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A Few Notes about Libya

June 29, 2011

The oil that is imported into my country to fuel cars and trucks came until March mainly from Libya. This has changed now because NATO airplanes went on a noble mission to protect the Libyan people from the atrocities of a brutal and bloodthirsty regime headed by a bizarre madman.

I don’t have sympathies for military dictators, and Libya’s “Brother Leader”, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi undoubtedly belongs into this category. I followed closely the HIV trial of Bulgarian nurses, who were charged with conspiring to deliberately infect 400 children with HIV in 1998 and was incensed about their death sentences and relieved when they were finally released in 2007. I also followed the Lockerbie trial in 2000 about the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 which resulted in 270 fatalities. This was a very complicated and multi facetted story which I cannot even touch here because it would exceed the purpose of this text and lead to nowhere.

I still haven’t made up my mind about Pan Am Flight 103 and I cant rule out that Libya was framed. I have learned to be skeptical about claims and allegations that are made by governments and lobbying groups and trumpeted via mainstream media (weapons of mass destruction, Kuwaiti incubators), I have seen, how the “weapons of mass destruction” became “weapons of mass deception” and I don’t regard spokespersons for government and industry, lobbyists, pundits and “embedded” journalists as trustworthy sources.

In February Libya’s former justice minister Mustafa Abu Jalil alleged that Gaddafi personally ordered the Lockerbie bombing, but that doesn’t amount to much because Jalil had then taken side against Gaddafi and became soon the chairman of the anti Gaddafi “National Transition Council”.

Since February the media consumers in western countries are inundated with reports about Gaddafi’s atrocities. Until February I didn’t hear much about the human rights issues in Libya and I didn’t have the impression that the situation there was so much worse than in Saudi Arabia, Bahrein, or Yemen. The Libyan population enjoyed one of the lowest poverty rates in the world (5 percent), a 82 percent literacy rate, and a life expectancy of 75 years, 10 percent above the world average.

Libya looks different now, of course and the war has killed an estimated 10,000 people so far.

The Libyan atrocities in detail:

1. Colonel Gaddafi ordered his troops to rape women and acquired Viagra to encourage and enable them to do so. Libyan rebels said that condoms and Viagra found on captured soldiers were proof of a campaign of rape waged by the Libyan dictator to terrorize female opponents.

There is no doubt that rapes have occurred. Most famously, Iman al-Obeidi burst into a hotel in Tripoli on 26 March and gave a credible account of how she had been raped by pro-Gaddafi security men. Yet until now Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have not found evidence of mass government-ordered rape. Diana Eltahawy, Amnesty International’s Libya expert: “We spoke to women, without anybody else there, all across Libya, including Misrata and on the Tunisia-Libya border. None of them knew of anybody who had been raped. We also spoke to many doctors and psychologists with the same result.”

Captured pro-Gaddafi soldiers have appeared on TV, claiming they knew about the rapes as an official policy, Amnesty International found that when an Arabic-speaking investigator visited detention facilities without an official minder in the room they did not repeat the allegation.

2. Libyan government force used MAT-120 cluster munition in an attack on Misrata in April. Human Rights Watch (HRW) and C.J. Chivers, a journalist for the NY Times witnessed cluster munitions landing in residential areas of Misrata. Civilians were reportedly killed in these attacks and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, condemned “the repeated use of cluster munitions and heavy weaponry by Libyan government forces in their attempt to regain control of the besieged city of Misrata.” She noted that one cluster munition had reportedly exploded a few hundred meters from a hospital in Misrata.

When initially confronted with the information that cluster munitions had been found in Misrata, Hillary Clinton’s reaction was: “That is worrying information. And it is one of the reasons the fight in Misrata is so difficult, because it’s at close quarters, it’s in amongst urban areas and it poses a lot of challenges to both NATO and to the opposition.”

It was universally assumed that the cluster shells were fired by Libyan rather than NATO forces, because the MAT-120 is mortar-fired and NATO had no troops on the ground. But the MAT-120 cluster munition can be fired from a number of smoothbore 120mm mortar systems, including the NEMO and AMOS systems, mounted in a turret.

The combination of the AMOS and the Combat Boat 90H has been described as ideal for fire support in urban environments. As Captain Evin H. Thompson, Commander of US Naval Special Warfare Group Four said in 2007 about US Navy use of the CB90-H and AMOS system: “The Amos or something like that — tied into my reduced signature boat gives special operations and our Navy the ability to clandestinely be someplace with the capability to act if circumstances allow.”

