Fear and Hope in Libya

A mixed bag coming out of Libya, according to Voice of America:

Witnesses in the Libyan capital Tripoli say many streets were deserted Wednesday, with residents afraid to leave their homes, a day after Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi urged his supporters to attack anti-government demonstrators.

But, there were more signs that the Libyan leader has lost control of the eastern half of his country to protesters backed by defecting military units. Witnesses in the eastern cities of Benghazi and Tobruk say residents were in control of the streets Tuesday and celebrating their defeat of Gadhafi’s forces. Benghazi residents also formed units to collect weapons and protect property.

I think that’s a bit reassuring that liberated Libyans in the east are quickly taking steps to protect their fledgling freedom. VoA has more:

In another setback to Gadhafi Tuesday, a close associate, Interior Minister Abdel Fattah Younis, announced his defection and support for the uprising. Numerous other Libyan officials, including the justice minister, diplomats and military officers, also have turned against the Libyan leader in recent days.

My neighborhood Arab contacts predicted 3 more days for this despot, and that was yesterday. We’ll see how it ends soon enough, I’m fairly sure.

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