Marc Lynch thinks it's "time for the United States, NATO, the United Nations and the Arab League to act forcefully to try to prevent the already bloody situation from degenerating into something much worse." He recommends the U.S. "call for an urgent, immediate Security Council meeting and push for a strong resolution condeming Libya's use of violence and authorizing targeted sanctions against the regime":

There is no avoiding what is happening in Libya. Al-Jazeera Arabic has been covering the Libyan situation heavily for the last couple of days and has powerfully conveyed the gravity of the situation, including broadcasting some truly disturbing images and video of protestors.  I've been stunned by what Libyans inside the country and outside have been willing to say on the air about the regime --- prominent Libyan diplomats declaring Qaddafi to by a tyrant, major tribal leaders calling for his overthrow, Yusuf al-Qaradawi calling on the air for someone to shoot Qaddafi, and more. 

The Arab world's attention is focused on Libya now, after several days of a fragmented news agenda divided among Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, Egypt and more.  Voice after voice, Libyans and other Arabs alike, denounce the silence of the international community and call for action.  Qaddafi has few friends, and Qatar has called for an urgent Arab League meeting to deal with the crisis.  While history doesn't suggest we can expect all that much from that club, their public support for international action could go a long way towards overcoming any suggestion that this is an imperialist venture. 

Especially gruesome clips can be viewed here, here and here. Footage of a sniper shooting at a distant crowd here.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.