The USA has refused to sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions and these weapons are an important part of the US arsenal. Defense Secretary Gates said, that cluster munitions are regarded as: “Legitimate weapons with clear military utility.” Richard Kidd, Director of the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement, U.S. Department of State, wrote in 2008: “Cluster munitions are available for use by every combat aircraft in the U.S. inventory, they are integral to every Army or Marine maneuver element and in some cases constitute up to 50 percent of tactical indirect fire support.”

On the 14th of April, NATO Secretary-General Rasmussen confirmed that Gaddafi’s forces were now in populated areas of Misrata and that “to avoid civilian casualties we need very sophisticated equipment.” Certainly coalition forces were providing fire support (and allegedly also special services support) to the rebels in order to secure the town for the rebels and to establish a major foothold in western Libya. It is quite clear that coalition forces were deeply involved in the bombing of Misrata, using deadly force in a civilian area, contrary to the spirit of UN Resolution 1973.

3. Gaddafi used aircraft attacks to kill unarmed protesters.

On February 21, Al Jazeera reported, that Libyan military planes fired live ammunition at crowds of anti-government protesters in Tripoli, quoting witnesses for its information. On the same day Salem Gnan, a London-based spokesman for the National Front for the Salvation of Libya, said that eyewitnesses in Tripoli told him the navy opened fire on parts of the capital.

Also on February 21 it was reported that two defecting Libyan pilots had landed their Mirage F-1 jets in Malta. The pilots initially asked for emergency clearance to land and for refueling. Upon landing they were questioned by the police and sought political asylum. The defected pilots told Maltese officials that they were based in Tripoli and ordered to attack protesters on the ground in Benghazi.

On February 22 ex-Interior Minister Abdul Fattah Younis al Abidi said, that he resigned after hearing about the killing of 300 unarmed civilians in Benghazi (Human Rights Watch put the toll at 62). He accused Gaddafi of planning to attack civilians on a wide scale. “Gaddafi told me he was planning on using airplanes against the people in Benghazi.”

All the information is coming from eyewitness accounts and no fact finding missions has confirmed it. Until now there’s been not the slightest forensic evidence of such attacks, no photos or videos, no projectiles or holes and craters in the streets.

About the defectors: Air force colonel Abdullah Gehani was arrested in late January for plotting against the government. He was charged with civil aviation in Benghazi and he had made contact with an European secret service and also with the protest planners in November 2010.

Gehani might well have had some subordinates on board, so that even after his arrest and the uprising’s start, someone else could have located two trustworthy, disloyal fighter pilots for an important propaganda mission. Both pilots were themselves “senior colonels,” but otherwise there’s been little or no detail about them. The whole story went pretty quiet once its purpose was served.

An order to attack civilians would have been most likely disobeyed shortly before or after takeoff and it would have been an emotional and spontaneous decision. Neither of the colonels, in this supposed police state of informants and twisted loyalty, was obviously too afraid the other would shoot him as a traitor when they took off and turned to Malta. The evidence suggests, that they both decided together to flee, and it seems obvious that there was an agreement long before receiving orders and taking off.

A witness in Malta reported: “The two jets did not arrive as defecting pilots might — whatever that might be — but they performed a kind of airs how above the Mediterranean Sea some time before, swooping and circling like a display team. They then vanished out to sea again, before eventually returning according to the normal flightpath. I thought it extremely odd. As they landed overhead, the Libyan markings were visible from beneath.”

On March 19 it was reported that a warplane shot down over Benghazi may have been one of the rebels’ own planes, accidentally shot down by friendly fire and not a plane of Libya’s air force. The interesting aspect of this news item is, that the insurgents had aircrafts to their disposal.

On March 23 it was reported, that Libya’s air force no longer exists (one would have thought, that the UN mandate was therefore fulfilled).

4. The Israeli company Global CST has provided Gaddafi’s regime with 50,000 African mercenaries to attack the civilian anti-government protesters in Libya.

