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Is the Libyan revolution dying?

BBC Africa HYS Team | 15:01 UK time, Monday, 14 March 2011

It has been a painful week for the revolutionaries trying to topple the long-serving Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi. 

anti-Gaddafi protest in Benghazi
They have been steadily losing ground as Colonel Gaddafi's forces ramp up the pressure to quash the uprising, which has engulfed large parts of the country over the past weeks.
Despite the Arab League's endorsement of a no fly zone as requested by the rebels, it is still uncertain whether any action will be taken to implement it.

Meanwhile, the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan last week have switched international attention away from Libya, removing Colonel Gaddafi's regime and its actions from the focused glare of the international media.

So as the tide turns, is Libya's revolution dying? Is Colonel Gaddafi bringing the rebellion under control? Were the revolutionaries over-ambitious to start with? Can the world afford to allow the rebellion to fizzle out? Does it matter if the Libyan regime regains control over the entire country? 

If you would like to debate this topic LIVE on air on Tuesday 15 March at 1600 GMT, please include a telephone number. It will not be published.


  • Comment number 1.

    Libya today is a good eaxample of one type of situation for which the United Nations was originally created. The people of Libya have been systematically terrorized, mistreated, and denied human rights for years and the international community has ignored this (as they have in Zimbabwe and other countries). It is not up to N.A.T.O. or the countries of the West to intervene here, it is the job of the U.N. and they should step up to the task.

  • Comment number 2.

    The Arab league should take the responsibility of ensuring of the no fly zone and not only asking the security council to impose it. When it comes to action they should lead.The Arabs can change the face of the no fly zone to western conspiracy at the slightest of mis-understanding.No sitting on the fence!

  • Comment number 3.

    That the international media attention has been shifted from Libya to Japan is not debatable. But to say that this has weakened or dampened the moral of the Libyans who are on the streets to oust Colonel Gadafi is like saying that a living Cobra is now a grass. The spirit of revolution is still living in the heart of each and every one of these protesters. However, I wish to say that it will not be in the interest of Libya if the UN folds its hands and allow such massacre of innocent civilians take place. The faster they act, the better for Libya.

  • Comment number 4.

    What makes libya's case more important (oil?) than the caos in ivory coast? By the way, UN should publicly acknowledge the decent effort made by the military regime in Niger for organizing a reasonably free and fair elections in the country.... [Personal details removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 5.

    Thet right!, Mr Gerry Buy. I do totally agree with you.Its true its not up to NATO or the countries in the west to intervene, that is out of the topic, but it is up to the African Union A.U. that first of all have the right to intervene, wheather diplomatically or military. because its for some of these reasons why the Union had been set up in the Continent. Then if the African Union fail to broke a deal between the two parties, and the situation is getting worst, then the A.U can refer the problem to the United Nations for further Intervention.
    Even the European Union (Brigton,France)is taking a centre stage in this tipical Libya African problem. They are even proposeing to shun the African Union, and work with the Arab League. Are we sure that, all this is because of the humaniterian crisis in Libya or because of our Oil investment in Libya. If is for humanterian disasters, then I think they should have first of all intervene in with there No Fly Zone in Isreal and Palestine, Irak, Kashmir,etc. for God`s sake can some one tell the real true, the real cause behind all this?
    France who is trying to play even a more central role in this Libya`s problem. because Colonel Gadafi have stay too long in power. Have they forgetten that their ex colonies have the worst Democratic system of government in Africa. Example Paul Biya of Cameroun, in his 29 years in power still opressing the Camerouneans, no freedom of speech, Press etc, lots of violations of human right, mass curroptions from government ministers, all have investment in France. Ben Ali of Tunisia, after 28 years in power, Late Omer Bongo of Garbon allmost 40 years in power, died and his son took over as president, Gnasinbe Eyadema of Togo, allmost 40 years in power. died and his son took over as a president, The late Ofet Boigni of Ivory Coast, allmost 40 years in power, died and his son took over as president. If France had support all this and is still supporting it in their former colonies. Why are they seeing it so Bizzard in Libya,
    Using their majority colonies to undermined the Organisation of African Unity O.A.U, until its dead, and still continued to do the same to the Africn Union A.U. France and Brigton, are the main causes of Africa`s problems. They were the main stake holders in Africa land Grabing, during colonial periods, even presently they continue to disstabilizing African governments that refused to work in their intrests and commands. For Example the late Thomas Sankara of Burkinafaso. Allmost 30 years now since then Blais Campoire is still the president of that country, under the full support of France. My last question to Westerners is, Do you went to tell the rest of the innocent world tha you dont know or aware about all this psycological opression on the African continent?. Tell me how will Africa move forward?

