Libyan Battle Map
The rebels are on the move in Libya.
Unfortunately, getting solutions to the query “the place exactly are they transferring ” from the American media is just not that simple. There are just a few reasons for this, but earlier than I get to that, right here”s the map the media actually needs to be offering on a regular basis (but usually are not). [I recommend you open this map in a separate browser window, to use as a useful reference for the rest of this article.]
The Libyan rebels have launched an offensive from all three of the main areas they at the moment management. The japanese part of Libya (see the smaller inset map at the underside of the battle map) is the world across the rebel stronghold (and governmental middle) of Benghazi. This is the most important area within the nation which the rebels control. The battle westward from Benghazi to the Gaddafi-held Sirte has ebbed and flowed over the course of the conflict. At the moment, the battle for Brega (which I wrote about a few weeks ago) is still being fought. The slowdown in the rebels’ advance right here is due in large part to the new tactic the loyalist forces are utilizing — withdrawing from an area after laying tons of of landmines. Clearing out these mines is slow and harmful work (a recent photo confirmed over three thousand anti-personnel mines faraway from Brega and disarmed). The rebels have taken over the jap half of Brega, however the loyalists nonetheless management the western half of town, and the refineries and pipelines.
While the rebel advance has slowed in Brega, though, it has sped up noticeably in Libya’s west. The battle map reveals this part of the nation in detail. The final word goal, in fact, is how much oil does a supertanker hold Tripoli. To Tripoli’s east is the second rebel-held space, around the town of Misrata (rebel-held areas are crimson on the map, loyalist-held areas are in green). The battle for the town of Misrata was the rebels’ first actual victory on this civil war, and in current weeks the frontlines have moved out from the town itself to the surrounding towns. The rebels have expanded their perimeter to the point that loyalists can not shell Misrata any more, because they’ve been pushed back out of vary. Transferring southwards alongside the coast, the rebels took Tarwerga, and in the present day reports are coming in that the rebels have taken Al Heisha (which, sadly just isn’t on the map, however appears to be additional down the road to Sirte Petroleum than Tarwerga). Along with this, the rebels are additionally pushing west from Misrata, shifting the struggle alongside the coast to town of Zlitan.
Within the westernmost part of the nation, the rebels have had their largest successes since securing Misrata. Starting from the border, how much oil does a supertanker hold the rebels have taken town after city till they now control the whole chain of the Nafusa Mountains. A number of weeks ago, they took the city of Zintan, and as you’ll be able to see on the battle map, they’ve rapidly advanced from there in two separate instructions.
The rebels try to take the words “the noose is tightening around Gaddafi” in quite literal vogue. It appears obvious that the rebels are attempting to encircle Tripoli, and because of the truth that there just aren’t a lot of roads in or out, this objective may very well soon be inside their grasp.
Isolating Tripoli means reducing off supply traces between it and everywhere else the loyalist forces hold, and from any of Libya’s borders. Up to now week, the rebels are reported to have taken the city of Gharyan, which is crucial to reaching this objective. Slicing off the provision line to the south at Gharyan is a significant part of the rebels’ pincers motion. The opposite main part of this plan of attack is cutting off the coastal route from Tripoli to Tunisia. The rebels initially took and held a key bridge along this route, and have expanded to holding the town of Surman and preventing the battle for the city of Zawiyah. Currently the rebels hold portions of town, and the loyalists are mentioned to nonetheless hold about a 3rd of the town. The hospital has apparently been taken over for navy use by the loyalists, but the rebels have claimed to have shut off the coastal oil pipeline to Tripoli. Zawiyah (like Brega) is a refinery city, and the rebels appear to be in charge of the refinery at this point. It is usually only about 30 miles down the highway from Tripoli — the closest the rebels have but gotten to their most important goal.
If the rebels can hold on to Zawiyah and Gharyan, they could have reached a tipping point of their battle effort. Holding a bit of the coastal road from Tunisia to Tripoli is a significant blow to the loyalist forces within the capital, as this highway is the major provide route for the Tripoli. Gasoline and different fuel are reported to already be in brief supply in Tripoli, and if Gaddafi loses each the coastal highway and his southern provide route as nicely, then Tripoli can be cut off from any further resupply.
The rebels’ subsequent transfer is obvious. Keep the pressure on in Brega. The rebel forces around Misrata have the objective of taking Zlitan and holding it, after which shifting up the coastal route to Tripoli to take Al Khums. The objective of the rebels in Gharyan shall be to secure the town (and the supply road south), after which move north and take Al Aziziya. Finally, the forces from Misrata and the forces from Gharyan can meet within the center, at Tarhuna, which is able to full the encircling of Tripoli, and cut off Ghaddafi from the remainder of his loyalist forces elsewhere in the nation. To the west of Tripoli, the rebels must broaden the part of coast they control in each directions.
If all goes nicely for the rebel forces, they are going to soon be inside attain of the purpose of fully surrounding Tripoli. There have been rumors that the Gaddafi authorities and the rebels are holding secret talks in Tunisia, however these rumors have been denied by both sides. Even if the talks are going down, it’s exhausting to imagine the rebels would give in on any of their demands — beginning at the beginning with Gaddafi stepping down from energy. The one thing the talks could obtain is avoiding the ultimate battle for Tripoli itself, which might be brutal.
The American media has been beating the drum of “the Libyan struggle is a stalemate” so long that they’ve been slow to appreciate the changing image on the ground there. Slightly than a ragtag bunch of guys who had never fired a gun before, the rebel forces are displaying that they’ve spent the last six months getting lots better at what they’re doing. They haven’t achieved it yet, but they are on the brink of turning that battle map of Libya from one largely tinted green (with pockets of crimson) to one among largely purple (with ever-shrinking pockets of green).
I notice it is hard to maintain track of what is going on in Libya. For one thing, Individuals aren’t on the bottom there (though they’re within the skies and off the coast at sea), meaning there have been zero American troop deaths up to now. For one more thing, all the location names (as properly as the chief’s name) should be translated from Arabic — which is a phonetic language. This means varied totally different English spellings of every explicit title (there isn’t a “right” spelling of any of those, in English), each within the news and on the internet. And none of those places — with the exception of Tripoli — are very familiar to Americans. All of this contributes to the lack of knowledge in the media on what the state of affairs is on the bottom in Libya.
But every once in a while, it is nice to truly see a map of what is how much oil does a supertanker hold happening. This week is an effective one to take a look on the battle map, and watch the rebels’ advance. To this point, in this offensive, the rebels haven’t lost any ground at all. They’ve been slowed down by the landmines in Brega, however everywhere else they are gaining ground by the day. Ultimately the rebels’ advance could also be halted, and even turned again. There are not any certain issues in warfare. But though the United States is in a peripheral function in this fight, the media need to get up and notice the situation is altering in Libya.
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