Exulting over Libya

on 41 Comments

I’ve kept myself from exulting over Libya too much because the left is divided on Libya, but I’m exultant. There is an old journalistic rule that a trend requires three events, and Libya consolidates the Arab spring as a trend of great revolutions across the Arab world. It has uprooted a hateful tyrant, it has added auto-mechanics-turned-armorers and geologists-turned-generals to the west’s new image bank of Arab ingenuity. It has silenced all that tribal talk in the name of democracy. And America was on the right side.

The neocons and neoliberals have battened on to Libya as a sequel to Iraq. They bring up Iraq all the time, they want to justify their murderous occupation in Iraq by claiming Libya. I don’t buy it, but I can tune them out.

I am hopeful that ten years after 9/11 America has learned something, that it can be on the side of the people in the Arab world, on the side of a genuine popular uprising, which is what Libya is. When the Libyan ambassador to Washington, Suleiman Aujali, said yesterday that NATO was there in our hour of need, I was stirred by that. We can change our paradigm in the Arab world. And I believe there is a way for the west to participate in the rebuilding of Libya without a foremost imperial interest. And if Europe cares about oil or refugees, again, I don’t really care. Look what the refugee problem has done to the Palestinian issue, and Somalia. And as for oil, I want the left to talk conservation, and global warming.

Ten years ago Arundhati Roy wrote a famous essay in the Guardian attacking the U.S. military-imperial presence in Asia, and I want to believe that era is ending. Roy said that we don’t see Asians on TV; but we have seen Arabs all over television this spring, in inspiring roles, and I believe in the American story enough to think that our civil rights movement and feminist movement and gay rights movement are available to the world; and that after 7 decades of demonizing Arabs, 7 decades since FDR promised King Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia that he would consult the Arab neighbors on the future of Palestine, and that promise was voided, we will begin to apply the principle that All men are created equal to the Arabs world.

The contradiction here is Palestine. Israel is the reason that “Arabists” were marginalized in the State Department. Israel is a good part of the reason that we were sold a “clash of civilizations.” Right now on MSNBC Jane Harman, a stalwart of the Israel lobby, was saying that our real enemies are Syria and Iran. They threaten our “strategic interest,” Israel.

But I say Libya’s liberation hurts that agenda, it does not advance it. The Arab spring is a great motion of history in our lifetimes. It is eroding Zionism in the name of democracy. Of course it will be a great contradiction if a month after the U.S. helps the rebels capture Tripoli, we work against Palestinian self-determination in the U.N., but it took Jews and Americans a few decades to fall into the messianic trap that is Zionism, and it is going to take us a while to dig out, and it actually helps this process that all the contradictions of our Palestinian policy are being held up to the light. We are for human rights in Libya, against them in Palestine. For the International Criminal Court in Libya, against it in Israel. For self-determination and democracy in Libya, against them in Palestine and Israel. These contradictions are too stark to be ignored. They show that the special relationship is unprecedented, they show that what we readily endorse in Pakistan, East Timor, and Kosovo — self-determination– we cannot tolerate in Palestine. Americans are being educated. The Arab spring will change us too.

41 Responses

  1. Richard Witty
    August 24, 2011, 10:22 am

    Syria is next (maybe somewhere else is next really, who knows).

    Palestine is a different beast. Although many object to features of the Fatah regime, it is not hated in the same way that the other regimes were, especially if they facilitate elections once that is feasible.

    Israel similarly is a democracy already.

    The way to make change in a democracy is via election.

    I definitely will celebrate the formation of a democratic sovereign Palestine. I hope we get there. I see likud, hamas, and Palestinian militant solidarity standing in the way, as odd as that may sound.

    Again, trying to fly over a chasm, when the bridge is a couple miles down the road.

    • Woody Tanaka
      August 24, 2011, 11:12 am

      “Israel similarly is a democracy already.”

      No, it’s not. It is has limited democratic features in an apartheid system whereby an artificially limited, ethnically dominated electorate rules over a population in which half of the people have no say in the government which runs their lives.

      • DBG
        August 24, 2011, 11:19 am

        Do all Palestinians consider themselves Israelis? This argument that they should have a vote in their occupier’s election is a joke. The 20 percent of non-Jews in Israel get to vote, they don’t all vote, but they have that right.

