Richards Call For Libya Shock And Awe Campaign

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UK Chief of General Staff, General Sir David Richards has called for an easing of restrictions on NATO targets to allow the bombing of Libya’s infrastructure.

Current restrictions state that NATO forces can attack only targets that are deemed to pose a direct threat to Libyan civilians, such as tanks and artillery.

Richards yesterday called for the rules of engagement to be changed so that direct attacks can be launched against the the country’s infrastructure.

Richards claimed in a Sunday Telegraph interview: ‘We now have to tighten the vice to demonstrate to Gadaffi that the game is up and he must go.’

He added: ‘If we do not up the ante now there is a risk that the conflict could result in Gadaffi clinging to power.

‘At present, NATO is not attacking infrastructure targets in Libya.

‘But if we want to increase the pressure on Gadaffi’s regime, then we need to give serious consideration to increasing the range of targets we can hit.’

Backing attempts to assassinate the Libyan leader, Richards said: ‘The United Nations resolution allows NATO to use “all necessary means” in Libya.

‘We are not targeting Gadaffi directly, but if it happened that he was in a command and control centre that was hit by NATO and he was killed, then that is within the rules.’

The UK Chief of Staff warned: ‘If NATO withdraws its forces with Gadaffi still in power, then there is a significant risk that he will launch fresh attacks against the rebels.’

Richards insisted: ‘The prime minister and I are on the same page. We are in total agreement that the only solution to this conflict is for Gadaffi to go.’

Cameron meanwhile, said that the government is planning to write into law for the first time the principles of the military covenant.

In an article for the News of the World, Cameron said the government must ensure that it is doing everything it can for the armed forces.

He pledged the military will get ‘the recognition it deserves’.

Defence Secretary Liam Fox will today announce measures to improve soldiers’ welfare in areas such as health, housing and education for forces’ children.

Cameron told the News of the World: ‘Our Armed Forces Bill will ensure Parliament holds the government to account on the central principle of the covenant that military personnel will not suffer any disadvantage as a result of their work.

‘But in some areas we go further and make their needs a special case.’

Dubbing the covenant a ‘historic agreement’ he said that the ‘value we place on those brave men and women who put their lives on the line will be written down for all to see’.