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Welcome to Libya’s ‘democracy’

November 27, 2011 Leave a comment

 

Why does every US military intervention end up with politics dependent on terrorism and economies subverted by drugs?

The neo-colonial mirage. Does Libya own its oil - now or then, too! |  Graphic source and courtesy - http://thesantosrepublic.com  |  Click for larger source image.

The neo-colonial mirage. Does Libya own its oil – now or then, too! | Graphic source and courtesy – http://thesantosrepublic.com | Click for larger source image.

A large Benghazi-based “revolution” sold to the West as a popular movement was always a myth. Only two months ago the armed “revolutionaries” barely numbered 1,000. NATO’s solution was to build a mercenary army – including all sorts of unsavory types, from former Colombian death squad members to recruiters from Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), who pinched scores of unemployed Tunisians and tribals disgruntled with Tripoli. All these on top of the CIA mercenary squad – Salafis in Benghazi and Derna – and the House of Saud squad – the Muslim Brotherhood gang.

It’s hard not to be reminded of the UCK drug gang in Kosovo – the war NATO “won” in the Balkans. Or of the Pakistanis and Saudis, with US backing, arming the “freedom fighters” of Afghanistan in the 1980s.

Then there’s the dodgy, Benghazi-based, Transitional National Council (TNC)’s cast of characters.

The leader, Mustafa Abdel-Jalil, Gaddafi’s justice minister from 2007 until his resignation on February 26, studied sharia and civil law at the University of Libya. That might entitle him to cross rhetorical swords with the Islamic fundamentalists in Benghazi, al-Baida and Delna – but he could use his knowledge to press their interests in a new power-sharing arrangement.

As for Mahmoud Jibril, the chairman of the council’s executive board, he studied at Cairo University and then the University of Pittsburgh. He’s the key Qatari connection – having been involved in asset management for Sheikha Mozah, the ultra high-profile wife of the emir of Qatar.

There’s also the son of the last monarch of Libya, King Idris, deposed by Gaddafi 42 years ago (with no bloodshed); the House of Saud would love a new monarchy in northern Africa. And the son of Omar Mukhtar, the hero of the resistance against Italian colonialism – a more secular figure.

The new Iraq?

Yet to believe that NATO would win the war and let the “rebels” control power is a joke. Reuters has already reported that a “bridging force” of around 1,000 soldiers from Qatar, the Emirates and Jordan will arrive in Tripoli to act as police. And the Pentagon is already spinning that the US military will be on the ground to “help to secure the weapons”. A nice touch that already implies who’s going to be really in charge; the “humanitarian” neo-colonialists plus their Arab minions.

Abdel Fatah Younis, the “rebel” commander killed by the rebels themselves, was a French intelligence asset. He was killed by the Muslim Brotherhood faction – just when the Great Arab Liberator Sarkozy was trying to negotiate an endgame with Saif al-Islam, Gaddafi’s London School of Economics son now back from the dead.

So the big winners in the end are London, Washington, the House of Saud and the Qataris (they sent jets and “advisers”, they are already handling the oil sales). With a special mention for the compound Pentagon/NATO – considering that Africom will finally set up its first African base in the Mediterranean, and NATO is one step closer to declaring the Mediterranean “a NATO lake”.

Islamism? Tribalism? These may be Libya’s lesser ills compared to a new fantasyland open to neo-liberalism. There are few doubts the new Western masters won’t try to revive a friendlier version of Iraq’s nefarious, rapacious Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), turning Libya into a hardcore neo-liberal dream of 100% ownership of Libyan assets, total repatriation of profits, Western corporations with the same legal standing of local firms, foreign banks buying local banks and very low income and corporate taxes.

Meanwhile, the deep fracture between the center (Tripoli) and the periphery for the control of energy resources will fester. BP, Total, Exxon, all Western oil giants will be gratefully rewarded by the transitional council – to the detriment of Chinese, Russian and Indian companies. NATO troops on the ground will certainly help to keep the council on message. (via Asia Times Online :: THE ROVING EYE: Welcome to Libya’s ‘democracy’).

After American military interventions, many economies were subverted by drugs - and politics by terrorism. Why?  |  Cartoon by Charlie Daniels; source and courtesy - http://editorialexplanations.blogspot.com   |   Click for source image.

After American military interventions, many economies were subverted by drugs – and politics by terrorism. Why? | Cartoon by Charlie Daniels; source and courtesy – http://editorialexplanations.blogspot.com | Click for source image.

Oil … The Big Story

Pepe Escobar, specializes in seeing how oil influences the West – and dictates policy all over the world – from Uzbekistan to Uganda. He has also traced (in other posts) how China has moved across various geographies, to secure its oil interests.

