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Obama admits Libyan "stalemate"

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Obama admits Libyan "stalemate"


The Libyan rebels are reinforcing their western outpost of Misrata by sea as the battle for the city continues. More air strikes have hurt the forces loyal to Colonel Gaddafi, but the knockout punch has yet to delivered.

Gaddafi launched about 100 Grad rockets into Misrata on Friday, and the rebels say, cluster bombs, but it is unclear just how much heavy equipment he has left, and in the east the oil town of Braga is coming under heavy rebel attack. Rebel commanders there say the fall of the town is imminent. Zintan and Sirte were also hit from the air.

President Obama appears confident the effort will pay off, eventually.

“I didn’t expect that in three weeks, as a consequence of an air campaign, that Gaddafi would be gone. You now have a stalemate on the ground militarily but Gaddafi is still getting squeezed in all kinds of other ways. He is running out of money, he is running out of supplies. If we continue to apply that pressure and continue to protect civilians, which NATO is doing very capably, then I think in the long term Gaddafi will go and we will be successful,” he said.

While NATO is in complete agreement about removing Gaddafi it is split on allocating resources. Britain and France are doing most of the air strikes, so arming the rebels may be the next step.

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