Sirte – the Apotheosis of “Liberal Intervention”

by craig on August 26, 2011 10:14 am in Uncategorized

There is no cause to doubt that, for whatever reason, the support of the people of Sirte for Gadaffi is genuine. That this means they deserve to be pounded into submission is less obvious to me. The disconnect between the UN mandate to protect civilians while facilitating negotiation, and NATO’s actual actions as the anti-Gadaffi forces’ air force and special forces, is startling.

There is something so shocking in the Orwellian doublespeak of NATO on this point that I am severely dismayed. I suffer from that old springing eternal of hope, and am therefore always in a state of disappointment. I had hoped that the general population in Europe is so educated now that obvious outright lies would be rejected. I even hoped some journalists would seek to expose lies.

I was wrong, wrong, wrong.

The “rebels” are actively hitting Sirte with heavy artillery and Stalin’s organs; they are transporting tanks openly to attack Sirte. Yet any movement of tanks or artillery by the population of Sirte brings immediate death from NATO air strike.

What exactly is the reason that Sirte’s defenders are threatening civilians but the artillery of their attackers – and the bombings themselves – are not? Plainly this is a nonsense. People in foreign ministries, NATO, the BBC and other media are well aware that it is the starkest lie and propaganda, to say the assault on Sirte is protecting civilians. But does knowledge of the truth prevent them from peddling a lie? No.

It is worth reminding everyone something never mentioned, that UNSCR 1973 which established the no fly zone and mandate to protect civilians had

“the aim of facilitating dialogue to lead to the political reforms necessary to find a peaceful and sustainable solution;”

That is in Operative Para 2 of the Resolution

Plainly the people of Sirte hold a different view to the “rebels” as to who should run the country. NATO have in effect declared being in Gadaffi’s political camp a capital offence. There is no way the massive assault on Sirte is “facilitating dialogue”. it is rather killing those who do not hold the NATO approved opinion. That is the actual truth. It is extremely plain.

I have no time for Gadaffi. I have actually met him, and he really is nuts, and dangerous. There were aspects of his rule in terms of social development which were good, but much more that was bad and tyrannical. But if NATO is attacking him because he is a dictator, why is it not attacking Dubai, Bahrain, Syria, Burma, Zimbabwe, or Uzbekistan, to name a random selection of badly governed countries?

“Liberal intervention” does not exist. What we have is the opposite; highly selective neo-imperial wars aimed at ensuring politically client control of key physical resources.

Wars kill people. Women and children are dying now in Libya, whatever the sanitised media tells you. The BBC have reported it will take a decade to repair Libya’s infrastructure from the damage of war. That in an underestimate. Iraq is still decades away from returning its utilities to their condition in 2000.

I strongly support the revolutions of the Arab Spring. But NATO intervention does not bring freedom, it brings destruction, degradation and permanent enslavement to the neo-colonial yoke. From now on, Libyans like us will be toiling to enrich western bankers. That, apparently, is worth to NATO the reduction of Sirte to rubble.

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217 Comments

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  1. “I had hoped that the general population in Europe is so educated now that obvious outright lies would be rejected. I even hoped some journalists would seek to expose lies”.

    Even though education is probably not as corrupt in the average European nation as it is in the UK, I fear you are sadly deceived. Not only has “progressive education” tended to drive down standards; it has also assisted in the progressive brainwashing of each new generation, starting as soon as they go to secondary school. Even at one of Britain’s best public schools in the 1960s, I was heavily disinformed as to the nature of politics and international relations. It took decades of reading news and commentary and gradually piecing together the truth before I began to see the light.

    Any government has a powerful interest in keeping its people docile, and this does not necessarily mean uneducated. It is naive to keep women and children away from school, as Afghan and other fundamentalists strive to do. Far more effective to compel them to attend state schools where they can be imbued with politically correct views from the earliest age.

    As for the complaisance of journalists, I think David Edwards and David Cromwell explain that phenomenon perfectly in their excellent “Newspeak in the 21st Century”. Once again, no overt conspiracy or censorship is necessary. All that is required is for intelligent, ambitious journalists and editors to know which way lies promotion, fame and riches; and which way lies obscurity, mockery, and probable eventual unemployment.

  2. A propos my last comment, I can’t resist citing the following quotation. There’s probably no need to attribute it, is there?

    ‘When an opponent declares, “I will not come over to your side,” I calmly say, “Your child belongs to us already… What are you? You will pass on. Your descendants, however, now stand in the new camp. In a short time they will know nothing else but this new community”’.

  3. Craig

    What’s the duration of UN resolution 1973?

  4. Bloody good stuff Craig.

    Though, like Tom, I’m still somewhat perplexed at your seeming blind-spot concerning the perceptions of Western populations and their gross ignorance of foreign affairs and their resulting ‘biddability’.

    Post WWII ‘history’ was written by its ‘victors’. There is a narrative to be maintained and promoted and that is just what Western educational establishments, with some notable (and therefore marginalised) exceptions, have engaged in ever since.

  5. Well said Craig.

    I hope that the public at large are getting a clearer idea of what NATO is all about. This venture was never ‘humanitarian’. It was about replacing Gaddafi and placing Libya in the hands of western stooges from day one.

    It is hard to see anything other than an Iraq-stlye occupation at the end of this horrible process. We can already see the beginnings of a ‘Green Zone’ in Benghazi.

    The ‘rebels’, mercenaries and tribal gangs will melt away as a single grouping and begin warring amongst themselves. Some people who see themselves (perhaps correctly) as Libyan nationalists, those now supporting Gaddafi, will continue a guerrilla war against occupiers, new government, rebel tribes etc…….

    ……..and we, from the goodness of our loving humanitarian hearts, will have created this hellish nightmare.

    Our supremacist masters are determined to control it all. The fraudulent stooges in Westminster who are supposed to represent us represent this supremacist elite.

    They deceive us into being passive partners in the great crimes committed against the people of Libya.

    If you were an Iranian might not possession of a nuclear arsenal seem like a very sensible precaution against the murdering degenerates that prowl the middle east.

  6. Tom, agree with every word, it is amazing to see how our youngsters, after having only been indoctrinated for soem years fall into the consumer/establishment role allocated for them, without grudge or so much of a whimper.
    When I visisted Essex University, once the hot bed of radicalism in Britain, it was the most calm and oprdered student society I have ever visited, not much scrutiny and questions applied.

    Ghadaffi is not showing himself and the NTC’s propaganda machine is muisled by NATO freakeries. For the last two weeks they should have amplified and broadcast that Muhammar is responsible for the continued fighting, it is his hiding that stops negotiations progressing and a hand over to the Libyan people, but not even the simplest of eyewashes is applied here, just sheer NATO brutality.

  7. Osama bin Laden

    26 Aug, 2011 - 12:13 pm

    [Mod/jon: deleted, abusive again]

  8. Osama bin Laden

    26 Aug, 2011 - 12:15 pm

    [Mod/jon: disruptive, deleted]

  9. exiledlondoner

    26 Aug, 2011 - 12:20 pm

    Craig,

    Being a liberal isn’t easy – it has none of the certainties that other political creeds can offer.
    .
    When this started I reluctantly supported intervention – the alternative seemed to be to leave Gaddafi in place, eventually to hand over to his sons. Realisically there was no prospect of the Libyan people ever being able to overthrow the petro-dollar funded Gaddafi regime.
    .
    The problem is that supporting his overthrow raises a lot of other questions – particularly the motives of the outside forces which may not be the same as the Libyan rebels, and what was to follow Gaddafi.
    .
    While I understand why you focus on NATO, who have clearly gone way beyond the UNSC remit, the problems stem as much from the disfunctional UN and the bad joke that calls itself the Arab League. NATO are not acting as the agents of the UNSC – they are acting as the agents of western business interests who want a share of a “liberalised” Libyan economy.
    .
    While you and I might see Gaddafi as a despot and tyrant, western business sees him as a dangerously independent figure. While he and his family might have had their fingers in the till, it is for denying western financial a share of the booty that he is being punished.
    .
    It is in this light that the attack on Sirte is taking place. The interests behind NATO’s involvement are not patient people – they want to call in their favours. To get what they want the victory must be absolute – a negotiated deal at this stage might see them come away with far less than they want. The plan is for total victory to be swiftly followed by the arrival of the “reconstruction advisors” – a motley crew of the usual suspects fresh from Iraq.
    .
    As with Cuba, I hope that the baby doesn’t get thrown out with the bathwater, but I fear the worse. The new Libya needs a strong, independent Government that puts Libyan interests first, and preserves what is good about Gaddafi’s Libya (and there are things that are good, notably a level of social provision unmatched in the region). What it doesn’t need a client Government eager to pay off their foreign benefactors, and dragging Libya into the neo-liberal fold.
    .
    I guess that I may live to regret my support for intervention – I never kidded myself that it was risk-free, and the NATO route wasn’t my preferred option. Time will tell whether the new Libya will be any improvement on the old Libya.
    .
    If it isn’t, I’ll hold up my hands and say I was wrong, but I won’t be any closer to knowing what was the right course to take. As I said, being a liberal isn’t easy.