The other element that Pepe Escobar touches on is the role of KLA-UCK, a significant part of the Serbo-Croat problem in Bosnia-Kosovo.

KLA being the English abbreviation of the Albanian name UCK (Ushtria Clirimtare E Kosoves) – a known entity dealing in drugs, well-funded and sufficiently armed.

Sources?

War, Drugs .Terror

Widely supported, trained and equipped by US and West European governments, the KLA-UCK targeted the Serbs and Roma Gypsies. Yugoslavia (now Crotia, Bosnia-Herzegovinia, Serbia, Montenegro), for long a legal drug-supplier to Europe, apparently continued this trade even after WWII, when it declared illegal.

After WWII, traditional opium supplies from (Greater) China, by Government granted opium monopolies of Yugoslavia and Italy, were replaced by Iran, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Mexico. It was the Golden Triangle and the Golden Crescent which dominated opium supplies from 1960s, after the start of Vietnam War.

Even though most drugs in the world originated in India; India remains a producer of these drugs - Indians are not major users.  |  Cartoon by Mike Keefe; on 25 March, 2009; source and courtesy - theipinionsjournal.com  |  Click for larger source image.

Even though most drugs in the world originated in India; India remains a producer of these drugs – Indians are not major users. | Cartoon by Mike Keefe; on 25 March, 2009; source and courtesy – theipinionsjournal.com | Click for larger source image.

The Pattern Behind Drugs

There is a pattern in Central Europe and Afghanistan-Pakistan, South East Asia. All these regions became major centres of drug trade. In an earlier post, we had seen how close US allies became terror hot-spots.

Golden Triangle in SE Asia; Golden Crescent in Af-Pak region; and the Russian-Eastern/Central European mafias. Drug flows from these new supply sources coincided with America’s Asian Wars in Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Korea, etc. These wars were justified under Eisenhower’s Domino Theory – which made Communism an enemy ‘under-your-bed’.

The subject of much research, many Hollywood films and significant evidence confirm that American armed forces and the CIA were behind drugs import into USA. The so-called Phoenix operation was run by CIA with some 200 Green Berets – whose major activity, apart from killings, assassinations and torture, was narcotics. For some time during the Vietnam War, the French intelligence also used drug money to funds its own operation. Like its British and American counterparts, French Government identified its intelligence agencies to manage drug trade.

In former Yugoslavia, the Albanian mafia made $45 million annually in 1990s by controlling the Turkish drug chain from Istanbul through Zurich to New York. A large chunk of this money returned to Kosovo to finance separatist activities inside the province as well as use the money to buy sympathies from the international NGOs that will implicitly advocate Kosovo Albanian separatist agenda.

Ethnic Albanians were initiated as the couriers for the Turkish and Bulgarian state mafia thirty years ago. These used smuggling of narcotics as the source of financing secret political, military and intelligence service operations. The majority of them were recruited in the “Kosovo triangle” Veliki Trnovac-Preševo-Gnjilane, marked on Interpol map as a black point on world drug routes.

French expert on narcotics, Alen Labrus described Kosovo Albanian drug smuggling operations to the Washington Post as being managed by tough, merciless bands that have displaced Turks as the leading smuggling clan:

“Powerful Turkish clans controlling Europe heroin market, realized that Russian, Caucasian and Albanian narco-mafia have invaded their territory in the last ten years, looking for their part of the market and profit. Kosovo ethnic Albanians have become so strong that they keep under their control 70% of drug market just in Switzerland. The war in the Balkans interrupted previous Yugoslav channels of drug smuggling. (via Balkan Death: The Albanian Narco-Mafia | Serbianna Analysis).

Who Pays

While the Oil and Terror linkage is much talked about, the role of Saudi Arabian funding much discussed, the global footprint of the drug trade is overlooked. As controls on gold sparked a global crime wave, the war on drugs is sparking another crime wave – a wave of terror. When the West wanted they imposed Opium Trade in the name of open markets. When the West wanted they declared a war on drugs.

Either way, someone else is paying.

PS

The usual story – cure is worse than the disease. Will the NATO-supported regime in Libya be better than Gaddafi’s?

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi | Source: AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia; Courtesy rt.com  |  Click for image.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi | Source: AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia; Courtesy rt.com | Click for image.

The most serious charge against Saif al-Islam Gaddafi that Libya managed to back with evidence is over his failure to obtain a license for his camels, the head of Human Rights Watch says.

Kenneth Roth cited on his Twitter account complaints of lawyers of the International Criminal Court, who said the case of Saif is a “legal black hole”.

According to the lawyers, Libya said it would not charge “serious crimes, such as murder & rape, due to lack of evidence” and has only managed to charge him with “the absence of a licence for camels, and irregularities concerning fish farms” so far.

