Skip to main content

Follow clayclai on Twitter
On September 5th, Chris Hedges wrote a very pessimistic article on Truthdig titled Libya: Here We Go Again. His title reflects the very common view among many on the left in the US that whatever happens in Libya, as with the rest of the world, it's all about the United States. This is also the view held by CCDS and numerous other "left" groups that Libya is just like Iraq [from the US POV] and "we've been through this movie before." In other words, same old stuff, nothing new to see here. Nothing to learn. Whatever the Libyans may have accomplished or are trying to accomplish is not nearly so important as what Hedges thinks the US government wants, and therefore will get, out of the Libyan revolution.

To understand why Hedges is promoting such a pessimistic outlook on the future of Libya, we must, for the moment, skip over the garbage that constitutes the body of his article and "cut to the chase" in the last paragraph where he calls for foreign "boots on the ground", which we will review in full:

The vendettas in Libya have already begun. Government buildings in Tripoli have been looted, although not on the scale seen in Baghdad.

And we might add to that, not even on the scale recently seen in London. As @libya20 tweeted on August 26, "Looting in #Tripoli was much less than that in #London despite there is no police in Tripoli and a lot of them in London" While Qaddafi's luxury villa may have been ransacked and looted and the western media has been throwing up a scare about suspected looting of arms depots, there has been almost no looting of the type that is common in western cities as soon as law and order breaks down. Did Hedges call for a UN "peacekeeping" force to be dispatched to London?
Poor black sub-Saharan African immigrant workers have been beaten and killed.

Although there have been exaggerations in the pro-Qaddafi press, this has been a real problem which the NTC is starting to deal with but as I noted in Racism in Libya, it's not exactly a problem that is new in Libya. Did Hedges call for a UN "peacekeeping" force when 150 black Africans were slaughtered in Tripoli in 2001 and hundreds of thousands were interned in Qaddafi's desert detention camps?
Suspected Gadhafi loyalists or spies have been tortured and assassinated. These eye-for-an-eye killings will, I fear, get worse.

While excesses and atrocities can be found on every side in every war, there is no widespread evidence of "torture and assassination" among those captured by the revolutionary forces. Al Jazeera reported on the same day Hedges published his piece:
In recent days, fighters said they had conducted sweeps through the capital and acted on informants' tips to carry out the targeted arrests of ex-regime members.

The arrests of confirmed Gaddafi loyalists, however, have been limited. Some former high-ranking officials claimed they turned themselves in, including Abdelati Obeidi, former foreign minister, and Jibril Kadiki, former deputy commander of Gaddafi's air defence forces.


Imagine that! Qaddafi loyalists turning themselves in to be "tortured and assassinated." Too bad they didn't check with Truthdig before they made that fatal error. I'm surprised Obeidi is still among the living.

As to Chris Hedges' "fear," I will address that shortly and show that it has absolutely nothing to do with the current situation in Libya.

The National Transitional Council has announced that it opposes the presence in Libya of U.N. military observers and police, despite widespread atrocities committed by Gadhafi loyalists.

Yes, the NTC has very wisely refused any UN or NATO "boots on the ground" and with a little help from NATO and Qatari air power, they have in six months reduced the area in which Qaddafi loyalists are free to commit atrocities to three small and surrounded areas, and there is no reason to believe they can't now finish the job in a month or so without foreign "boots on the ground."
The observers and police have been offered to help quell the chaos,

      September 17th started another school year in Libya..
Children starting school today in LibyaThe chaos which seems to exist only in the minds of those that need it as an excuse for sending in the marines. Imagine the courage of the stream of international heads of state and other dignitaries who have braved the "chaos" to visit Libya's liberated capital, not to mention the courage of ordinary Tripolians who are starting to get back to their normal lives. Yesterday September 17th, was the first day of the school year in Libya and at least some schools started on schedule.
train new security forces and provide independent verification of what is happening inside Libya.

Because now that Qaddafi is gone, Libyans obviously can't be trusted to run their own country. Clearly from this we can see that Hedges doesn't think the Libyan forces that won the civil war can secure the peace but by what logic does the "socialist" and "anti-imperialist" Hedges conclude that a UN force would be "independent?" Independent, perhaps, of the will of the Libyan people, but certainly not independent of the machinations of the NATO imperialists.
But just as Gadhafi preferred to do dirty work in secret, so will the new regime.

What exactly is the basic of this charge? Is the Internet still being blocked? Have there been any restrictions to freedom of the press in liberated Libya? By most accounts the people of Libya and the press have been enjoying a freedom there that they have not known for 42 years. If anything, I think they need to tighten up on the "freedom of the press" a little because while I was very pleased to see the work product of the Qaddafi-era documents that an Al Jazeera reporter smuggled out of the state security building showing the close relationship between the Dennis Kucinich and the Qaddafi regime, I thought it bad that they had been left unguarded and available for the taking. Perhaps that is the 'looting of government buildings' to which Hedges is referring?

He ends his piece with a final shot of cynicism, indicating that he, with his infinite experience in world affairs, doesn't think anything will change or can change.

It is an old truism, one I witnessed repeatedly in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and the Balkans, that yesterday's victims rapidly become today's victimizers.

Well Chris, you have never witnessed a revolution like this before!

So the bottomline is that Chris Hedges is pushing for UN forces on the ground in Libya. He must now be a little embarrassed that a week after he called for them in Libya, UN "peacekeepers" have been charged with rape in Haiti. He should also know, given his extensive experience in the 3rd world, that a UN "peacekeeping" force will in reality do little to keep the peace. Witness the bang up job they did in the Cote d'Ivoire. What they really represent is an opportunity for the great powers, which control the UN and will determine the composition and real agenda of any UN mission to get imperialist "boots on the ground" because as has been point out by a US defense analysts "it may be difficult to cement any victory in Libya without ground troops."

I will not critique the body of his article in the same way. You see how tedious it has been to set right just this last paragraph. However, I will run through a few of the main points so you will understand that I am not being mean when I call it garbage.

If Hedges knew as much about Libya as he claimed, he wouldn't be "waiting for a trucked-in crowd to rejoice." On February 20th Libyan's went to what is now known as Martyrs Square to protest the Qaddafi regime peacefully and in large numbers, about 800 of them were murdered. The people rejoicing there as Hedges penned that line represented the freed people of Tripoli in their tens of thousands and they didn't have to be "trucked in." There is no "occupation" of Tripoli. The uprising from within the city led its liberation on August 20th.

He thinks he knows Libya, but he has only known Libya under the dictatorship Mummar Qaddafi, a man that even Hedges calls "insane" so he has no sound basis for now predicting "chaos and bloodletting." He supported "stopping Gadhafi forces from entering Benghazi." but apparent thinks nothing should have been done to stop him from entering Misrata. He is clearly opposed to NATO having any role in protecting civilians in Sirte now, where Qaddafi may be holding as many and 60,000 people as human shields. Because of that, NATO really can't do much, which why it is turning into a house-to-house slug feast.

He claims the NTC has put the number of Libyan's killed in the civil war at 50,000 whereas their official number is 30,000 according to the interim health minister. The 50,000 figure was given by a colonel according to PressTV.

For a guy that came from Harvard and use to work for the NY Times, to produce work of that quality is to produce garbage. Besides which, it is this last paragraph that contains what we call in filmmaking "the money shot", or in comedy "the punchline", or more appropriately in this case, what we call in business "the bottomline."

And the bottomline is that the "socialist" and "anti-imperialist" Chris Hedges is joining the chorus of voices led by NATO, that now include Russia and China, that are demanding UN intervention, not in the war in Libya but in the peace. Every paragraph that proceeds this is just more garbage heaped on top of garbage in the hopes that by the time you reach what we call in the protest movement "the demand", you won't notice that what he is demanding is the capitulation of the revolution to imperialism.