  10. Osama, go and find a play ground.. it will suit you better

  11. Some say that the Arab Spring was initiated and organised by the by the CIA. And that Libya is the spearhead of a US/NATO offensive against Africa, competing with China for a resource-grab.
    And they claim that Usama bin Laden’s joint operation with the CIA to attack the twin towers has passed its sell-by date as an inspiration for Muslims. On the contrary, the new youth movements are a direct creation of the planned youth sacrifice which Usam planned.

    The lesson from history is that the West constantly tries to change Islam, from being a religion of total integrity to a religion of fanaticism. The scholars of Islam in Delhi and India were exterminated by the British, in order to change Islam.
    There is no integrity in fighting for its own sake. In demonstrating or fighting and changing governments for its own sake. But a significant number of the the influential and the easily-influenced have swallowed the Usama plan hook line and sinker, playing straight into the power of the enemies of Islam.

    They love the destruction of society, prosperity, rule of law, and see it as a necessary tool for the destruction of Western world-domination. Dis-rule is loathed by Islam and loved by mad mullahs whose political minds see rich pickings in the grain thrown down to them from Western powers. These political minds see human beings as no more than a pile of ballast for them to make the building blocks of their own personal political careers.

    When Disney land comes to Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya etc, as an economic progression for western advantage, these betrayers of Islam and Muslims will be doing very nicely thank-you under the Western controlled governments they helped to form.

  12. For the most part Craig a fine article that says what needs to be said.

    That’s until this bit:

    “I have no time for Gadaffi. I have actually met him, and he really is nuts, and dangerous. There were aspects of his rule in terms of social development which were good, but much more that was bad and tyrannical. But if NATO is attacking him because he is a dictator, why is it not attacking Dubai, Bahrain, Syria, Burma, Zimbabwe, or Uzbekistan, to name a random selection of badly governed countries?”

    A deconstruction…

    “I have no time for Gadaffi”. This’s a meaningless remark which, however, probably helps keep you (just) on the right side of ‘reality’ for western media/establishment (handy for to make sure speaking invites keep coming in and you’re not black-listed by the BBC…)

    “I have actually met him, and he really is nuts, and dangerous.” I see. Or rather, I don’t. Do you always make judgements about someone’s sanity when you meet them? Why not share with us the specifics of your personal meeting that led you to draw that conclusion? Dangerous was he? Did he threaten you with a sabre? Or say ‘Boo’ in Arabic? Do explain.

    “There were aspects of his rule in terms of social development which were good”. Really? How odd that a dangerous crazy-man could achieve much at all. Why not explain what you mean? Did you have in mind, for instance, that over four decades, despite long periods of harassment and sanctions by the west, he led his nation from deep poverty and high illiteracy to the best UNDP Human Development Index ranking in Africa, with the lowest infant mortality and highest life expectancy in Africa, free healthcare and free education (including fees paid for tertiary students overseas). Or did you have in mind the remarkable fresh water system set up on his watch, or Africa’s satellite coms which he funded, or provision of decent housing for all Libyans? Was it the 100 billion dollar pledge to support African development free from western usury? Why be so coy about these “good aspects” of his governance?

    “Much more that was bad and tyrannical”. Quite so, quite so. So very unlike the track record of good democrats such as Sarkosy, Cameron, Obama, Bush, Blair etc. Good to have one good reason for bombing the hell out of his nation, I guess?

    “If NATO is attacking him because he is a dictator, why is it not attacking Dubai, Bahrain, Syria, Burma, Zimbabwe, or Uzbekistan, to name a random selection of badly governed countries”.

    If I hear this argument put one more time I think I may scream. It implicitly concedes that it’s acceptable for an unaccountable cabal in far-away places to bomb ANY nations into ‘regime change’. I beg to differ. IT IS NOT! So why don’t we say that for all those other nations too – rather than leave the door wide open for one of them to be next?

    Ghadafi is doubtless not a saint. I have yet to meet anyone who is (are you, Craig?). Most people, however, do not have to demonstrate sainthood in order to justify their continuing existence on this planet. The Zionist media has set up a narrative to make it seem that Ghadafi DOES need to demonstrate that. By this tawdry paragraph in what was otherwise a fine article, you make a concession to that demented idea, which has been used so very successfully to rationalize the murderous bombing of Libya.

  13. On the BBC morning news this week, Bill Turnbull stated that many Libyan ‘rebels’ were out demonstrating in Green Square, waving flags and so on. What he and the BBC failed to mention was that the flags were actually those of India and the ‘rebels’ looked decidedly Indian and not Libyan. No Kalishnikovs firing into the air either. Oops! Another BBC clanger to go with their huge boo-boo over WTC7 when they declared its fall some 30 minutes before it actually fell. Sounds like another prepared script that went awry.

  14. Leak of a 70 page Criminal NATO Plan to Occupy Libya UAE Would Occupy Tripoli in Post-Gadhafi Libya.

    “The document includes proposals for a 10,000-15,000 strong “Tripoli task force”, resourced and supported by the United Arab Emirates, to take over the Libyan capital, secure key sites and arrest high-level Gaddafi supporters.”
    ….
    “The authors of the report also believe the escalation of NATO attacks to an “unbearable” level is a strong possibility.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/iraq-haunts-plans-for-post-gaddafi-libya/story-e6frg6so-1226111211251

  15. The BBC has apparently shown a video of some demonstration in India, claiming it to be from Green Square, Tripoli:
    .
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_-lzI8I0_0

  16. Osama/Yugo/Larry,
    .
    Keep it coming – either someone responds to you before I log on, and I leave your comments be so we can laugh at your silliness; or I log in before a substantive reply comes your way, in which case I delete you at the flip of a coin. In the last few months I think you are the only person I’ve had to delete, so it’s really no trouble. Moderate mouse-clicking keeps RSI at bay, I hear :D.
    .
    I should love to know your motivations, when you’re done hiding under your rock. Mental illness, unhealthy obsession or career? I am not sure if there are any other options, since you repeatedly refuse to explain your abusive comments.

  17. Steve Faraday

    26 Aug, 2011 - 1:45 pm

    Are “the people of Sirte” being “pounded into submission”?
    Aren’t NATO hitting only military targets?
    Aren’t highly dangerous and inaccurate Scuds being fired from Sirte to the city of Misrata?

  18. It certainly pays to plan ahead:

    This week’s toppling of the Qaddafi regime in Libya shows that the Obama administration’s multilateral and light-footprint approach to regime change is more effective than the troop-heavy occupation-style approach used by the George W. Bush administration in Iraq and Afghanistan, a top White House official told Foreign Policy today in a wide-ranging interview.

    “The fact that it is Libyans marching into Tripoli not only provides a basis of legitimacy for this but also will provide contrast to situations when the foreign government is the occupier,” said Ben Rhodes, deputy national security advisor for communications, in an exclusive interview on Wednesday with FP….

    Despite criticism from Congress and elsewhere, President Barack Obama’s strategy for the military intervention in Libya will not only result in a better outcome in Libya but also will form the basis of Obama’s preferred model for any future military interventions, Rhodes said.

    That’s all right, then.

    The whole report at Foreign Policy.

  19. Syd Walker -Spot on comment.
    .
    Clark, yep I saw that youtube vid. Shameful. The complicit media are desperately trying to indicate a mass Libyan peoples’ revolt agaisnt Gadaffi, but they are struggling to find any images/videos of large scale protests at all. Even the front page newspapers pics are of a few of the ragtag rebel army.
    .
    I have no doubt that the whole thing has been driven by foreign secret service agents.
    .

  20. @Syd,
    .
    I think it is fine to criticise Gaddafi, and I don’t see that doing so adds anything to the wall of propaganda from the MSM. I myself said something very similar in comments here recently; that the social programs in Libya are laudable if they are widespread, but they are eclipsed by the totalitarianism of despotic rule. Would recognising those things have made it more likely, all other things being equal, that Libya was next to be invaded instead of Uzbekistan? I don’t see that it would (and no-one who is most at risk of being influenced by mainstream propaganda is likely to be here to read it anyway!).
    .
    I would caution you against supporting Gaddafi unconditionally – democracy in its true form should be the right of every person, and a society is unlikely to be well without it. (I don’t necessarily mean multi-party democracy – one can have soviet democracy or initiative and referendum democracy without it (hat-tip to Evgenui for the latter)).
    .
    I don’t know Craig’s mind, but am not at all of the view that he has one eye on BBC panel invitations. I am fairly sure he has been irrevocably blacklisted already, which is most regrettable.

