Archive for the ‘Nato Crimes’ Category

In Afghanistan, NATO Now Committing Bald-Faced ‘Murder’

April 12, 2013

http://worldmeets.us/ http://worldmeets.us/derspiegel000012.shtml#ixzz2QEMWkIWG

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/augstein-kolumne-afghanistan-krieg-ist-sinnlos-und-nicht-zu-gewinnen-a-893044.html

 

On Saturday, in northeastern Afghanistan’s Kunar Province: American and Afghan troops battled their enemies. After several hours, as reported by The New York Times, the Americans called in air support.  The house of the opposing commander was to be destroyed. When it was all over, the Taliban are dead. And according to the provincial government, ten children also lose their lives. Five women were also said to be injured. This is the reality of the war in Afghanistan – a war in which the Bundeswehr is participating. A war that is completely nonsensical. Because by the end of 2014 it should all be over. The foreign troops will pack up their things and withdraw – the way a circus packs up and moves on when a performance is over. But this is no game. Truth be told, it is murder. Because a senseless war can be called nothing but murder.

 

There was a similar attack in February. On that occasion, five children, four women and a man were killed. Afghan President Hamid Karzai subsequently forbade his own security forces from calling in NATO air support. Bombs from the air bring an indiscriminate death. And ISAF had already determined that it would no longer target residential buildings.

 

But apparently, that is no concern of the Americans. ISAF troops, among them Germans, are waging this war based on a meaningless routine. It is no longer about a goal – about victory or defeat, or about anything at all. It is just a matter of killing time until the troops pull out. One day, at midnight, the fight will simply end. This is surreal. Only the dead who fall victim to this madness are real.

 

That is why this war cannot be won

 

Expressing outrage over this has nothing to do with naïve pacifism. Very few people have the wherewithal to be pacifists. It is hard to imagine morals stronger than those held by a true pacifist. Most people cannot tolerate the complete absence of violence. They believe in violence and find ways of soothing their guilty consciences. The worse the violence, the better must be the reason.

Posted By Worldmeets.US

 

How good must the reasons be to justify killing ten children? Perhaps there are such grounds. Perhaps there is someone who thinks he can make that judgment. But in this case, we know there are no such reasons.

 

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Who seriously believes that if one Taliban commander more or less is killed, it will make a difference for the future of Afghanistan? In this case, the individuals targeted by the Americans were called Ali Kahn and Gul Raouf. They allegedly organized attacks in the country’s mountainous northeast. According to everything we are able to read, these men are now dead. And now? Will the Kunar region now be more peaceful? Others will take the place of the dead, as it was in Afghanistan’s past. That is why this war cannot be won. That is why a date for the withdrawal of Western occupation forces has been set.

 

Every death is one too many

 

Everything is geared toward the withdrawal. ISAF troops are already trying to figure out how to get their stuff home. Not so easy with such poor infrastructure. If the withdrawal is to be accomplished on schedule, until the end of 2014, one container must to leave the country every seven minutes. The transit countries of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan will make a fortune allowing ISAF troops to retreat by land and through the air. Pakistan opens and closes its border to Western military materiel depending on its mood – and according to how many Pakistanis have just fallen victim to America’s drone war.

 

On the subject of German participation in the war, former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder recently said in an interview with Spiegel: “The decision was the correct one at the time.” But “whether the entire deployment of more than ten years was correct can only be assessed later, perhaps even many decades later.” So far, this was Schröder’s most critical statement on the war in Afghanistan. But it wasn’t enough. Schröder would have done himself and the SPD a favor by expressing what in any case, everyone already understands: This war is lost, it is senseless, and everyone already knows it.

 

Each additional day of fighting is one day too many. Every death is one death too many, and it weighs on our collective conscience. We have made ourselves into accomplices to a crime. A few years ago, it was said that Germans should again become accustomed to war. It was said that this was the global responsibility of an economically strong and politically sovereign nation. At least in this respect we can say: mission accomplished! We got used to war again. The senseless deaths of ten children don’t bother us anymore. Now we know the meaning of global responsibility. Thanks for the lesson.

 

SEE ALSO ON THIS:
Afghanistan Times: Karzai is Right – Taliban are in the Service of America
Asia Times, Hong Kong: Karzai’s Curious Counterblast
Die Zeit, Germany: Unwarranted Pessimism Over Leaving Afghanistan
The Nation, Pakistan: U.S. Withdrawal from Afghanistan: ‘Please Don’t Wait Until 2014!’
FTD, Germany: The Beginning of the End for the Bundeswehr in Afghanistan
The Nation, Pakistan: U.S.-Afghan-Taliban Talks Must Benefit Pakistan, Not India
Guardian, U.K.: U.S. Suspends Joint Military Operations with Afghan Forces

Telegraph, U.K.: Taliban Hit U.S.- U.K. Afghan Base; ‘Miss’ Prince Harry

The Independent, U.K.: Obama’s Foreign Policy of Reconciliation in ‘Tatters’

Frontier Post, Pakistan: Obama’s Drone War a PR Disaster for America

Der Spiegel, Germany: President of Dissapointment: How Obama Failed to Deliver

Frontier Post, Pakistan: Panetta Spills Beans: U.S. Handing Afghanistan to India
Thawra Al-Wada, Syria: Middle East Borders to Be Drawn in Arab Blood
Tunis Hebdo, Tunisia: A Method to Bush’s Madness?
The Frontier Post: Co-opted U.S. Media Will Always Blame Pakistan
The Frontier Post: Just Say ‘Thank You’ to Cut in American Aid
The Frontier Post: Letter to A.Q. Khan Resembles CIA Iraq War Forgery
Guardian, U.K.: Pakistani Generals ‘Helped Sell Nuclear Secrets’
Guardian, U.K.: Pakistan Hits Back at Mullen Over Journalist’s Murder Claim
Dawn, Pakistan: Even if U.S. Nuclear Accusations are True, Pakistan Broke No Law
Asia Times, Hong Kong: America Homes in on al-Qaeda’s New Chief
The Nation, Pakistan: CIA Chief Panetta Says Zawahiri Living in Pakistan
The Frontier Post, Pakistan: Obama Withdrawal Plans ‘Spell Doom’ for Pakistan
The Frontier Post, Pakistan: Karzai Finally Awakens to American Treachery
The Daily Jang, Pakistan: The Beginning of the End of U.S. in Afghanistan?

 

 

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NATO War Crimes Against Libyans Graphic Photos

March 22, 2013

Before It’s News – by Deborah Dupre

After Libyans gathered outside the UN Headquarters in Cairo on Tuesday to denounce NATO and “rebel” war crimes on the anniversary of the beginning of the U.S.-led aerial bombardment campaign, an international rights group on Wednesday urged the American-supported Libyan government to halt “systematic destruction” of a town whose residents backed their leader Moammar Gadhafi.  
Displaced residents once living in the town Tawergha now live in harsh conditions in refugee camps in Tripoli and Benghazi.

Human Rights Watch based its report of abuse on recent satellite images showing “arson and targeted demolitions” of Tawergha to prevent residents from going home, the New York-based group said.
The United States, that illegally kick-started the war on oil-rich Libya through CIA covert operations, and its NATO allies “destroyed the country, displaced millions, slaughtered over 100,000 civilians and left approximately 10,000 political prisoners,” Libyan rights group Viva Libya! says.
Since NATO war crimes began in Libya, that Barack Obama has supported without Congressional debate, vote or approval, arbitrary arrests and detentions continue there.

Viva Libya! says that crime and murder rates are up over 500% there.

“Libya is a land of lawlessness and terror under NATO’s GNC dictatorship,” Viva Libya! says.
“More than 18 months since the end of the conflict that ousted Gadhafi’s regime, Libya is awash with weapons, roaming militias, violence and instability,” ABC News reports.

Such was not the way life was for Libyans before the U.S. and its allies declared war them.
(SeeSixteen things Libyans will never see again)

In response to continued bombing and a new statement by Western leaders, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Stop the War have called an emergency protest at Downing Street on Tuesday 19th April at 5:00 P.M.

Warning: The following photographs out of Libya are graphic and desturbing.

