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Geopolitics

'Mad Max' Brigade: Libyan Rebels, More Enthusiastic Than Effective

Air support from Western powers has helped the Libyan rebels, but they are outgunned by Gaddafi's forces along a complicated political and tribal landscape.

Libyan rebels near Sirte
Libyan rebels near Sirte
Adrien Jaulmes

AJDABIYA - The Libyan rebels are retreating again. Having advanced for nearly 300 kilometers following air strikes by the US, UK and France, the rebels were first halted on Monday near the small town of Nofilia. By Tuesday and Wednesday, they have continued to have been unable to compete with the awesome firepower of Muammar Gaddafi's artillery units, and were retreating towards Ajdabiya.

It only took Gaddafi's loyalists a few hours to re-conquer Ben Jawad and the oil port of Ras Lanuf. In the absence of aerial assaults, they were speeding forward again along the road running through the desolate Gulf of Sidra. Lacking leadership and the proper training necessary to hold ground or dig trenches -- the only effective answer to the enemy's artillery shells -- the rebels have barely been able to fire back.

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Society

End Of Roe v. Wade, The World Is Watching

As the Supreme Court decides to overturn the 1973 decision that guaranteed abortion rights, many fear an imminent threat to abortion rights in the U.S. But in other countries, the global fight for sexual and reproductive rights is going in different directions.

"Don't abort my right" At 2019 pro-choice march In Toulouse, France.

Alain Pitton/NurPhoto via ZUMA
Hannah Steinkopf-Frank and Sophia Constantino

PARIS — Nearly 50 years after it ensured the right to abortion to Americans, the United States Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade case, meaning that millions of women in the U.S. may lose their constitutional right to abortion.

The groundbreaking decision is likely to set off a range of restrictions on abortion access in multiple states in the U.S., half of which are expected to implement new bans on the procedure. Thirteen have already passed "trigger laws" that will automatically make abortion illegal.

U.S. President Joe Biden called the ruling "a tragic error" and urged individual states to enact laws to allow the procedure.

In a country divided on such a polarizing topic, the decision is likely to cause major shifts in American law and undoubtedly spark outrage among the country’s pro-choice groups. Yet the impact of such a momentous shift, like others in the United States, is also likely to reverberate around the world — and perhaps, eventually, back again in the 50 States.

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