  21. I’m not getting into the rights/wrongs of the entire campaign. They are well rehearsed on either side. However, you ask a question – why here and not other perverse regimes? The fact is that Gadaffi sealed his own fate with his move on Benghazi and his threat of a massacre which any reasonable person would have expected him to carry out with zeal. Contrary to your assertion, this supposed ‘imperialist’ war has been prosecuted by a lack of enthusiasm by its main protaganists; Britain, France and the US. But once you start something like this you HAVE to finish it. NATO gave Gadaffi umpteen opportunties to do a deal or go into exile. They stayed their hand for almost six months. Liberating everywhere else and leaving Sirte a besieged stronghold of the old regime is militarily and politically not a sustainable position. Whether or not we should have stepped in to help Benghazi in the first place – and i think YES! – the die was cast at that point.

  22. I have not met any of the general population in the UK, Austria or the US that actually agree with what NATO is doing in Libya. The problem is,you cannot stop it.They went in there for 1973 and now we have an undeclared war against one side of the civil war. There are British , Qatari and probably US and French boots on the ground ,as well as weapons smuggled in by NATO countries and Qatar.1973 has been largely ignored because it limited the countries to humanitarian protection.The UN is complicit , and just as in past actions in Gaza, we remain silent !!!! Its shocking and totally against International Law and it’s not the first time. Had Britain tried to go it alone, our population might have had a chance to say NO, but it was NATO, and there is no-one you can say NOTO.All our political parties seem to be quite happy with what is going on and there isn’t a demonstartion on the street.What’s that joke ? How low can you get ? A corgi !! naw, David Cameron

  23. Brian Robinson

    26 Aug, 2011 - 2:11 pm

    Completely agree Craig.

  24. @Clark – the video of “Green Square” – I think that’s more likely to be a balls-up rather than knowingly lying. Sounded like the presenter (who admittedly was making propagandist assumptions subconsciously) was just ignorant, and was umming-and-ahhing her way to a coherent statement. Autocue borked, perhaps? 😉
    .
    Proper propaganda is always more subtle than this, in my view.

  25. @Gus

    Gadaffi had been culling the rebels for years and we chose to ignore his activities. In point of fact, we armed him to those ends!
    Unfortunately, he wanted a bigger and bigger slice of the pie from the Oil companies. Big mistake.
    As usual, it’s all about oil and money is and as humanitarian as Ebola.

    “Britain sold weapons to Libya and other dictatorships in North Africa and the Middle East just four months before Colonel Gaddafi’s regime slaughtered hundreds of protesters, a damning report reveals today.”

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1373444/Libya-The-dirty-secret-UK-arms-sales-Gaddafi.html#ixzz1W8hozqGc

  26. I totally agree with Craig that NATO intervention is selective and as Exiledlondoner says ‘are acting as the agents of western business interests who want a share of a “liberalised” Libyan economy.’ And again as Exiledlondoner says without outside help Libyans would never have been able to overthrow the petro-dollar funded Gaddafi regime.’

    However,a negotiated deal between the rebels and Gaddafi regime would not ever have been possible except in the most dire circumstances and that’s questionable. The rebels wanted the regime out, Gaddafi would not go. Say if a deal had been reached and the Gaddafi family left with some power, inch by inch with their wealth they would have clawed their way back and resumed brutalising and terrorising the people .

    So maybe after all NATO is compliant with UNSCR 1973 ‘which established the no fly zone and mandate to protect civilians ‘

    Without the Gaddafi regime extinguished the Libyan people will be in danger.

  27. What you are saying is a possiblity Ruth. And Gus I also agree with you.
    For my own part, I would say that many anti-NATO commentators, including the author of the blog, have been badly wrong in their predictions about this Libya issue before – NATO was losing; deals were being cut to keep Gadaffi in power etc. – yet there has not been any admission of previous fault; therefore, how can we tell that the possiblity of error is something that it is acknowledged, and if it is not acknowledged then are we not dealing with fixed beliefs rather than with supple judgements about facts? I think that too often on this blog the cart is put before the horse and really this whole exercise is about ideological affirmation.

    At least Scouse Billy with his references to PRAVDA has not popped up so far on this thread.

  28. Agree with every word, West was baffled with the power of change in Egypt but they made up their minds quickly. It is very sad that Libyan people cannot see what we are able to see. Since when British and French have been that sensitive about humanitarianism and human right abuses? Since Rwanda Genocide Mr Sarkozy? Was Ivory Coast not enough for your greed? Shame!

  29. How astonishing that a former diplomat sounds more like an activist from the Stop the War coalition than an educated, reasonable mind.

    ““Liberal intervention” does not exist. What we have is the opposite; highly selective neo-imperial wars aimed at ensuring politically client control of key physical resources.”

    Really. Sounds like a line from an anti-Iraq protest back in 2003. So we didn’t have access to Lybian oil before the intervention? Tell us, Mr Murray, how does a nation most effectively secure physical resources: by labouriously spending billions and billions of money we will never get back on establishing *actual* material control through our military over the resources – or by sitting down with a dictator who is only too happy to accept greenbacks so he can buid himself lavish palaces and let his family live a life of decadence, and sign a contract with him?

    FYI: the Chinese in Sudan, that’s how you secure resources. Whilst the West has embargoed Sudan out of humanitarian concerns. Your theory is utterly false.

    Your belief that from now on, ‘Lybians will toil to support the bankers like us’ betrays a Marxist logic that is more suited to a Cuban than a former British diplomat.

    Lastly, the irony of reading a blog *opposing* humanitarian intervention – an intervention in support of people who are desperately struggling to free themselves from the cluthes of a ruthless, crazed dictator who has reigned a reign of terror for decades – by a self-declared ‘human rights activist’ is very rich indeed. Yes, war is bloody and cruel, but Sirte is the last bastion of support for Gaddafi’s dictatorship, and has to fall.

    You oppose this. Being a left-wing ‘anti-imperialist’ does not make you humanitarian, it makes you an illiberal proto-Marxist whose ideal of social relations has far more in common with totalitarianism than with liberalism. Which explains the implied defence of Gaddafi’s top-down imposition of socialist policies back in the 80s: ‘There were aspects of his rule in terms of social development which were good.’

    It is shameful that you once had the honour of representing our free nation abroad when you yourself are of a fundamentally anti-democratic inclination.

  30. Syd Walker
    .
    Forgive a personal post on Craig’s blog but I can find no contact facility on your blog.
    .
    With insights like those in your post above, Wikispooks could use your input. Failing that I’d like to put some of your stuff up myself.
    .
    Contact info through my posting link above

  31. @Ruth”Without the Gaddafi regime extinguished the Libyan people will be in danger.”

    Yes, we will see how they get on the rebels, they themselves are being accused of warcrimes. Perhaps it will provide a good excuse to put boots on the ground. Oh no, wait a mo, we are admitting to having trained them.

    @Danj “NATO was losing; deals were being cut to keep Gadaffi in power etc.”

    Uping the ‘ante’: NATO acting as air power and also the training of the rebels (boots on the ground) lost the UN the fig leaf cover of a humanitarian action weeks ago.

    Agree with Craig 110%

  32. Well done Craig! Great writing! It really is shocking how many seemingly ordinary people are involved in these crimes. The banality of evil or is it the evil of the banality of our lives.
    The left has disgraced itself and played a key role for NATO in helping them present the “rebels” as some kind of democratic, popular opposition. They have also pushed the evil dictator line. I haven’t concerned myself much with the merits or demerits of the colonel. It is beside the point. What we do know is that the people rallied round him against NATO. They are defending the sovereignty of their country. They are defending the existence of their country.It’s the arrogance of the western leftist/liberal that gets me: they think they’re fit to stand judgement on everyone. One day we will be judged.
    It’s quite clear the rebels can’t control Libya and so NATO must send in ground troops. They may already have done so. This isn’t just one more war: we must be able to see now that this is part of a drive to global war. We are engaged now in the fight for the survival of some kind of human civilization. NATO must be defeated! Victory to the Libyan people!!

  33. David Cameron backtracks and changes his mind on most things, but mysteriously the one where he remained constant is Libya.. Why ??? It was obviously not his decision.

  34. I don’t think there’s anything any one of us can add to that, Craig.
    Nail. Head. Hit.

  35. Well said, Syd Walker! I completely agree with everything you said.

    Jon, you seem very keen on democracy. But like Christianity and communism, democracy is something that has hardly ever been tried in anything like a pure form – and when it was tried, it has often failed abysmally. In the UK, USA, France, etc. at present we have “democracy” that isn’t.

    As a test case, have you noticed that most of the people in our countries don’t actually want to attack Libya? (Just as they didn’t want to attack Serbia, or Iraq, or Afghanistan, or Pakistan, and just as they don’t want to attack Iran). Over a million people paraded through central London to tell Tony Blair that the people were dead set against attacking Iraq. What difference did the people’s views and wishes make to our governments’ actions? None whatsoever.

    So the war to impose democracy on the Libyans (whether they want it or not) was waged by our “democractic” governments in spite of the fact that their own people were opposed to it!

