Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Independent
A British diplomatic source said: "From quite an early stage there has been a view that Gaddafi's stranglehold would only be broken if there were practical measures on the ground as well as the air campaign. We are not talking legions of SAS crawling through the undergrowth. What we are talking about is offering expertise, diplomatic support and allowing others to be helpful."

The "others" in question are the small groups of former special forces operatives, many with British accents, working for private security firms who have been seen regularly by reporters in the vanguard of the rebels' haphazard journey from Benghazi towards Tripoli.

...London has been content for the Benghazi-based National Transitional Council to use funds to buy in ex-SAS men and others with a British military background to help train and advise anti-Gaddafi forces.
The Independent understands that the contracts for the security companies, often signed in Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, have involved funds provided by Western countries to the NTC, although much of the money has come from previously frozen regime bank accounts and assets...
The Guardian
The Guardian has previously reported the presence of former British special forces troops, now employed by private security companies and funded by a number of sources, including Qatar. They have been joined by a number of serving SAS soldiers.

They have been acting as forward air controllers – directing pilots to targets – and communicating with Nato operational commanders. They have also been advising rebels on tactics, a task they have not found easy.
Seumas Milne
But the facts are unavoidable.Without the 20,000 air sorties, arms supplies and logistical support of the most powerful states in the world, they would not be calling the shots in Tripoli today. The assault on the capital was supported by the heaviest Nato bombardment to date. Western intelligence and special forces have been on the ground for months – in mockery of the UN – training, planning and co-ordinating rebel operations.
It was the leading Nato states that championed and funded the Transitional National Council – including members with longstanding CIA and MI6 links – and officials from Nato states who drew up the stabilisation plan now being implemented on the ground.
etc.

Bahrain

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