Libyan ‘Terrorists’: Children killed by US-led NATO Bombing Campaign
Libyan Sirte Bodies
NATO continues bombing campaign on oil-rich Libya
Beheaded Libyan soldier
Libyan boy stands amid rubble
Libyans mourn loved ones killed by NATO
Libyans watch their nation burn
NATO bombing Libya back to Stone Age
Libyan father holding baby
Libyans walk through NATO destroyed community
Man finds killed Libyan
NATO massacre of Libyans with hands tied behind backs, execution style

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The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

US’ New "Syrian PM" Yet Another Muslim Brotherhood Extremist

March 20, 2013

US’ New “Syrian PM” Yet Another Muslim Brotherhood Extremist

Source

March 19, 2013 (LD) – The Western media eagerly announced that long time US resident Ghassan Hitto was chosen as the new “interim prime minister” of NATO’s proxy forces fighting in Syria. While most headlines attempted to focus solely on Hitto’s long stay in the US and his role in a tech firm based in Texas, The Globe and Mail reported in their article, “Canadian loses bid to lead Syria’s rebels; Ottawa’s stance assailed,” that:

Ghassan Hitto, a Kurd with links to the Muslim Brotherhood, was elected in the early hours of Tuesday at a meeting of leading opposition figures of the Syrian National Coalition.

Some reports indicate that Hitto was in fact pushed forward specifically by the Muslim Brotherhood. The AFP reported in their article, “Ghassan Hitto voted premier of Syria’s rebel territory,” that:

Some Coalition members described Hitto as a consensus candidate pleasing both the opposition’s Islamist and liberal factions.

But some of the 70-odd Coalition members withdrew from the consultations before the vote could take place, accusing opposition heavyweight Muslim Brotherhood of imposing Hitto as a candidate.

The article would also say:

“We don’t want what happened in Egypt to happen in Syria. They hijacked the revolution,” Coalition member Kamal Labwani, who walked out of the vote, told AFP.

Associated Press would report in their article, “Syrian opposition elects Ghassan Hitto as interim PM,” that:

Mr Hitto, 50, who is believed to have Islamist leanings, received 35 of 49 votes in a meeting of the Syrian National Coalition (SNC) in Istanbul in the early hours yesterday. He was supported by the Muslim Brotherhood, which is a powerful bloc within the opposition.

This latest round of political “musical chairs” is meant to once again clear the board for the West in hopes of confusing the public, while NATO’s proxies remain firmly led and comprised primarily of hardcore terrorists and sectarian extremist intent on the ruination of Syria, just as was done in the now decimated North African nation of Libya. Hitto takes the reins of this Western-contrived front from fellow sectarian extremist, Moaz al-Khatib, also an affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood and an unabashed defender of Al Qaeda’s al-Nusra front, who frequently takes credit for the indiscriminate bombings, murder and maiming of civilians across Syria.

Since long before the 2011 violence began, the US, Israel, and Saudi Arabia had conspired to use sectarian extremists, specifically the Muslim Brotherhood and terrorist groups linked directly to Al Qaeda as the main force with which to overthrow the Syrian government, not for “spreading democracy,” but specifically to undermine and destroy neighboring Iran and reassert Western hegemony across the Middle East. 

West Planned Overthrow of Syria Via the Brotherhood Since 2007

Pulitizer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh, in his 9-page 2007 New Yorker report titled, “The Redirection: Is the Administration’s new policy benefiting our enemies in the war on terrorism?” stated explicitly that:

“To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.” 

Hersh’s report would also include: 

“the Saudi government, with Washington’s approval, would provide funds and logistical aid to weaken the government of President Bashir Assad, of Syria. The Israelis believe that putting such pressure on the Assad government will make it more conciliatory and open to negotiations.”

Hersh also reported that a supporter of the Lebanese pro-US-Saudi Hariri faction had met Dick Cheney in Washington and relayed personally the importance of using the Muslim Brotherhood in Syria in any move against the ruling government: 

“[Walid] Jumblatt then told me that he had met with Vice-President Cheney in Washington last fall to discuss, among other issues, the possibility of undermining Assad. He and his colleagues advised Cheney that, if the United States does try to move against Syria, members of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood would be “the ones to talk to,” Jumblatt said.”

The article would continue by explaining how already in 2007 US and Saudi backing had begun benefiting the Brotherhood:

“There is evidence that the Administration’s redirection strategy has already benefitted the Brotherhood. The Syrian National Salvation Front is a coalition of opposition groups whose principal members are a faction led by Abdul Halim Khaddam, a former Syrian Vice-President who defected in 2005, and the Brotherhood. A former high-ranking C.I.A. officer told me, “The Americans have provided both political and financial support. The Saudis are taking the lead with financial support, but there is American involvement.” He said that Khaddam, who now lives in Paris, was getting money from Saudi Arabia, with the knowledge of the White House. (In 2005, a delegation of the Front’s members met with officials from the National Security Council, according to press reports.) A former White House official told me that the Saudis had provided members of the Front with travel documents.” 

At one point in Hersh’s report, it is even admitted that officials from US ally Saudi Arabia admitted to “controlling” the “religious fundamentalists.” The report states specifically:

“…[Saudi Arabia’s] Bandar and other Saudis have assured the White House that “they will keep a very close eye on the religious fundamentalists. Their message to us was ‘We’ve created this movement, and we can control it.’ It’s not that we don’t want the Salafis to throw bombs; it’s who they throw them at—Hezbollah, Moqtada al-Sadr, Iran, and at the Syrians, if they continue to work with Hezbollah and Iran.”

Also in 2007, the Wall Street Journal would publish a report titled, “To Check Syria, U.S. Explores Bond With Muslim Brothers.” In this report, it was revealed that even in 2007, Syrian opposition groups were being created from whole-cloth by the US State Department and paraded around in front of Syria’s embassies in the West. The article begins with one such protest, stating:

On a humid afternoon in late May, about 100 supporters of Syria’s largest exile opposition group, the National Salvation Front, gathered outside Damascus’s embassy here to protest Syrian President Bashar Assad’s rule. The participants shouted anti-Assad slogans and raised banners proclaiming: “Change the Regime Now.”

Later in the article, it would be revealed that the National Salvation Front (NSF) was in contact with the US State Department and that a Washington-based consulting firm in fact assisted the NSF in organizing the rally:

In the weeks before the presidential election, the State Department’s Middle East Partnership Initiative, which promotes regional democracy, and NSF members met to talk about publicizing Syria’s lack of democracy and low voter turnout, participants say. A Washington-based consulting firm, C&O Resources Inc., assisted the NSF in its planning for the May 26 anti-Assad rally at the Syrian embassy, providing media and political contacts. State Department officials stress they provided no financial or technical support to the protestors.

And while the Wall Street Journal then, just as the US State Department and the Western media houses are now portraying the Syrian opposition as representing a wide range of interests across Syrian society, it was admitted then, just as it is plainly obvious now, that the sectarian extremist Muslim Brotherhood was in fact at the very center of the “uprising:”

One of the NSF’s most influential members is the Syrian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood — the decades-old political movement active across the Middle East whose leaders have inspired the terrorist groups Hamas and al Qaeda. Its Syrian offshoot says it has renounced armed struggle in favor of democratic reform.

The continuous necessity of the West to rebrand its proxy front stems from the fact that it, along with the Western agenda that created it, lacks any dimension of legitimacy. Combined with the increasingly tenuous reputation of the West’s media monopolies and a better informed public, the lifespan of each new proxy is decreasing exponentially.

Hitto has yet to form a “government,” and already his ties to extremists are being exposed – even by other members of his own contrived front – perhaps realizing the difficulties that lie ahead with disasters like Libya and Egypt smoldering behind. Any aid or political support the US, UK, France, and its partners in the Middle East including Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar attempt to lend Hitto’s foreign-contrived government will be done so with the public’s full understanding that such support is being willfully given to sectarian extremists who not only fail to represent the West’s ideals of “democracy” or “freedom,” but fail to represent even the majority of people living in Syria.