  36. Sir,

    The observation you have reluctantly made regarding the one sidedness of the Libyan Contact Group’s acceptance of the arms, navy, air force and mercenaries/contractors is very hollow. Many commentators on all the available comments pages of the mainstream media have pointed this out for months. As you point out to continue this massacre, when calls for ceasefires have gone unheeded, shows the world the corruption of the ideals of the crusader coalition for their own ends – not the Libyan population.

    The preferred military option to ensure regime change is still not complete. The bloodshed of innocent Libyan civilians is being witnessed daily, reported by the media. The leaders of the crusader coalition countries are praising their pilots, special forces (armed boots on the ground) and navy personnel as “heroic”. Heroes do not shoot their guns, fire their missiles or watch the drone generated TV images from 20 miles, 30,000 feet or 6,000 miles respectively.

    The raping of the Libyan people “frozen” assets continues with the recent grab by the unelected TNC terrorists to pay their “masters”. The UNSC appear to have sanctioned this rape with no oversight of the amounts to be release, where it is to be spent, who will decide how it is spent except a passing reference to illegal organisations and illegal, unelected terrorist gangs.

    In the UK the right to protest has disappeared, the right to free speech is being eroded by the day, kettling, police murder, sentences of 4 years imprisonment and the ilk are the outcome of the world in which we are currently living.

  37. Ruth, You are failing to grasp that Gadaffi does not have wealth, gold, silver etc to spend to “create” disruption. He has beliefs, similar to some of the Libyan population.

    The demand of his to be able to put this to the people of Libya, similar to the South African solution. The SAs showed how the people could reconcile their differences and produce a settlement not gained by bloody civil war to it’s n’th degree.

    The crusader coalition have not accepted that any way other than their “democratic” way acceptable and continue in this murderous illegal civil war. All under the bannner of “humanitarian aid” and the “protection of civilians”.

  38. But if NATO is attacking him because he is a dictator, why is it not attacking Dubai, Bahrain, Syria, Burma, Zimbabwe, or Uzbekistan, to name a random selection of badly governed countries?

    Cue counter-argument “So you’re saying just because we can’t fix every problem we shouldn’t do anything at all? What kind of moral cretin are you!!?!”, to which the counter-counter-argument may need some elaboration.

  39. Cloud, you are totally ignoring the fact that WE support those dictators, in fact WE supported Gadafi until it did not suit us any more, WE train the secret services of those countries with the most up to date torture methods and WE happily sell them torture equipment.If you think WE are supporting them on moral/humanitarian grounds, then I am afraid You are The moral cretin

  40. What pisses me off about the well meaning Liberals such as Craig, is that they are still in denial about how incredibly evil our “Western” society is.

    Sure, I lived the first 50 years of my life in this Virtual Reality, but then 9/11 happenned, and I knew instinctively that there was something very wrong.

    18 months later, when I was 100% sure, that the Official Story could not possibly be true, because it defied the most fundamental laws of physics, the enormity of it hit me in an instant.

    It was like a Religious Conversion, like St Paul on the Road to Damascus, except it was not God I was Discovering, it was Satan.

    And The Evil is Us.

    Libya is just the latest example, and I have almost given up hope.

    Nothing has improved since then. The human race which is led by complete psychopaths is destroying everything. Nearly everyone is totally brainwashed by the incessant propaganda.

    I don’t even bother anymore trying to tell people how the World really is, because when I do, they think I am insane.

    No one cares.

    Maybe my problem is my strict moral upbringing. My parents tried their hardest to make a Catholic Priest out of me, but I preferred Girls.

    I also studied and was trained in psychological techniques, so I understand the forces in play, and I have no answer to them.

    I gave up all religion at the age of 15.

    Tony

  41. exiledlondoner

    26 Aug, 2011 - 6:16 pm

    Banquo21,
    .
    Ruth, You are failing to grasp that Gadaffi does not have wealth, gold, silver etc to spend to “create” disruption. He has beliefs, similar to some of the Libyan population.
    .
    Most Libyans have never lived under any regime other than Gaddafi’s, have never seen a free press, and have never had any political freedom. There may well be some support for him, but support is meaningless unless it’s informed support. If Gaddafi wanted to claim popular support, he’s had 42 years to demonstrate it through an open political society – instead he has tortured and murdered his opponents, turned Libya into a family kleptocracy, and denied the most basic political rights to Libyans.
    .
    As for Gaddafi not having wealth – you’re deluded. Just read a bit about the lifestyle enjoyed by his sons.
    .
    The demand of his to be able to put this to the people of Libya, similar to the South African solution. The SAs showed how the people could reconcile their differences and produce a settlement not gained by bloody civil war to it’s n’th degree.
    .
    There’s a fundemental difference – De Klerk agreed to step aside and allow free elections – Gaddafi threatened to slaughter his opponents.
    .
    The crusader coalition have not accepted that any way other than their “democratic” way acceptable and continue in this murderous illegal civil war. All under the bannner of “humanitarian aid” and the “protection of civilians”.
    .
    My enemy’s enemy is not my friend. I’m probably as distrusting of the motives of the coalition as you are, but that doesn’t mean I should be supporting a brutal tyrant against his people.
    .
    We can argue about whether the west should be bombing anyone in Libya, but the Libyan people have every right to evict Gaddafi and his thieving brood – even if that means civil war. The right to fight tyranny is universal.

  42. Scouse Billy

    26 Aug, 2011 - 6:39 pm

    Syd Walker – top post: totally agree with everything you say.
    .
    Tony Opmoc, I know what you mean but don’t give up – check out this letter from a physicist to a journalist:
    .
    http://www.rense.com/general73/phy.htm

  43. Scouse Billy,

    I have given up, thinking that the load of complete bollocks I write on various websites across the world, is going to make the slightest difference to anything.

    I haven’t however given up writing a complete load of bollocks in between trying my best to have an incredibly good time with my wife, family and friends.

    I don’t currently understand how the human race can proceed without at least the vast majority going through absolute hell.

    That in itself doesn’t personally bother me. I expect hell. I have already lived longer than most of my brothers and sisters. When you get to my age, you kind of expect that everything is slowly going to get worse as your body and brain degrades and you are eaten up inside by some horrible aweful cancer that causes you unbearable pain, but so far as I know, beyond the muscular disease I inherited and have had to cope with all my life, there is nothing else wrong with me – or my wife and kids. In fact my wife looks almost exactly the same as my daughter, except that we go to even louder parties and gigs.

    Our Children are Incredibly Well Behaved and conservative (notice the little c).

    Our Daughter is going to a Cheese and Wine Party tonight.

    She just wants to go down the Pub (Live Band) and a Club after – but all her friends are trying to be like their Mums.

    Tony

  44. nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/22-Aug-2011/Pakistan-to-send-more-troops-to-Bahrain
    .
    It’s continuing.

  45. According to Reuters there are gold reserves worth $10 billion in Tripoli. I think this is a low estimate.

  46. Lockman,
    You say ‘It is very sad that Libyan people cannot see what we are able to see.’ This to me shows a misunderstanding of the situation. Without the help of NATO the Libyan people could never have got rid of Gaddafi. This is seen as stage one.

    To be quite honest I’ve generally found that people from abroad have a much better grasp of what goes on. In fact it was a Libyan lady from Tripoli who said to me just after Megrahi’s release, ‘Ruth, you’ll see Megrahi walking the streets of Tripoli for many years to come’ I hope now that the political scene’s changed this will remain true. She also said with regard to Megrahi’s release, ‘It isn’t just Libyan intelligence involved but also the British.’

  47. so in order to save benghazi we now have to bomb the civilians, and go house to house in Sirte ..
    .
    makes sense innit.
    .
    any honest media reporting in the west yet ?

  48. Валентин Левин

    26 Aug, 2011 - 7:41 pm

    NATO is the main terrorist in the Peace!
    Muammar Gaddafi is the real hero of our time/
    I wish the Gaddafi win!

  49. Tony, has it right. When the fuckers start killing their own people, as on 9/11, to justify killing some other people, then you know that liberal democracy is a load of toxic lying bollocks. And when people like Craig Murray cannot admit the truth of 9/11 you know he’s unbelievably naive for a highly intelligent person, or he is angling for a job writing editorials for the Gruaniard or some other crap newspaper in cahoots with the murderous, lying liberal ruling elite.

  50. Валентин Левин

    26 Aug, 2011 - 7:53 pm

    Russian rock – for Gaddafi. Listen to a song dedicated to Muammar al-Gaddafi: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VPx2k9jzqew&feature=related

  51. I agree with you in your assessment of NATO. But every time you call Gaddafy a tyrant, you justify the enemies of the Libyan people. Not only NATO, American government or West Europe governments, but also those same so called “rebels” – killers and thieves in Libya. Whose ultimate goal of establishing democracy further away from the existing situation in Libya than Pluto.

