nyt reports stuff like this:
Distrustful of even his own generals, Colonel Qaddafi has for years quietly built up this ruthless and loyal force. It is made up of special brigades headed by his sons, segments of the military loyal to his native tribe and its allies, and legions of African mercenaries he has helped train and equip. Many are believed to have fought elsewhere, in places like Sudan, but he has now called them back.
Witnesses said on Wednesday that thousands of members of this irregular army were massing on roads to the capital, Tripoli, where one resident described scenes evocative of anarchic Somalia: clusters of heavily armed men in mismatched uniforms clutching machine guns and willing to carry out orders to kill Libyans that other police and military units, and even fighter pilots, have refused.
meanwhile nick kristof, whose reporting from the middle east has been courageous by any measure , suggests steps to "nudge" gaddafi from power, such as...sanctions? (well at least also a no-fly zone.) um, well, then we're going to be watching an unbelievable bloodbath. i really think the u.s. and britain, or the u.s. and the eu, or nato, needs to nudge gaddafi from power with high explosives and special forces operations.
meanwhile, obama upped the ante yesterday, deploying 'outrageous!,' which i'm sure caused gaddafi much pain and embarrassment, just as it did for cee lo when commentators applied it to his performance at the grammys. they still haven't escalated their rhetorical intervention to 'inappropriate,' which they're holding for the moment when no rational course of action remains but mutually assured destruction.