Yet despite these apparently insurmountable difficulties, should the West pick a leader not affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood and its terrorist spin-offs, the opposition in Syria would splinter and collapse – because the “secular moderates” the White House keeps telling the world about, simply do not exist. Its otherwise irrational insistence on propping up one discredited Muslim Brotherhood dictator after another is clearly indicative of this.
 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Israel: A De Facto Member of NATO

March 11, 2013

 NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen received Israel’s president Shimon Peres at NATO headquarters in Brussels on March 7.

nato-israel-flag_webThe order of the day: to enhance military cooperation between Israel and the Atlantic Alliance focusing on issues of counter-terrorism.
“Israel will be happy to share the knowledge it has gained and its technological abilities with NATO. Israel has experience in contending with complex situations, and we must strengthen the cooperation so we can fight global terror together and assist NATO with the complex threats it faces including in Afghanistan. “

Israel is already involved in covert operations and non-conventional warfare in liaison with the US and NATO.
This agreement is of particular significance because it deepens the Israel-NATO relationship beyond the so-called “Mediterranean Dialogue”.
The joint statement points to an Israel NATO partnership “in the fight against terror and the search for peace… in the Middle East and the world”.
What this suggests is the participation of Israel in active theater warfare alongside NATO –i.e. as a de facto member of the Atlantic Alliance.
In other words, Israel would be directly involved were US-NATO to launch an outright military operation against Syria, Lebanon or Iran.
Israel offered to assist NATO in counter-terrorism operations directed against Hezbollah and Iran.

“The two agreed during their discussions that Israel and NATO are partners in the fight against terror…the statement said.
President Peres stressed the need to maintain and increase the cooperation between Israel and NATO and Israel’s ability to cooperation and provide technological assistance and knowledge from the vast experience Israel had gained in the field of counter-terrorism.
“Israel will be happy to share the knowledge it has gained and its technological abilities with NATO. Israel has experience in contending with complex situations, and we must strengthen the cooperation so we can fight global terror together and assist NATO with the complex threats it faces including in Afghanistan, ” Peres told Rasmussen.

History of Israel-NATO Military Cooperation
It is worth noting that in November 2004 in Brussels, NATO and Israel signed an important bilateral protocol which paved the way for the holding of joint NATO-Israel  military exercises. A followup agreement was signed in March 2005 in Jerusalem between NATO’s Secretary General and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
The 2005 bilateral military cooperation agreement was viewed by the Israeli military as a means to “enhance Israel’s deterrence capability regarding potential enemies threatening it, mainly Iran and Syria.”
The ongoing premise underlying NATO-Israel military cooperation is that “Israel is under attack”.
There is evidence of active military and intelligence coordination between NATO and Israel including consultations pertaining to the occupied territories.

“Before Operation Cast Lead was launched in Gaza, NATO was already exchanging intelligence with Israel, sharing security expertise, and organising military drills. …. Former NATO chief Scheffer visited Israel in the midst of Israel’s offensive on Gaza. And NATO officials were at the time of the opinion that cooperation with Israel was essential for their organisation. (Al Ahram, February 10, 2010)

The March 2013 Israel-NATO Brussels bilateral agreement is the culmination of more than ten years of Israel-NATO cooperation.
Does this agreement “obligate” NATO “to come to the rescue of Israel” under the doctrine of “collective security”?
The agreement tightens the ongoing process of US-NATO-Israel military planning and logistics relating to any future operation in the Middle East including an aerial bombing of Iran’s nuclear plants.
The Israeli presidential delegation consisted of several top military and government advisers, including Brigadier General Hasson Hasson, Military Secretary to President Peres (See image below: first from left) and Nadav Tamir, policy adviser to the president of Israel (first right of president Peres).
The text of the Israel NATO agreement following discussions behind closed doors (see image below) was not made public.

(Click image to enlarge)
Following the meeting, a joint statement was released by NATO. Secretary-General Rasmussen stated in the press report:

“Israel is an important partner of the Alliance in the Mediterranean Dialogue. The security of NATO is linked to the security and stability of the Mediterranean and of the Middle East region. And our Alliance attaches great value to our political dialogue and our practical cooperation. Israel is one of our longest-standing partner countries. We are faced with the same strategic challenges in the Eastern Mediterranean.
And as we face the security threats of the 21st century, we have every reason to deepen our long-standing partnership with our Mediterranean Dialogue countries, including Israel. We all know the regional situation is complex. But the Mediterranean Dialogue remains a unique multilateral forum, where Israel and six Arab countries can discuss together with European and North American countries common security challenges. I see further opportunities for deepening our already close political dialogue and practical cooperation to our mutual benefit.”

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The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

NAVI PILLAY’S GROSS ABUSE OF POWER: SEEKING ARREST WARRANT FOR PRESIDENT ASSAD

February 22, 2013

Posted on February 20, 2013 by Libya 360°

UN Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay: “Pretext-maker” for Western Military Aggression

Ken Stone
 
Navi Pillay is up to her old tricks: she’s abusing her position as United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to provide a pretext for imperial aggression against Syria. Today, February 18, 2013, she repeated her call for Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad to be referred for investigation to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for the actions of his forces in trying to repel the western-back mercenary war against his country, which the UN says has killed almost 70000 in 22 months of fighting. And she went even further in calling for immediate action by the international community to end the killing, up to and including military intervention.
 