Beside which, the thinking behind Hedges' dismal outlook for the Libyan revolution really has nothing to do with Libya or the facts on the ground there. If we want to understand what is going on in Chris Hedges' head, rather than spending more time on this piece he recently wrote about Libya, we would be better served by looking at a piece he wrote almost a year before the February 17th uprising. That piece is Zero Point of Systemic Collapse, and although it doesn't even mention Libya, I think we will find a better explanation for his views on Libya there than anything in the more recent piece that we have been examining. Here he sums up his worldview:

We stand on the cusp of one of the bleakest periods in human history when the bright lights of a civilization blink out and we will descend for decades, if not centuries, into barbarity. The elites have successfully convinced us that we no longer have the capacity to understand the revealed truths presented before us or to fight back against the chaos caused by economic and environmental catastrophe. As long as the mass of bewildered and frightened people, fed images that permit them to perpetually hallucinate, exist in this state of barbarism, they may periodically strike out with a blind fury against increased state repression, widespread poverty and food shortages. But they will lack the ability and self-confidence to challenge in big and small ways the structures of control. The fantasy of widespread popular revolts and mass movements breaking the hegemony of the corporate state is just that a fantasy.

So even before it happens, the possibility that the Arab Spring, or any other mass movement could result in any revolutionary, or even long lasting progressive change, is completely denied. Believing this, how could he possibly see a way the Libyan revolution could succeed? More gems from this piece include:
We have undergone, as John Ralston Saul writes, a coup d'etat in slow motion. And the coup is over. They won. We lost.
and
We will begin a period in human history when there will be only masters and serfs.

So you see that the possibility that the Libyan uprising could create anything substantially better that Libya under Qaddafi is completely denied before it even begins. He doesn't need to call on his vast experience in the 3rd world or Libya at all to reach his conclusion, that's just to convince you he knows what he is talking about. And his conclusion is that the Libyan revolutionaries, if there really are any, were beaten before they begin and just don't know it yet.

In other words, Resistance is Futile. Not that Hedges thinks that we should stop resisting:

The increasingly overt uses of force by the elites to maintain control should not end acts of resistance. Acts of resistance are moral acts. They begin because people of conscience understand the moral imperative to challenge systems of abuse and despotism. They should be carried out not because they are effective but because they are right. Those who begin these acts are always few in number and dismissed by those who hide their cowardice behind their cynicism.

If resistance is purely a moral act, with no practical possibility of success, then any compromise to enhance that success can also be denied.
We must continue to resist, but do so now with the discomforting realization that significant change will probably never occur in our lifetime.

This is not a theory for building a popular revolutionary movement.

Chris Hedges thinks that the best thing progressives can do is find a quiet, secure place, perhaps in Canada, to weather the coming storm. I think that is exactly what he should do, or maybe he should go back to the NY Times, if they will have him. That is his proper place. The bourgeois press is already home for many petty-bourgeois cynics.  But he should stop spreading his cynicism and pessimism and he should stop calling himself a progressive. Progressive are people with an optimistic outlook and great faith in what humanity can accomplish and he should certainly stop calling himself a socialist because socialists are revolutionaries that not only wish for a better world and are willing to fight for it, but also have a clear and confident vision of how it can be achieved.

In short, he should get out of the way, go write a long novel or something.



For more background on the Libyan Revolution and links to lots of information see my other writings at the DailyKos and WikiLeaks Central:
The Worm Has Turned: Good Film on Libyan Revolution from PressTV
Why NATO's mission in Libya isn't over yet
Libya's Freedom Fighters: How They Won
Racism in Libya
Abdul Rahman Gave his Eyes to See the End of Qaddafi
BREAKING: Secret files reveal Dennis Kucinich talks with Qaddafi Regime
BREAKING: Libyan TNC won't extradite Lockerbie bomber
Who really beat Qaddafi?
#Feb17: @NATO Please help MEDEVAC wounded from #Libya
What should those that opposed NATO's intervention in Libya demand now?
BREAKING: Qaddafi's Tripoli Compound Falls!
Does PDA Support Qaddafi?
BREAKING: Operation Mermaid Dawn, the Battle to Liberate Tripoli is Joined
Helter Skelter: Qaddafi's African Adventure
Qaddafi's Long Arm
SCOOP: My Lai or Qaddafi Lie? More on the 85 Civilians presumed killed by NATO
Did NATO kill 85 Libyan Villagers As Qaddafi Regime Contends?
CCDS Statement on Libya - a Critique
The Assassination of General Abdul Fattah Younis
NATO over Tripoli - Air Strikes in the Age of Twitter
How Many Libyans has NATO Killed?
Qaddafi Terror Files Start to Trickle Out!
Have Libyan Rebels Committed Human Rights Abuses?
Tripoli Green Square Reality Check
Behind the Green Curtain: Libya Today
Gilbert Achcar on the Libyan situation and the Left
NATO slammed for Libya civilian deaths NOT!
2011-07-01 Qaddafi's Million Man March
NATO's Game Plan in Libya
February 21st - Tripoli's Long Night
Did Qaddafi Bomb Peaceful Protesters?
Tripoli Burn Notice
Libyans, Palestinians & Israelis
'Brother' Qaddafi Indicted plus Libya & Syria: Dueling Rally Photofinishs
An Open Letter to ANSWER
ANSWER answers me
2011-06-22 No Libyans allowed at ANSWER Libya Forum
Are they throwing babies out of incubators yet?
Continuing Discussion with a Gaddafi Supporter
Boston Globe oped supports Gaddafi with fraudulent journalism
2011-04-13 Doha summit supports Libyan rebels
Current Events in Libya
Amonpour Plays Softball with Gaddafi
Arming Gaddfi
North African Revolution Continues
Is Libya Next? Anonymous Debates New Operation
EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)

    Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

    by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:10:03 AM PDT

  •  Shorter Hedges (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BeeDeeS

    We must pick up the white man's burden.

    "Remember Bob. No fear, no envy, no meanness" Liam Clancy to Bob Dylan

    by BOHICA on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:33:11 AM PDT

    •  Yea "cry me a river" (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BOHICA, BeeDeeS

      Unlike Hedges, I consider it to be a privileged to be alive in such a critical period in human history.

      Humans have been on the planet from 200,000 - 2 million years depending on who you want to call the first. We've had what can loosely be called "civilization" for maybe 6k years but we all know that the success or failure of this great experiment will likely be determined in the next century or so.

      So it's really up to us and our children. The way I look at it, had I been born at any earlier period in our history,  my efforts couldn't possibly do as much for human progress as they can now.

      And even with racism, capitalist crisis, poverty and global warming, there are no problems that we can't solve yet.

      I am becoming more and more convinced that these cynics, who love to carp like radicals doing agitation, but have no program and see no way out of our dilemma, are our worst enemy.

      And that goes for the religious "end-of-days" fanatics, the Illuminati controls everything nuts and the "leftwing" fatalists like Hedges as well.

      What the "Arab Spring" has shown is that even the most suppressed and brutalized of us can still muster the strength and courage to wage a successful fightback.  

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 08:19:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nicely done. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BOHICA, Clay Claiborne

    Chris Hedges: isn't he someone who wrote an admiring work eulogizing and glorifying US armed invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan with the "War is the force that gives us Meaning" and how America is cheered up, buoyed and made a perfect place by applying constant warfare to anybody small  of interest all over the world?

    Bullying as the new American virtue?

    Harvard has a long history of supplying cheerleaders for imperialism of the late 20th century sort, like Samuel Huntington, George Bundy, Robert MacNamara and a bunch of others aspiring to be the Great Men of American history.  Hedges is up against it trying to be the expert on all things going on regardless of if he participates in them  or not, finds out about them third hand or not, or relies on the current Beltway narrative or not.

    •  Bullshit.. Sounds more like Hitchens than Hedges (4+ / 0-)

      In fact, it does not sound like Hitchens either, but he has surprised me before.  Chris Hedges does have a well reasoned and depressing view of our possible future... and he may be right, judging by what I see.... and the large numbers of complacent sheep in this world.

      John

       

      •  But his is a self-fullfilling prophecy (0+ / 0-)

        If get can convince enough people to sit on their hands, everything he predicts will come true.

        Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

        by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 08:23:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's one narrow way of looking at it (3+ / 0-)

          Chris Hedges is warning against the spread of Fascism, Permanent War, and other atrocities while many of the people claiming Liberalism sit idly by as the country goes over a right wing tipping point.

          His is a valuable voice that should be heard.

          John

          •  As far as his warning goes (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BeeDeeS
            "he's filling our heads full of figures and angles,
                 and telling us stuff that we already know"

            Most intelligent people already know about "the spread of Fascism, Permanent War, and other atrocities." Chris Hedges is telling them point blank that they can't do anything about it. His message on Libya is that they didn't do anything about it and he is willing to twist the facts to "prove" his point.

            Ultimately, he is one of the voices encouraging "the people claiming Liberalism [to] sit idly by as the country goes over a right wing tipping point."

            Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

            by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 10:27:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  War is -the-a force that gives us meaning (0+ / 0-)

        Corrected.  The point is the Chris Hedges stands on his own soapbox, there is no solution exception the individual mastery of politics and a paradigm to win.  meaning if you do not have such a belief, your skepticism or pessimism will rule, and that is where he is.

        he cannot find a praiseworthy struggle, a clean perfect one that inspires confidence.  the facts are we all imperfect, we do what we can and none of us or our efforts will be or can be 100% clean and perfect.

        We make choices, not excuses for disengaging or avoiding.    If we can recognize a heroic act, we can recognize heroic causes. those go on regardless of the number and quality of the participants. With great effort they can get better and be successful.

            To dismiss Middle easterners, be they Palestinians in hovels being pushed out by wealthy white settlers with bank accounts back in New York and forced to live in tin or plastic shacks....or Libyans ridding themselves of a tyranny lasting 42 years is simply wrong.

        Even from a certified leftist journalist who knows better like Hedges.

        •  Hedges is fully engaged, you just don't like what (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          David Futurama

          he is saying.  He is pessimistic for good reason.   He is right about the imperial war juggernaut. He is right about the corporate media.  He is not some feckless politician, propagandist, or whore for big money interests who misleads the public for a living, but an honest actor in the debate.

          John

    •  It is obvious you are not familiar with Hedges (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      John Kelly, BigAlinWashSt, Knarfc

      works.

      http://www.amazon.ca/...

      This review is from: War Is a Force that Gives Us Meaning (Paperback)

      This book is provacative and disturbing in that it strips away the veneer of war by relating the author's eye witness accounts of the brutatily, fear, humiliation, destruction, physchological addiction and damage (and occasional acts of humanity) that war brings to those who participate in it or are simply caught up in it and unable to escape. The book is at its strongest in this regard.
      ...
      Perhaps some of the virulent criticism he has received emanates from his daring to lump America's own often-virulent nationalism and its own war promoters and war managers into the same basket as the more unsavory types inhabiting Central America or the Balkans. In so doing he insinuates that we Americans too are part and parcel of the horrors of war and not immune to its appeal. Poor fellow, in this post 9-11 world to question anything about 'us' is to invite rabid criticism.

      Bullying as the new American virtue?

      Harvard has a long history of supplying cheerleaders for imperialism of the late 20th century sort,

      Where do you get these ideas in reference to Hedges? Hedges is closer to John Pilger and Noam Chomsky.

      You need to watch this:


      •  In the case of Libya he has now become a (0+ / 0-)

        "cheerleader for imperialism."

        That is the main point of this diary. Now that Qaddafi is [mostly] defeated, and without the predicted NATO "boots on the ground", he is joining the chorus of all the imperialist powers for some sort of "UN" [read imperialist] armed presence on the ground.

        He is performing the critical function of arguing for this from a "left" prospective. Critical because it would not surprise me at all if they gin something up in the UNSC and try to ram it down the Libyans throats. Even Russia & China will vote for that because everybody wants a hand in controlling Libyans oil. Things were okay as long as that meant control by a compliant and corrupt dictator, but if there is even a slight chance that this revolution will result in that oil wealth falling onto the hands of the Libyan people, they all agree, they have to nip that in the bud.

        What is happening in Libya now is world historic. For one thing there is the whole question of Africa. Contrary to the tale spun by Qaddafi and his supporters, he has been no friend of Africa.

        Just like they didn't mind giving billions to the house of Saudi for the people's oil because he invested a big part of it in US treasuries, they didn't mind giving billions to the house of Qaddafi for the people's oil because he invested a big part of it in keeping Africa in turmoil and under control. See my Helter Skelter: Qaddafi's African Adventure for more on that.

        ">

        Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

        by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 10:59:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  What are you talking about? (0+ / 0-)
          "cheerleader for imperialism."

          Have you even read Chris Hedges' column? He knows damn well that the western powers under NATO will manage to get the UN to allow them to control Libya if it doesn't go to their liking.

          Now that Libya has been forcibly raped by NATO, it will be pillaged by the neo-liberals.  

          The National Transitional Council, made up of former Gadhafi loyalists, Islamists and tribal leaders, many of whom detest each other, will be the West’s vehicle for the reconfiguration of Libya. Libya will return to being the colony it was before Gadhafi and the other young officers in 1969 ousted King Idris, who among other concessions had let Standard Oil write Libya’s petroleum laws. Gadhafi’s defiance of Western commercial interests, which saw the nationalization of foreign banks and foreign companies, along with the oil industry, as well as the closure of U.S. and British air bases, will be reversed.

          Gaddafi dubs WTO "terrorists", slams Africa-EU ties
          Monday, 29 November 2010
          ...
          "Africa and Europe need each other," the Libyan leader said.

          But he warned that in the event of failure Africa had alternatives in the Americas, China and India.

          Africa wanted to deal with "groups that respect our space, our sovereignty, our regimes and that don't interfere in our internal affairs," he said.
          "We call for the elimination of the WTO, because it does not serve our interests," Gaddafi added. "It wants us to open our borders to foreign goods to kill our industries."

          The International Monetary Fund and World Bank "have destroyed Africa" and the word "terrorism" could as well be applied to the World Bank and the WTO as to Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda, he said.

          Turning to calls for reform of the UN Security Council, Gaddafi said Africa wanted permanent seats for both the African Union and the EU.


          World Bank says to help with Libya rebuilding
          Tue Sep 13, 2011

          WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The World Bank on Tuesday said it officially recognized the ruling National Transitional Council as Libya's government and had been asked to help lead efforts to restore vital services and develop jobs programs as the country tries to return to normal after a six-month war.

          "As Libya begins its recovery from conflict, the World Bank has been asked to lead the effort in the areas of public expenditure and financial management, infrastructure repair, job creation for young people and service delivery," the poverty-fighting institution said in a statement.

          The Bank said it had been asked to repair services in the water, energy and transport sectors and, in cooperation with the International Monetary Fund, to help prepare the country's budget and restore the banking sector.

          "We are ready to support the people in Libya," World Bank Managing Director Sri Mulyani Indrawati said. "Our experts have started coordinating with their partners already and we are moving fast to begin work."

          The World Bank's sister organization, the IMF, on Saturday said it had endorsed the rebel transitional council and would send a team to Libya as soon as security permits.

          Here's why staunch neo-liberal Libyan Prime Minister Jibril defected: (BTW, there are other wikileaks cables that state that many of the privatization reforms would not be feasible until "Gaddafi is removed").

          HEAD OF LIBYAN "THINK TANK" OUTLINES HUMAN DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY
          5/11/2009

          3. (C) According to Jibril, there are 11,000 development projects in Libya spanning several sectors, with the bulk of projects focusing on infrastructure. The NEDB's role in these projects is to "pave the way" for private sector development, and to create a strategic partnership between private companies and the government.
          ...
          7. (C) Comment: With a PhD in strategic planning from the University of Pittsburgh, Jibril is a serious interlocutor who "gets" the U.S. perspective. He is also not shy about sharing his views of U.S. foreign policy, for example, opining that the U.S. spoiled a golden opportunity to capitalize on its "soft power" (McDonald's, etc.) after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1989 by putting "boots on the ground" in the Middle East. At the same time, his organization has a daunting task to tackle, in terms of rationalizing 11,000 development projects in the chaotic Libyan government bureaucracy and also, to train Libyans to work in new sectors outside of the hydrocarbons industry. Jibril has stated American companies and universities are welcome to join him in this endeavor and we should take him up on his offer.

          •  I really didn't want to have to deal with every (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BeeDeeS

            paragraph piecemeal, but since you raised this one:

            The National Transitional Council, made up of former Gadhafi loyalists,

            Qaddafi has ruled for 42 years, that means the only people with any practical experience governing Libya might be what you and Hedges would term "Gaddafi loyalists" nevertheless, I think it's important to incorporate the best of them in building a new Libya state. People like Jibril that have a history of internal opposition and came over to the revolution early.
            Islamists

            Well it is an almost 100% Islamic country and the 5% that Jibril says are Islamists should have a say in the new government too. But the bogeyman "Islamists" (picture Osama Bin Laden) is raised as a racist caricature by the imperialist media and Qaddafi himself to warn people off of the Libyan struggle against dictatorship and the Arab Awakening in general. That makes Hedges' use of the same device very suspect in my eyes.
            and tribal leaders,

            Well, it has long been a tribal society so I would expect those leaders to play a role in any new government to begin with.
            many of whom detest each other,

            And what is his evidence for that? Was he one of those who predicted the outbreak of warfare between rival militias after the assassination of General Younes? Well it never happened. It was a united and coordinated army that took Tripoli from four sides and the center at once. Still Hedges talks about "factions" outside of Sirte. Well, he can spin the language all he wants, fortunately, those aren't the facts on the ground.
            will be the West’s vehicle for the reconfiguration of Libya.

            Certainly he is entitled to his own opinion. The question is: Who does publishing this one help?
            Libya will return to being the colony it was before Gadhafi and the other young officers in 1969 ousted King Idris, who among other concessions had let Standard Oil write Libya’s petroleum laws.

            Is Hedges living in some mystic Qaddafi past? Because those days are long gone, in the last few decades Qaddafi has become fully integrated into the world imperialist system. His role is more than just keeping Libyans under control, he provided an important function in keeping the entire continent of Africa under wraps.
             
            Gadhafi’s defiance of Western commercial interests, which saw the nationalization of foreign banks and foreign companies, along with the oil industry, as well as the closure of U.S. and British air bases, will be reversed.

            And IMF, military-to-military relation to pentagon, CIA & M16 rendition, financial support for white supremacists, exploitation of African immigrants, mass murder and the list goes on and on...

            Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

            by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 01:31:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  nooo.. (0+ / 0-)
      Chris Hedges: isn't he someone who wrote an admiring work eulogizing and glorifying US armed invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan with the "War is the force that gives us Meaning"

      what chris hedges was describing was rightwing enthrallment with war. sheesh, hedges is anti war. he was describing people leading empty lives who suddenly found an issue that a community of like minded idiots can rally around. now, that pro war fervor has been supplanted by anti obama animus and the tea party's misleading agitation about the deficit.

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 05:05:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  he is is anti imperialistic (0+ / 0-)

        is probably more accurate.

        Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

        by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 06:21:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It is not enough to be "anti imperialistic" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          stolen water

          in general. then one ends up supporting Quaddafi, Chavez, Castro as beacons of progress in this world. They are slightly better than outright thugs starting out, but as Mugabe and other long running tyrants demonstrate, eventually retaining total control for one's own family or tribe trumps everything else if there is no law or governing principle in place that empowers and educates  the population.

          Russia, China, even Iran is "anti imperialist". Does that mean that they take the people's side, take the efforts of the progressives and revolutionaries to remake their nation? No, it means they form a strategic alliance with anyone, regardless of behavior  if it suits  their policy, their economy to confront and compete with their rivals such as the European Union or NATO or the United States.  

              Just as USA supports unflinchingly a Saudi Arabia or an Israel based on strategic interests regardless of what misery it may cause, so do China and Russia do the same. That is precisely why they backed a Quaddafi, a Mugabe, a Chavez or the South Sudan's war criminal leader because there is a selfish interest such as access to oilfields in seeking favors/partnerships there.  

          The knock on Hedges is he can't see a way out of the dilemma of supporting a default option,  such as neo liberals with masks on who come under various guises, NGO's and banks to penetrate commingle and haul the target country back into the US orbit as opposed to some other arrangement.

          China withdrawing nearly 50,000 civilian construction workers and technicians and not being allowed to return and finish the projects would be a "win" for the Western interests. Now the Western based  multinationals  can substitute their companies and people for those who started.

                By rights, all these elements and all sorts of people who work in a transparent manner should be allowed to do legitimate work that enhances the quality of life for Libyans.

                Those that would like to, and can return, should.

                As opposed to the shills for Quaddafi, apologists for NATO, and those carrying an anti imperialist line identical to RussianTV or Hsinhua, genuine progressives are careful to point out who benefits, and how many parts of the complex  picture are an asset to Libya, not skipping over  noting the mercenary and commercial outfits attempting to reassert their presence there.

          •  real progressives don't give (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BeeDeeS

            western liberal pundits who don't speak the language and aren't an expert on the culture a bigger voice than what libyan people themselves have to say.

            Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

            by stolen water on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:32:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  the tnc reversed themselves. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BeeDeeS

            first, one member said they wouldn't consider russian or chinese contracts. but then they then came back and said everything would be on the table.

            smart negotiating tactics, if you ask me. narrowing the pool narrows your options.

            Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

            by stolen water on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:35:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  The neocons are happy, they got rid of Gaddafi. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    John Kelly, Claudius Bombarnac

    These are the same ones who got us into Iraq and Afghanistan and want hegemonic control of Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Algeria, and Syria, and the entire Middle East and Africa for that matter. That should tell anyone about the goals of many of those who impact foreign policy decisions in this country.  Their goals are certainly not altruistic or humanitarian.  There are indeed many danger signs with the situation in Libya and six months in, there are no clear signs how it will work out for the Libyan people as a whole.  Hedges opinions are harsh, but for those that think Libya is "different", we'll just have to wait and see.  

    S.A.W. 2011 STOP ALL WARS "The Global War on Terror is a fabrication to justify imperialism."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 08:36:45 AM PDT

    •  The title of your diary is completely false and (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      John Kelly, BigAlinWashSt

      misleading. I suggest that people read Hedges' report in full.

      http://www.truthdig.com/...

      Libya: Here We Go Again
      ...
      The NATO airstrikes on the city of Sirte expose the hypocrisy of our “humanitarian” intervention in Libya. Sirte is the last Gadhafi stronghold and the home to Gadhafi’s tribe. The armed Libyan factions within the rebel alliance are waiting like panting hound dogs outside the city limits. They are determined, once the airstrikes are over, not only to rid the world of Gadhafi but all those within his tribe who benefited from his 42-year rule. The besieging of Sirte by NATO warplanes, which are dropping huge iron fragmentation bombs that will kill scores if not hundreds of innocents, mocks the justification for intervention laid out in a United Nations Security Council resolution. The U.N., when this began six months ago, authorized “all necessary measures … to protect civilians and civilian populated areas under threat of attack.” We have, as always happens in war, become the monster we sought to defeat. We destroy in order to save.
      ...
      Once the Libyans realize what the Iraqis and Afghans have bitterly discovered—that we have no interest in democracy, that our primary goal is appropriating their natural resources as cheaply as possible and that we will sacrifice large numbers of people to maintain our divine right to the world’s diminishing supply of fossil fuel—they will hate us the way we deserve to be hated.

