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 Imperialist stratagems

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مُساهمةموضوع: Imperialist stratagems    الثلاثاء 29 مارس 2011, 12:00 am

Imperialist stratagems



Ongoing Western bombing of targets in Libya illustrates the deceitfulness of the Nato powers which insist that they are simply fulfilling the terms of UN resolution 1973.


The resolution authorised member states "to protect civilians and civilian populated areas under threat of attack in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, including Benghazi, while excluding a foreign occupation force of any form."


It also ordered a no-fly zone to prevent the Gadaffi regime from launching aerial attacks on its opponents.


The no-fly zone was imposed in short order, with the Pentagon declaring last week that the regime's air power had been neutralised, but still the bombing continues.


The most recent Nato aerial attacks on Sirte, assisting the advance by opposition forces, indicate military coordination for regime change rather than concern for civilian welfare.


Events recall Washington's use of the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan in 2001, when concentrated US aerial bombing raids allowed alliance forces to drive back the Taliban.


As in Afghanistan so in Libya, the Western planes are not flying in support of anti-government forces.







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French intelligence & Gaddafi protests



Reports have emerged in European media alleging that efforts by French intelligence to destabilize or topple the Libyan government of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi may have played a role in last month’s protests in Benghazi, which ultimately led to war in Libya.


The National Council, a Libyan rebel group based in Benghazi and led by ex-Gaddafi regime officials, appealed to the Western powers for military support. The US, Britain, and the French government of President Nicolas Sarkozy then launched a war against Libya on March 19.


Allegations of French intelligence involvement center on a March 23 report by journalist Franco Bechis in the right-wing Italian daily Libero, headlined "'Sarko’ manipulated the Libyan revolt." He highlights the strange case of Nuri Mesmari—Gaddafi’s former chief of protocol, who fled to Paris in October—and claims that Mesmari put French officials in contact with military officers and activists in Benghazi plotting against Gaddafi.


To a large extent, Bechis bases himself on dispatches from French business intelligence site Maghreb Confidential. On October 21 of last year, Maghreb Confidential reported, "Muammer Kadhafi’s [i.e., Muammar Gaddafi’s] chief of protocol, Nouri Mesmari, is currently in Paris after stopping off in Tunisia. Normally, Mesmari sticks closely to his boss’s side, so there’s some talk that he may have broken his long-standing tie with the Libyan leader."


A prominent pro-free-market reformer in the Libyan ruling elite, Mesmari played a critical role in the Gaddafi regime. He coordinated visits to Libya by foreign heads of state and their use of Libya’s fleet of private jets. He also oversaw the state’s payments to Gaddafi’s children, who have become major business leaders in Libya by taking state funds.


Jeune Afrique, a French news magazine on African affairs, commented that Mesmari’s case was "nourishing the most contradictory rumors. The 'Guide’ [i.e. Gaddafi] allegedly slapped and insulted Mesmari during the Arab-African summit of October 9-10 in Syrte [Sirt]. This was the man’s last public appearance before the revelation, on October 22, that he had fled for France."


On November 18, Maghreb Confidential wrote, "The comings and goings of Nouri Mesmari have been stirring a lot of curiosity in recent weeks. The protocol chief of Muammer Kadhafi, who seemed to be joined at the hip with Libya’s leader, travelled to France at the end of October, passing by way of Tunisia. Officially, Mesmari, who suffers from a chronic illness, came to Paris for an operation. His wife and daughter indeed visited him, staying for a while at the Concorde Lafayette hotel in Paris. He has since dropped out of sight. Mesmari, who reportedly wants to go into retirement, is one of Kadhafi’s closest confidantes and knows pretty well all of his secrets."


On the same day, Maghreb Confidential reported talks between French and US wheat growing interests—including France Export Cereales, FranceAgrimer, Soufflet, Louis Dreyfus, Glencore, CAM Cereales, Cargill, and Conagra—and Libyan state-owned mills. These included National Flour Mill Co. in Benghazi, and National Company for Flour Mills & Fodder in Tripoli.


The French ruling class was intent on boosting its market share in Libya. Before a December 14-17 visit—by French banks Crédit Agricole and Société Générale, engineering firms Alstom and Thales, and construction firm Lafarge—Maghreb Confidential wrote: "French firms are determined to climb higher in the ranks of Libya’s trading partners. Italy is currently in number one position, with China second and France a distant sixth."


According to Bechis, however, these visits provided cover for French military officials to sound out opposition in the Libyan military.




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A CIA commander for Libyan rebels



The Libyan National Council, the Benghazi-based group that speaks for the rebel forces fighting the Gaddafi regime, has appointed a long-time CIA collaborator to head its military operations. The selection of Khalifa Hifter, a former colonel in the Libyan army, was reported by McClatchy Newspapers Thursday and the new military chief was interviewed by a correspondent for ABC News on Sunday night.


Hifter’s arrival in Benghazi was first reported by Al Jazeera on March 14, followed by a flattering portrait in the virulently pro-war British tabloid the Daily Mail on March 19. The Daily Mail described Hifter as one of the "two military stars of the revolution" who "had recently returned from exile in America to lend the rebel ground forces some tactical coherence." The newspaper did not refer to his CIA connections.


McClatchy Newspapers published a profile of Hifter on Sunday. Headlined "New Rebel Leader Spent Much of Past 20 years in Suburban Virginia," the article notes that he was once a top commander for the Gaddafi regime, until "a disastrous military adventure in Chad in the late 1980s."


Hifter then went over to the anti-Gaddafi opposition, eventually emigrating to the United States, where he lived until two weeks ago when he returned to Libya to take command in Benghazi.


The McClatchy profile concluded, "Since coming to the United States in the early 1990s, Hifter lived in suburban Virginia outside Washington, DC." It cited a friend who "said he was unsure exactly what Hifter did to support himself, and that Hifter primarily focused on helping his large family."


To those who can read between the lines, this profile is a thinly disguised indication of Hifter’s role as a CIA operative. How else does a high-ranking former Libyan military commander enter the United States in the early 1990s, only a few years after the Lockerbie bombing, and then settle near the US capital, except with the permission and active assistance of US intelligence agencies? Hifter actually lived in Vienna, Virginia, about five miles from CIA headquarters in Langley, for two decades.


The agency was very familiar with Hifter’s military and political work. A Washington Post report of March 26, 1996 describes an armed rebellion against Gaddafi in Libya and uses a variant spelling of his name. The article cites witnesses to the rebellion who report that "its leader is Col. Khalifa Haftar, of a contra-style group based in the United States called the Libyan National Army."


The comparison is to the "contra" terrorist forces financed and armed by the US government in the 1980s against the Sandinista government in Nicaragua. The Iran-Contra scandal, which rocked the Reagan administration in 1986-87, involved the exposure of illegal US arms sales to Iran, with the proceeds used to finance the contras in defiance of a congressional ban. Congressional Democrats covered up the scandal and rejected calls to impeach Reagan for sponsoring the flagrantly illegal activities of a cabal of former intelligence operatives and White House aides.




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Imperialist stratagems
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