Madness, Misinformation, Militias and NATO’s Misadventure in Libya

Libya's UN-backed GNA condemns Greece for expelling Ambassador
Libya’s Foreign Minister Mohamed Taher Siala (R) speaks during a joint press conference with his German counterpart Heiko Maas in Zuwarah, about 160 km west of Tripoli, on October 27, 2019. (Photo by Mahmud TURKIA / AFP)

In the American mind, military campaigns to overthrow despots, nation-building missions to stabilise a foreign country, including peacekeeping and counterinsurgency are ‘good wars’.

However, using its enormous clout as the world’s hyperpower, the United States pumped over $1.1 Billion into war machines to intervene in Libya in order to oust long-term President Muammar Gaddafi.

It marked the third time in ten years that Washington deployed lies and misinformation, forcing regime change yet failing to plan for the aftermath of such “Interventions”.

By arming anti-Gaddafi forces, the bastion of democracy, the United States, Britain and France secured UN security council resolution 1973 (2011) as justification for invading a peaceful, prosperous Libya.

The Libya inquiry launched in July 2015 was birthed from research and consultations with politicians, scholars, journalists and for over a year.

The report revealed that while Gaddafi was not planning to massacre civilians, or insurgents, the West had exaggerated the story based on little or no intelligence. The threat of violent insurgents which was basically the cause of uprising was ignored and the NATO bombing made this threat even worse, giving extremist murderous militant ISIS a base in North Africa. 

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France, which initiated the military intervention, was moved by economic and political interests, and not humanitarian ones.

Foreign media platforms, especially Qatar based Al Jazeera, BBC and Saudi Arabia’s Al Arabiya also spread unverified stories about Gaddafi and the Libyan government.

NATO’s bombings plunged Libya into a humanitarian disaster, killing thousands of people, disabling thousands and displacing hundreds of thousands more, thereby taking Libya from an African country with the highest standard of living status to a failed state status.

The French Intelligence Agencies listed factors that motivated Sarkozy as a desire to gain greater share of Libya oil production, increasing French influence in North Africa, providing the French military with an opportunity to reassert its position in the world, and addressing the concern of advisors over Gaddafi’s long-term plans to supplant France as the dominant power in Francophone Africa.

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Before Ghaddafi’s death, Libya had been the wealthiest nation in Africa, with the highest life expectancy and GDP per capita.

In his book “Perilous Interventions,” former Indian representative to the United Nations, Hardeep Singh Puri stated that before the war, Libya had less poor people than the Netherlands.

Libyans had access to free health care, education, electricity and interest-free loans, and women had great freedoms that had been applauded by the U.N. Human Rights Council in January 2011, on the eve of the war that destroyed the government.

As a result of mindless interference of foreign forces, self-styled warlords and mercenaries now control vast swathes of oil deposits. Libya has become one of the most dangerous places to visit or live… a ’convenient’ transit for transnational arms proliferation and choice route for African migrants leaving Africa, through the Mediterranean, to Europe.

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Virtually all foreign involvement and rival foreign power costs are little compared to what Libyans suffer… like vultures circling, desperate to strip the Libyan carcass clean.

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