      •  This post was not meant as a response to your (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BigAlinWashSt

        post. Sorry for error.

        I agree with you that the removal of Gaddafi has long been part of the neocon's agenda for the ME.

      •  What exact is false about my title? (0+ / 0-)

        Please be specific.

        Is he or is he not calling for "U.N. military observers and police" in Libya, which means an armed presence, that will be given the job of  "train[ing] new security forces" and "provide independent verification" which implies the right to go anywhere and lord over the Libyan government.

        If you don't think it reasonable to call that "boots on the ground" would you please explain why not?

        Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

        by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:30:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm confused. I've had a couple beers, so maybe... (2+ / 0-)

          ...I missed it, but as near as I could tell, you failed to quote the sentence where he actually calls for "boots on the ground" in Libya.

          Again, if I just missed it, I apologize, but I honestly couldn't find the quote in your diary, and given your title, I would have expected the quote to have been included right at the top, without having to pursue links to other websites.

          "If I can't dance, then I don't want to be in your revolution"--Emma Goldman

          by ehrenfeucht games on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 12:11:32 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  He did not 'call' for UN military observers (0+ / 0-)

          He merely stated that the call was rejected even in the face of  

          "vendettas in Libya have already begun. Government buildings in Tripoli have been looted, although not on the scale seen in Baghdad. Poor black sub-Saharan African immigrant workers have been beaten and killed. Suspected Gadhafi loyalists or spies have been tortured and assassinated. These eye-for-an-eye killings will, I fear, get worse. A plan to deploy United Nations military personnel to help stabilize Libya has been abandoned."

          BTW, the TNC is still open to UN policing as long as they are not 'military' in nature. These would have very little power.

          http://www.un.org/...
          United Nations Policing

          The United Nations has been deploying police officers for service in peace operations since the 1960s. Traditionally, the mandate of police components in peace operations was limited to monitoring, observing and reporting. Beginning in the early 1990s, advisory, mentoring and training functions were integrated into the monitoring activities in order to offer peace operations the opportunity to act as a corrective mechanism with domestic police and other law enforcement agencies.

          •  of course it's not supprising that libya (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Clay Claiborne

            wouldn't want foreign boots on the ground what with their history of european colonization. the tnc however said they would consider arab troops (such as from qatar) if it was needed to help maintain security.

            Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

            by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:28:33 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  "wait and see" is another corrupt "left" line. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      stolen water

      From day one the Thuwwars have put a ton of material on the Internet. Videos, audio recordings, websites [feb17.info and many others], facebook pages, photos, blog posts, tweets. Much of it in English and Google has probably spent millions in the last year giving us via Google translates, reasonable  access to the stuff that isn't in English.

      Never before has a revolutionary movement been so open and accessible to the world, and yet we keep hearing the lazy people in the US left saying "we don't even know who these people are."

      "These people" are engaged in a desperate struggle for their liberation and that struggle is intimately connected to the forward progress of all humanity. The matter is by no means decided and every hand is required on deck if we are to weather the storm and "activists" like you council "wait and see."

      The "wait and seers" will kill you every time
                            - Cliff Robertson in Midway

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:19:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  One way to look at it. Another way is this effort (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Claudius Bombarnac

        has seen the largest, most integrated and despicable propaganda effort by the western governments and their media ever seen.  Alot of the negative information about NATO and Rebel actions coming out is simply ignored or categorized as Gaddafi propaganda.  20,000 sorties and nearly 9K bombing missions and we hear virtually nothing of the damage or casualties.  
        Wait and see, what the hell else are we supposed to do, all become NATO cheerleaders?
        Just once I'd like to hear the views of supporters relative to why the Neocons are so much in favor.  

        S.A.W. 2011 STOP ALL WARS "The Global War on Terror is a fabrication to justify imperialism."

        by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:57:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  what about the 70 days or more where (0+ / 0-)

          gaddafi loyalists held misrata under seige, constantly pummeling it with katyusha rockets, mortar shells, tank fire and snipers.

          Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

          by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:09:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  proof is in the pudding. (0+ / 0-)

          if libyans were so incensed about nato bombings, (and if there had been more support for gaddafi,) the rebels wouldn't have been able to roll into tripoli as easily as they did.

          Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

          by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 07:13:32 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  You guys really like to play up NATO bombing (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          stolen water

          don't you? You do know that they have only dropped bombs in about 20% of their strike, what you call bombing, missions don't you? A strike mission means they go out armed but 4 out of 5 times they come back without attacking anything, at least that was the ratio last time I checked  which was in July.  See How Many Libyans has NATO Killed? That means they "dropped bombs" about 1800 times. As of June 29, when I was preparing that diary, US planes had dropped a grant total of 132 "bombs." Not exactly Rolling Thunder.

          Now let's look at recent air activity.

          Strike sorties conducted 15 SEPTEMBER: 40
          Key Hits 15 SEPTEMBER:
          In the vicinity of Sirte: 1 Military Storage Facility, 2 Armed Vehicles, 1 Tank, 4 Multiple Rocket Launchers, 8 Air
          Missile Systems.
          In the vicinity of Waddan: 1 Multiple Rocket Launcher.
          In the vicinity of Sebha: Several Armoured Vehicles, 1 Multiple Rocket Launcher, 1 Tank, 5 Armed Vehicles.
          Strike sorties conducted 16 SEPTEMBER: 43
          Key Hits 16 SEPTEMBER:
          In the vicinity of Sirte: 5 Command and Controle Nodes, 3 Radar Systems, 4 Armed Vehicles, 8 Air Missile
          Systems.
          In the vicinity of Hun: 4 Anti Aircraft Guns.
          Strike sorties conducted 17 SEPTEMBER: 42
          Key Hits 17 SEPTEMBER:
          In the vicinity of Sirte: 2 Command and Control Nodes, 4 Multiple Rocket Launchers, 1 Armed Vehicle, 4
          Surface to Air Missile Systems.
          In the vicinity of Hun: 9 Anti Aircraft Guns.
          In the vicinity of Al Jufra: 1 Command and Control Node, 1 Vehicle Storage Facility.
          In the vicinity of Sheba: 1 Armed Vehicle, 1 Armoured Vehicle, 1 Multiple Rocket Launcher

          This is the data from NATO and as far as I know no one as even accused them of falsifying data let alone proving it. So rather than throw around terms such as "massive bombing" and "carpet bombing" try to have a sense of prospective. The truth is the number of civilians killed by NATO operations over Libya probably numbers less than a few hundred.

          For me, its not about neo cons or any Americans, it's about the Libyans. I guess you could say I became a "cheerleader" for the Libyan uprising before I published my first diary about on Jan 18, 2 months before NATO involvement.

          And I didn't drop my support for their struggle when they made a "deal with the devil" that got them NATO air support without NATO ground troops, and almost certainly saved the lives of tens of thousands of Libyans, maybe hundreds of thousands. I don't know.

          We know what Qaddafi has done other places and they are still finding mass graves in the dessert and I fear will for some time. So how many Libyans do you think Qaddafi would have murdered by now it you and the other "anti-interventionists" had been successful in allowing him to use his air force, navy and heavy weapons without serious opposition?

          How about Syria? Aren't you happy that no one is even trying to protect the Syrian people from Assad's murderous assault? Can't you be satisfied with that bloodletting and let the Libyan people have their freedom.

          And the freedom is real to them. Have you noticed how Libyan tweets are starting to use their real names? I've so far not had to hesitate putting my name on everything I do, probably neither have you, so don't make light of what they have accomplished.

          Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

          by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:20:01 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  NATO ran out of bombs... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BigAlinWashSt
            As of June 29, when I was preparing that diary, US planes had dropped a grant total of 132 "bombs."

            That is complete bullshit. If you have read the reports, some targets received 10 or more individual hits during an attack.

            NATO running out of bombs in Libya
            Published April 16, 2011

                Less than a month into the Libyan conflict, NATO is running short of precision bombs, highlighting the limitations of Britain, France and other European countries in sustaining even a relatively small military action over an extended period of time, according to senior NATO and U.S. officials.

                The shortage of European munitions, along with the limited number of aircraft available, has raised doubts among some officials about whether the United States can continue to avoid returning to the air campaign if Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi hangs on to power for several more months.

            Libya Mission Cost at $550 Million for U.S. Forces So Far

            Mar 29, 2011
            The U.S. launched 192 Tomahawks in the first 10 days,

            Here's a link
            Action by international forces
            for a better perspective on the amount of bombs/missiles NATO has dropped in Libya. I leave it to you to estimate the tonnage. Keep in mind that one plane can carry multiple bombs and rockets as well as cannon. There have been over 300 cruise missiles launched from ships/submarines in the Mediterranean from all NATO forces..

            •  132 targets were hit, not count cruise missiles (0+ / 0-)

              AFRICOM spokeswoman Nicole Dalrymple said in a statement on June 29th. “As of today, and since 31 March, the U.S. has flown a total of 3,475 sorties in support of OUP. Of those, 801 were strike sorties, 132 of which actually dropped ordnance.”  That was only 16.1% of the 4,963 strike sorties conducted by NATO as of June 29th with a total of 132 targets being hit.

              Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

              by Clay Claiborne on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:10:53 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You are attempting to rationalize and minimize (0+ / 0-)

                the impact of NATO's devastation on the country. Your post only reflects on how many strike sorties were made by US forces - forces who were not supposed to be dropping bombs according to Obama's statements.

                The US used their B2 stealth bomber for several sorties. Here's their payloads (note the quantities of bombs these massive aircraft can carry):

                Armament:

                    2 internal bays for 50,000 lb (23,000 kg) of ordnance.[55]

                    80 × 500 lb class bombs (Mk-82) mounted on Bomb Rack Assembly (BRA)
                    36 × 750 lb CBU class bombs on BRA
                    16 × 2000 lb class weapons (Mk-84, JDAM-84, JDAM-102) mounted on Rotary Launcher Assembly (RLA)

                Here's a typical "strike sortie" by 3 B2 bombers:

                B-2 stealth jets return after epic 11,500 mile journey to bomb Libyan aircraft shelters
                March 21, 2011
                They dropped 45 satellite-guided bombs weighing 2,000lbs each

                Canada alone dropped hundreds of bombs before they ran out in late April and they only had 6 planes (each could carry up to 9 weapons depending on type).

                You are attempting to have us believe that all of NATO had less than a few hundred bombs and rockets.

                Denying truth with misleading information does not help your cause in the long run.

        •  former military intel officer pat lang (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Clay Claiborne

          has a blog where veterans discuss their experiences. here one explains that x number of sorties doesn't always mean a target was engaged.

          http://turcopolier.typepad.com/...

          Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

          by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:52:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  A very informative piece, thanks (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            stolen water

            I would just like to point out his conclusion:

            If anyone still harbors thought of the victorious rebels marching into Tripoli behind a steamroller of airpower, the numbers game should disabuse them of this vision.

             Modern tactical airpower is precise, surgical, and deadly, but the support of the type being provided—numerically small and tailored to limit collateral damage—is not going to provide an offensive advantage for the under-trained and under armed Libyan rebels. They may still win, because if the support missions continue, they are a kind of safety net, but it may take a very long time. The alternative is that an attack against a legitimate command and control target may provide a de facto decapitation, and a swift end.

             That would be luck. Otherwise we surely must be thinking about someone’s boots on the ground if we continue to expect a military solution to the situation.


            Guess he was wrong about "boots on the ground" This was a Libyan victory.

            Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

            by Clay Claiborne on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:21:55 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Very good piece - it speaks the truth (0+ / 0-)
              They may still win, because if the support missions continue, they are a kind of safety net, but it may take a very long time. The alternative is that an attack against a legitimate command and control target may provide a de facto decapitation, and a swift end.

              Note that this was posted May 2, 2011. NATO started using Apache strike helicopters for close air support on May 4.

              It still took 6 months of NATO attacks to gain Tripoli and the fighting is still not over. This is a long time. Obama said Libya action would last 'days, not weeks'.

      •  Here's the link to the Neocons call for action (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Claudius Bombarnac

        in Libya, which is exactly what they got.  

        http://www.foreignpolicyi.org/...

        S.A.W. 2011 STOP ALL WARS "The Global War on Terror is a fabrication to justify imperialism."

        by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 12:01:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, according to that they didn't want much (0+ / 0-)

          1) no fly zone
          2) freezing assets
          3) "Consider" not buying Qaddafi oil
          4) tell Qaddafi to stop being bad
          5) provide humanitarian aid.

          Not exactly a declaration of war. Pretty mild for neocons. Dated 2/25 after he had already massacred 2,000 in Benghazi and 800 in Tripoli. I think it supports my thesis that they secretly wanted to see Qaddafi's violence succeed.

          Thanks for the link.

          Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

          by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 01:48:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Please back up your "massacred" figures. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BigAlinWashSt

            It appears to be more media spin.

            I think it supports my thesis that they secretly wanted to see Qaddafi's violence succeed.

            Here's Kristol on Mar 13, 2011. Obama and NATO did exactly like he wanted.

            Here's Wolfowitz

            http://www.youtube.com/...

            Here's Max Boot:

            http://www.nytimes.com/...

            I could give you dozens more to refute your statement that the neocons wanted to "see Qaddafi's violence succeed".

            •  the neocons were split on libya. (0+ / 0-)

              some were dismissive of the arab spring entirely. leslie gelb (cfr) characterized protesters as being nothing but a bunch of losers. other neocons like richard haas and even rumsfeld dismissed libya as being "a sideshow" either pointing to syria or iran as being more consequential. haas said the US intervention into libya was an "ill advised war of choice."

              Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

              by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:22:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Kristol says Qaddafi mustn't be allowed to (0+ / 0-)

              slaughter Libyans in the east. He said it twice in this video. And on that point I am in agreement with him. [Oh the horror! How can you declared your agreement with the neo con Kristol?] He didn't say anything about re-colonizing them and stealing their oil [ of course we know that's what he really wants]

              You're he ahole because all the neocons have to do to get you to support Qaddafi's slaughter of Libyans is to declare themselves against it.

              Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

              by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:32:26 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  neocons weren't united about libya. (0+ / 0-)

          leslie gelb pooh-poohed it. richard haas said US intervention into libya was an "ill-advised war of choice." rumsfeld didn't support it either.

          Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

          by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 11:27:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Most of the hard core PNAC members were (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            stolen water

            hot to trot against Gaddafi.

            Obama's Pathetic Response to Libya
            Feb 23, 2011 • By ELLIOTT ABRAMS
            ...
            call Musa Kusa, Qaddafi's long-time intelligence chief, and tell him that if the regime attacks any American we will find him wherever he is, however long it takes, and he will meet the same fate as Saddam Hussein. And tell him to pass that on to Qaddafi.

            I can find similar reports from 90% of the PNAC signatories to that famous "catastrophic and catalyzing event––like a new Pearl Harbor" paper. Neocons will never let an opportunity to further their aims go unused.

            •  Qaddafi had killed at least 3000 Libyans (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              stolen water

              by that point and Abrams threatens to get even if he attacks Americans? Now really, what kind of threat is that? Slaughtering Americans was not his mission. Another way to look at that is that Abrams is not objecting to his killing Libyans.

              Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

              by Clay Claiborne on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:26:58 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The neocons could care less about the deaths (0+ / 0-)

                of foreigners - civilian or otherwise. They also consider American soldiers to be cannon fodder and expendable.

                It's all about regime change in those countries that are not wholly subservient to US interests. You will notice that these 'principles' are almost identical to the substance of Obama's foreign policy speeches.

                PNAC - Statement of Principles

                Our aim is to remind Americans of these lessons and to draw their consequences for today. Here are four consequences:

                    • we need to increase defense spending significantly if we are to carry out our global responsibilities today and modernize our armed forces for the future;

                    • we need to strengthen our ties to democratic allies and to challenge regimes hostile to our interests and values;

                    • we need to promote the cause of political and economic freedom abroad;

                    • we need to accept responsibility for America's unique role in preserving and extending an international order friendly to our security, our prosperity, and our principles.

            •  how many of these neocons (0+ / 0-)

              before turning on him, helped to bring gaddafi "out from the cold?"

              how many got paid to help rehab his image?

              Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

              by stolen water on Mon Sep 19, 2011 at 12:41:35 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The only ones I know of were Richard Perle and (0+ / 0-)

                Francis Fukuyama.

                The "Prince of Darkness" (Perle) may have only been sizing up the situation in Libya and making contact with Gaddafi's enemies within the government. We now see some of these enemies in the TNC. This would not be the first time Perle has been involved in these sort of deals.

                In the late 70's, Perle began promoting Turkey as a key US and Israeli strategic ally.  When Islamic terrorists destabilized that nation, a military coup established a pro-US regime.  It was later found that the terrorism that had destabilized Turkey was carried out by the Turkish military in conjunction with the CIA and NATO.  This is but one instance in which Perle was involved in western support for islamic militancy.

                There are some wikileaks cables from this period showing dissatisfaction within the Libyan government with the slow speed at which Gaddafi was moving towards privatization. Some had said that the changes would take decades unless Gaddafi was removed. The cables show that the CIA was knowledgeable of these facts at the time.

    •  neocons flipped the script. (2+ / 0-)

      they bemoaned the fact that mubarak is now gone.

      the fact is israel defenders support arabic dictators who oppress their own people. the last thing israel needs is free arab countries where the populace is now able to express anti israel sentiment via policy.

      this former cia chief even cops to that fact. neocons and pro israel defenders never really supported democracy.

      http://english.aljazeera.net/...

       

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 06:29:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  one exception i'd concede to neocons (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BigAlinWashSt

      drooling to overthrow iran.

      another blogger here points to the curiosity where the neocon agenda and western oil interests coincidentally(?) merge when it comes to iran.

      who is the most oppressed in the arab world in being most denied democracy? saudi arabia. and yet you don't hear neocons urging that regime to be overthrown.

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 06:34:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  noam chomsky had an article (0+ / 0-)

      where he pointed out the obama administration, weeks before the libya uprising heated up,  urged the international criminal court not to indict gaddafi ( who had allied with charles taylor) on crimes against humanity charges.

      http://kavkazcenter.com/...

      hard to argue the US secretly plotted the overthrow of gaddafi when weeks earlier, they had acted to protect him from being charged by the hague.

      Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

      by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 06:41:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  NATO Tries to Control Libyan Revolution (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt
    http://therealnews.com/...

    Hamid Dabashi​: Neo-liberalism a greater threat to Libya than tribalism or extreme Islam


  •  Also, Chris Hedges is an absolutely heroic (2+ / 0-)

    man who has reported from the middle of multiple war zones.  He has particular credibility on the subject that many apologists for, and supporters of, the endless war machine do not.

    John

  •  Libya: The real war starts now (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt
    http://en.cubadebate.cu/...
    Sep 14th, 2011

    According to already leaked plans, sooner or later there may be troops from Persian Gulf monarchies and friendly allies such as Jordan and especially NATO member Turkey, also very keen to bag large commercial contracts. Hardly any African nations will be part of it – Libya now having being “relocated” to Arabia.

    The Transitional National Council (TNC) will go for it – or forced to go for it - if, or when, Libya spirals into chaos. Still it will be an extremely hard sell – as the wildly disparate factions of “NATO rebels” are frantically consolidating their fiefdoms, and getting ready to turn on each other.

    There’s no evidence so far the TNC – apart from genuflecting in the altar of NATO member nations – has any clue about managing a complex political landscape inside Libya.

    Guns and no roses

    Everyone in Libya is now virtually armed to its teeth. The economy is paralyzed. A nasty catfight over who will control Libya’s unfrozen billions of dollars is already on.

    http://www.nytimes.com/...
    Islamists’ Growing Sway Raises Questions for Libya

    TRIPOLI, Libya — In the emerging post-Qaddafi Libya, the most influential politician may well be Ali Sallabi, who has no formal title but commands broad respect as an Islamic scholar and populist orator who was instrumental in leading the mass uprising.

    The most powerful military leader is now Abdel Hakim Belhaj, the former leader of a hard-line group once believed to be aligned with Al Qaeda.

    The growing influence of Islamists in Libya raises hard questions about the ultimate character of the government and society that will rise in place of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s autocracy.
    ...
    Islamist militias in Libya receive weapons and financing directly from foreign benefactors like Qatar; a Muslim Brotherhood figure, Abel al-Rajazk Abu Hajar, leads the Tripoli Municipal Governing Council, where Islamists are reportedly in the majority; in eastern Libya, there has been no resolution of the assassination in July of the leader of the rebel military, Gen. Abdul Fattah Younes, suspected by some to be the work of Islamists.

    Mr. Belhaj has become so much an insider lately that he is seeking to unseat Mahmoud Jibril, the American-trained economist who is the nominal prime minister of the interim government, after Mr. Jibril obliquely criticized the Islamists.

    For an uprising that presented a liberal, Westernized face to the world, the growing sway of Islamists — activists with fundamentalist Islamic views, who want a society governed by Islamic principles — is being followed closely by the United States and its NATO allies.

    •  Thanks for the laugh (0+ / 0-)
      There’s no evidence so far the TNC – apart from genuflecting in the altar of NATO member nations – has any clue about managing a complex political landscape inside Libya.

      They have managed to put together a coalition of, what was it? "former Gadhafi loyalists, Islamists and tribal leaders, many of whom detest each other" long enough to beat Qaddafi didn't they?

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 01:37:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The TNC controlled militias performed very (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BigAlinWashSt

        poorly in the eastern sections. Just look to Brega and Ras Lanuf. The western based militias performed much better and they know it.

        Jalil has already had to dismiss his entire cabinet after the assassination of Younes.

        You will want to watch this one unfold. Take note that the meeting occurred in Zawiyah and not Tripoli. Right now everything is very diplomatic - until Gaddafi is finally overthrown and NATO's firepower is no longer required.

        A familiar face emerges to lead Libya's new army

        It was unclear how Hifter would reconcile his force with the thousands of Libyans who picked up weapons to depose the dictator.

        "The Tripoli Military Council is responsible for security here until a national army is set up," said Anis al Sharif, Belhaj's spokesman.

        Sharif said Belhaj's position had been confirmed on Tuesday during a meeting with Mustafa Abdul-Jalil, the chairman of the rebel National Transitional Council and the country's de facto head of state.

        But Hifter said his appointment supersedes Belhaj's position.

        "Now we will rebuild the army," Hifter said. "We are responsible for the entire country. Belhaj is in charge of the revolutionaries in Tripoli."

        Here's some info on Hifter/Haftar. Take note of date.

        http://www.twf.org/...
        Libya: Who's Terrorizing Whom

        WASHINGTON, D.C., March 26, 1996 -- Today, the Washington Post reported unrest in Libya which the Libyans believe is led by a Col. Khalifa Haftar based in the U.S. On May 17, 1991 the Washington Times reported that three hundred and fifty Libyans would arrive soon in the United States. So what's the connection?