  52. “But every time you call Gaddafy a tyrant, you justify the enemies of the Libyan people.” Zurab.
    .
    So we’re supposed to lie and say that Gaddafi was not a tyrant? Cannot we hold two separate ideas in our minds at the same time?
    .
    Let’s just admit it. The world is at war. “You’re either with us, or against us”. George W. Bush.
    .
    Sorry, Mr Bush, I don’t accept that.

  53. My thoughts exactly about the bombing of Sirte.

    Are there any sceptical journalists attending the NATO briefings, who will laugh with derision at the sophistry and lies coming from the NATO spokespersons?

  54. Return Libya to Africa!

    Great South Africa! God Bless You!

    The World must know that Libya and the whole of North Africa are integral part of Africa.
    The land and the people do not belong to Arabs or Europeans or Islamist rebels and mercenaries or even to Gaddafi.

    It is stolen from Africans and must be liberated and returned to Africans.

    Shame that the indigenous black people of Libya who are the only owners of oil which made Libya to appear on maps are considered as foreigners or at best as a low grade citizens by Arabs, Gaddafi, and Islamist rebels and mercenaries.

    We Africans must reclaim Libya and all North Africa.

  55. Save North Africa from Arab Emirs and NATO

    The Palestinians of Gaza, particularly of Hamas, are the invisible organizers and agitators of unrest and insurgencies against anti-Islamist regimes under the pretense of democracy. This is obvious in the involvements of the Palestinian majority of Staff of Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabiya TV against anti-Islamist regimes. The World is getting more of Iran Islamic “revolutions” and theocracies. Sarkozi; Obama and Cameron are miserably short-sighted and greedy looters.

    Corrupt Arab authoritarian regimes should be toppled by real democratic and friendly popular movements; but not by Sunni global caliphate financed by Gulf States and organized by Hamas and Muslim brotherhoods with other terrorists. Arab Gulf states got too much petro-dollar with too little plans in life; and Gaza is exploiting the glutted and vulnerable Emirs and Sultans.

    They are taking chances against each other only. Arab regimes and League are good for nothing. All of them with no exception are anti-democracy. The funding Gulf States don’t have even elected municipalities. Government and wealth rest exclusively in the hands of unanswerable Emirs dynasties. When the majority of population in the Gulf kingdom of Bahrain protested peacefully against the ruling Arab Sunnite minority the Gulf States crushed them by violent force, and the “democratic” West kept quiet.

    It is time for Africans to support the indigenous peoples and reclaim North Africa from invading and colonizing Arabs and Europeans.

    Gulf States lack the sense of nationhood and nationality. And North African Arabized countries are still avoiding reconciliation with themselves long after Arab invasions and colonization. The term “Arab World” is unrealistic and unfair. And so is the Arab League.

    Muslim brothers in Egypt are pushing hard for fast constitutional amendments and rejecting new constitution because they want Islam and Arabic language as the only main source of legislation and official language; and to keep the mostly Christian Copts in second class carriage, despite they are the most native and biggest indigenous people in Egypt. They want Egypt to remain “Misr Arab Republic” and Islamic.

    Mosques are the basic security; propaganda; and business unit in their system which is exploiting Allah and not serving any genuine faith.

    The threats to democracy in Gulf States and in North Africa states are:
    1- Islamist groups;
    2- Authoritarian ruling families and juntas;
    3- The Arab League;
    4- Pan-Arabism; and
    5- Western and NATO military interventions.

    The problem is that most Africans assume that North Africa belongs to the Arabs and to Europeans; and it is not an integral part of Africa that was lost to invaders and colonizers. The war in Libya is between two evils. The bigger devil is NATO, Islamists, and Gulf Emirs coalition against the lesser devil of the tyrant and colonizer Gaddafi regime. I wish both of them to go to deepest hell. But first let the lesser evil inflict huge damages and humiliation on the bigger devil.

  56. I suppose Craig’s almost childlike innocence about certain aspects of the world, and his disarming honesty, coupled with his obvious humanity and true liberalism, is why we are so fond of him.

    His analysis of the debacle in Libya, yet another gross international warcrime, even though the end apparently justifies the means, where have we heard that before, and it makes up for everything, like leading a dying democracy to war again, so soon after Iraq, on a gigantic raft of lies, distortions, exaggerations, and hysterical war-propaganda. There are a frightening number of people on the ‘left’ and the ‘right’ who don’t seem to care about any of this, as long as Gaddafi bites the dust. And they call it democracy?

    It would be interesting to hear Craig’s views on his friend Juan Cole, the expert on the Middle East, who has allowed his obvious and perhaps understandable antipathy towards Gaddafi cloud his judgement to an extraordinary degree. But then all’s fair in love and war, isn’t it?

  57. Osama bin Laden

    26 Aug, 2011 - 10:58 pm

    [Mod/jon: off-topic, deleted]

  58. Canspeccy,

    Thank You, but I think Craig is Innocent, just slightly brain damaged.

    I reckon he will live long enough to make a Full Recoveryand see The Full Picture and see at Least a Bit Of The Justice He is Fighting For.

    He has got many on his side – but we are Few

    But we are all there is

    Tony

  59. @Craig,

    One of your really good posts.

    You call Gadaffi “nuts’ – but he seems to have in a nutty way made some really good social provisions for his people, educated the women, provided health care, supported a number of liberation movements, had a vision for Libya and for Africa – now isn’t that all very nutty? Eccentric – I think would have been a better choice of word. But -as you said – you met the “nut” – so, who am I to speak?

    I think in other regards your post has a finger on the Libyan pulse.

  60. In response to Writeon :-
    “I suppose Craig’s almost childlike innocence about certain aspects of the world, and his disarming honesty, coupled with his obvious humanity and true liberalism, is why we are so fond of him.
    His analysis of the debacle in Libya, yet another gross international warcrime, even though the end apparently justifies the means, where have we heard that before, and it makes up for everything, like leading a dying democracy to war again, so soon after Iraq, on a gigantic raft of lies, distortions, exaggerations, and hysterical war-propaganda. There are a frightening number of people on the ‘left’ and the ‘right’ who don’t seem to care about any of this, as long as Gaddafi bites the dust. And they call it democracy?
    It would be interesting to hear Craig’s views on his friend Juan Cole, the expert on the Middle East, who has allowed his obvious and perhaps understandable antipathy towards Gaddafi cloud his judgement to an extraordinary degree. But then all’s fair in love and war, isn’t it?”

    I ask two(2) questions:-

    1. Where have all the journalists gone?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04PyD0mIm0k
    And –
    2. Why does Juan Cole support this imperialist intervention in Libya?
    http://www.thevoiceslu.com/let_and_op/2011/june/30_06_11/End_the_bombing_of_Libya.htm

  61. Alexander Mercouris

    27 Aug, 2011 - 12:50 am

    This is an outstanding post Craig. I agree with everything you say. I have nothing to add to what you have said. I do not know what shocks me more: the murderous cruelty of those who support these wars or the indifference of the peoples of America and Europe who look on when they happen. I remember once sharing in the bafflement at German indifference to Auschwitz. In the light of the general indifference to the horror in Iraq and now in Libya it is no longer so strange to me. Like the American abolitionist I tremble for my country when I remember that God is just.

  62. In response to Writeon :-
    “I suppose Craig’s almost childlike innocence about certain aspects of the world, and his disarming honesty, coupled with his obvious humanity and true liberalism, is why we are so fond of him.
    His analysis of the debacle in Libya, yet another gross international warcrime, even though the end apparently justifies the means, where have we heard that before, and it makes up for everything, like leading a dying democracy to war again, so soon after Iraq, on a gigantic raft of lies, distortions, exaggerations, and hysterical war-propaganda. There are a frightening number of people on the ‘left’ and the ‘right’ who don’t seem to care about any of this, as long as Gaddafi bites the dust. And they call it democracy?
    It would be interesting to hear Craig’s views on his friend Juan Cole, the expert on the Middle East, who has allowed his obvious and perhaps understandable antipathy towards Gaddafi cloud his judgement to an extraordinary degree. But then all’s fair in love and war, isn’t it?”

    I ask two(2) questions:-

    1. Where have all the journalists gone?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04PyD0mIm0k
    And –
    2. Why does Juan Cole support this imperialist intervention in Libya?
    http://www.thevoiceslu.com/let_and_op/2011/june/30_06_11/End_the_bombing_of_Libya.htm

  63. Bin Liner, I’n not sure who the “pro-911 conspiracy nuts” are that you refer to.
    #
    But, I assume you mean the idiots who think 9/11 was planned by bin Laden from a cave in Afghanistan and executed by 19 non-pilots armed only with box cutters, who entirely outwitted the trillion-dollar Norad air defense system.

    Tony, I agree that whatever of Craig’s brain remains undamaged can certainly be a great asset to whatever cause it is committed.

