Have Gaddafi tanks gone underground?

The GuardianIan Black in The Guardian yesterday wrote about the various tactics Gaddafi forces employ to prevent NATO air strikes against them. They deliberately hide near or in civilian buildings where NATO would fear causing collateral damage. Now, it seems, Gaddafi’s tanks are also hiding inside the water tunnels.

Muammar Gaddafi has always flaunted the Great Man-Made River project as one of the many wonders of his 41-year rule – and as one of the wonders of the modern world. The largest and most expensive irrigation project in history, costing a whopping $33bn, it extracts water from beneath the Sahara at a depth of 1,600 to 2,500ft, purifies it and transports it to the Mediterranean coast where most of Libya’s 6.5m people live. But are its huge concrete tunnels also coming in handy to keep Libyan tanks and missiles out of sight of Nato air attacks?

Western intelligence officials have now suggested that the concealment of heavy weapons in the 15ft-wide tunnels is causing them problems – not least because strategic targets like these, which Britain and France would like to hit, fall outside what was agreed by the UN security council to protect Libyan civilians.

Claims of weapons and, according to some reports, gold bullion hidden in the GMMR’s tunnels conjures up a Bond villain-type scenario. But there is evidence that Gaddafi has gone underground before. In the mid-1990s facilities built by North Korean workers at Tarhuna, 50 miles south-east of Tripoli, were used to house chemical weapons factories in the side of a mountain and were protected by a thick layer of reinforced concrete. Libya claimed at the time that those tunnels were innocent and formed part of the GMMR.

Read the full article here.

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7 Responses to Have Gaddafi tanks gone underground?

  1. The largest and most expensive irrigation project in history, costing a whopping $33bn, it extracts water from beneath the Sahara at a depth of 1,600 to 2,500ft, purifies it and transports it to the Mediterranean coast where most of Libya’s 6.5m people live. But are its huge concrete tunnels also coming in handy to keep Libyan tanks and missiles out of sight of Nato air attacks?
    Western intelligence officials have now suggested that the concealment of heavy weapons in the 15ft-wide tunnels is causing them problems – not least because strategic targets like these, which Britain and France would like to hit, fall outside what was agreed by the UN security council to protect Libyan civilians.
    I don’t think tanks hiding in a tunnel can do much damae aboveground if ample warning is given. I think the problem is that his army is using the tunnels to flank the rebels repeatedly……..Again, frickin Younis………..

  2. James Voorhies says:

    AWACS type planes with powerful side looking radar can spot tanks, etc. moving in the desert or wherever…. The trouble is that those planes are big and thirsty and a long way from a gasoline station. The attack jets, also, have a limited range – it takes a long time to fly to Libya from European bases! So if someone yells for help, if there are no planes above or heading toward Libya it will probably take hours to respond to the call – it’s not like calling for a taxi. G. probably has enough radar left to see these things and doesn’t shoot the “big guns” if the attack planes are overhead or coming – he can start as soon as they head for home knowing that they don’t have enough gas to come back and the next wave of jets won’t be around for many hours. That’s why air-to-air refueling tankers are so critical – and the first big new one was just delivered to the British and won’t be ready to use till late in the year or later. Can you say “caught with their pants down”.

    • MishMash says:

      He still has many lethal SAM 6 mobile units which he has nor deployed yet. Maybe he is saving them for when he’s on his last gasp of air. These are state of the art Russian surface to air missiles which only the Americans can disable from their stealth fighter systems. That is part of NATO’s problem; flying missions in this area. If he does shoot down a plane however, this will turn into a bigger problem for him so I wonder how the two sides are playing this game.

  3. Cinnamonape says:

    There’s no way in the world that NATO doesn’t know precisely were the entrances to this tunnel system lie. All of the engineering work would have been recorded by satellite surveillance. It doesn’t appear that tanks were transported through the Fezzan from Sirte to the areas South of Adjabiya unless they were travelling right beneath the rebel forces. There are no desert connections across to places like Jalu. These come from the coast.

    However the tanks could have been hidden in the tunnels temporarily and then brought out later to wreak havoc on the oil fields and to make their attacks from the South.

    http://www.greenprophet.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/manmade-river-in-Libya.jpg

    http://www.greenprophet.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/manmade-river-in-Libya.jpg

  4. char El Agab says:

    They need to fill the pipes with gas and set fire to them.-I would,’t doubt Gorfi’s mercenaries are travelling through them from town to town. Why else were they built, by foreign companies???

  5. char says:

    They need to fill the pipes with gas and set fire to them.-I would,’t doubt Gorfi’s mercenaries are travelling through them from town to town

  6. Fredy Benghanza says:

    I am sure Nato has a secret plan to deal with this issue that was kept in silence.

    Hi MishMash , I was waiting for your comments.

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