The trappings of Moammar Gadhafi's regime crumbled Sunday as hundreds of euphoric Libyan rebels overran a major military base defending the capital, carted away truckloads of weapons and raced to the outskirts of Tripoli with virtually no resistance.
The rebels' surprising and speedy leap forward, after six months of largely deadlocked civil war, was packed into just a few dramatic hours. By nightfall, they had advanced more than 20 miles to the edge of Gadhafi's last major bastion of support.
Along the way, they freed several hundred prisoners from a regime lockup. The fighters and the prisoners — many looking weak and dazed and showing scars and bruises from beatings — embraced and wept with joy.
Thousands of jubilant civilians rushed out of their homes to cheer the long convoys of pickup trucks packed with rebel fighters shooting in the air. Some were hoarse, shouting: "We are coming for you, frizz-head," a mocking nickname for Gadhafi. In villages along the way that fell to the rebels one after another, mosque loudspeakers blared "Allahu Akbar," or "God is great."
No wonder they're yelling "Allah Akbar." It has been reported that there are al-Queda links with some of the rebels.
A son of the Libyan dictator has apparently been captured as well.
A Libyan rebel leader says Moammar Gadhafi's son and one-time heir apparent Seif al-Islam has been arrested.
Sidiq al-Kibir, the rebel leadership council's representative for the capital Tripoli, confirmed the arrest to The Associated Press on Sunday but did not give any further details.