What Pillay is seeking is an indictment (arrest warrant) against Assad so as to demonize the Syrian president and delegimitize his government in the eyes of western public opinion and to turn Assad into an international pariah in anticipation of a possible, full-scale, western, military but “humanitarian” intervention for regime change in Syria.
Pillay’s remarks of today represent an escalation in her crusade against the Syrian president and the steadfast support his government has enjoyed in the UN Security Council (UNSC) from both Russia and China, which are permanent members of the UNSC and, therefore, have veto powers. Previously, Pillay had made an effort to temper her condemnation of the Syrian president by linking it to a condemnation of the crimes against humanity perpetrated (and even filmed!) by the foreign-backed mercenaries. 2
For example, on Friday, January 25, 2013, on CNN’s International News broadcast at noon 3, she was interviewed from Davos, Switzerland, (at the World Economic Forum, where high-level technocrats scheme about running the world’s economy for the next year on behalf of the 1%) by anchor, Hala Gorani, on the question of alleged and widespread human rights abuses in Syria.
While videos of the unfortunate families of refugees fleeing Syria were flashed upon the screen, Pillay indicated that she was increasingly frustrated by the failure of Russia and China (“and several other states”) to allow the United Nations Security Council to refer the request by 58 member countries of the United Nations for an investigation into the alleged human rights abuses by both sides in Syria to the ICC.
The January 25th CNN interview was only the latest of similar interviews of Pillay by CNN 4 and other mainstream media outlets, following the issue of a proposed ICC investigation into human rights abuses in Syria. So, why is this crusade on Pillay’s part important to CNN? Why does she get so much air time in the West? The answer is that governments and corporate media in the West are counting on Pillay to provide the same kind of pretext for regime change in Syria that she provide against the Gaddafi government of Libya.
THE LIBYAN PRECEDENTS
Two very useful precedents for illegal, but so-called “humanitarian”, intervention by NATO were set by the United Nations in regards to Libya. The first was that the doctrine of the responsibility to protect was successfully invoked, for the very first time, as a legal grounds for over-riding the fundamental principle of national sovereignty as the basis of international law.
R2P holds that, if a government cannot protect the human rights of its own citizens, the international community may step in to do so. In the case of Libya, R2P was used to justify United Nations Resolution 1973, the motion that authorized NATO to create a no-fly zone over Libya. Resolution 1973 was perverted by NATO within hours into a full-blown military intervention for regime change in Libya that resulted in the deaths of thousands of Libyans, pogroms against black persons resident in Libya, the assassinations of Muammar Gaddafi and members of his family, massive infrastructure damage, the de facto partitioning of the country, and a failed state machine.
But the first precedent (above) could not have been realized without the fancy legal footwork executed in advance by the nimble Navi in demonizing Mouammar Gaddafi and his son, Saif, at the UN. The second precedent, then, was the initiative taken by the UN Human Rights Council, chaired by Pillay, in calling for an international inquiry into violence against civilians in Libya. This call for an inquiry led the International Criminal Court, acting in the interests of the US empire and other neo-colonial powers such as France, Italy, and Britain, to obtain an indictment against the late, former leader of Libya, Mouammar Gaddafi and his son, Saif, for alleged human rights abuses by the Libyan government against Libyan civilians. In fact, the entire bureaucracy of the United Nations was completely finessed by the Empire in using fabricated abuses of human rights of Libyan civilians as an excuse to delegitimize, unseat, and demonize the legitimate government of Libya so as to manoeuvre the National Transitional Council of Libya [NTC] (organized and supported by all of the western powers) into the position of being recognized internationally as the legitimate representative of the Libyan people. This manoeuvre, in turn, helped provide a further pretext for the NATO regime change operation in Libya.
The wholesale replacement of the official Libyan government representatives at the UN by those of the NTC was achieved in several rapid steps. First, on February 25, 2011, at an emergency meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), representatives of more than 70 human rights NGO’s (non-governmental organizations) were assembled in Geneva, Switzerland, on a petition initiated by UN Watch (a pro-Israeli NGO) and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) to hear a litany of accusations of human rights violations on the part of the Gaddafi government by Dr. Soliman Bouchuiguir, who spoke for the Libyan League for Human Rights (LLHR).
The LLHR was closely tied to the NTC and had, in fact, some executive members in common with it. No evidence of the human rights abuses that the Libyan government was alleged to have committed against Libyan civilians was ever entered as evidence. Libya was a member of the UNHCR but its membership had been temporarily suspended prior to the emergency meeting.
Therefore, it was not allowed to answer the charges levelled by the LLHR, an organization directly connected to the western-backed opposition. Navi Pillay, as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, chaired the meeting. She is quoted as saying, “The Libyan leader must stop the violence now.” And she pointed out that Libya was a member of the Human Rights Council and pledged to respect human rights, and was also a State party to various international human rights treaties. 5 It was also at this meeting that “a statement (was) delivered on behalf of all of the Council’s independent human rights experts (who) endorsed the High Commissioner’s call for an international inquiry into the violence, stressing that the international community should “act without delay” to protect civilians from serious human rights violations.” 6 The UNHCR report was duly forwarded to the Security Council which formally suspended Libya from its seat on the UNHRC.
Shortly following the emergency meeting, Libya was prevented from appointing a new ambassador to the United Nations, following the defection of its two representatives at the UN to the opposition. 7 Despite having gone over to the opposition, the two defectors were granted “courtesy passes” allowing them access to the Security Council chamber where they delivered anti-Gaddafi remarks.
Libya responded by naming former Nicaraguan Foreign Minister (under the revolutionary Sandinista government of the 1980′s) Rev. Miguel D’Escoto Brockman as its new Permanent Representative to the UN. D’Escoto Brockman had also served as a former Secretary-General of the UN General Assembly. However, his attendance at the UN was blocked by Susan Rice, US Ambassador to the UN, because he was on a tourist visa to the USA and not a diplomatic visa. D’Escoto Brockman rightly criticized UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon of betraying the UN Charter and called the UN “a lethal weapon of the Empire.” 8
On March 28, 2011, Al Jazeera, the TV mouthpiece of the Qatari monarchy, an ally (with very deep pockets) of NATO in the Persian Gulf, first broadcast the Viagara libel. 9 In this narrative, which rivals the fantasies of the Kuwaiti incubator babies (a pretext for the First Gulf War) and of the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (the pretext for the Second Gulf War), the Libyan government of Mouammar Gaddafi was accused of encouraging the mass rapes of Libyan civilian women by distributing the drug, Viagara, to its troops. There turned out to be no evidence whatsoever of this wild accusation.
But that did not prevent all the major mainstream media outlets of the West from repeating it. Nor did it deter Susan Rice and her boss, US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, from condemning Gaddafi. Finally, following the condemnation by Clinton, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the chief prosecutor for the ICC at the time, issued an indictment (basically an arrest warrant) against Mouammar Gaddafi and his son, Saif, effectively turning them into pariahs and accused international war criminals.
There were three problems for the ICC and for Libyan civilians in indicting the Gaddafis, not the least of which was the lack of evidence. The other two were the ICC’s own record and the consequences of the Viagara libel. The ICC’s record was very sketchy to say the least. In his decade of tenure as chief prosecutor, twenty-nine Africans were indicted by Ocampo but only one was convicted and not on the original charges contained in the indictment.10 11 
 In every instance when the ICC, under his leadership, became involved with political leaders, the leaders indicted were always African and at odds with the foreign policy goals of the USA. It should be noted that the USA has not accepted the jurisdiction of the the court over its own citizens, who have immunity from ICC prosecution. In other words, the ICC is a one-way street along which the racist and neo-colonial goals of US foreign policy are driven in Africa, but the crimes of racism and neo-colonialism go unpunished. The ICC has never issued an indictment for war crimes or human rights abuses against the likes of George W. Bush, Tony Blair, Stephen Harper, Nikolas Sarkozy, and David Cameron, nor is it ever likely to do so.
Finally, the indictment issued for allegedly distributing Viagara to its troops was part of a racist campaign in the West suggesting falsely that the Gaddafi government had so little support among the people of Libya that the Libyan leader had to resort to hiring black mercenaries from Sub-Saharan Africa to retain his hold on power. The old shibboleth of black men raping light(er)-skinned women played very well, as would be expected, in the mainstream media of the USA, Britain, Canada, France, and other mainly white countries, where a latent pool of racism lays just below the surface of the consciousness of a certain part of the population and where an ersatz concern for the welfare of women is used as a rationale to wage war on foreign peoples, as in Afghanistan, and now in Mali. 12
The results for black Libyans (one-third of the total Libyan population) and the hundreds of thousands of black migrant workers resident in Libya were absolutely catastrophic, including mass arrests, beatings, thefts, kidnappings, torture, lynchings, and ethnic cleansing. For a thorough assessment of this chapter in NATO’s war of terror on Libya, please refer to Maximilian Forte’s excellent new book, Slouching Towards Sirte: NATO’s war on Libya and Africa, published by Baraka Books of Montreal.
NAVI PILLAY, the ICTR, and ICC
Pillay was not just complicit in paving the way for a NATO military intervention in Libya. She previously established her international credentials as a servant of the US Empire in the aftermath of a US-sponsored proxy war of conquest in Rwanda. As President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, she exercised power on behalf of the US victors (and their ex-patriate Tutsi proxy warriors) by dispensing a sub-standard form of “justice” to the losers (officials and supporters of the former majority Hutu government) . For a comprehensive account of that war and the humanitarian tragedy it caused, please see Robin Philpot’s, Rwanda 1994: Colonialism Dies Hard 13 and Michel Chussodovsky’s “The US was behind the Rwandan Genocide. Rwanda: Installing a US Protectorate in Central Africa.” 14
Similarly, she served as a justice of the International Criminal Court at the Hague (alongside prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo, mentioned above) dealing with a number of black leaders of countries who had run afoul of US foreign policy goals in Africa.
PILLAY AND WESTERN MILITARY INTERVENTION IN SYRIA
The Western-backed mercenary war for regime change in Syria began in early 2011. 15 It was formally funded at a meeting of the so-called “Friends of Syria” conference on April 1, 2012, in Istanbul, which was attended by Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird as well as representatives of about 70 countries. 16
What is less known, however, was that Canada was deeply involved in setting up the Friends of Syria group at a pre-conference meeting in Tunisia in December, 2011. 17 At the Istanbul conference, the participants established a division of labour regarding the mercenary war on Syria. The US committed to provide “communications equipment”, the absolute monarchs of Qatar and Saudi Arabia pledged vast sums of money, while Canada undertook to provide $8.5 million in humanitarian aid (to Syrian refugees) and in “opposition assistance.” 18
Sending mercenaries to fight for regime change within a sovereign country is a war crime, according to the Nuremberg Principles and the London Charter of 1945. It is also a violation of the very first article of the UN Charter. 19 As well, it amounts to interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign country, which sovereignty is the cornerstone of all international law. Even to threaten regime change in a sovereign country is a violation of Article 2 of the UN Charter. 20 Furthermore, all of the heinous crimes perpetrated by the western-backed mercenaries in Syria, some of which were videotaped by the mercenaries themselves for the entire world to see, and which include extralegal assassination of civilians, execution of military prisoners, destruction of civilian infrastructure, bombing public places (such as schools) and thereby killing and injuring civilians, and many more, are themselves violations of the Geneva Conventions on the conduct of war, not to mention the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
At the same time as various western and Gulf states were waging this mercenary war on Syria, virtually all of them, including Canada, 21 had signed onto the UN and Arab League Six-Point Peace Plan for Syria which called for a Syrian-led, negotiated settlement of the crisis, notably without calling for the removal of Syrian President Assad. 22 Similarly, they had adopted a communiqué on June 1, 2012 in Geneva, advocating a political solution, involving the participation of the current government of Syria. 23 UN Special Envoys, Kofi Annan and Lakhtar Brahimi, were charged with facilitating the negotiated end of the crisis and engaged in shuttle diplomacy between Moscow, Iran, Egypt, Istanbul and many other capitals for many months. At the UN Security Council, Russia and China used their vetoes on at least three occasions to block further economic sanctions against Syria as well as resolutions authorizing a western military intervention in Syria.
As early as August 2011, Navi Pillay was engaged with the issue of human rights abuses in this theatre of war. Not surprisingly (given her track record), she completely ignored the UN Charter and international law and sided firmly with the western and Gulf states who were underwriting and organizing the undeclared mercenary war against Syria, while at the same professing support for the UN’s Six-Point Peace Plan. In August of 2011, she urged the Security Council to refer the issue of widespread human rights abuses in Syria to the ICC. 24
She repeated this call at the UN and in the media in December of 2011, several times more in 2012, and most recently in January of 2013, when, for example, she was interviewed by Hala Gorani on CNN. She also complained about the Russian and Chinese governments’ use of their Security Council vetoes to oppose resolutions targetting Syria. In her briefing to the UN General Assembly on February 13, 2012, for example, she stated her one-sided view that “the failure of the Security Council to agree on firm collective action appears to have emboldened the Syrian Government to launch an all-out assault in an effort to crush dissent with overwhelming force.” 25 And, in calling for the matter to be referred to the ICC for investigation, she unquestioningly and consistently has quoted the dubious casualty figures supplied by the foreign-backed Syrian opposition.26
We can now see why CNN and other western mainstream media are so interested in following the Navi Pillay story: as in Libya and Rwanda, where Navi Pillay was a player, the present narrative justifying western military intervention in Syria invokes the responsibility to protect the human rights of civilians, which allegedly cannot be guaranteed by the target government. Against the backdrop of ordinary civilians fleeing Syria in their hundreds of thousands (which did not occur before the start of the western-backed mercenary war), Navi Pillay is portrayed as being on the side of the angels.
Humanitarian intervention is a powerful tool in the West, where even people on the “left”, who should know better, fall for it. Take, for instance, the most recent petition by 58 countries to UN Secretary Ban Ki Moon to approach the Security Council to refer to the ICC an investigation into widespread human rights abuses in Syria. The petition was initiated behind closed doors by the USA and spearheaded at the United Nations by the UK, because of two issues. The first is the consternation (and surprise) of western states with the steadfast opposition of Russia and China at the Security Council to any such resolution, because those two veto-wielding powers learned the hard way, through their losses in Libya 27, that such an investigation would lead inexorably to an indictment by the ICC of President Assad and provide a pretext for a western military intervention in Syria. The second issue was that Syria never ratified the Treaty of Rome which established the International Criminal Court. Therefore, like the USA, its citizens cannot be prosecuted by it. These difficulties are formidable for the success of such a petition. Nonetheless, as in the case of Libya and Rwanda, creative sidestepping of the rule of international law is a specialty of legal counsellors of the empire such as Navi Pillay. The next few months will probably see her tirelessly working her tricks to achieve that end.
It should be noted, however, that the Syrian government responded directly to Pillay and the 58-country petition with a statement of its own on January 18, 2013, terming the initiative “the wrong approach.” 28 Instead, the Syrian government called, among other things, for an end to the foreign-backed mercenary war, the end of jihadist fatwas resulting in brutalities against civilians, and the lifting of sanctions.
The problems with the petition cited above did not faze the Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME). In its statement of January 15, 2013, 29 CJPME stated that it applauded the decision of 58 countries to ask the UN Security Council to refer the Syrian situation to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for investigation: ” ‘If the Security Council acts on the request, it will send a powerful signal to both the Syrian government and the opposition that war crimes and human rights violations cannot be committed with impunity,’ says CJPME President Thomas Woodley.” The statement also includes a reference to a report by Human Rights Watch that blames both the Syrian government and foreign-backed opposition with human rights abuses.
CJPME should know better. In fact, war crimes and human rights violations are committed continuously and with complete impunity by the western powers. The USA has invaded over sixty countries since the end of World War ll while the hands of the former colonial powers, stained in the blood of the people of Asia, Africa and Latin America, are once more reaching for the resources of Libya, Syria, and Mali. The continuing oppression of the Palestinian people is a due to western governments’ carte blanche attitude to Israeli aggression. Organizations such as Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the National Endowment for Democracy have all provided the human rights figleaf for western interventions in Iraq, Libya, Rwanda, and many other countries, by repeating and circulating allegations of abuses of human rights, which, after the fact, are proven to be false.
Another group that should know better is the Canadian Lawyers for International Human Rights (CLAIHR). Two days before Muammar Gaddafi was taken prisoner, sodomized, and executed by Libyan “rebels” with the assistance of Western special forces on the ground, 30 Jillian Siskind, President of CLAIHR, was writing in The Mark and giving video interviews about the fact that Canadians should be proud of our country’s participation in military operations, such as in Libya, relating to the responsibility to protect. She wrote: “Canadians and our government should be proud of our contribution to international peace and security – not just our participation in the collective action of R2P, which attempts to bring greater security and a safer future to populations whose rights have been trampled upon, but also our leadership role in the great effort that resulted in the R2P doctrine. The principles that we set forth have now been established as an international norm. On this 10th anniversary of R2P, we should be celebrating our contribution to international law…” 31
It appears that there is a sort of collective amnesia amongst some circles in the West regarding military interventions. The military interventions in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, and Libya, in every case, made things worse for the majority of civilians: massive infrastructure destruction, deaths in five to seven figures, homelessness, lawlessness (and lack of personal security), partition and/or failed state status, ethnic cleansing, birth defects (due to the use of depleted uranium shells), long-lasting psychological problems for children, and a worsening standard of living for the target country’s general population. No matter how much a failure the last intervention was in protecting the human rights of the civilians in the target country, those amnesiacs, such as the Canadian Lawyers for International Human Rights, are always chomping at the bit to begin the next.
During a recent visit on the part of the executive committee of the Hamilton Coalition To Stop The War to the three sitting New Democratic members of parliament for Hamilton, one of the MP’s asked, “Can you not see any possible case in which the doctrine of the responsibility to protect would be justified?”
The head of the HCSW delegation replied that, given the unequal distribution of power in the contemporary world, military interventions can only be mounted with the backing of the great powers of the world, who, of necessity, will pick and choose where to intervene (or not to intervene) based on their own national interests.
As the current international struggle over Syria unfolds with greater rapidity and danger – Patriot missile batteries in Turkey (which enable NATO to create a back-door, no-fly-zone over Syria); an Israeli airstrike on a Syrian research facility; US and British special forces on the ground co-ordinating with the foreign-backed mercenaries; the presence of a large US naval fleet in the Eastern Mediterranean, including at least one Canadian frigate; unsubtle NATO threats to seize Syrian chemical weapons; the Iranian government assertion that it regards an attack on Syria as an attack on Iran – Canadians need to be wary of crass appeals to their genuine humanitarian instincts posed by the Syrian refugee crisis and widespread abuse of human rights in Syria.
Navi Pillay, pretext-maker for imperial aggression, is almost within reach of her presidential target in Syria. Don’t fall for her tricks.
Ken Stone is a veteran anti-war and anti-racist activist and Treasurer of the Hamilton Coalition to Stop The War. (www.hamiltoncoalitiontostopthewar.ca)
Notes
1 http://www.timeslive.co.za/thetimes/2013/02/18/probe-assad-for-war-crimes ;
2http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVWZDWlkq7g
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djnv4DgqYzg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eOsVHxKAiX8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvL9IuuFkac
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dX4jzn1UgiA ;
3http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2013/01/25/idesk-intv-pillay-impact-of-syrian-civil-war.cnn ;
4http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2013/01/02/un-commissioner-60000-killed-in-syria-since-march-2011/ Pillay was previously interviewed on CNN on the subject of Syrian refugees on January 2, 2013;
5 UN News Centre, February 25, 2011,
http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=37626#.UQv7H2dA08A ;
6 ibid;
7Maximilian Forte, Slouching Towards Sirte: NATO’s war on Libya and Africa, Baraka Books, Montreal, 2012, page 248;
8ibid, page 249;
9ibid, page 253;
10http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1206605—international-criminal-court-prosecutor-reaches-end-of-his-term-with-mixed-record;
11 http://www.globalresearch.ca/waging-an-illegal-us-nato-led-war-on-syria-with-the-endorsement-of-international-criminal-law/5311556 ;
12http://www.thespec.com/news/world/article/879242–women-of-timbuktu-remembering-their-dance-steps . Thanks to the French military intervention in Mali, we are led to believe that the status of women has been restored in Mali. In Afghanistan, we have been told by the Harper government of Canada, that the status of women there has been improved by NATO occupation. Actually, the standard of living of all Afghans has dramatically deteriorated during the eleven-year-old war which has seen an increasing number of self-immolations by desperate Afghan women unable to provide for their children ;
13 http://www.taylor-report.com/Rwanda_1994/ ;
14 http://globalresearch.ca/articles/CHO305A.html
15 The western military intervention in Syria was actually planned as early as 2007. Please see chapter 14, “NATO and the Levant: Lebanon and Syria”, of M. D. Nazemroaya’s new book, The Globalization of NATO, published by Global Research, 2012;
16 http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/story/2012/04/01/world-syria-istanbul-conference.html ;
17 http://o.canada.com/2012/02/21/baird-to-attend-friends-of-syria-meeting-in-tunis/ ;
18 http://www.international.gc.ca/media/aff/photos/2012/04/01a.aspx?view=d ;
19 http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/chapter1.shtml ;
20 ibid;
21http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2012/06/30/canada_calls_for_solution_to_syrian_crisis_backs_un_plan_for_peace.html ;
22 http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2012/sc10583.doc.htm ;
23http://blog.unwatch.org/index.php/2012/07/01/full-text-action-group-for-syria-final-communique/ ;
24http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=40596&Cr=Syria&Cr1=&Kw1=navi+pillay+&Kw2=syria&Kw3=#.UQyIy2dA08A ;
25http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=41216&Cr=Syria&Cr1=#.UQyO5mdA08A ;
26 According to journalist Robert Fisk, the casualty figures jumped 15,000 in one week. Public lecture, Hamilton, Ontario, January 28, 2013;
27 Both Russia and China suffered from the overthrow of the Libyan government led by Muammar Gaddafi, not only in terms of the loss of their prestige in being hoodwinked by NATO’s abuse of UN Resolution 1973 (the no-fly-zone), but also in terms of business contracts and loans that were nullifed by the new Libyan government. Public lecture, Dr. Atif Kubursi, September 13, 2012, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Audio record: http://www.radio4all.net/index.php/program/63312; video record: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6rvEpmRUkw&feature=youtu.be
28 http://www.sana-syria.com/eng/21/2013/01/18/462534.htm ;
29http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?llr=7zk64gcab&v=001rxOp_4aBK0qVHcF41BMcDE_eC-CzMClmzKN_u4-De_6uHuwI-25Gw6RiHuIQgjRAVCaMMPaax2H_2qHgTdJ7wmmEa9rgH-CAnm6YMjVxf_aEKT4usOY0VknWLsEn-zsZO4a6LCR2uSpcQB-W0oeOc-g7RD-cZkX-nWlaIShzuWplMbwjwBbkASmdjERXRt7erlVwI9B6tXhzCYktzEfHKUMSA0RskGeInaHcnBsWmdybD7Fa26i8MES1GO9L1KJkT-IIAQvClpAkjLIIxX-2C2AwMPiJVWfFK3QcijGFxhubUBXhRgSa0doWMtMRMa2V-b5-En391dtMtoTRILeVuWHGUCp50XSwGjeoHuKVuvRoXnZz3t4DPTdrVw5dQZPipaXR29IuUcE%3D ;
30 Maximilian Forte, in a radio interview with Phil Taylor on the “Taylor Report”, CIUT 89.5 (University of Toronto Radio, January 28, 2013) http://www.radio4all.net/responder.php/download/65993/73295/86423/?url=http://www.radio4all.net/files/anonymous@radio4all.net/16-1-SyriaMaliLibya.mp3;
31Jillian Siskind, The Mark, October 19, 2011. http://www.themarknews.com/articles/7072-canada-and-the-responsibility-to-protect/#.URMzrWdA08A.

