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Gadhafi Likely to Win: US Intelligence Chief

He says rebels' long-term prospects look bleak
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 10, 2011 5:30 PM CST
James Clapper, Director of Intelligence, Thinks Moammar Gadhafi Will Defeat Rebels
A Libyan volunteer prays on the outskirts of the eastern town of Ras Lanouf, Libya, Thursday, March 10, 2011.   (AP Photo/Tara Todras-Whitehill)

(Newser) – Rebel fighters in Libya are unlikely to beat the forces loyal to ruler Moammar Gadhafi, says the US director of national intelligence. James Clapper pointed out to a Senate panel that the rebels are untrained, poorly organized, and have arms seized from only a few caches, while they face career soldiers and mercenaries with access to Gadhafi's tanks, artillery, and deep cash reserves, the LA Times reports. "I think over time, over the longer term, that the regime will prevail," Clapper said.

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The rebels had made great advances initially, seizing the important oil hub of Ras Lanuf. Today, Gadhafi's forces sent them fleeing from the city, notes AP, and his son, Seif al-Islam, promised to retake the eastern part of the country soon. Clapper warned that a volatile stalemate could emerge when the fighting dies down: "You could end up with a Somalia-like situation." He spoke as the US and other nations continued to hash out options on ways to help the anti-Gadhafi troops. (Read more Libya stories.)

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