  64. Why does Juan Cole support this imperialist intervention in Libya?
    http://www.thevoiceslu.com/let_and_op/2011/june/30_06_11/End_the_bombing_of_Libya.htm

  65. Where have all the journalists gone?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04PyD0mIm0k

  66. Kevin Barrington

    27 Aug, 2011 - 3:00 am

    The BBC footage is obviously a mistake. If intentional, apart from giving the game away with the flags, it is lousy propaganda. It does not look like a historic scene of liberation, looks more like a crowd in line for a national sport event.

    The supposedly nefarious plan exposed by the Australian shows at least that the attempts are being make to avoid the arrogance and criminal negligence of the Iraq folly.

    The quote about NATO strikes becoming “unbearable” is of concern.

    However, it is a truncated quote…which makes a suggestive highlight of the word ‘unbearable” but does not give us the context.

    I am sceptical, but open to correction, that this is some Karadvic like pledge of bombing Sarajevo the edge of insanity.

    I thought the paper offered some minor consolation.

    We’ll see.

  67. “I had hoped that the general population in Europe is so educated now that obvious outright lies would be rejected. I even hoped some journalists would seek to expose lies.

    I was wrong, wrong, wrong.”

    An excellent post. I have been discussing this issue along with others on a vaguely left-leaning Guardian-related talkboard. The nature of the discussion shouldn’t surprise me, but it does. What happens is that pro-war posters – and clearly, I don’t know who they are – just refuse to engage in any analysis. They repeat the mantras, and immediately indulge in sly mockery of the ‘pro-Gaddafi’ types. When faced with essential facts – that these rebels are dubious, and often CIA backed – they choose to ignore the essential facts, or actively refute them, without bothering to check. It’s a deeply curious mindset, an almost, dare I say it, dialectic mindset.

    This indeed is linked to the laughable reportage of much of the visual-media. I’m not sure it’s all that much better in the written media, though I concede that there is some difference in quality. In all the time since we invaded, I have read, or viewed, almost nothing about the rebels, not beyond ‘they are the rebels, and Star Wars teaches us that Rebels Are Good.’ Star Wars is responsible for a lot, I’m sure. And the pertinent question – since when do we take part in a civil war – is simply not asked: do we – i.e, NATO – now legally take part in civil wars? It seems we do, and I missed a memo.

    I don’t even reckon myself all that clever, just reasonably educated, and with an honorable skepticism about military propaganda. I’m sure the media, and the talkboards, are not representative, mind, and others are as skeptical as I.

  68. Writeon, Courtenay:
    .
    I too have found Juan Cole’s blogging on Libya to be very surprising. I get the feeling that Juan has a big blind spot when it comes to Obama, he seems to take Obama’s words at face value and applies none of the same scepticism as when Bush was in office. I don’t expect people to all have the same views as me, but I have been very disappointed with the limited range of views he allows in his comments section. The lack of free discussion has caused me to lose a lot of respect for his work. Over the space of 2 weeks, I tried 3 times to post a link to Craig’s Bahrain post (US green light to Saudi invasion), each time it was denied. Numerous other comments I have tried to post have been denied and all were polite, on topic and even limited to the mainstream framework of political discussion. Juan has also repeatedly said that those against the NATO bombing are pro Gaddafi, despite the fact he used to rail against being called pro Saddam when he was against the Iraq war. It’s sad, it used to be one of my favourite blogs, but now I see little reason to visit.

  69. miketherevelator

    27 Aug, 2011 - 6:29 am

    Excellent post, although I do agree with Syd Walker 100%. I’m not sure you were saying they all deserved a NATO attack, but still it was written in a way that that could be perceived. All enemies of the west need to be demonized and once you’ve demonized the religion of an entire vast area, it’s very simple to get the people to believe any leader must by definition be a despot of some kind.
    Of course the truth is that nobody has given NATO, the UN or the USA the job of deciding what regimes need to be changed and then invading those countries and seeing that it happens. Forced regime change for oil is an arogant, evil business, made easier when the leader is ”brutal” and the people begging us for help. But empires always end up on the dark side, natural resources always end up taking priority over human beings, especially when you can BS the population that it’s all humanitarian and will be of great help to the ‘real’ people of that country. If any are left by the time NATO and/or the US get done establishing NO LIVE ZONES with Obama’s beloved drones. People believe what they choose to believe. Juan Cole has bitten so deeply into the Obama apple, his posts anymore are little more than drivel. To still be thinking this is some kind of noble humanitarian operation defies credulity but he is by no means the only “liberal” who sees this as some kind of victory for our side.
    Any reasonable look at what is going on already in Libya that does not take the violence and chaos that most likely lies ahead into account is dishonest. And that more than the drivel is what bothers me about ‘experts’ like Cole.

  70. It’s not good enough to say being a liberal is not easy, etc.

    For those who supported humanitarian intervention by NATO to prevent a massacre of his own citizens by Gaddafi, we now have an endgame that looks like

    a) collective punishment via aerial bombardment by NATO forces
    to be followed by b) ‘rebels’ massacring fellow Libyans

    In other words, rather similar, or worse, than what the original intervention was supposed to prevent.

    It’s clear. NATO should not be believed. The use of humanitarian intervention to justify this was simply a neat way of either forcing those predisposed to dissent to come onside, or to place them in the awkward position of arguing (supposedly) for a massacre of the innocents by a bloodthirsty dictator.

  71. FunkyMonkeyAC

    27 Aug, 2011 - 7:19 am

    The tragedy is that Libya is only the latest country targeted for regime change. After Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia, the U.S./NATO/Israel alliance has other countries selected for regime change including Iran, Syria, Lebanon, North Korea, Sudan, Algeria, Eritrea, Zimbabwe, Myanmar, Venezuela, Cuba, Bolivia, Belarus and even Russia (through covert support of opposition groups), being countries that are not aligned with the strategic interests of this alliance. Unfortunately, this globally expanding aggressive militarism is far from over. Just as the militarism of former military powers ended in a world war, similarly it is likely that this globally expanding militarism (which is occurring in conjunction with the U.S./NATO pursuit of nuclear primacy through multi-layered missile architecture and the build-up / expansion of military alliances) will likely result in a conflict that will have profound implications for humanity.

  72. ‘Gaddafi is no saint’ – ‘Oh yes he is’ (July 10th)
    .
    In 2011, when Muammar Gaddafi was demonised more than ever, many people around the world felt an urge to remind the rest of us that “Gaddafi is no saint.”
    Google reported the phrase “Gaddafi is no saint” about 1,580 times. This figure doesn’t encompass the many other spellings of Gaddafi’s name.
    This attempt to bring us to sobriety didn’t quite work for me – in fact it looked ridiculously out of place.
    While there are people who view Gaddafi as a saint, they didn’t participate in the online discussions; they were mostly in Libya, bombed.
    Sainthood is culture dependent. The people who said “Gaddafi is no saint” never indicated their criteria for sainthood: Sunni, Sufi, Christian, or perhaps altogether secular ones? Was anyone a saint in their view?
    And since when did these pundits become interested in sainthood in the first place?
    And if they know a lot, how much they know of Gaddafi in order to judge him? Have they studied his life, or informed themselves from popular journals and TV shows?
    If they were suddenly transported to Tripoli, would they tell the people that their worship of Gaddafi (which is a segment of the Libyan culture) is “wrong”?
    And one more point. In this age, many have forgotten a simple truth:
    Sainthood isn’t about being perfect. It’s about striving for perfection. In other words, you don’t have to be an angel in order to be a saint.*
    .
    If you ask me, I think Gaddafi will be celebrated like a saint for millenia to come. You see, it’s due to the national transformation he led. It’s like the transformations in the film 2001: Space Odyssey. Too powerful, miraculous and positive, not to be retold as a legend.
    .
    (* I borrowed this phrase from another great fighter for Africa, Albert Schweitzer)

    http://out-of-beirut.livejournal.com/3121.html

  73. NATO is frantically ratcheting up the violence, because it is rapidly running out of time. In a fortnight, it runs smack into the tenth anniversary of 9/11. And it’s hand-in-glove with al-Qa’eda! What’s more, the relationship is very well documented, and widely known. Ditto Malcolm Rifkind’s support for al-Qa’eda’s 1996 coup attempt. Not a good place to be.

    There’s also an irony attached to UNSCR 1973. In the year 1973, on 21st February, Israel shot down Libyan Arab Airlines Flight 114. This Boeing 727 had gone off course in a sandstorm. When Israeli fighters intercepted it over Sinai, the pilot realised his error, and headed west, away from Israel. But they shot him down, and 108 people died. No action was ever taken against Israel, and the incident is seldom remembered. As British lawyers are currently demanding ten million dollars for each Lockerbie victim, on the basis of a shonky prosecution with bribed witnesses, we can conclude one Libyan life is worth one ten-millionth of an English or American life. Which also explains NATO’s violence.

