Thursday, February 24, 2011

Special Forces Muster on Malta

Elite troops, including U.S. Delta Force and Navy SEALS, are positioned on the island of Malta to help protect fleeing Americans and others escaping the chaos in Libya, if needed, knowledgeable sources confirmed.

Food, water and emergency supplies are also being stockpiled on Malta, a strategic port of call for the U.S. Navy in the Mediterranean, a source said.

The U.S. special forces on Malta are equipped with chemical warfare suits, a source said. "Those guys like to travel light and they hate carrying those things around," said a source familiar with the deployment.

Earlier today, The Wall Street Journal and others reported the U.S. fears Gadhafi never destroyed his stash of  chemical weapons, like mustard gas. Gadhafi has not used chemical weapons on the protesters so far, but because of his hair-trigger personality and threats to fight to the death, it is a contingency the Western powers are taking into consideration.

Special forces from European nations are also believed to be in the region, a diplomatic source said.

Malta has been a primary destination for Americans and others seeking refuge from strongman Moammar Gadhafi and his armed goons who have wreaked havoc in Tripoli and elsewhere in Libya. A State Department-sponsored ferry is also waiting at a dock in Tripoli to take Americans and others to Malta once a patch of bad weather that has caused high seas passes.

Defecting Libyan fighter jets and helicopter pilots landed their aircraft on Malta earlier this week, seeking political asylum.

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