The ICC forcefully demanded that Saif al-Islam were extradited to The Hague earlier on Thursday. But the Libyan government refused to do so, insisting that it will try him on its soil.

via Gaddafi son’s atrocity: Failing to license camels? — RT.


 

Pakistani diplomacy – a tour de force

May 28, 2011 1 comment
Cartoon by Jerry Holbert; Courtesy - caveviews.blogs.com. Click for larger image.

Cartoon by Jerry Holbert; Courtesy - caveviews.blogs.com. Click for larger image.

Without Comment

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton traveled halfway around the world Friday for several hours of meetings with Pakistani leaders. Clinton’s brief visit — she arrived just after breakfast and was headed home by early afternoon — was part of the Obama administration’s efforts in recent weeks to leverage bin Laden’s killing during a secret raid by U.S. commandos into closer ties with Pakistan, rather than risk it finally severing the always-fragile partnership.

Administration officials also said they listened to Pakistan’s complaints about the slow delivery of promised military assistance and its desire for other forms of assistance that “they can show as proof of this relationship” to the Pakistani public. “We committed to look at that,” one official said.

Responding to recent reports that Pakistan has tried to solidify its ties with China and other traditional friends as a hedge against troubles with the United States, Clinton said that Americans provide Pakistan with “more support than Saudi Arabia, China and everybody else combined. . . . I’m not sure many Pakistanis know that.”

It was far from the first time the United States has announced an attempted reset. But administration officials traveling with Clinton said that the seriousness of the current crisis had forced both sides to confront the possible consequences of an irreconcilable breach and that the talks were marked by a new level of frankness.

After her news conference at the U.S. Embassy, she was whisked back to her plane and gone before most Pakistanis were even aware she was here.(via Clinton visits Pakistan to firm up new ties – The Washington Post; parts excised /reordered for brevity and continuity).

Cartoon By Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle From the Cartoonist Group; Courtesy - americanprogress.org. Click for larger image.

Cartoon By Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle From the Cartoonist Group; Courtesy - americanprogress.org. Click for larger image.

She expressed Washington’s “strong commitment” to relations with Pakistan. Mrs Clinton said that the US had “absolutely no evidence that anyone at the highest level of the Pakistani government” knew where Bin Laden was and said she would return to Washington “ever more committed” to the relationship. In what correspondents say was perhaps an attempt to smooth ruffled Pakistani feathers over the killing, Mrs Clinton acknowledged the ”sacrifices made every single day by the men and women Pakistan’s military and its citizens”.

Mrs Clinton was accompanied on her visit by the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm Mike Mullen. The pair held meetings with senior Pakistani politicians and army officers to plead for greater co-operation in the war against the Taliban and al-Qaeda. Having all of Pakistan’s civilian and military leadership in one room was unusual, perhaps an effort to get them talking to each other more.

It is the first such high-level visit to Pakistan since the killing of Bin Laden on 2 May. (via BBC News – Clinton exonerates Pakistan over Osama Bin Laden; parts excised /reordered for brevity and continuity).

Taliban and Pakistan Nukes; Cartoon by Mike Keefe; 04/25/2009 (Ref Num:69801); Courtesy - intoon.com. Click forlarger image.

Taliban and Pakistan Nukes; Cartoon by Mike Keefe; 04/25/2009 (Ref Num:69801); Courtesy - intoon.com. Click forlarger image.

Pakistan is preparing for further deterioration, building its non-U.S. alliances and options. For Pakistanis, the Abbottabad raid that killed Osama bin Laden was a vivid demonstration that America does not respect its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The presence of American drones flying into Pakistan’s airspace underscores this all the time. For Americans, the fact that bin Laden was hiding for years in a major Pakistani garrison town surrounded by Pakistani army cantonments and retired officers’ homes confirmed the U.S. view that the country engages in a complex double game of patronizing some terrorists while fighting others. Both sides are right about the other.

Pakistan has seen the United States cut off aid many ties before in the last half century. It knows Washington is capricious. So it is strengthening its alternatives east and west. China is Pakistan’s reliable “all weather” ally. Both Pakistan’s civilian and military leaders travel often to Beijing to ensure close cooperation. Chinese engineers are building highways to link Tibet to the Arabian Sea through Pakistan. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are key Muslim allies to the west. Pakistan has been the kingdom’s largest recipient of aid for decades and Saudi Prince Bandar just visited Islamabad to secure promises of Pakistani troops if the Arab Spring threatens to erupt in the gulf monarchies. A battalion of Pakistani troops is in Bahrain backing up the Saudi and Emirati forces that intervened there this year to crush the Shia protest movement.(via America’s Menacing Pakistan Problem – Brookings Institution; parts excised /reordered for brevity and continuity).

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