You know the scenario – the government troops fall back and consolidate, the rebels rush helter skelter after them along a long highway. How far can the rebel forces pursue before they run into a logistics problem? Food, shelter, ammo, petrol – where will these things come from to support a rebel “army” in the field.

Who is planning for rebel logistics and force sustainment?

See BBC News – Libya: Rebels pushed back by Col Gaddafi’s forces:

US President Barack Obama earlier said he did not rule out arming the rebels.

France and the US say they are sending envoys to the rebel-held city of Benghazi in the east to liaise with the interim administration there.

And see also Arming Libya rebels not allowed by UN resolutions, legal experts warn US:

The US is likely to be in breach of the UN security council’s arms embargo on Libya if it sends weapons to the rebels, experts in international law have warned.

After Hillary Clinton said it would be legal to send arms to support the uprising, lawyers analysing the terms of the UN’s 26 February arms embargo said it would require a change in the terms for it not to breach international law.

“The embargo appears to cover everybody in the conflict which means you can’t supply arms to rebels,” said Philippe Sands QC, professor of international law at University College London.

His view was backed by other experts in international law who said they could not see how the US could legally justify sending arms into Libya under the current resolutions.

Lord knows we wouldn’t like to run afoul of UN resolutions.

Posted by Mark Tempest in Foreign Policy, Hard Power, Soft Power

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  • Old Air Force Sarge

    Well said Eagle1. The logistics of the situation are not much different than when it was the Afrika Korps and British 8th Army slugging it out along that same road. And both of those forces were well-organized and (at the time) modern armies. I cannot imagine the difficulties a semi-organized rebel force would have. The campaign in 1941-1942 bounced back and forth between the two forces’ logistical centers (again along that same coastal road) until the Allies cut Rommel’s supply line back to a trickle and Monty had built up a very extensive logistical base. I can’t see the rebels sustaining this for very long without outside help.

  • Michael Antoniewicz II

    Ive got a better question. Just who are the rebels? Not the ‘cannon fodder’ on the front lines (and the one’s mostly seen and talked to by Western MSM) but the leaders and coordinators. There’s been some … disturbing reports of late.

  • Dominic Caraccilo

    The quality of life and security for the citizens has been largely restored and we are a large part of why that has happened.