BENGHAZI, Libya—Col. Moammar Gadhafi's forces Saturday penetrated deep into Benghazi and heavily shelled the rebel capital's residential neighborhoods, threatening to snuff out the month-old Libyan revolution...It seems to me that the no-fly zone puts the evolution of the situation into slow motion. Gadhafi would be best served to ruin as much of Benghazi as possible before the thing takes effect and all of his armor is destroyed. If he was really smart, he would wreck the power, sewage and water systems first. After that, the no-fly zone would work like a siege.
Col. Gadhafi's forces, deployed some 100 miles south of Benghazi on Friday afternoon, launched a rapid two-pronged armor assault from the south and the west overnight, outflanking rebel defenses. By Saturday morning, regime tanks, some of which witnesses said were later disabled or captured by the rebels, reached a key bridge less than two miles from the rebel headquarters in a courthouse on Benghazi's Mediterranean corniche.
Here's another one for you. With both sides employing armed pickup trucks and the jets having no reliable spotters on the ground, how will they know who is who in the streets of Benghazi?
And another: who runs Benghazi? I mean, who provides essential services? Were the dudes in the water department Gadhafi loyalists who have been taken out and shot? Did they switch to the rebel side? Are there people left who know how to make things work or is the place devolving into pre-industrial conditions?
Without Allied ground forces to put a stop to the mutual slaughter, how is this going to end with anything other than a nasty and prolonged infantry war?