I have a niggling suspicion that I glossed over the issue of the struggle for freedom in this morning’s post. There is some real shit going down right now:
Pan-Arab news outlets report that Gaddafi’s troops have used live ammunition and heavy military equipment such as anti-tank missiles in Benghazi. Late on Sunday fierce clashes were being reported in Tripoli. Libya Al Youm reported on its website on Sunday that the regime was using “heavy weapons” and shooting at random.
I cannot put too fine a point on this – Muammar Gaddafi has authorized the use of deadly force against civilians for exercising their right to free speech and free assembly. He has called in foreign mercenaries and snipers to shoot Libyan citizens, and has directed weapons strikes from aircraft against crowds of unarmed civilians. The United States declared war against Iraq at least partially on the justification that he had done stuff like this to his people. The drama is rapidly unfolding:
Meanwhile, two Libyan fighter jets have landed in Malta, where officials say the pilots defected after they were ordered to bomb civilians. Two Libyan helicopters apparently carrying French oil workers have also landed in Malta.
These reports are unsubstantiated eye-witness accounts so it’s entirely possible that we’re not getting the unvarnished truth here, but these reports are coming from Al Jazeera and the BBC – not exactly World Net Daily.
By the time you’ve read this, this “news” will be more than 24 hours old, but I’ve been told by a handful of people who don’t read the news regularly that they wouldn’t have known about this stuff if I hadn’t been harping on it. I hope this will motivate you to read up a little about what’s going on – this will have major repercussions for all of us for many years to come. It’s a good idea to be paying attention. This morning, Gaddafi appeared on state television and gave an hour-long histrionic rant, blaming America and demanding that his fictitious supporters go out onto the streets and arrest those protesting the government, promising death to all who oppose the government. Chilling stuff.
Of course in all the tumult it’s easy to forget that The Ivory Coast has been in a state of violent revolution, with citizens being murdered and raped, since November.
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