Eastern Mediterranean 2011: NATO intervention in Libya

11 Feb 2011 Arab Spring 5 Mar 2011 Libyan Revolution of Dignity 19 Mar 2011 NATO intervention in Libya

In response to Arab League calls to do something about Gaddafi’s suppression of the 2011 Libyan Revolution, the United Nations Security Council authorized military intervention in Libya on 17 March. Two days later NATO responded by mounting air strikes on Libyan government forces around Benghazi, helping to drive them back from the rebel headquarters.

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Main Events

15 Mar 2011–12 Jun 2012 Syrian Revolution of Dignity

In March 2011 minor protests against the oppressive rule of Bashar al-Assad in Syria expanded across the country, defying violent government crackdowns to become a full-scale revolution. Armed insurgency followed in July, after defectors from the Syrian Army formed their own Free Syrian Army to counter Assad’s deployment of ground troops and airforce. Despite limited cohesion, these opposition militias began capturing large tracts of territory and by June 2012 had transformed the conflict into a civil war. in wikipedia

17 Mar 2011 UNSC Resolution 1973

On 26 February 2011, in response to Muammar Gaddafi’s attempts to crush the ongoing Libyan Revolution, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) unanimously passed Resolution 1970, referring the Libyan government to the International Criminal Court. When this measure, and an accompanying international boycott, failed to sway Gaddafi, the Arab League announced its recognition of the rebel National Transitional Council in Libya and called for a no-fly zone in order to protect Libyan civilians from air attack. Heeding the League’s request, the UNSC adopted Resolution 1973, authorizing all measures necessary to protect Libyan civilians, short of military occupation. in wikipedia

19 Mar–31 Oct 2011 NATO intervention in Libya

After just two weeks of fighting, the 2011 Libyan Civil War appeared likely to end in a bloodbath, with Muammar Gaddafi’s troops gradually advancing on the newly-formed National Transitional Council (NTC) in Cyrenaica. When UN sanctions proved unable to halt Gaddafi, NATO intervened on behalf of the NTC with four coordinated operations under US strategic command: Operation Mobile (Canada), Opération Harmattan (France), Operation Ellamy (UK), and Operation Odyssey Dawn (US). After helping defeat Gaddafi outside Benghazi in late March, the intervention continued under NATO command as Operation Unified Protector until 31 October, when it officially ended in the wake of the NTC victory in the civil war. in wikipedia

19–20 Mar 2011 Second Battle of Benghazi

Advancing from Bin Jawad and largely bypassing Ajdabiya by taking the coastal roads, Muammar Gaddafi’s Syrian government forces reached the outskirts of Benghazi, the headquarters of the rebel National Transitional Council, by the night of 18 March 2011. The next morning Gaddafi’s troops began an offensive on the city from the west and south, but were forced back by opposition fighters by early afternoon. At this point, the French, acting on behalf of the international coalition, intervened in support of the rebels, striking Libyan government armored vehicles with their fighter jets later that day and again the following morning. Unable to contend with the coalition’s air superiority, Gaddafi’s forces abandoned their attempt on Benghazi and began withdrawing westwards. in wikipedia