On February 23 a Time reporter visited Al-Baida, a town taken by the rebels, and he was allowed to see and speak with some of 200 alleged mercenaries taken captive by protesters at the airport and elsewhere. These were held in an old school in Shehat, a small town five miles east of al-Baida. He reported:

“Given their claim that there were once 325 of them — flown in from Libya’s southern town of Sabha — the remaining men consider themselves lucky. Many were captured during fierce clashes between residents and Gaddafi’s forces. 15 of the suspected mercenaries were executed on Feb. 18 and 19 in front of the town’s courthouse. They were hanged, says the country’s former Justice Minister Mustafa Mohamed Abd al-Jalil (who has quit and joined the revolution). It wasn’t entirely planned, but the people here were enraged.”

So it has been acknowledged that in this post-victory mayhem, at least 15 of these prisoners of war were executed in the heat of the moment. Most captives were being taken in the first day of the reportedly lopsided battle.  According to the account of prisoner Ali, 325 had been reduced to 200, suggesting a total of about 125 had perished in the bloody fighting.

As it later came out, only a very few were true foreigners, most were Libyan citizens, although many held dual citizenship and were born in Chad and Zimbabwe. Ali further claimed he hadn’t come to kill anyone — they were flown up from Sabha to participate in peaceful counter-protests in Tripoli, but were re-routed to al-Baida at the last minute for unknown reasons. An official of Human Rights Watch investigated as well when visiting al Baida. Reporting by March 2, after an apparently later visit, he cited 156 soldiers who were: from the south of Libya and not from another African country. After talking to them he found out that they were all black Libyans of African descent.

How NATO tries to protect civilians:

US and NATO military advisers and special forces are already on the ground. This was first recognized when British SAS Special Forces commandos were arrested in the Benghazi region on March 6th. Since then hundreds of US, British and French military advisers have arrived in Cyrenaica, Libya’s eastern breakaway province. The advisers, including intelligence officers, were dropped from warships and missile boats at the coastal towns of Benghazi and Tobruk.

Confirmed by US NATO statements, a wide spectrum of weapons are being supplied to opposition forces. There are indications, although no clear evidence so far that weapons were delivered to the insurgents prior to the onslaught of the rebellion. In all likelihood, US and NATO military and intelligence advisers were also on the ground prior to the insurgency. This was the pattern applied in Kosovo: special forces supporting and training the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in the months prior to the 1999 bombing campaign and the invasion of Yugoslavia.

The rebels are now equipped with wireless radios, which give them, coupled with the degradation of the Qaddafi forces’ communications, a tactical advantage on the battlefield.

A few sketches about the bombing campaign:

On May 1 the headquarters of the Libyan Down’s Syndrome Society and a pre-school for children with Down’s Syndrome were heavily damaged. An orphanage was also destroyed in the attack.

On May 18 NATO aircrafts bombed a guesthouse in Berqia, where 16 civilians died and a 40 were injured. The alliance said its airstrike had missed the intended target because of an apparent weapons system failure.

On June 4 two Apache WAH 64Ds obliterated a key radar and communications centre and killed a number of Libyan soldiers who fired at them from the back of a pick-up truck.

On June 19 NATO air raids struck a civilian neighborhood, the area had no military facilities or weapons installed nearby. 9 civilians were killed in the raid. A Xinhua reporter saw dozens of homes damaged or destroyed and a BBC reporter saw bodies pulled from the wreckage. NATO warplanes circled overhead for more than one hour after the raids, causing panic to local residents.

On June 22 NATO forces killed 19 civilians, including eight children, in an attack on a home of one of Gaddafi’s top officials.

On June 24 warplanes dropped bombs on the strategically important town of Brega, killing 16 civilians.

“Friendly bombs”:

On April 1 rebel forces reported that at least 10 of their fighters were killed in a NATO air strike on the outskirts of the eastern town of Brega, On June 16 the rebels reported 16 of their fighters killed in what appears to be an errant NATO air strike.

The Libyan government claims, that 800 civilians have been killed by the airstrikes and 4000 wounded.

In the first 24 hours of the Libyan attack, US B-2s dropped forty-five 2,000-pound bombs. These massive bombs, along with the cruise missiles launched from British and French planes and ships, all contained depleted uranium warheads.

Leaked reports by the Russian Foreign Intelligence Services indicate that NATO until now has launched between 11,000 airstrikes. One report includes allegations that 4000 attacks used bombs or missiles containing depleted uranium and that many of these attacks targeted civilian areas.

