Analysis: Fractured war effort against Gaddafi


I didn’t know the name of the man barely out of his teens who was dying in the room next door.

Neither did Dr Suleiman Refadi who emerged from the operating theatre covered in his blood to pronounce him dead.

I don’t know what he did before this war began. He may have been a skilled engineer, an inspired artist or a humble shopkeeper.

What I do know is that, as a soldier, he was a fool.

So foolish that he tried to clean his gun by banging it on the ground with the safety catch off, firing a bullet into his chest and creating an exit wound in his neck from which he bled to death.

And he was not alone. Ajdabiya was full of people like him – and increasingly so was its hospital – during the worst days of the fighting in eastern Libya.

Most had been injured by Gaddafi’s troops. Others by their own side.


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