Retreating Gadhafi forces leave behind deadly mines
Libyan rebels rendezvous at their vehicle during a battle in the village of Josh in western Libya.
August 4th, 2011
01:19 PM ET

Retreating Gadhafi forces leave behind deadly mines

The front lines of Libya's grinding war weave through the western mountains and around Zlitan, the last city east of Tripoli still under the grip of strongman Moammar Gadhafi.

In many places that Gadhafi's forces have fled, they've left behind deadly fields of mines - tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands of them, say the rebels.

Not only do they pose a danger for civilians but they also have slowed the advance of the rebels in their march toward Tripoli.

Here in Qawalish, a town 60 miles southwest of Tripoli where fierce fighting has taken place in recent weeks, the war looks like this: Men in no protective gear sift through a public park to fight an enemy that can kill instantly and indiscriminately. Here, the enemy is Gadhafi's landmines.

Milad al Saidy and his fellow "sappers," as those who work with mines are known, are armed only with simple metal probes and a couple of metal detectors. A burned-out shell of a car sits as evidence of what the mines can do.

So far, they say, about 2,500 mines have been discovered, all left by fleeing pro-Gadhafi forces.

Al Saidy has been doing this work for 16 years but many others are green - fresh recruits who volunteered for a potentially deadly job. Some learn on the job. Amazingly, al Saidy said, no one has been killed or hurt.

"It's very, very dangerous but people are insisting they want to work with us to secure the lives of the innocent, the children, so families can come without the fear of landmines," he said.

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Filed under: NATO • World
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. CSnSC

    This should put to rest any doubt that Col. Mo is evil. Planting mines in his own country.

    August 4, 2011 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  2. GENERAL RUFFNUTT

    THESE mines can be owned after 30 days if no one comes in and claim them...

    August 4, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
  3. raven

    Ah.. Gadhafi, where do I begin? Again I think an exercise video should be the first order of business .

    August 4, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  4. CSnSC

    Most popular boys names in Libya for the next decade: Lefty and Stumpy

    August 4, 2011 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  5. JB

    Hey guys, my father has cancer and we are selling pictures of my mother sukin a huge coc. Please visit MYMOMSUCSCOK.COM and place your order, only $9.95. Thanks and please kum in her face.

    August 4, 2011 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy

      You're obviously a fan of either Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann, judging by your choice of words,JB. We all know that you're another Tea Partier since your profanity gives you away. Besides, you should be quite pleased with the outcome Tuesday with the approval of the debt ceiling on Capitol Hill!

      August 5, 2011 at 3:30 am | Report abuse |
  6. CSnSC

    But oil companies are the only ones getting the oil out of the ground and making it a usefull product

    August 4, 2011 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. banasy

    Ah, yes, let's have the excersize video be shot in Libya; it can be called "Stumpin With The Oldies".

    August 4, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  8. banasy

    I can't believe I misspelled 'exercise'!
    Long day.

    August 4, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  9. fernace

    Raven & banasy y'all slay me! But it is a good idea! Lets see if we can't get Saleh, Ahmadinejad,KimJongIl, & Raul Castro to sign up, now that we have Hugo, Hosni & Moammar on board! Really, 1ce they realize the capital they can make on the videos, not to mention related product sales, they'll never want to go back to dictatorship again!! 🙂

    August 4, 2011 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. JB

    Very funny fernace, you are a nice person. Do you think we can meet? I love your comments and I think we can make a nice team. What do you say?

    August 4, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  11. JB

    I tried with banasy but there's a jerk that keeps bothering me each time I try.

    August 4, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  12. banasy

    Today we're witnessing a horrific tragedy unfold in Libya as those cursed so-called "rebels" inch ever closer to victory. The outcome appears to be very similar to that of the Spanish Civil War(1936-1939) with a horrific tyrant in charge and those NATO countries get their sleazy hands on Libya's oil. Woe to the Libyan people!!!

    August 4, 2011 at 5:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lyndsie Graham

      Well said banasy, and quite true too. I, like you, just hate to see these NATO countries get the upper hand every time!

      August 4, 2011 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
  13. banasy

    Sorry, folks, I didn’t post the above. Somebody is trying to make a fool out of me, but no one can do that better than myself!!! I love banasy, and I steal her name because I can’t have her!!!

    August 4, 2011 at 10:20 pm | Report abuse |
  14. banasy

    Well said, and quite true, too. When I post under some else's name, I then troll yet another person to agree with myself.

    August 4, 2011 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  15. banasy

    Want to know why? Because my mommy didn't love me enough as a kid.

    August 4, 2011 at 10:23 pm | Report abuse |
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