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Libya: The Second Anniversary of a Bloody Coup

February 19, 2013

By Maximilian Forte
Global Research, February 18, 2013
Zero Anthropology 17 February 2013
libya Victims-of-NATO-attacks-on-Tripoli1
This weekend, marking the second anniversary of the start of protests that would usher in a bloody and prolonged NATO-led coup to overthrow the Libyan Jamahiriya and Muammar Gaddafi, offers many reasons to celebrate for those whose intention was the demolition of Libyan self-determination, African integration, and a domestic system of extensive social welfare and stability. In return, Libyans have won the right to live in fear, as they have won the freedom to be ruled by countless armed despots each engaged in torture, abductions, and persecution of minorities.

In spite of what seems like an unstoppable momentum towards greater strife and social disintegration, romantic imperialists in the West still insist on speaking in the most unwarranted terms of the “street revolution,” that has “brought freedom and hope to millions of people here” (Globe and Mail, 15/2/2013). In the warm glow of fires that consume others, some among us find reason for a warming self-congratulation. Symbolic of the depth of Western respect for Libya’s “new freedom” is this very statement, from the government of Canada itself, warning Canadian travelers: “Do not criticize the country, its leadership or religion. Harsh penalties may be imposed.”
The few remaining pro-”revolution” propagandists in the West are not only unwilling to simply state that what they support is globalized regime change and a new colonizing wave that would make non-Western self-determination and sovereignty principles something to be wrecked and thrown aside, they are equally immune to irony. After all, blessed Benghazi, which was to be “saved” at all costs, saved against all else, by Western military intervention is now the same city from which Western interests flee in order to save themselves (Reuters, 24/1/2013, 31/1/2013, 5/2/2013; The Star, 24/1/2013):
WESTERNERS SHUN BENGHAZI
Few Westerners live in Benghazi, which has borne the brunt of a wave of violence against diplomats and international bodies, including the killing of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and a gun attack on the Italian consul’s car this month.
Britain’s recent call to its nationals to leave immediately due to a “specific and imminent” threat to Westerners highlights the insecurity plaguing Benghazi.
The assault on the U.S. mission, for which no arrests were made, grabbed world attention. But there had already been attacks on British, Red Cross and U.N. properties here….
Randy Robinson, principal of British School Benghazi, said: “One of our staff was carjacked. Our residence last spring was robbed with teachers in a room held at gunpoint as thieves cleaned out the apartments. We have to take care.”
Two years ago the anti-Gaddafi uprising had the strongest support in Benghazi but today a very different mood has emerged.
“Most people here would say they are very unhappy,” a local oil worker said. “Some say they are worse off than before.”

So let’s celebrate the “new Libya,” this “revolution for freedom,” in all of its glory. Let it be an example to others.

