Libyan rebels are in full retreat under attack from Colonel Gaddafi’s forces, losing control of more towns along the Mediterranean coast.
It seems they are no match for the army’s superior organisation and weaponry.
Two days ago the rebels were heading westwards, delightedly chasing Gaddafi’s troops across the desert.
Now they are fleeing in the opposite direction back eastwards. They have lost Bin Jawad and the important oil town of Ras Lanuf; they are also in retreat from Brega.
Pictures taken near the town showed refreshments being distributed as the rebels retreated.
Since then an unconfirmed report said the coalition had launched an attack on Gaddafi’s forces near Ajdabiyah.
But there has been no sign of allied assault on the sort of scale that repelled the army earlier.
Injured rebels have been taken to hospital in Ajdabiyah.
Their changing fortunes pose plenty of questions. There have been doubts over their lack of organisation and ability to use their weapons properly.
Their latest dramatic setbacks bring the role of the international coalition into even sharper focus.