Sunday, March 20, 2011

French Send Carrier; Marine Harriers Join In

French air attacks are slowing Moammar Gadhafi's siege of the rebel capital Benghazi as the allies impose a no-fly zone and ceasefire orders from the United Nations, according to multiple reports.

Navy drones and Marine Corps attack jets joined the battle today. Navy EA-18G Growlers launched from unnamed land bases are providing eye-in-the-sky surrveilance over Libya, while Marine AV-8B Harriers from the USS Kearsarge conducted strikes on Gadhafi's troops and air defenses, MSNBC reports.

The first barrage of cruise missile attacks were fired from the guided-missile destroyers USS Stout and USS Barry, and submarines, USS Providence, USS Scranton and USS Florida. The U.S. has at least 11 ships in the Mediterranean Sea, the Pentagon said.

France today sent its super carrier, the Charles de Gaulle, to join the battle, Reuters reports.

"I would say the no-fly zone is effectively in place," Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen told CNN this morning.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) says the allies may have to do more than just a no-fly zone, The Hill reports.

China says it "regrets" the action by the Western powers. Russia calls for a halt to allied action, as well.

A still defiant Gadhafi spoke today in an audio message, saying "the devil will be defeated."

Gadhafi also has been doing some letter-writing, The Hill reports.

The thinking inside the White House in the days and hours before the allies came to the aide of the rebels and anti-Gadhafi protesters, as told by National Journal.

A tick-tock of the Libya Revolution.

The rest from:

The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, NPR, The Washington Post, BBC.

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