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    The world would be a better place without Gadafi, Africa in particular and the world in general. He is a crazy, power tursty tyrant. He has financed all types of rebellion in Africa and thr middle east with one ultimate purpose to promote his delussional dream of expanding his rule. To be king of kings of Africa, leader of the Arab world and etc.The world knows his truck record, and we see know how he is dealing with his peoples protest for freedom. Calls them rats and cockrotches. What is going on with the UN and the peace loving world?

  • Comment number 8.

    The Libyan revolution is not dying its dead! It died the minute the Old Libyan Flag appeared and the son of the former Sanusi monarch began his media rounds and the final nail in the coffin is the armed rebellion that started in Benghazi.


  • Comment number 9.

    I think the Libyan revolution is deeper than receiving international coverage. The devastation in Japan is getting as much coverage as it deserves, but our brothers and sisters in Libya are not going to give up on getting rid of the bad leaders that we have in Africa. The Arab League, fortunately, is following what's happening there closely and the UN should also ensure the no-fly zone is imposed. The AU should not support all this bad leadership that is so typical of African leaders - Kenyan leaders included! It is a pity that not more is done by the AU to discourage bad leadership on the continent - this is what the unrest is all about. Even the Ocampo 6 in Kenya should never have been supported - look at how they are chest-thumping themselves - at the cost of innocent lives.

  • Comment number 10.

    Why doesn't anybody talk about countries like Russia?

    Russia is the biggest impediment to UNSC action. Clinton wants UN approval before any action is taken and Russia is all too happy to throw a spanner in the works with a big fat veto. All the while getting none of the blame for anything.

    I keep seeing people blaming the UN collectively, when they should be blaming those select members of the UN who are causing the problem.

  • Comment number 11.

    I wouldn't subscribed to the idea that the revolutioners in Libya were over ambitious.Their protest is genuine and proper just that they are dealing with a very "hard nut to crack".Goddafi for me is the test of how far the revolution in the Arab world at momemt could go.So what is happening right now in Libya is a test and if the revolutioners are able to force Gaddafi to go then every other leader in the Arab world should brace up for their turn.

  • Comment number 12.

    It's plain to see that the West are only interested in Libyan resources. Why else would they offer to go help when they haven't in Palestine, Sudan, Ivory coast, or any other of the many conflict areas.

    Let the AU deal with this. It could turn sour when the West are called Resource Raiding Crusaders, out to colonise Islamic countries.

    I can see another unending war like Iraq and Afghanistan looming up in the future.

  • Comment number 13.

    The Western World have just decieved Libyans into taking a near succidal step. The Western World was pretending that they don’ t like Ghadaffi but their love for oil money have made it impossible for them to come out and protect Libyan civilians who are now being pounded with military might by Ghadaffi for dearing to protest against his Royal Highness leadership of 42years at present. The UN and EU are only « discussing » a no fly zone over Libya while Ghadaffi keeps killing their citizen like flies for demanding their rights. This is a shameful deception on the side of UN and EU who hates Ghadaffi but loves oil money more than human lives.

  • Comment number 14.

    Hello fellow Libyans. We the people of Ghana is behind you. The well meaning citizens of Libya who are fighting to prevent Gaddafi to stop killing his own people are to be praised and not to call them rebels. Libya is not for Gaddafi and his family. International community please stop the talk right now and apply no fly zone to enable Libyans to liberate themselves from Gaddafi who is using state resources to kill his own people. He who is down fear no fall. Gadaffi is down and he does not care to kill the entire Libya before he is arrested.

    One thing I do not understand is. What is the business of Gaddafi's children? Is their father the only Libyan? Please International Community Gaddafi now before it's too late. As we speak or write. He is still Killing Libyans everyday.


  • Comment number 15.

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  • Comment number 16.

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