as a very bloody popular uprising could turn into something much, much worse.