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stockholmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-15-11 07:54 PM
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The London Review of Books : Who said Gaddafi had to go?

So Gaddafi is dead and Nato has fought a war in North Africa for the first time since the FLN defeated France in 1962. The Arab worlds one and only State of the Masses, the Socialist Peoples Libyan Arab Jamahiriyya, has ended badly. In contrast to the bloodless coup of 1 September 1969 that overthrew King Idris and brought Gaddafi and his colleagues to power, the combined rebellion/civil war/ Nato bombing campaign to protect civilians has occasioned several thousand (5000? 10,000? 25,000?) deaths, many thousands of injured and hundreds of thousands of displaced persons, as well as massive damage to infrastructure. What if anything has Libya got in exchange for all the death and destruction that have been visited on it over the past seven and a half months?

The overthrow of Gaddafi & Co was far from being a straightforward revolution against tyranny, but the Wests latest military intervention cant be debunked as being simply about oil. Presented by the National Transitional Council (NTC) and cheered on by the Western media as an integral part of the Arab Spring, and thus supposedly of a kind with the upheavals in Tunisia and Egypt, the Libyan drama is rather an addition to the list of Western or Western-backed wars against hostile, defiant, insufficiently compliant, or rogue regimes: Afghanistan I (v. the Communist regime, 1979-92), Iraq I (1990-91), the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (over Kosovo, 1999), Afghanistan II (v. the Taliban regime, 2001) and Iraq II (2003), to which we might, with qualifications, add the military interventions in Panama (1989-90), Sierra Leone (2000) and the Ivory Coast (2011). An older series of events we might bear in mind includes the Bay of Pigs (1961), the intervention by Western mercenaries in the Congo (1964), the British-assisted palace coup in Oman in 1970 and last but not least three abortive plots, farmed out to David Stirling and sundry other mercenaries under the initially benevolent eye of Western intelligence services, to overthrow the Gaddafi regime between 1971 and 1973 in an episode known as the Hilton Assignment.

At the same time, the story of Libya in 2011 gives rise to several different debates. The first of these, over the pros and cons of the military intervention, has tended to eclipse the others. But numerous states in Africa and Asia and no doubt Latin America as well (Cuba and Venezuela spring to mind) may wish to consider why the Jamahiriyya, despite mending its fences with Washington and London in 2003-4 and dealing reasonably with Paris and Rome, should have proved so vulnerable to their sudden hostility. And the Libyan war should also prompt us to examine what the actions of the Western powers in relation to Africa and Asia, and the Arab world in particular, are doing to democratic principles and the idea of the rule of law.

The Afghans who rebelled against the Communist regimes of Noor Mohammed Taraki, Hafizullah Amin and the Soviet-backed Babrak Karmal, and in 1992 overthrew Mohammed Najibullah before laying waste to Kabul in protracted factional warfare, called themselves mujahedin, fighters for the faith. They were conducting a jihad against godless Marxists and saw no need to be coy about it in view of the enthusiastic media coverage as well as logistical support the West was giving them. But the Libyans who took up arms against Gaddafis Jamahiriyya have sedulously avoided this label, at least when near Western microphones. Religion had little to do with the upheavals in Tunisia and Egypt: Islamists were almost entirely absent from the stage in Tunisia until the fall of Ben Ali; in Egypt the Muslim Brothers werent instigators of the protest movement (in which Coptic Christians also took part) and made sure their support remained discreet. And so the irrelevance of Islamism to the popular revolt against despotic regimes was part of the way the Arab Spring came to be read in the West. Libyan rebels and Gaddafi loyalists alike tacitly recognised this fact.



Case Study - the Libya invasion and US/UK/NATO support of al-Qaeda :

Lies, War, and Empire: NATOs Humanitarian Imperialism in Libya (Video + Article)


It has been said, In war, truth is the first casualty. Libya is no exception. From the lies that started the war, to the rebels linked to al-Qaeda, ethnically cleansing black Libyans, killing civilians, propaganda, PR firms, intelligence agents, and possible occupation; Libya is a more complex story than the fairy tale we have been sold. Reality always is.

What Were the Reasons for Intervention?

We were sold the case for war in Libya as a humanitarian intervention. We were told, of course, that we needed to intervene in Libya because Muammar Gaddafi was killing his own people in large numbers; those people, on the same token, were presented as peaceful protesters resisting the 40-plus year reign of a brutal dictator.

In early March of 2011, news headlines in Western nations reported that Gaddafi would kill half a million people.<1> On March 18, as the UN agreed to launch air strikes on Libya, it was reported that Gaddafi had begun an assault against the rebel-held town of Benghazi. The Daily Mail reported that Gaddafi had threatened to send in his African mercenaries to crush the rebellion.<2> Reports of Libyan government tanks sitting outside Benghazi poised for an invasion were propagated in the Western media.<3> In the lead-up to the United Nations imposing a no-fly zone, reports spread rapidly through the media of Libyan government jets bombing the rebels.<4> Even in February, the New York Times the sacred temple for the stenographers of power we call journalists reported that Gaddafi was amassing thousands of mercenaries to defend Tripoli and crush the rebels.<5> Italys Foreign Minister declared that over 1,000 people were killed in the fighting in February, citing the number as credible.<6> Even a top official with Human Rights Watch declared the rebels to be peaceful protesters who are nice, sincere people who want a better future for Libya.<7> The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights declared that thousands of people were likely killed by Gaddafi, and called for international intervention to protect civilians.<8> In April, reports spread near and far at lightning speed of Gaddafis forces using rape as a weapon of war, with the first sentence in a Daily Mail article declaring, Children as young as eight are being raped in front of their families by Gaddafis forces in Libya, with Gaddafi handing out Viagra to his troops in a planned and organized effort to promote rape.<9>

