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The official estimates a late April-early May timetable. UN Resolution 1973 prohibits an occupation force, but authorizes "all necessary measures," including boots on the ground. Hawkish Western military analysts urge it, a March 25 Wall Street Journal report saying:
"The history of air-only military actions is that they rarely, if ever, defeat an adversary without" ground forces.
On March 26, Rick Rozoff's Stop NATO web site mentioned reports of US forces in Libya with a planned ground invasion coming next month. Various March 26 sources were cited, including:
(1) Sofia News Agency reporting:
"US forces are rumored to be already present on the ground in Libya," despite official denials. According to Reserve Colonel David Hand, American soldiers have been in Libya for 12 days. US intelligence Colonel Tony Scheffer confirmed it.
(2) Voice of Russia's Alexander Vatutin said:
"We are witnessing an attempt to seize oil and gas reserves by means of force. Apparently, coalition forces are pursuing targets other than humanitarian operations...." Dozens of civilian deaths are reported.
"In the meantime, NATO has suggested the possibility of a ground operation in Libya unless Gaddafi chooses to surrender. The military are guided by the Second World War saying 'Put on the Ground' which means you can never expect to win unless you reach the enemy's positions on the ground." About 4,000 US marines are positioned in the Mediterranean to invade.
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