Gadhafi Loyalists Go on Offensive Against Rebels

In a day of violent reversals, this was the old regime’s ultimate show of bravado: Flag-waving supporters of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi drove through opposition-held towns all the way to the border of Tunisia, where they taunted opponents across the barbed wire and threw boxes of food and drinks over the border to refugees who were fleeing the very violence their forces had unleashed.

In the worst day of fighting since the uprising began two weeks ago, a Libyan air force jet bombed Brega, south-east of the capital, Tripoli. At least 14 people were killed.

After the first round of bombing, rebel forces rushed anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons to the outskirts of Brega to defend their positions.

Ferocious street fighting, air strikes in a heavily populated city and a siege with terrified families held hostage: these were the violent and chaotic scenes yesterday as Colonel Gaddafi's regime began its offensive to claw back the land lost to Libya's revolution.