  74. “If you ask me, I think Gaddafi will be celebrated like a saint for millenia to come. You see, it’s due to the national transformation he led. It’s like the transformations in the film 2001: Space Odyssey. Too powerful, miraculous and positive, not to be retold as a legend.” Levantine.
    .
    A Gaddafi Romance Cycle, possibly. Or ‘Muammar Gaddafi: The Space Opera’?
    .
    On another note, those people who seem incapable of comprehending that Craig Murray was being sarcastic as a means of highlighting NATO/Western hypocrisy (and that it is deeply silly for anyone to read his post as advocating NATO bombing of Bahrain et al) themselves probably need a dose of ‘Space Opera’.
    .
    To reiterate, NATO is engaged in (another) criminal, imperialist war of aggression on behalf its fat-cat elites. Gaddafi is just another ‘Third World’ potentate who has outlived his managerial usefulness to those elites. Oil and Africa: It is a C21st re-make of 1880-90. No need to beatify him, or them, no need for theology. This is politics. Better to quote Machiavelli, rather than Aquinas.

  75. “one Libyan life is worth one ten-millionth of an English or American life.” Bob Jackson.
    .
    Of course. Black, brown and yellow people (unless they’re in the White House or its equivalents; you see, as before, there is a difference the ‘house’ and the ‘field’) are viewed largely as vermin. Nothing new.

  76. See the destruction and mayhem here. The Russian reporter pronounces rebels as rabbles! They have not even the decency to bury the bloated rotting bodies.
    .
    http://www.youtube.com/user/RussiaToday#p/u/6/4viPcBmqV00

  77. BBC: ‘Huge problem of public health – with no water or proper sanitation’
    Posted by The Editors on August 27, 2011, 10:54 am

    The West’s Midas touch in reverse, again. Almost beyond belief (and no doubt this is only a tiny, partial glimpse of the reality).

    ‘Most of the fighting in the capital appears to be over. The bigger problem here now is a humanitarian one.

    ‘++This is a city of two million people with no effective political direction or leadership++. The real political leadership and the people who need to take control of the situation are not here and ++practically what that means is that when it comes to resources like water there is none, and there’s hardly any electricity++ – there was a blackout across Tripoli last night and only those hotels or buildings with generators had any power.

    ‘There’s also a huge problem of public health – with ++no water or proper sanitation++ there’s a very difficult issue developing in many parts of the city.’

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-14690119

  78. Well now they own Libya.. even if there is no foreign forces left in Libya, the policies are going to be dictated from afar..Did Libyan think that after letting NATO in they will be allowed to determine their own future? I hope and pray Syria will not go the the same way.

    http://www.newcivilisation.com/home/middle-east/understanding-clinton%E2%80%99s-statement-on-libya-%E2%80%93-%E2%80%9Cwe-own-you%E2%80%9D

  79. For anyone still harbouring the delusion of some kind of popular uprising in Libya look at these scenes of jubilation in “rebel” controlled areas in Tripoli:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/RussiaToday#p/u/6/4viPcBmqV00

  80. So maybe now Bob Geldof will ‘sing a song for Libya’. Africa is for charity, after all. “Don’t they know it’s Christmastime at all…” Crap.

  81. @Tom Welsh: on the existence of democracy – a very good point. I agree there is no widespread support for the bombing, though I am not sure why there has not been a highly visible British opposition to it. Perhaps most activists inclined against war have been demoralised by – as you say – the 2003 marches being ignored? There are lots of little propaganda lies, of course, but perhaps the Big Lie is missing this time around? Or maybe people feel that the situation under Gaddafi might be worse than Iraq under Hussein? I don’t know – and there are too many opposing arguments about how much support Gaddafi has, or does not have, to make an informed decision.
    .
    In terms of a pure democracy generally, Evgueni and I had a great discussion about this recently, which weaved back and forth between that topic and a fairer economic system. I am fully in favour of more democracy, and generally believe that an improvement in the quality/independence of our media system would go hand-in-hand with improving our democratic enfranchisement.
    .
    > http://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2011/07/why-die-with-money/

  82. Tarig, you give an interesting angle but, I think, to some extent it is misplaced. The Pan Africanism of Nkrumah and Lumumba et al was and is laudable. Africa should unite as a single economic trading block (not a single state) with tariffs, etc., just like the EU has done. But your seeming insistence on alluding to essentialist concepts which seem very close to those of ‘race’ detracts from your argument and almost puts your basic premise in the same bracket as that of White Supremacists in Europe. This type of ideation was used for heinous purposes by bloody dictators like Mobutu and Amin.
    .
    The peoples in Africa are – and always have been – hugely mixed. This applies also to the northern parts of Africa. Goths, Vandals, Arabs, Turks, Greeks, Romans, Spanish, Jews… all have been there for hundreds, or even thousands of years and have mixed with Berbers and other groups. What are you going to do, using ‘mitochondria’ or other such nonsense, sort out who is a ‘real’ African down to the fourth generation and boot out all the others? And in any case, what was the ‘original population-type’ of Africa (or Europe, or Asia)? It’s a fool’s errand and will not help the peoples of Africa achieve true self-determination.
    .
    I agree completely about Arab (and Turkish) imperialism, the part played by Arabs and Turks in the slave trade and continuing Arab chauvinism and discrimination. I also agree with you about the malign role played by Islamic Fundamentalism in Africa, including wrt the Copts in Egypt, the attacks on whom are utterly shameful and must be opposed. But the answer to such belligerent tribalism is not to sow yet more tribalism.
    .
    The real enemies of the peoples of Africa are those who wield power in the current criminal global economic system and it is towards the systems developed by these elites – whatever the colour of their skin, whatever their supposed creed, whatever their language or location – that the struggle ought to be directed.

  83. Colin, it is a very good link, and an indication of things to come! Libya and Iraq both have many tribes and as many as 2000 Sub tribes (clans) each, how to unite them and bring them together?? that is not going to be easy!the only difference is that Muslims in Libya are almost all Sunni, therefore no rivalry there. One can only hope.

  84. Furthermore, Tarig, what have got against Palestinians? They are a forced diaspora, many of whom swelter in camps but some of whom have done very well (and good on them). So some of them will work for Western, or pro-Western news outlets. And some will not. Some will be doctors, nurses, teachers, bus drivers. Is there something that irritates you about Palestinians? Do you think that they are going to take over the world? Do they think they ought to continue to be oppressed by Israel?

  85. I think, for the most part, the ‘quality’ of jounalism in the overwhelming number of reports and articles relating to this latest western ‘intervention’ or ‘crusade for freedom’, has been appalling bad. But is that really surprising, we are, after all, fighting abroad against an unpopular tyrant and the political class are, judging from the parliamentary debates, 100% behind this ‘war.’

    It’s perhaps natural that the jounalsists follow the political lead, that is, their role in most situations, isn’t it?

    What’s more troubling is the wretched discontinuity between the level of public scepticism and outright opposition to yet another costly overseas adventure/war, and how little of this opposition is honestly reflected in our media and by our politicians. For example, most, if not all, our newspapers, television stations, and radio programmes, support the aims of the war, virtually without scrutiny or criticism, and supposedly we have a ‘free’ press and a broad spectrum of views are expressed across the political spectrum. But, given the numbers who are against the latest war, for a variety of reasons, where is the TV, newspaper, radio station, that’s on their side?

    Our media give a grossly distorted picture of what’s going on. The impression that the entire world backs the attack on Libya and is cheering from the sidelines. This is the exact opposite of the truth, yet from the UK media, we’d never know this.

    I think our journalists should be honest and wear military uniforms so that everyone can make their own judgements about where they stand and what their role is in wartime, though I suppose this might be giving the game away.

  86. Suhyal, the treatment of Copts in Egypt and attacks.. I have a well informed Coptic friend who is a Journalist , she and many other Copts firmly believe that it is not the Islamist who are attacking the Copts, but the secret police in Egypt, who want to cause problems and divide Muslim and Copts .Apparently when the secret service head office was broken into they found documents regarding the previous attacks on Copts during Hosni’s rule relating to this kind of tactics. To me it sounds quite feasible. Same tactics as in Vietnam! As you said they are shameful and they should be stopped, but stopped by who??

  87. Juan Cole, maybe sincere, but I somehow doubt it. He’s seen how priciples have damaged the careers of other leading academics, and understandably he doesn’t want to become tainted as well.

    In the strange sectarian world of US politics, which reminds one of the serious schism between City and United, being a Democrat or a Republican means a lot, despite the obvious similarities between the two ruling parties, often to the point of them becoming indistinguishable from each other on most substantive issues, when in power. The brazen rhetoric of the campaign trail is only for public consumption and is not to be taken for more than it really is, glossy marketing to create a profile signifying nothing.

    Of course if Obama is virtually identical to Bush, if not worse, then the two-party system breaks down, and a one-party democratic state begins to seem like a puzzling paradox.

  88. Azra, thanks. Very interesting and not surprising – same dynamic in Pakistan and Alegria wrt attacks on civilians. It is usually the work of the security forces.

