Libya rebels will receive $25 million from U.S.
Dismissing concerns over possible links between Libyan rebels and al Qaeda, the Obama administration has notified Congress it is providing $25 million in nonlethal aid to the rebels' effort to drive Col. Moammar Gadhafi's regime from power.
|I suppose cash is always welcome, but the Brits are putting boots on the ground. And the rebels have access to the oil fields so they can always raise cash.|
"The president's proposed actions would provide urgently needed nonlethal assistance to support efforts to protect civilians and civilian-populated areas under threat of attack in Libya," said Joseph E. Macmanus, acting assistant secretary of state for legislative affairs, in an April 15 letter. A copy of the letter, sent to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was obtained by The Washington Times.
|Only during those brief interludes when access turns into control, and they can quickly load up and send off a tanker... How many of those have the rebels sent off, since the troubles began?|
The new authorization for assistance would cover "vehicles, fuel trucks and fuel bladders, ambulances, medical equipment, protective vests, binoculars, and non-secure radios," according to a memorandum attached to the letter.
Reports last month, confirmed by The Times, stated that the CIA was providing covert assistance to elements of the Transitional National Council (TNC), the political arm of the Libyan rebels.
Questions have emerged in recent weeks about the connection between some of the Libyan opposition and the al Qaeda terrorist group. Noman Benotman, a former leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, said in an interview last month that about 1,000 freelance jihadists are at large in Libya.
The State Department memorandum attached to the letter, however, stated that the United States finds the TNC to be committed to democratic reforms.
"The U.S. government has been in communication with the TNC in an effort to build a working relationship and to understand its security capabilities and shortfalls, while recognizing the key role that Libyan opposition forces play in the protection of civilians and civilian populated areas in Libya," the memo said.
The memo also stated that "the TNC has publicly rejected terrorism, embraced the Geneva Conventions, and emphasized its dedication to building democratic institutions to provide for a secular future in which a broad range of Libyan citizens will be able to participate."
|Did they say it in English, Arabic or both?|
Posted by: Steve White 2011-04-20