Depleted uranium is a waste product from the process of enriching uranium ore. It is used in nuclear weapons and reactors. This material is greatly valued by the US military because it is 1.7 times as dense as lead and the perforation capacity is increased. When a projectile with a depleted uranium tip strikes a solid object like the side of a tank, it perforates the object and then erupts in a burning cloud of vapor. The vapor settles as dust, which is poisonous and radioactive. An impacting missile burns at 10,000 degrees Celsius. 30 percent fragments into shrapnel pieces. The remaining 70 percent vaporize into three highly toxic oxides, including uranium oxide. The dust can be spread by wind over great distances.
The smallest particles of uranium, nano-particles (less than 5 microns in diameter), are the most dangerous. Once inhaled, they get into the blood and can spread into any organ, including the lung, heart, brain, and the liver. Internalized depleted uranium can cause kidney damage, cancers of the lung and bone, skin disorders, neurodegenerative disorders, chromosome damage, immune deficiency syndromes and rare kidney and bowel diseases. Pregnant women may give birth to infants with genetic defects. The contamination will persist forever — as an alpha particle emitter, depleted uranium has a half life of 4.6 billion years.

“An unacceptable threat to life and a violation of international law” — that is how the US former Justice Secretary Ramsey Clark described the use of depleted uranium. The United States first used this material during the military invasion of Iraq in 1991 and about 300 radioactive shells were fired at Saddam Hussein’s troops from the air and from the ground.

Apparently pleased with the debut, the Americans used depleted uranium again in Yugoslavia. The US and the British military admitted widespread use of depleted uranium in bombing Bosnia in 1995 (Operation Deliberate Force) and Serbia (Operation Noble Anvil). In the densely populated Yugoslavia, leukemia increases were extensive and leukemia rates among new-born babies soared from one per 1,000 prior to NATO’s attacks to between 10 and 15 per 1,000.

In the Vranje area, which is surrounded by four known contaminated locations, there has been an enormous increase in cancer rates and genetic malformations. In 1998 21 children were born with deformities, in 2008 the number had risen to 73. The number of newly registered cancer cases has more than doubled — from 185 in the year 2000 to 398 new diagnosis in 2006.

Traces of uranium 236 and plutonium isotopes found on bombed locations suggest that at least a part of the material in the projectiles had originated from reprocessing nuclear fuel.

The fallout affected also NATO troops and until now more than 250 Italian soldiers, who served in Yugoslavia, died from cancer-related diseases. There are unfortunately no numbers available from other coalition partners.

In Fallujah in Iraq where the US dropped thousands of depleted uranium rounds after the 2003 invasion, a quarter of all babies are born with a range of either horrendous abnormalities or chronic diseases. Higher rates of cancer, leukemia and infant mortality have been found here than after the atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Birth statistics from Fallujah show that in the month of May 2010, 15 percent of the 547 babies born had defects, 14 percent were spontaneous abortions, and 11 percent were born prematurely before 30 weeks.

In 2003, the World Health Organization reported a rise in cancer diseases in five provinces in southern Iraq. Leukemia south of Baghdad assumed epidemic proportions. By 2009, cancer rates grew to thousands of new cases per year. Iraqi doctors say that they are struggling to cope with the rise in the number of cancer cases, especially in cities subjected to heavy US and British bombardment.

The Libyan population will suffer like the Iraqis do now and the radioactive contamination will be permanent.

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The current situation in this war is, that the purpose of UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973 has been achieved and that the US and NATO are supporting an armed insurrection in Eastern Libya, barely disguising their efforts as a “humanitarian intervention”.

The rebel offensive has faltered in some parts of Libya, but it seems to have picked up momentum in the west. The rebels plan to consolidate control of the western mountain region and using it as a staging ground for an assault on the oil city of Zawiyah and, finally, the heavily fortified capital Tripoli.

The rebels are advancing on Tripoli from the East, they control Misrata, and NATO pilots, now flying Apache combat helicopters, have apparently used their firepower to clear a path for the rebels into the city of Yafran. In the West, near the border with Tunisia, Berber tribes from the mountains near Nalut have now taken up arms against Gaddafi.

http://www.obamaslibya.com/

Wanted dead or alive

NATO has bombed compounds where Gaddafi was suspected several times since March 20. A bombing of Gaddafis headquarter Bab al-Aziziya on April 24 left three death and 45 wounded. ‪Saif al-Arab Gaddafi, 29, the youngest son of Gaddafi‬ and three grandchildren under the age of 12 were killed on April 30. On May 28 NATO bombed Bab bin Ghashir, a tribal compound near Bab al-Aziziya. On June 13 the bombing of Bab al-Aziziya with some 80 large bombs caused 31 fatalities.