Now there is a call from Western media and the usual RAND voices urging NATO to establish a “mission” in Libya (CSM, 15/2/2013). And if foreign occupation, or foreign boots on the ground were allegedly anathema to the Libyan “revolutionaries,” that too changed well before Gaddafi was overthrown, and is being revived at present: military forces from Italy, and once again from Qatar, have landed in Libya, to help it celebrate its “revolution” (RT, 13/2/2013).
The thing about authentic, legitimate revolutions these days is that all of their legitimacy comes from external sources and is dropped from the air in explosive 2,000 pound bursts of authenticity. Real revolutions, it would seem, require foreign guardians and can only survive under the tutelage of colonial powers (Washington Times, 5/2/2013). Beautiful thing then, these revolutions. Sirte, in particular, was rapidly beautified as a result of this revolution:

Once independent, wealthy, and powerfully defiant, today Libyan resources are almost being given away to foreign powers that “mentored” Libya’s revolution. Foreign investors in Libya’s oil sector are being given years of tax exemption, as if they need it; specifically aimed at encouraging Gulf state investors, Libya grants the investor 65% from a project’s value;

“various large scale projects will be given Saudi companies in order to strengthen brotherly ties, remove previous disputes between the two countries, establish a new strategic partnership and benefit from the expertise of Saudi companies. Aarusi also said that all obstacles facing Gulf investors will be overcome…”

and, “last but not least Aarusi said he expected this Saudi company [whose name he refuses to reveal] to be totally in charge of starting up the sugar and cement factories in mid-2013,” whose aim is to export to Europe and Gulf states (Al Arabiya, 4/2/2013). Along with Gaddafi himself, what the “new Libya” buried in that unmarked grave was resource nationalism and a sense of integrity and dignity in the face of foreign vulture capitalists.
Then there is the IMF, in its newly acquired role of dictating to Libya, another reality permitted by the “street revolution” (Arabian Business, 6/2/2013). After all, as the IMF’s Christine Lagarde herself has recently said, the “Arab Spring” must be followed by a “Private Sector Spring” (IMF, 9/1/2013). Libya, formerly a significant actor in international investment, buying up properties and shares of lucrative enterprises across Europe, is now the target of investors (IMF, 9/1/2013).
The IMF knows when it can take advantage of a situation smelling of ripe disaster: “The budget deficit was 27.0 percent of GDP in 2011, compared to a budget surplus of 16.2 percent in 2010. Similarly, the current account surplus narrowed from 19.8 percent of GDP in 2010 to 1.3 percent in 2011″ (IMF, 4/5/2012). Thus the IMF can now instruct Libya to eliminate universal price subsidies, to reduce public sector wages, and to eliminate incentives for individuals to seek employment in the public sector: “the recent surge in the public sector payroll to 1.5 million (80 percent of the labor force) will need to be unwound” (IMF, 4/5/2012).
The IMF has had its sights on Libya from before Gaddafi was overthrown by NATO and NATO’s local neocolonial dependents: days before Gaddafi was murdered, the IMF had a mission on the ground in Libya (IMF, 20/10/2011) and had previously decreed its recognition of the rebel National Transitional Council as the government of Libya, thrashing international law as the Libyan government under Gaddafi still existed (IMF, 10/9/2011). But you won’t find Naomi Klein writing the Libyan chapter of the “shock doctrine” (Gulf News, 26/10/2011)–Naomi Klein was too busy throwing her support behind a Canadian politician, Nathan Cullen, who voted in support of NATO’s intervention in Libya, with little regret. The protection of civilians was paramount, of course, and here is another view of what that protection looked like:

Maximilian C. Forte is a professor of anthropology in Montreal, Canada. He teaches courses in the field of political anthropology dealing with “the new imperialism,” Indigenous resistance movements and philosophies, theories and histories of colonialism, and critiques of the mass media. Max is a founding member of Anthropologists for Justice and Peace. He is the author of “Slouching Towards Sirte: NATO’s War on Libya and Africa” (Baraka Books, 2012).
NATO’s war in Libya was proclaimed as a humanitarian intervention—bombing in the name of “saving lives.” Attempts at diplomacy were stifled. Peace talks were subverted. Libya was barred from representing itself at the UN, where shadowy NGOs and “human rights” groups held full sway in propagating exaggerations, outright falsehoods, and racial fear mongering that served to sanction atrocities and ethnic cleansing in the name of democracy. The rush to war was far speedier than Bush’s invasion of Iraq.
Max Forte has scrutinized the documentary history from before, during, and after the war. He argues that the war on Libya was not about human rights, nor entirely about oil, but about a larger process of militarizing U.S. relations with Africa. The development of the Pentagon’s Africa Command, or AFRICOM, was in fierce competition with Pan-Africanist initiatives such as those spearheaded by Muammar Gaddafi.
Far from the success NATO boasts about or the “high watermark” proclaimed by proponents of the “Responsibility to Protect,” this war has left the once prosperous, independent and defiant Libya in ruin, dependency and prolonged civil strife.

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NATO originally set up as a mutual defence organisation, now it’s all about mutual offence

February 17, 2013
 
 

U.S.-NATO Threats, From Europe To Middle East

natoNATO continues to surround the Russian Federation with their missiles, which according to Rozoff may soon number in the thousands and NATO also continues to aggressively seek to “integrate” country after country into their “alliance”. Rick tells us why the Western media has gone quiet on Syria and comments on the fact that Iran is now producing its own drones, which were reversed engineered from captured American drones. As always Rick has his finger on the pulse.

Robles: Can you give our listeners an update on the latest happenings with NATO please?

Rozoff: Yes. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is continuing its expansion, at least its efforts to expand globally. Within the last few days we’ve seen overtures made by leading NATO officials to previously neutral countries like Ireland, Finland, Sweden in efforts to recruit them into the alliance.

The Secretary General of NATO Anders Fogh Rasmussen is in Ireland now, but prior to departing for Ireland, which historically has been a neutral nation, was during the Cold War, he gave an interview to the Irish Times where he extended an invitation essentially for Ireland to join NATO as a full member.

The Deputy Commander of Allied Command Transformation, the NATO command in the United States, in Norfolk, Virginia, within the last week or two as well has welcomed Finland, which borders Russia, as a strategic partner of NATO and talked about the further integration of that nation into the NATO sphere of influence and military operations.

And then the commander of the military forces, the top commander, in Sweden a couple of days ago made a very provocative statement to the effect that if a war ensued between Sweden and Russia – How probable is that, right? – that Sweden wouldn’t last two days against Russia’s military might and that’s why Sweden needs to be in NATO.

So, as we are seeing there is a concerted effort to consolidate North Atlantic Treaty Organization control over the entire European continent. I mean they are not going to rest until every nation has been pulled in it as a full member. So, we have that going on.

And then we have, although not formally a NATO operation, we have the French military campaign in Mali in northwest Africa with the active assistance of the United States, Britain, Germany and other major NATO powers. And so, just off the top of my head, that’s what is going on with NATO: it is consolidating its domination of Europe and it is extending its reach outside of Europe to the point where, an official with the German Marshall Fund of the United States, recently stated that NATO is basically, I don’t want to say a three-ring circus, but something to that effect, saying that there is a ring that is Europe and there is beyond that ring Asia and Africa. This is from Mark Jacobson. an Atlanticist think tank expert.

So, we see the persistence of the US-dominated military bloc’s efforts to extend itself. As a matter of fact, something I don’t want to forget, the current Russian ambassador to NATO, Alexander Grushko, said a couple of days ago at a meeting in NATO headquarters that Russia would not tolerate NATO declaring itself and functioning as, I believe his words were, “an international energy security guarantor”, which is another role that NATO has arrogated onto itself.

Reminder

Robles: Can you tell us anything about, there were reports last week that the infamous missile shield, including Romanian installations, was not workable? Have you heard anything about that?

Rozoff: Yes, there were reports to that effect and one wonders if these are calculated leaks or if they have any authenticity. I don’t know. But you might recall there were similar concerns expressed about the earlier George W. Bush administration’s plans for interceptor missiles in Poland, what are called Ground-Based Midcourse interceptors. But the concerns that you’ve read or you are alluding to rather are premised on the fact that Iran is supposedly going to be able to develop intercontinental ballistic missiles that need interception from places like Romania and Poland, and I would argue that’s an absurd contention in the first place. So, the basic premises and the conclusions drawn from them would be similarly inaccurate. So, I wouldn’t give too much credence to those reports. The US is still going ahead with them.

