Sunday, August 21, 2011

Success for the Arab Spring in Libya

After six months, success is at hand in Libya. Here is a bit from a post by Juan Cole on his blog Informed Comment one of the best blogs on the situation in the Middle East:
As dawn broke Sunday in Libya, revolutionaries were telling Aljazeera Arabic that much of the capital was being taken over by supporters of the February 17 Youth revolt. Some areas, such as the suburb of Tajoura to the east and districts in the eastrn part of the city such as Suq al-Juma, Arada, the Mitiga airport, Ben Ashour, Fashloum, and Dahra, were in whole or in part under the control of the revolutionaries.

Those who were expecting a long, hard slog of fighters from the Western Mountain region and from Misrata toward the capital over-estimated dictator Muammar Qaddafi’s popularity in his own capital, and did not reckon with the severe shortages of ammunition and fuel afflicting his demoralized security forces, whether the regular army or mercenaries. Nor did they take into account the steady NATO attrition of his armor and other heavy weapons.

This development, with the capital creating its own nationalist mythos of revolutionary participation, is the very best thing that could have happened. Instead of being liberated (and somewhat subjected) from the outside by Berber or Cyrenaican revolutionaries, Tripoli enters the Second Republic with its own uprising to its name, as a full equal able to gain seats on the Transitional National Council once the Qaddafis and their henchmen are out of the way. There will be no East/West divide. My hopes for a government of national unity as the last phase of the revolution before parliamentary elections now seem more plausible than ever. Tellingly, Tunisia and Egypt both recognized the TNC as Libya’s legitimate government through the night, as the Tripoli uprising unfolded. Regional powers can see the new Libya being born.
There is more. Go read the whole post. Even better, keep checking at Juan Cole's blog.

This has been a nail-biter, but finally sunshine is breaking out. Things are looking good along North Africa, but now the problems in the Arab heartland need to be improved. The Syrian uprising needs to overthrow the vicious dictator Assad. The Green movement for democracy in Iran needs to be re-energized. The Bahrain uprising needs new hope and a new spark. The Yemen uprising needs to find a way forward with representative leadership now that Saleh has left the country.

So much hope. So much pain.

The end is very near. Here is a report from Sky TV:
Libyan rebels entered Tripoli and continued their advances into the centre of the city, meeting almost no resistance along the way.

It comes as Libyan rebels told Sky News that Saif Al-Islam, Colonel Gaddafi's son, has been captured.

Sky's special correspondent Alex Crawford, accompanying the rebels, said as opposition fighters entered the city, their cars gridlocked the roads and hundreds of people came out onto the streets to greet them.

The rebels responded with celebratory gunfire, she said.

"These scenes are amazing - there are hundreds of people who have come out onto the streets to greet this convoy of rebel soldiers.

"You can hear them singing and dancing, it is an amazing scene.

Here is a report by Sky News reporter Alex Crawford with the rebels as they enter Tripoli. The reports are of 2 of Gaddafi's son's captured. The end is at hand:

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