The attempts to assassinate Gaddafi, his children, and grandchildren is a violation of the rules of engagement set by the UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973. These UN resolutions don’t allow for the targeting of Libyan officials, or sanction the murder of Gaddafi and his children and grandchildren and other family members.

US Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, commander of the NATO Joint Operations Command in Naples, Italy, revealed that NATO forces are actively targeting and trying to kill Gaddafi. According to Admiral Locklear the UN authorization with resolution 1973 has three components: blockade, no fly zone, and civil protection.The scope of civil protection is being interpreted to permit the removal of the chain of command of Gaddafi’s military, which includes Gaddafi himself.

The International Criminal Court in The Hague has issued arrest warrants for Gaddafi, one of his sons and his intelligence chief, accusing them of crimes against humanity during the first two weeks of the uprising. The court accusations are limited to events between February 18 and February 28. Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampocourt predicted, that Gaddafis days as head of state are numbered and urged his associates to arrest him and deliver him to the court. The prosecutor did not mention civilian deaths caused by NATO strikes or the abuse and the violation of the UN mandate by NATO.

With the warrant against Colonel Muhammar Gaddafi without addressing the breach of international law and the violation of UN resolutions by NATO, the International Criminal Court has lost credibility and legitimacy.

As it stands nor, any allegation against the Libyan leadership are based on hearsay. Gaddafi has repeatedly asked for an international fact-finding team to visit Libya and investigate alleged atrocities. If this would be about justice, the court should have waited for the result of such an inquiry before issuing a warrant.

The USA signed the Rome Statute but formally withdrew its intent of ratification in 2002. The US administration uses the ICC as an additional tool to destroy adversaries but the USA herself does not conform and has always insisted, that US citizens are not subject to the jurisdiction of the court.

I wrote in other blog posts before, that justice is only an abstract construction in our minds. A justice system and a legal framework are necessary to secure the social contract which makes it possible, that humans live in bigger groups together, but as soon as a ruling class emerges, the rulers will break the social contract and use the justice system to secure their position, preserve the status quo, and keep the broad population in check.

Justice is always a justice of the powerful, a justice of the victors.

Dissent international:

Mairead Corrigan Maguire, who won the nobel Peace Price in 1976, wrote an open letter to President Obama and condemned “the state terrorism of the U.S. government”. http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/06/22-9

Russia stated that the attacks on Libyan government forces amounted to intervention in a civil war and are not backed by the UN resolution 1973 authorizing a no-fly zone.

Italy has broken ranks with NATO and demands an urgent halt to hostilities in Libya. Franco Frattini, the foreign minister in Rome, called for an immediate suspension of military operations to allow humanitarian aid to be brought to the country. He also said, that military leaders should provide more details about NATO bombing raids following mistakes which led to civilians being killed. His demand for a ceasefire echoes comments by Arab League Chairman Amr Moussa, who stated: “When I see children being killed, I must have misgivings. That’s why I warned about the risk of civilian casualties.” Moussa went further: “You can’t have a decisive ending. Now is the time to do whatever we can to reach a political solution.”

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Dissent in the USA:

Susan Lindauer, former CIA Asset and whistleblower, warns about the nature of the Libyan insurgency (which includes many jihadists coming back from Afghanistan). She also argues that Gaddafi’s fate was decided, when Chevron and Occidental Petroleum pulled out of Libya and lobbied on Capitol Hill, complaining that Gaddafi’s nationalism interfered with their oil profits.

http://akirathedon.com/blobblog/susan-lindauer-libya’s-blood-for-oil-the-vampire-war/
http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2011/06/23/18682737.php

In a recent interview former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney described the information being fed to the U.S. public by the mainstream media as “Perception Management.”

“This is a blatant use of propaganda in an attempt to sway the American public into supporting an unjust and illegal invasion of Libya by the USA and NATO.”

Ms. McKinney went on to describe the bombing of an university in Tripoli indicating that this so called humanitarian mission is in reality a brutal assault on the Libyan patriots who are standing with their leader, Muammar Gaddafi, in defiance of Al Qaida rebels, who are in the minority and want to take over that government. Ms. McKinney also addressed the fact, that depleted uranium bombs are used in the indiscriminately bombing of Tripoli.

