News / USA

US Says International Forces Control Skies Over Libya

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Michael Mullen (File Photo)
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Michael Mullen (File Photo)

America’s top military commander says a United Nations-authorized no-fly zone over Libya has effectively been achieved. 

The Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, is calling the initial phase of a multi-national effort to take control of Libyan airspace a success. Mullen says Libyan command-and-control centers and air defense installations have been struck, and that leader Moammar Gadhafi’s forces effectively are grounded.

"We have had a very significant impact very early in establishing this no-fly zone and supporting the mission, which is to protect civilians and also to be able to provide corridors and create the conditions for humanitarian relief," he said. "So I would say the no-fly zone, which we were tasked to put in place, is actually in place."

Speaking on the Fox News Sunday television program, Mullen stressed that the current U.S. objective in Libya is well-defined and limited.

"The focus of the United Nations Security Council resolution was really [the rebel stronghold of] Benghazi, specifically, and to protect civilians," he said. "And we have done that, or we have started to do that. This is not about going after Gadhafi himself or attacking him at this particular point in time."

Mullen added that it is impossible to know right now what the ultimate outcome in Libya will be.

Some U.S. legislators believe the United States should have intervened sooner in Libya, and should now focus on ending Mr. Gadhafi’s rule. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina also appeared on Fox News Sunday.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., right, and Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo. take part in a news conference, on Capitol Hill in Washington (File Photo)
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., right, and Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo. take part in a news conference, on Capitol Hill in Washington (File Photo)
"This is a great opportunity to replace a tyrannical dictator who is not a legitimate leader and who is an international crook," said Graham. "And we should seize the moment and talk about replacing him, not talk about how limited we [U.S. objectives] will be."

But Democratic Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island says the United States should not act unilaterally beyond the U.N.-authorized mission. He responded this way when asked if he favors U.S. ground forces in Libya:

"Not United States forces," said Reed. "I think the president [Barack Obama] has rightly ruled that out. But there are many forces that are capable of helping."

Many doubt Moammar Gadhafi will give up power unless he is forcibly removed. Ali Suleiman Aujali has served as Libya’s ambassador in Washington, but now backs anti-Gadhafi rebels in his home country. He spoke on ABC’s This Week program.

"There is one thing on the mind of Gadhafi: that he will not step down," he said. "He will fight. He has no other choice. He will never give up"

With air attacks against rebels a thing of the past, Aujali predicts anti-Gadhafi forces will regroup and begin a march towards the Libyan capital, Tripoli, where he predicts they will mount a siege to end the leader’s rule.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid