Filed under: Africa | Tags: Africa, Colonialism, Imperialism, NATO, United States, Violence
Training exercises coordinated by the Pentagon take place again on the continent
An escalation in violence in Libya has prompted the call from Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi for military intervention by the “international community.”
Such an appeal suggests that the Egyptian leader, who staged a military coup against the former President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013, is requesting a renewed imperialist-led campaign in North Africa, utilizing the political crisis in Libya as a rationale. Cairo is subsidized by the United States Government with over $2billion in taxpayer funds which are largely channeled to the military for joint cooperation agreements with the Pentagon and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Egypt carried out airstrikes in Libya on Feb. 16 in response to the brutal execution of Coptic Christians by Islamic State (IS) operatives now escalating their destabilization efforts in Libya. The Egyptian airstrikes killed mainly civilians and no real assessment was made of the damage done to IS capabilities in the country.
IS was said to have claimed responsibility for the bombing of the Corinthia Hotel in the capital of Tripoli on January 27. The hotel provides accommodation for foreign guests to the North African state and initial reports said that nine people were killed including five foreign nationals, one being from the U.S. and another from France. (BBC, Jan. 28)
Since the 2011 U.S. and NATO-sponsored counter-revolution against the government of Col. Muammar Gaddafi, there has been an escalation of internecine violence including the targeting of Christians and their churches. Under the Jamahiriya, the system of government designed under Gaddafi, the country was guided by a secular ideology based on popular committees and mass organizations.
After the Pentagon-NATO bombings which lasted for over seven months, and the coordination of disparate rebel groups which followed the trail established through the aerial bombardments across strategic areas of the country, Libya has been destroyed as a nation-state. There are no viable political, social, military, cultural or legal institutions within the country which could serve to stabilize the situation.
Another aggressive Pentagon-NATO operation in Libya would be just as disastrous as the outcome of the war of regime-change in 2011. The situation in Libya has spread instability throughout other regions of North and West Africa, creating conditions for the escalation in foreign occupations from France as well as the U.S. in nearby Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso, Chad and other states.
Another series of bombing by IS in the east of Libya in the town of al-Qubbah caused the deaths of over 40 people on February 20.
In a report published by the BBC, the news agency said “Three bombs exploded, targeting a petrol station, a police station and the home of parliamentary speaker Agila Salah, a security source told the news group. According to an online statement, IS fighters said they struck in retaliation for Egyptian air strikes.” (Feb. 20)
What is often overlooked or distorted by the corporate media and U.S. government officials is the role of the CIA, the Pentagon and NATO in destabilizing Libya four years ago. This process of destabilization continues through the presence of intelligence and military assets inside the country.
On September 11, 2012, an attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound resulted in the killings of Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other intelligence and military personnel. The nature and circumstances surrounding the attack has been a source of criticism by Republican members of Congress that are clearly directed towards the domestic weakening of the Obama administration and its then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Stevens had served as the U.S. liaison for the war against the Gaddafi government in 2011 which was initiated in the east of country in Benghazi, the second largest city. There are at present pronounced divisions between the political factions based in the east and west of Libya.
U.S. Carries Out Annual Maneuvers in West Africa
In addition, Washington has conducted military maneuvers in West Africa ostensibly as a show of support in the increasingly regional fight against Boko Haram. Nonetheless, elements in the Nigerian government have said that the role of Washington has been less than helpful in the conflict which has killed over 10,000 people and dislocated millions. (Allafrica.com, Feb. 11)
Since 2009, Boko Haram has carried out a military campaign against the central government through attacking and occupying large swaths of territory in the northeast of the country. The rebels have also carried out operations in neighboring Cameroon, Chad and Niger.
Nigerian governmental sources indicate that Washington has blocked arm sells from various suppliers throughout the world including the state of Israel. Although the administration of President Barack Obama has repeatedly pledged to assist the government of President Goodluck Jonathan in the battle against Boko Haram, Abuja has complained that this assistance has not been carried out effectively through arms transfers and intelligence sharing.
A report published by Reuters on February 16 says that “Chad launched a U.S.-backed counter-terrorism exercise on Monday with 1,300 soldiers from 28 African and Western countries, billing it as a warm-up for an offensive against Nigeria’s Islamist insurgent group Boko Haram.
The “Flintlock” maneuvers unfolded as Chad and four neighboring states prepare a task force to take on Boko Haram, the biggest security threat to Africa’s top oil producer Nigeria and an increasing concern to countries bordering it.”
This same article reports:
“The annual exercises, which began in 2005, aim to improve cross-border military cooperation in the Sahel, a region prey to al Qaeda-linked and home-grown Islamists, separatist insurgents and criminal gangs. ‘This exercise to a large extent can be considered a warm-up to enable our special forces to learn techniques in the fight against terrorism,’ Chadian Brigadier General Zakaria Ngobongue, director of the exercise, said in a speech at a ceremony launching it.”
The Christian Science Monitor noted the international character of the U.S.-led operations saying:
“It includes counter-terrorism forces not only from the U.S. but from other Western countries and a number of African militaries including several of the armies who have pledged to support Nigeria in its battle against the jihadists.”
Nigeria was scheduled to hold national elections on February 14 and 28 for the presidency, parliament and local government offices. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the recommendation of the armed forces postponed the polls until late March and early April saying that the lack of security in the war-impacted areas of the country precluded the holding of a free and fair vote.
The Nigerian military along with forces from the impacted regional states have reported counter-insurgency operations where hundreds of Boko Haram fighters were killed. Nonetheless, it is not clear whether these offensive operations are adequate to break the military capacity of Boko Haram.
Although the government in Nigeria is closely allied with the imperialist states including the U.S., there are tensions between Washington and Abuja. The U.S. is no longer the major importer of Nigerian crude oil and it is reported that trade between the two countries in the petroleum industry has been severely curtailed.
At present India is the largest purchaser of Nigerian oil. The drop in oil prices, which provides Nigeria with over 90 percent of its foreign exchange earnings, has prompted an economic crisis inside the country. This is a reflection of the dependence on this industry in maintaining the current status of the national economy.
Of course you will be following events on the ground and you will know that the carnage in Libya is far from over despite the fact that the pro-imperialist corporate media is now silent and has moved on. All of a sudden, as we would expect, they are no longer interested in massacres in Libya. They have gone silent to allow the NATO backed forces to get on with their job of exterminating Qaddafi loyalists. Thousands of Qaddafi loyalists who have managed to leave Libya are now regrouping and organising the Libyan Liberation Front throughout the region known as the Sahel. Tuareg tribal leaders across the region have called for a unified front to avenge the murder of their brother and leader. As you know the Tuaregs do not recognise the colonial imposed borders and tribal leaders are calling for the liberation of the entire Sahel.
I am sending this message to alert you to the fact that many of our brothers and sisters inside Libya are in grave danger. Thousands have been rounded up, imprisoned, tortured and murdered. NATO has installed a death squad regime and many, including whole families – children and elderly, are in hiding, knowing that if they are only identified they will be murdered. Al Qaeda thugs are running amok and you will have seen the Al Qaeda flag flying on public buildings including the courthouse in Benghazi. You will recall that even the corporate media commented on the fact that the crowds that showed up in the streets to celebrate the so-called liberation of Libya were small. Of course they were – they represented a tiny minority of Libyans. Those who dared to show themselves in the streets at that time and wave the Green Flag were killed, in some instances beaten to death. The list of NATO crimes is inexhaustible. The frightening thing is that it does not seem to matter how much their heinous crimes are exposed – the North Atlantic Tribes have been able to continue their reign of terror and acts of genocide with impunity for centuries – they have been and remain without doubt the most brutal terrorists the world has ever known – that is why it was no surprise to us to find them fighting alongside the US created terrorist network Al Qaeda. I hope all those who doubted the Brother Leader’s warnings from the outset now see the Al Qaeda flags flying and the reports from civilians inside Libya that there are ‘armed gangs everywhere and that they appear to be on drugs as they rampage through the cities, towns and villages, murdering and looting.
Only last month Dr Abu Zeid Omar Dorda, the former Libyan Ambassador to the UN was actually thrown out of a second floor window during interrogations by NATO agents but he miraculously survived in front of witnesses and is now recovering in a prison medical ward. Accounts from those inside Libya are that these NATO backed rebel forces are animals and that what is now taking place on the ground inside Libya is pure terrorism. We are asking for pressure to be applied wherever you can to draw attention to this carnage. I want to highlight the case of Dr Ahmed Ibrahim, a former Secretary for Education, a brilliant scholar and well known exponent of the Third Universal Theory. Dr Ibrahim is an ideologue of the Al Fateh revolution and a staunch revolutionary Pan Africanist. He has been captured and we believe he is being held in Sirte. Dr Moussa
Ibrahim, the spokesperson for the Al Fateh Revolutionary Forces is his nephew.
Dr Ibrahim, like so many, was offered safe passage out of Libya but refused to leave. He is an intellectual warrior who stood his ground in Sirte and is now a prisoner of war and should be treated as a prisoner of war.
To those of you who attended the Green Book Supporters conference in Tripoli in 2009 Dr. Ibrahim was the person who introduced the Brother Leader Muammar Qaddafi.
If any of you are in a position to publicise his case and the plight of hundreds of thousands of Libyans who fear for their lives please do so.
The struggle continues.
Source: MR Zine
11 September 2011
The Foreign Ministers of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America, meeting in Caracas, Venezuela on 9 September 2011, recalling the Special Communiqué of the Political Council on 4 March 2011 and the Special Communiqué of the Ministerial Social Council on 19 March 2011, condemns the NATO intervention in Libya and its illegal military aggression, carried out under the cover of a UN Security Council resolution, opportunistically exploiting the situation of the internal political conflict in that country.
The ALBA foreign ministers denounce the NATO for carrying out a military operation for regime change in Libya under the doctrine of preventive war, manipulating the UN to suit its geopolitical and economic interests in violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1973.
The ALBA foreign ministers demand the immediate and unconditional cessation of the NATO bombings and military intervention in the Libyan territory.
The ALBA foreign ministers deplore the fact that the NATO has disregarded the persistent efforts of the African Union in search of a solution to the internal conflict in Libya based on dialogue to achieve peace.
The ALBA foreign ministers also deplore the complicity of various major international media, which have colluded with those interested in aggression and lent themselves to the purpose of distorting information about the state of affairs in Libya.
The ALBA foreign ministers issue their most urgent warning on the danger that the Libyan precedent may be repeated against Syria, by means of exploiting the ongoing political troubles in that Arab nation.
The ALBA foreign ministers reiterate their firmest commitment to the right to self-determination of the peoples of Libya and Syria.
The ALBA foreign ministers most energetically reject any Continue reading