As a matter of fact, in a recent statement by Anders Fogh Rasmussen, the NATO chieftain, he boasted particularly about the missile defense so-called, the interceptor missile system as being, as he put it, at the core of NATO’s defense posture.

He boasted about the deployment of 6 Patriot Advanced Capability-3 interceptor missile batteries to southeastern Turkey which have now come unde formal NATO command and control. And he also talked about European countries emulating or joining the United States by providing warships with interceptor missile radar and with the interceptor missiles themselves.

We should keep in mind, and I don’t know how well it is known in Russia and elsewhere, is that the United States currently has 62 what are called Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyers and 22 Ticonderoga class guided missile cruisers, that is altogether 84 warships, that currently, at least the destroyers, can carry as many as 90 missiles apiece.

And it is precisely these ships that are now referred to as Aegis class or are in the process of becoming such; that is, are equipped to carry, or will be carrying, Standard Missile-3 interceptor missiles of the sort that are going to be based on the ground in Poland and Romania from 2015 to 2018. But the 48 missiles that are going to be in Poland and Romania, 24 apiece, are a formidable challenge enough to Russia. But the fact that there may be several hundred, even thousands, of missiles placed on the US cruisers and destroyers is a much more serious consideration.

Robles: Can you tell us a little bit about what is going on with Syria right now? Everything’s gotten real quiet. After they’ve put those missiles in Turkey, the Patriots you just spoke about, and as we’ve said in the past in our discussions: when they go quiet something is up.

Rozoff: I know what you are talking about John. Watching old adventure films, whenever the insects and the animals in the forest or the jungle became quiet, you became nervous. And a situation similar to that I’m sure is obtaining in relation to Syria.

We also have to remember, though, there is a changing of the guard in Washington. With the Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, who more than anyone else I’m sure has been instrumental in pushing through a campaign of regime change in Damascus, out and John Kerry replacing her as the chief foreign policy diplomat in the US, similarly with the Pentagon with the defense secretary and with the CIA director.

So, there may be a short reprieve for Damascus, for Syria at this point until the second-term Obama administration’s foreign policy team is in place in which case we may see them mounting an offensive again.

Robles: There were reports we’ve just had that Iran captured a US drone, last year, and they reverse engineered it and are now producing massive quantities of their own drones.

Rozoff: It would serve Washington right if they did. I mean it truthfully would. The US has pioneered international drone warfare, this is something it has developed over the last decade, actually over the last 12 years. It is a new form of warfare, it is global in scope, it is deadly as we know.

You were listening to an interview with Rick Rozoff the manager of the stop NATO website and mailing list.

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NATO AFTER REMOVAL OF ASSAD

February 15, 2013

Posted on February 13, 2013 by
Published on 13 Feb 2013

The head of the foreign-backed Syrian opposition coalition, Ahmad Moaz al-Khatib, has again urged President Bashar al-Assad to step down while at the same time pledging allegiance to the Tel Aviv regime if he manages to form a “new regime in Syria.”

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Hypocrisy: US Arms Al Qaeda in Syria, Mass Slaughter of Civilians in Afghanistan

February 14, 2013

     

By Tony Cartalucci

AFP has reported that a recent NATO airstrike in Afghanistan has killed over 10 civilians in an all-too-familiar headline glossed over by the Western media in an exercise of both depravity and hypocrisy. RT’s article, “NATO airstrike kills 10 Afghan civilians, mostly women and children – officials,” notes in particular that up to 11,864 civilians were killed in Afghanistan between 2007 and 2011, and that civilian deaths before 2007 were not even tracked by the UN.

Just some of the corporate members of the US-Qatar Business Council, whose president just so happens to sit on the same board of directors of the Middle East Policy Center as Karen AbuZayd, co-author of one of many conveniently timed UN Human Rights Council reports on Syria.
Just some of the corporate members of the US-Qatar Business Council, whose president just so happens to sit on the same board of directors of the Middle East Policy Center as Karen AbuZayd, co-author of one of many conveniently timed UN Human Rights Council reports on Syria.

Such facts reveal alarming hypocrisy as the UN keeps almost daily, inflated tallies of civilian deaths elsewhere, in particular, in nations like Libya and Syria where Western interests have been heavily involved in regime change and in dire need of manipulating public perception worldwide. The United Nations had in fact pieced together a dubious report crafted from “witness accounts” compiled not in Syria, or even beyond its borders in a refugee camp, but instead, in Geneva by “witnesses” supplied by the so-called Syrian “opposition.”

Worse yet, that UN report was co-authored by Karen Koning AbuZayd, a director of the US Washington-based corporate think-tank, Middle East Policy Council. Its board of directors includes Exxon men, CIA agents, representatives of the Saudi Binladin Group (Osama Bin Laden’s family business), former ambassadors to Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar, US military and government representatives, and even the president of the US-Qatar Business Council, which includes amongst its membership, Al Jazeera, Chevron, Exxon, munitions manufacturer Raytheon (who supplied the opening salvos during NATO’s operations against Libya), and Boeing.

In other words, the very underwriters of the armed militancy that is consuming Syria are sitting along side the head of the UN commission producing reports portraying the Syrian government as guilty of “war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The hypocrisy does not end there. The pretense the US and NATO have used for over a decade to occupy, subjugate and slaughter the people of Afghanistan – in a conflict increasingly creeping over both Afghanistan’s borders with Pakistan and Iran – is supposedly to fight “terrorism.” Western interests have been allowed to fight this “war on terrorism” with impunity, and even without UN monitoring for years, while Syria was immediately condemned for fighting against Al Qaeda terrorists overtly flooding into their nation with NATO assistance.

Indeed, as NATO claims to fight terrorism in Afghanistan, it has already handed over the North African nation of Libya to Al Qaeda terrorists, specifically the the US State Department, United Nations, and the UK Home Office (page 5, .pdf)-listed terrorist organization, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG).

The US in particular oversaw the rise of the Al Qaeda terror-emirate Benghazi, even having a US ambassador slain there by the very terrorists it had armed, funded, trained, provided air support for, and thrust into power.

These same terrorists have been documented extensively as spearheading the invasion of northern Syria via NATO-member Turkey, with NATO cash and weapons in cooperation with Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

The glaring hypocrisy of so-called “international law” and “international institutions” is on full display. Nations like Russia, China, Iran, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Brazil, and many others should give serious thought to peeling away from the United Nations, the compromised International Criminal Court, and other corrupt, Western-serving institutions that will, and in many cases already are, being turned against them, their interests, and national sovereignty.

For the people of the world, we must realize that these institutions were created for and by big-business special interests, and the legitimacy they are portrayed as having is a mere illusion created by the corporate media. We must begin identifying these special interests, boycotting and replacing them permanently at a local level. If it is peace we want, it is clear that the UN, NATO, and all institutions in between, sow only death and destruction amidst a myriad of hypocrisy, double standards, and immeasurable corruption, and we must move into the future without them.

Tony Cartalucci’s articles have appeared on many alternative media websites, including his own at Land Destroyer Report, Alternative Thai News Network and LocalOrg. Read other contributed articles by Tony Cartalucci here.
 

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US TARGETS SYRIA TO SHIELD ISRAEL

February 13, 2013

Posted on February 12, 2013 by Alexandra Valiente

An activist tells Press TV that the US-led Western countries and their regional allies are targeting Syria in order to maintain and strengthen Israeli hegemony in strategically important region of Middle East .

She also added that the US-led NATO forces were fueling ethnic and sectarian tensions to achieve their vicious objectives across Syria.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011. Many people, including large numbers of security forces, have been killed in the turmoil. The Syrian government says the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country, and there are reports that a very large number of the militants are foreign nationals. Also several international human rights organizations say the foreign-sponsored militants have committed war crimes.

Press TV has conducted an interview with Mimi al-Laham, Syrian activist and political commentator from Australia.

 

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