U.S. Launches First Missile Strike Against Qaddafi's Regime
The U.S. Navy fires the first U.S. Tomahawk cruise missiles against Libyan leader's Muammar al-Qaddafi's air defenses Saturday, Fox News has learned.
The U.S. military strikes clear the way for European and other planes to enforce a no-fly zone designed to ground Qaddafi's air force and cripple his ability to inflict further violence on rebels, U.S. officials said.
Hours after Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton attended an international conference in Paris that endorsed military action against Qaddafi, the U.S. was poised to kick off its attacks on Libyan air defense missile and radar sites along the Mediterranean coast to protect no-fly zone pilots from the threat of getting shot down.
"We have every reason to fear that left unchecked, Qaddafi will commit unspeakable atrocities," Clinton said.
A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity in order to discuss sensitive military operations, said the Obama administration intended to limit its involvement -- at least in the initial stages -- to helping protect French and other air missions.
Posted by: tipper 2011-03-19