As it turned out, these claims as posterity notes turned out to be largely false and contrived. Doctors Without Borders and Amnesty International both investigated the claims of rape, and have found no first-hand evidence in Libya that rapes are systematic and being used as part of war strategy, and their investigations in Eastern Libya have not turned up significant hard evidence supporting allegations of rapes by Qaddafis forces. Yet, just as these reports came out, Hillary Clinton declared that the U.S. is deeply concerned by reports of wide-scale rape in Libya.<10> Even U.S. military and intelligence officials had to admit that, there is no evidence that Libyan military forces are being given Viagra and engaging in systematic rape against women in rebel areas; at the same time Susan Rice, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, told a closed-door meeting of officials at the UN that the Libyan military is using rape as a weapon in the war with the rebels and some had been issued the anti-impotency drug. She reportedly offered no evidence to backup the claim.<11>



article is heavily footnoted and sourced (127 total footnotes) with hyperlinks as well


Abdel Hakim Belhaj is a ranking al-Qaeda leader (emir of the Islamic Fighting Group of Libya) (page 18 has interview with Belhaj)

One of Belhaj's underlings is Nasser Tailamoun, who was Osama bin Laden's driver. Qadaffi released these 2, plus dozens of other radicals, in September of 2010.


US and NATO use and support of al-Qaeda in the Libya coup d' etat

Abdel Hakim Belhaj, Tripoli's newly installed military governor (also a key official within Libya's National Transitional Council), is linked to Al Qaeda, reports Libertion (Leftist French newspaper).

Belhaj is the former head of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (an affiliate group of Al Qaeda). In 2003, Belhaj was arrested in Malaysia in 2003, later being interrogated by CIA in 2004 in Thailand. He was set free in Libya in 2008.

It's important to note Belhaj is supported by NATO, as Le Parisien and MSN France report:

10 h 20. Un islamiste la tte du commandement militaire de la rbellion Tripoli. Abdelhakim Belhadj a t le chef militaire qui a prpar, avec l'aide de l'Otan, la prise du QG de Kadhafi, Bab Al-Azizya. Al-Jazeera lui a consacr un long entretien en direct du QG l'issue des combats. Ancien dirigeant du Groupe islamique des combattants libyens (GICL), li Al-Qaida, Abdelhakim Belhadj, a t arrt en 2004 par les Amricains en Asie et livr par la suite la Libye, selon la presse arabe. Il aurait bnfici de l'amnistie de centaines d'islamistes libyens en mars 2010 ordonne par Saif Al-Islam, fils prfr de Kadhafi.


Karel Abderrahim, a researcher at the Institute of International and Strategic Relations (Institut de relations internationales et stratgiques, a French think tank) said in an interview to La Croix, a Catholic French newspaper, that he is skeptical about the dissolution of Al Qaeda-Libyan Islamic Fighting Group:

Further background:


Libyan rebel commander admits his fighters have al-Qaeda links

"Abdel-Hakim al-Hasidi, the Libyan rebel leader, has said jihadists who fought against allied troops in Iraq are on the front lines of the battle against Muammar Gaddafi's regime.

In an interview with the Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore, Mr al-Hasidi admitted that he had recruited "around 25" men from the Derna area in eastern Libya to fight against coalition troops in Iraq. Some of them, he said, are "today are on the front lines in Adjabiya".

Mr al-Hasidi insisted his fighters "are patriots and good Muslims, not terrorists," but added that the "members of al-Qaeda are also good Muslims and are fighting against the invader".

His revelations came even as Idriss Deby Itno, Chad's president, said al-Qaeda had managed to pillage military arsenals in the Libyan rebel zone and acquired arms, "including surface-to-air missiles, which were then smuggled into their sanctuaries"....................


flashback 2 years (including Young Turks video) more US support of terrorist groups

Saudis and CIA back Khalid Sheikh Mohammads Jundullah in Pakistan and Iran?


flashhback to 2007 (BBC)

Libyan Islamists 'join al-Qaeda'

Zawahri called for North African leaders to be overthrown
A Libyan Islamist group has joined al-Qaeda, according to an audio message on the internet attributed to the radical network's second-in-command.
Ayman al-Zawahri purportedly said the Fighting Islamic Group in Libya was becoming part of al-Qaeda.


flasback to 2002 (Guardian UK) French intelligence experts revealed how western intelligence agencies bankrolled a Libyan Al-Qaeda cell

MI6 'halted bid to arrest bin Laden'Startling revelations by French intelligence experts back David Shayler's alleged 'fantasy'about Gadaffi plot

British intelligence paid large sums of money to an al-Qaeda cell in Libya in a doomed attempt to assassinate Colonel Gadaffi in 1996 and thwarted early attempts to bring Osama bin Laden to justice.
The latest claims of MI6 involvement with Libya's fearsome Islamic Fighting Group, which is connected to one of bin Laden's trusted lieutenants, will be embarrassing to the Government, which described similar claims by renegade MI5 officer David Shayler as 'pure fantasy'

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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-15-11 08:03 PM
Response to Original message
1. I read this article about a week ago - and found it appalling.
The Libyans said Gaddafi had to go. They begged for help. They died in their thousands for their freedom. The women put in an unbelievable effort to help the fighters.

These Libyan bashers remind me of Rush Limbaugh bashing liberals.


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dionysus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-15-11 08:18 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. pay them no mind. let them believe gadaffi was the "FDR of the middle east", if it helps them be
Edited on Tue Nov-15-11 08:18 PM by dionysus
outraged easier. they're still grieving.
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ellisonz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-15-11 08:11 PM
Response to Original message
2. Who said King George III had to go?

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