Less Than 1,000 Rebel “Fighters” Opposing Gaddafi

A truly pessimistic look at the state of the Libyan rebellion last night on CNN:

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Spitzer: “How many on the front line?”

    Anderson: “soldiers? – in the few hundreds … and … brave foolhardy young men with guns? – 1500″

    Hmmm .. so that’s approximately 2,000 fighters (disciplined or not) on the front line.

    And that’s on the front line near Brega. Gosh, too bad there aren’t any fighters left in Ajdabiya, Benghazi, Tobruk, Misrata, or Zintan.

    Yep, “Less Than 1000 Fighters Opposing Gaddafi.” Great headline.

  2. michael reynolds says:

    Gee, Doug, this doesn’t seem to support your alternate-universe line that these are Al Qaeda.

    Because the writer goes on and on about people who don’t sound like Al Qaeda. The word “agronomists” stuck out. But of course that doesn’t fit the Mataconis narrative, does it?

    How many men do you figure were at Lexington?

    These 1000 guys and the allied air force ran Gaddafi’s men clear across to Sirte. Now we have some bad weather, which is why close-support strikes are stopped. When the weather clears the 1000 guys will chase Gaddafi’s mercs back across the desert.