NATO deploys Apaches in Libya for first time

It's an escalation, of course. The Apaches will be able to attack targets where Gaddafi has hidden his military assets among civilians. But helicopters are particularly vulnerable to ground fire, which means that the alliance will probably begin to pay in blood for protecting Libya's civilians. Reuters: "This was the first operational mission flown by British Army Apaches at sea," British Secretary of State for Defense Liam Fox said. "The additional capabilities now being employed by NATO further reinforces the UK's enduring commitment and NATO's determination to... ensure that the people of Libya are free to determine their own future." Military analysts say attack helicopters will allow more precise strikes against pro-Gaddafi forces hiding in built-up areas than the high-flying jets used so far, while reducing the risk of civilian casualties. But given the vulnerability of helicopters to ground fire, their deployment also increases the risk of Western forces suffering their first...(Read Full Post)