        It turns out that the Libyans who arrived in the U.S. in 1991 were not the Libyan President Ghaddafi's terrorists. They were our folks, trained by our CIA. These terrorists, which our government (ever mindful of our sensitivities) prefers to call guerillas, were trained by our CIA to topple President Ghaddafi. Last December 1990 when a new government less sympathetic to our mission was formed in Chad, we tried to find another home for our folks. It seemed that no one wanted our recruits, and so they were flown to the United States from Kenya where they were being temporarily housed. Col. Haftar was part of this group.

        Col. Haftar is now reported to be the leader of a contra-style group based in the U.S. called the Libyan National Army. This group is supported by the U.S., and has been given training facilities in the U.S. It's a good presumption that Col. Haftar's group operates in Libya with the blessings of our government.

        The question is, "Is Libya terrorizing the U.S., or is the U.S. terrorizing Libya?

        "

        Calling the rebels "freedom fighters" is apropos....

        •  More information on Hifter/Haftar (0+ / 0-)
          http://www.unhcr.org/...
          Title     Libya: The Djava Khalifa Haftar movement, whose founding leader is reportedly a soldier named Khalifah Haftar, who currently in exile in the United States (May 2006)
          Publisher     Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
          Country     Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
          Publication Date     9 May 2006

          In March 2001, Le Monde diplomatique published a chapter of the book Manipulations africaines, in which the author indicated that [translation] "the Haftar force, created and financed by the CIA in Chad, vanished into thin air with the help of the CIA shortly after the Hissène Habré government was overthrown [in 1990 (IRIN 19 Apr. 2006)] by Idriss Déby" (see also The Washington Post 26 Mar. 1996). A report published by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) on the Web site of the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) notes that in 1996 the main opposition group in Libya was the Libyan National Salvation Front (LNSF), founded in 1981 and headed by Muhammad Al-Muqaryif (CRS 19 Dec. 1996). Its military wing is known as the Libyan National Army and is headed by Colonel Haftar (ibid.; see also The Washington Post 26 Mar. 1996).

          The same report indicates that Colonel Haftar joined the LNSF in March 1987 after he was captured in the Chadian war; his goal was to create an army to fight against the Libyan authorities (ibid.). The Washington Post reported on 26 March 1996 that, according to some sources, Colonel Haftar was the leader of the Libyan National Army, a group of counter-revolutionaries supported and trained by the United States and operating in Libya. According to the sources cited in the article, anti-government uprisings in Libya were led by Colonel Haftar from the United States (The Washington Post 26 Mar. 1996; see also CSR 19 Dec. 1996). A CRS report states that the United States was providing financial and military aid to the LNSF at that time and that a number of LNSF members were living in exile in the United States (ibid., see also The Washington Post 26 Mar. 1996). An article on the Daily Nation Web site at nationmedia.com reports that the American authorities permitted the "Haftar forces" to stay in Kenya before welcoming them to the United States (1 Mar. 1999). The "Haftar forces" had previously attempted to overthrow the Libyan government (Daily Nation 1 Mar. 1999)

          This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

  •  Not much of a fan of Hedges, are you? (0+ / 0-)

    By the way, what is the CCDS? I never heard of this organization and I didn't see any explanation.

    H'mm. I'm not terribly into this, anymore.

    by Knarfc on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 05:06:49 PM PDT

  •  hmm... (0+ / 0-)
    skip over the garbage that constitutes the body of his article and "cut to the chase" in the last paragraph where he calls for foreign "boots on the ground"
    UN "peacekeepers" have been charged with rape in Haiti. He should also know, given his extensive experience in the 3rd world, that a UN "peacekeeping" force will in reality do little to keep the peace. Witness the bang up job they did in the Cote d'Ivoire.

    sounds familiar.

    Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

    by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 05:07:51 PM PDT

  •  anybody see the fair 25th anniversary (0+ / 0-)

    forum, aired on linktv, where chris hedges gave a speech? i couldn't find the transcript, but he said something to the effect that an ineffectual democratic party instead of combating big monied interest, preoccupied themselves with "multiculturalism."

    i was like wtf? anybody see that? with the exemption of libya, i generally agree with chris, but threw me for a loop.

    Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want rain without thunder and lightening...Power [including obama] concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. ~ Frederick Douglass

    by stolen water on Sun Sep 18, 2011 at 06:19:56 PM PDT

  •  Chris Hedges is Pathetic (0+ / 0-)

    Chris Hedges is one of the most negative editorialists out there right now. Most of the time he is  mimicking refrains from the Rolling Stones' old piece, "Paint It Black" in reference to America, but  now he has trained his nihilistic black light on Libya too, unable, I suppose, to refrain from the ritualistic "Totalitarian Leftist" requirement to urinate on the Libyan Revolution. His article was posted on OpEdNews too, were comments usually lambasted him for not being pro-Gaddafi enough, while others, like me, lambasted him for a factless, hateful article toward Libya. Hedges is, simply, a mess.

  •  NATO instrumental in taking Tripoli (0+ / 0-)

    The rebels could not have succeeded on their own.

    http://graphics.thomsonreuters.com/...
    THE SECRET PLAN TO TAKE TRIPOLI

    Libya’s rebels and their western backers spent months plotting the attack on Tripoli. Here’s the inside story.
    ...
    In all, estimated Denece, some 100-200 foreign operatives were sent to Libya, where they focused on training and military coordination. Mlegta confirms that number.
    ...
    A French official said between 30 and 40
    “military advisers” helped organise the rebels and trained them on basic weapons and more high-tech hardware. In May, the French began smuggling weapons into western Libya. French military spokesmen later confirmed these arms drops, saying they were justified as “humanitarian support”, but also briefing that the aim was to prepare for an advance on Tripoli. British undercover personnel carried out some of the most important on-the-ground missions by allied forces before the fall of Tripoli, U.S. and allied officials told Reuters.
    ...
    The Europeans were also burning through costly munitions and Washington was concerned about wear and tear on NATO allies’ aircraft. “Some of the countries... basically every deployable F-16 they had in the inventory was deployed,” a senior U.S. defence official told Reuters.
    ...
    “The game-changer has been the attack helicopters which have given the NTC more protection from Gaddafi’s heavy weapons,” a French Defence Ministry official said.

    •  French intrumental in freeing 13 colonies (0+ / 0-)

      Rebels couldn't have done it on their own...

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Tue Sep 20, 2011 at 03:40:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The American revolutionaries did a lot more (0+ / 0-)

        to gain their freedom from Britain than the rebels in Libya have done to gain their freedom from Gaddafi.

        The French were not preparing the ground for the step by step advance of the American revolutionaries.

        There is absolutely no comparison to the aid France gave in the American Revolution compared to that of NATO in Libya.

        Here's a history lesson for you:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/...
        France in the American Revolutionary War
        North American operations

        •  It is not a close comparison for several reasons (0+ / 0-)

          1)  More than half of the colonists supported Britain and the king. Although that changed after the Independence was achieved many loyalists were active and opposed Washington and other revolutionaries. Some fled to Canada and some continued to oppose the effort all during the war.

           2) The presence of a number of genuine freedom fighters, like Polish army officers escaped from a failed independence effort in Europe and others who were commercial and political rivals of the British were a huge help to the young revolution.

           3)The combination of former British officers, foreign officers with experience and indigenous Americans experienced in the French and English wars made a difference to the leadership of the American effort.  The situation was a war between rebels and a remote dictatorship being truncated to where its supplies and efforts (sourced from overseas )were difficult to sustain.

          Quaddafi even now is still as far as is known on the ground somewhere in Libya being a die hard holding his narrowing base of tribal support.  Much different than the British combination of mercenary and unwilling troops.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site