Congressman Ron Paul posted on his website:

Strange Definitions of War and Peace

Last week I joined six Republican and three Democrat colleagues to file a lawsuit against the Obama administration over its illegal war against Libya. Now that more than 90 days have passed since the president began bombing Libya, no one can seriously claim that the administration has complied with the clear requirements of the 1973 War Powers Resolution.

In a remarkable act of chutzpah, the administration sent to Congress its response to the growing concern over its abuse of war powers.  Its argument, in a nutshell, is that the War Powers Resolution is not relevant because US armed forces are not actually engaged in hostilities because Libya is so militarily weak it cannot fight back!  This explanation would be laughable if not so horrific.  The administration wants us to believe that there is no real violence because the victim cannot fight back?  Imagine if this standard was applied to criminal law in the United States!  I am sure Libyans on the receiving end of US and NATO bombs feel hostilities are quite definitely taking place.

We must recall the origins of these attacks on Libya. The Obama administration made no claim that Libyan leader Gaddafi was killing his civilian population.  Rather, the claim was that Libya might begin killing its civilians in the future.  One need not defend Gaddafi’s regime — and I most certainly do not — to object to this flimsy and dangerous rationale for violating the sovereignty of another country.  Imagine a scenario where the UN approves military action against the United States as a preventative humanitarian measure over US enforcement of its immigration laws, for example!
Now in Libya we see the possible use of depleted uranium shells, we see infrastructure destroyed, we see universities bombed, we see all the “collateral damage.”  Yet, this is a “humanitarian intervention”?

In our lawsuit against the administration, among other critical issues we are demanding that the courts provide relief and protection to the country from the administration’s policy that a president may commit the United States to a war under the authority of the United Nations and NATO without authorization from Congress, and that previously appropriated funds by Congress may be used for an unconstitutional and unauthorized war in Libya or other countries. These are fundamental Constitutional issues and I expect the judicial branch to treat our challenge with the same level of gravity as we do in the legislative branch.

Remember, we were told that this attack would last “days, not weeks” and we are already three months and likely nearly a billion dollars into it. As the bombings obviously target Gaddafi’s houses, even killing some of his family members, we can see that the real goal is regime change rather than protection of civilians.  Do we know much about the rebels whose side we have taken in what is, in fact, a civil war?

A resolution authorizing American intervention in Libya was unfortunately approved on June 28 by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, hours after members skeptically grilled the administration’s legal adviser over his assertion that airstrikes and other military measures did not amount to hostilities.

Harold H. Koh, a legal adviser to the State Department, insisted that the War Powers Resolution did not apply to Libya, a position that the administration has expressed repeatedly.

“From the outset, we noted that the situation in Libya does not constitute a war,” Mr. Koh said. He cited four factors — ground troops and significant non-air forces have not been involved, the lack of American casualties or a significant threat of them, a limited risk of escalation, and the limited use of military means — as the central points of logic in the administration’s decision to essentially ignore Congress beyond providing largely perfunctory information.

That logic was rejected by many members of the committee.

Democratic Senator Jim Webb of Virginia said, “When you have an operation that goes on for months, costs billions of dollars, where the United States is providing two-thirds of the troops, even under the NATO fig leaf, where they’re dropping bombs that are killing people, where you’re paying your troops offshore combat pay and there are areas of prospective escalation — something I’ve been trying to get a clear answer from with this administration for several weeks now, and that is the possibility of a ground presence in some form or another, once the Qaddafi regime expires — I would say that’s hostilities.”

According to Gallup Poll on June 22, 46 percent of Americans disapprove of the Libyan military action, while 39 percent approve. 15 percent have no opinion.

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Why is this war fought?

The cost of the American operations in Libya are expected to exceed one billion US$ alone in this fiscal year, and the big winner will be the weapons industry, the “Military Industrial Complex.” Beyond that result of increasing the profits of the weapons manufacturers there are four main reasons for this war:

1. Libya has the largest oil reserves in Africa

With 46 billion barrels of proven reserves (10 times those of Egypt and more than twice those of the USA), Libya is among the World’s largest oil economies with approximately 3.4 percent of global oil reserves. The National Oil Corporation (NOC) is ranked 25 among the world’s Top 100 Oil Companies. While the market value of crude oil is currently well in excess of 100 US$ a barrel, the cost of Libyan oil is extremely low, as low as one US$ a barrel. The Anglo-American oil giants would be the main unspoken beneficiaries of a US/NATO victory in Libya and would most possibly take over Libya’s National Oil Corporation.

