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 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 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.
26th August 2011
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?”
“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.