  89. Algeria, not Alegria!

  90. If Tripoli is under rebel & al Qaeda[1] control for four days already, and NTC is effective (says John Simpson [2]), why is Tripoli still without water & electricity [3]?

    This is the likely answer to my question –

    LibyanLiberal [4] tired and the supplies are cut, we will die all here.we are surrounded and ready to face martyrdom. nato will not get us. nor the rebels.

    LibyanLiberal NATO is planning to exterminate every resist in Tripoli by cutting the water and forcing us to starve and die. if we go out rebels snipes us. [4]

    In reaction, the UN is doing – what?

    Today, 27 August, UN say “reports suggest… the water supply may be in danger.” [5]

    Reports SUGGEST?! most of Tripoli is already without water for days!

    A major genocide of the people of Tripoli is prepared with a cooperation of UN organs.

    [1] http://edition.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/africa/08/26/libya.militants.analysis/index.html http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgBzZtzqQ_M&feature=feedu

    [2] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-14683319

    [3] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-14691755

    [4] https://twitter.com/#!/LibyanLiberal

    [5]http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=39396&Cr=Libya&Cr1=

  91. Interesting article by an Indian professor on excellent site, Wikispooks.
    .
    https://wikispooks.com/wiki/Document:NATO_destroys_yet_another_country
    .

  92. Oh please.

    We lie to ourselves to reconcile our conscious.

    There were many, seemingly, well reasoned arguments to justify the enslavement of fellow human beings and every other atrocity committed through out history.

    We are committing armed robbery and using mass murder to do it.

    End of.

    “You are either with us or agin us”

    God will judge our silence and self denial, as surely God he will judge those that orchestrate these nefarious and deadly wars that wreck havoc, devastation, death and bereavement against fellow men, women and children.

    The really stupid thing is that the cowardly mases that sell their souls by indulging in the lie, will reap no material benefit from these atrocities only the material costs and who knows, maybe even the wrath of revenge.

  93. I wonder, is the western/nato grand strategy, not so much incompetent, wrong-headed, and counter-productive, in other words – mistaken, but something far, far, worse?

    That the mass destruction, collosal loss of life, and apparent chaos, are, in fact, the aim of the strategy, to destroy as much as possible, kill as many as possible, and effectively ‘Balkanize’ the countries and engtire regions we are attacking, undermining, and occupying?

    Are the Americans and their allies really as stupid as they seem, or are they much worse, deliberately smashing that which they desire to control? Look at Pakistan, for example, here the Americans are adopting a policy which is seemingly designed to tear the coutnry apart or lead to a war with India, which might involve China, and destroy all of them. Is this just a coincidence, or part of a truly vile and criminally insane longterm strategy?

  94. FunkyMonkeyAC

    27 Aug, 2011 - 3:23 pm

    Besides the phenomenon of militarism associated with successive political engineering efforts (regime change), there are also strong parallels with events that led not only to the great depression but more significantly to the last world war. A global economic crisis, significant military build-ups, the expansion and militarisation of opposing (now nuclear armed) alliances, aggressive militarism and gradually globally expanding conflicts. Despite the fact that history seems to be largely repeating, there is little recognition of this situation. The militarism of a different military power is now globally expanding as is the parallel military encirclement of Russia and China with military bases, multi-layered missile architecture, naval forces, militarisation of strategic alliances and the concurrent escalation of tensions over global energy resources and strategic pipeline routes. The dangerous pursuit of nuclear primacy ( the ability to launch a first strike in the event of war and destroy any surviving retaliatory missiles) risks triggering a conflict as Russia and China have stated they will not allow other powers to attain nuclear primacy capabilities.

    “They tell us their missile shield is not aimed against us, but we tell them our calculations show it is aimed against us.” (Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov)

    “This is a decision that has been made. We will not change it.” (NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen on the alliance’s decision to build multi-layered missile architecture)

    “If they (NATO) do not by the end of the year tell us exactly what they’re planning … we will respond.” (Russia’s ambassador to NATO Dmitry Rogozin)

    “We are starting to build a deterrent construct that will be better than mutual assured destruction” (U.S. General James E. Cartwright)

    “We will never give any one control over our red button, never……. a NATO decision to go ahead with the missile defence system in its present form, without consulting Moscow, would have serious consequences” (Russia’s ambassador to NATO Dmitry Rogozin)

    With the parallel expanding efforts to achieve numerous regime changes, targeting successive strategic opponents through military interventions, the expansion of U.S./NATO military bases in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the significant U.S. armament of Taiwan, escalating tension in the South China Sea, the impending conflict with Iran (and possibly a regional Middle Eastern war), the probability of eventual conflict with North Korea, the militarisation of energy resource conflicts, and the military encirclement of Russia and China with military bases and multi-layered missile architecture, there is a bigger picture many people do not see yet. If we do not recognise the likely result of current developments, it is unfortunate that within a few years, we probably will.

  95. kevin michael

    27 Aug, 2011 - 4:41 pm

    Funkeymonkey, the concept of history repeating itself, most likely, is true, the same decisions are made, the same inflexible people are in the decision making loop. Yet, i would look further back when the land between the Tigris an Euphrates was in strife, due to it’s soil. i could be wrong, yet the papyrus headlines, (joke), would have been extremely similar to today’s. This seems like a, “no brainer”, to me.
    Today i ran into a concrete wall, it hurt, i will not do it again. This somewhat simplistic, yet running into that wall until some magical new reaction from said wall would be considered…what, courageous, or insane?
    Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

    please excuse the commas i think i am addicted to them.

  96. kevin michael

    27 Aug, 2011 - 4:45 pm

    me again, i left out an is, must have been knocked out of me when i hit the wall.

    Funkeymonkey, the concept of history repeating itself, most likely, is true, the same decisions are made, the same inflexible people are in the decision making loop. Yet, i would look further back when the land between the Tigris an Euphrates was in strife, due to it’s soil. i could be wrong, yet the papyrus headlines, (joke), would have been extremely similar to today’s. This seems like a, “no brainer”, to me.
    Today i ran into a concrete wall, it hurt, i will not do it again. This (IS) somewhat simplistic, yet running into that wall until some magical new reaction from said wall would be considered…what, courageous, or insane?
    Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

    please excuse the commas i think i am addicted to them.

  97. exiledlondoner

    27 Aug, 2011 - 5:46 pm

    Kingfelix,
    .
    I assume you were replying to my earlier post…
    .
    It’s not good enough to say being a liberal is not easy, etc.
    .
    I know it isn’t – problem is, I don’t know what would be good enough. If anyone can tell me the good enough liberal position, I’d be delighted to hear it.
    .
    For those who supported humanitarian intervention by NATO to prevent a massacre of his own citizens by Gaddafi, we now have an endgame that looks like
    .
    a) collective punishment via aerial bombardment by NATO forces to be followed by b) ‘rebels’ massacring fellow Libyans
    .
    In other words, rather similar, or worse, than what the original intervention was supposed to prevent.
    .
    I’m not going to oppose your counter-factual assertions with some of my own – I don’t know what would have happened if there had been no intervention, other than it’s pretty certain Gaddafi would still be there.
    .
    I, and many like me, didn’t support NATO intervention, and don’t support much of what has been done, but if you turn the debate on its head and ask me if I think Gaddafi should have been left to do his worst, then the answer is still no….

  98. Suhayl Saadi, “same dynamic in Pakistan and Algeria wrt attacks on civilians. It is usually the work of the security forces.”

    Indeed, see here for details of Algerian state infiltration/utilisation of the GIA ‘terrorist’ group

  99. booneavenueboy

    27 Aug, 2011 - 6:26 pm

    You say, “I have met Gaddafi. He really is nuts and dangerous.” What evidence do you have for this diagnosis? I have run into a number of similar allegations on the Web in regard to Gaddafi’s “psychosis” but no one is able to back up these claims. Where is your evidence?

  100. @Writeon, Cheebacow,

    It was posted:-

    “I have been very disappointed with the limited range of views he allows in his comments section. The lack of free discussion has caused me to lose a lot of respect for his work”

    Juan Cole posted ten points against Gadaffi and this prompted me to respond to him. The first post was accepted. He gave a riposte and thereafter I set out to identify his errors in what he posted. I tried some 4 or 5 times to post but was blocked.

    I then published my views elsewhere and a US Professor picked up on what I said, posted elsewhere and gave my post a little mileage.

    So far as Cole and his blog and ideas are concerned, I can safely say this:-

    1. He does not permit fair and honest exchanges ( as does Craig Murray).
    2. He seems to fit within the camp of “liberal interventionists” – and in that camp there is no compunction about breach of sovereignty – – and like many on the right the “humanitarian”, “democracy” and “freedom” arguments are relied on to justify the illegality under international law violations. I believe I am fair and accurate in saying that Cole is within this camp.
    My views on him have changed and I must now question his political ( if not academic) bona fides.

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