2. The war against Gaddafi is part of a broader military agenda in the Middle East and Central Asia which consists in gaining control and corporate ownership over more than sixty percent of the world’s reserves of oil and natural gas, including oil and gas pipeline routes.

Libya has borders with several countries which are within France’s sphere of influence, including Algeria, Tunisia, Niger and Chad. Chad is potentially an oil rich economy. ExxonMobil and Chevron have interests in Southern Chad including a pipeline project. Southern Chad is a gateway into the Darfur region of Sudan, which is also strategic in view of its oil wealth.

Niger is strategic to the United States because of its extensive reserves of uranium. At present, France dominates the uranium industry in Niger through the French nuclear conglomerate Areva, formerly known as Cogema. China also has a stake in Niger’s uranium industry.

More generally, the Southern border of Libya is strategic for the United States in its quest to extend its sphere of influence in Francophone Africa, a vast territory extending from North Africa to Central and Western Africa. Historically this region was part of France and Belgium’s colonial empires, the borders of which were established  at the Berlin Conference of 1884.

In the last years US friendly regimes have been installed in several African countries which historically were in the sphere of influence of France and Belgium, including The Republic of the Congo and Rwanda.  Several countries in West Africa (including Côte d’Ivoire) are slated to become US proxy states

3. Restraining Chinas influence

The eventual formation of an US dependent regime would also help to diminish Chinas influence in the region and to edge out China’s National Petroleum Corp (CNPC). China plays a central role in the Libyan oil industry. The China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) had a workforce of some 400 employees. The total Chinese workforce in Libya was of the order of 30,000. 

11 percent of Libyan oil exports are channelled to China. While there are no figures on the size and importance of CNPC’s production and exploration activities, there are indications that they are considerable big.

More generally, China’s presence in North Africa is regarded by Washington to constitute an intrusion. From a geopolitical standpoint, China is an encroachment. The military campaign directed against Libya is intent upon excluding China from North Africa.

China has oil interests in both Chad and Sudan. The China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) signed a far reaching agreement with the Chad government in 2007.
The US companies in Libya, Chevron and Occidental Petroleum, decided October 2010, not to renew their oil and gas exploration licenses in Libya.

4. Helping Wall Street

The asset freeze sanctioned by paragraph 19 of UN resolution 1973 makes it possible to confiscate billions of US$ of Libyan financial assets that are deposited in Western banks.

”Gaddafi’s fall would give great way to Western banks. It would be the perfect embezzlement,” said one US specialist and he was joined by others who concluded, that the consequences of a regime change in Libya would be the disappearance of vast sums belonging to the Libyan people, since “Gaddafi could no longer under practical conditions and policies recover the funds and reverse the process of investments in the West.”

A financial operator directly linked to transactions involving the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), affirmed, that “regarding the diverted [financial] products, which are of great complexity, the situation is that not even the source of the investment knows exactly what was done with their capital.”

About the chances that a new regime in Libya could reclaim the funds: “They can go after the money until eternity. If the owner of the money disappears, the money remains unclaimed, so to speak, because in the beginning it was an investment that politically was made in secret.”

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Gaddafi planned to fund three ambitious financial projects: the creation of an African investment bank, an African monetary fund and an African central bank. These Africa-centered institutions would have diminished the continents dependence on the IMF and the World Bank — institutions who pressure African nations to privatize natural resources and to allow unlimited access to Western companies.

Thank you for the infos: http://libyancivilwar.blogspot.com/

3 comments

  1. ….An unacceptable threat to life and a violation of international law thats how the United States former Justice Secretary Ramsey Clark slammed the use of depleted uranium weapons. These days world news media have been awash with reports that NATO is using depleted uranium bombs against Libya.Leaving aside the legal and moral aspect of the attacks a question arises cant NATO crush Colonel Gaddafis Armed Forces without radioactive exposure?Political observer Sergei Guk discussed the issue with Voice of Russia guests – General Director of the Center for International and Strategic Research Vladimir Belous and Deputy Director of the Institute for the U.S. It could be that the Americans have something to test considering the tasks they need to fulfill.


  2. thanks.very good blog and very good share.



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