British ‘Advisers’ Head to East Libya to Face Divided Rebel Forces

Rebels Can't Even Agree Who Is Actually Running Their Military

Though Foreign Secretary William Hague insists no direct training or transfer of armaments is involved, the British government announced today that they are sending military “advisers” to East Libya to work with the rebels.

Hague insisted the deployment would not involve any direct fighting, and that their soldiers would wear civilian clothing while in East Libya. They are meeting a rebel force that is increasingly divided, and can’t even seem to agree who the leader is.

Previous indications have all been that Gen. Yunis was the commander of the forces, and he has always presented himself as such. Gen. Khalifa Hifter, however, also describes himself as the “field commander” and claimed Yunis was his chief of staff.

The civilian leadership of the rebels still says Yunis is in charge and Hifter is somewhere underneath him, but Hifter’s own comments blamed Yunis for the failed counter-offensives and increasing territorial losses, and suggest that the leadership is being openly contested.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of