Feb 15 – A riot in Benghazi is triggered by the arrest of human rights activist Fethi Tarbel, who has worked to free political prisoners, Quryna newspaper says.
Feb. 24 – Anti-Libyan government militias take control of Misrata after evicting forces loyal to Gaddafi.
March 1 – The U.N. General Assembly unanimously suspends Libya’s membership of the U.N. Human Rights Council because of violence against protesters by forces loyal to Gaddafi. U.S. Senate unanimously passes resolution calling for no-fly zone over Libya.
March 10 – Warplanes sent by forces loyal to Gaddafi bomb the oil town of Brega, extending attacks deeper into rebel-held territory in the east of Libya, rebels report. Gaddafi takes back control of Zawiyah, about 50 km (30 miles) west of Tripoli. France recognises the Libyan National Council, the rebel body fighting to oust Gaddafi, as the legitimate representative of Libya’s people, the first country to make such a move.
March 12 – The Arab League calls for a U.N. no-fly zone over Libya. A meeting in Cairo decides that “serious crimes and great violations” committed by the Gaddafi government against his people have stripped it of legitimacy.
March 17 – The U.N. Security Council votes to authorize a no-fly zone over Libya and “all necessary measures” – code for military action – to protect civilians against Gaddafi’s army.
March 22 – Western warplanes fly more than 300 sorties over Libya and fire more than 162 Tomahawk cruise missiles in the mission to protect Libyan civilians.
March 28 – President Obama addresses the nation:
“Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different. And as president, I refused to wait for the images of slaughter and mass graves before taking action.”
Given the unique circumstances of this situation, we helped form an unprecedented coalition, thwarted mass-murder, and gave the Libyan people an opportunity to forge their own future. In my opinion, the President acted quickly and carefully. Some say we should have done a lot more, some say we should have done nothing.
What do you think?