Within Libyan Rebels' Ranks, a Chaotic Mess

Ragtag rebels seek one voice
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 9, 2011 7:58 AM CST
A rebel fighter opposing Libyan ruler Moamer Kadhafi heads to the front line.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – In Libya, the opposition faces struggles on two fronts: Against Moammar Gadhafi, and within their own ranks. What it has done in three weeks is impressive, reports the New York Times: Amassed a ragtag army, gained the respectful attention of the West and the Libyan people, and pieced together a sort of transitional government. But is it at all viable? Council leaders have contradicted one another publicly on several occasions in recent days, with differing stories on the opposition's calls for aid and for Gadhafi to exit. And many are worried that ousting Gadhafi and his infamous megalomania could leave a gaping hole that the opposition may not be equipped to fill.

In eastern Libya, residents cobbled together local councils that, in theory, are supposed to send reps to the Provisional Transitional National Council of Libya in Benghazi ... whose rep acknowledges that "we didn’t have any authority, of course; we just gave ourselves authority. Nobody has any political experience." The Times reports that the council has hardly even touched on major issues like whether to back foreign intervention or negotiate with Gadhafi. Opposition leaders also can't agree on whether they should even officially declare a transitional government.

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