      • Woody Tanaka
        August 24, 2011, 11:54 am

        What Palestinains “consider themselves” is kind of irrelevant to the question of whether the Israelis have created a democratic state. What is important, with regard to democracy, is whether there is a consent of the governed and whether the state in question has extended the rights all people deserve to the people its control.

        The Israelis, two generations ago, de facto annexed the West Bank and Gaza. They maintain a de jure separation, solely because to do otherwise would upset their ethno-religious apartheid state. (And, that separation is, more and more, non-territorial and relies on ethno-religious bigotry, as a person born over the green line who is a Jew gets to vote in Israeli elections, but one who is borne next to him, who is an Arab, does not.)

        That Israel has created this de jure fiction in no way obligates anyone to recognize or respect it, or to flatter that bigotry by calling this apartheid state a democracy.

      • eljay
        August 24, 2011, 1:46 pm

        >> This argument that they should have a vote in their occupier’s election is a joke.

        The really funny part of that joke is that they have an occupier.

      • DBG
        August 24, 2011, 1:53 pm

        woody, so you are arguing there is no occupation of the WB and Gaza?

      • Woody Tanaka
        August 24, 2011, 2:21 pm

        “woody, so you are arguing there is no occupation of the WB and Gaza?”

        I’m arguing that Israel can’t call itself a democracy if it holds half of the people under its control for two generations without the vote. The method that the Israelis have used to impliment its plan is a military occupation under the de facto annexation, while not affirming the annexation de jure.

      • Sumud
        August 24, 2011, 11:10 pm

        woody, so you are arguing there is no occupation of the WB and Gaza?

        Forty-four years after the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza began, a single apartheid state exists across mandate Palestine, by de-facto.

        60% of Palestinians in Gaza are under 18. I don’t know the figure for the West Bank but I can say with confidence that the majority of Palestinians in the OPTs have lived their entire lives under Israeli occupation.

        One state exists, now.

    • annie
      August 25, 2011, 12:13 am

      Palestine is a different beast.

      the ‘beast’ is not palestine. the ‘beast’ is apartheid. the ‘beast’ is the fiction in framing that protects those who pretend they live in a democracy when in fact, only half the people get to vote while those same leaders they vote for rule all the people, including the ones who do not get to vote based on ethnicity.

      Do all Palestinians consider themselves Israelis?

      they consider themselves, as they should, captives of an apartheid israeli legal system that determines every aspect of their lives. lives in which they have a limited amount of control over due to the fact a majority of jewish israelis (a majority created by ethnic cleansing, immigration laws, and an apartheid election process), thru their vote and elected representatives, choose to oppress them in the guise of ‘security’ and ‘democracy’ which in both cases is anything but.

      One state exists, now.

      yes, it does. one apartheid state that only designates certain people as citizens and an even lessor segment of people nationals in an intricate system of fancy framing to disguise what is becoming increasingly clear to everyone. this is ethnic nationalism at it’s worst, and it’s damn ugly.

    • robin
      August 25, 2011, 4:12 am

      Although many object to features of the Fatah regime, it is not hated in the same way that the other regimes were

      Probably true, if only because the Israeli regime is worse and more influential in Palestinians’ lives. It absorbs a bigger share of that anger and makes the PA look better in comparison. (And the PA has its loyal clients, like any autocracy, but probably more so because of the role of foreign aid.)

      But ultimately the Arab Spring (especially the Egyptian revolution) showed that anti-Israel, anti-U.S. sentiment can shift quickly from diverting anti-regime energy, to inflaming it once people make the connection between the weakness and spinelessness of their “leaders” and the power that Israel has to abuse them.

  2. ehrens
    August 24, 2011, 12:10 pm

    Everyone can exult if they want, but I’m reserving judgment. The US/NATO campaign in Libya is not an example of a more cautious, humanitarian-driven Western intervention in the Middle East. The West has had a bullseye on Ghadafy for decades, even after he started selling Europeans oil and giving the US intel on salafists. His 2009 speech at the UN was probably the last straw: reminding everyone that the UN Security Council is really still only a White colonist’s country club. Now that we know that there were plenty of boots on the ground and that hawks like Richard Haass want “in” on recreating a new Libya, and now that mainstream foreign policy wonks are obsessing about possible Islamists in Libya’s future government, Libya will be another Iraq. Get ready for lots of foreign meddling in its selection of legislators, prime minister, defense chief. Get ready for lots of US bumbling which will foster the creation of factions and slow national reunification. Expect us to become the salesmen for new weaponry to replace all that’s been expended, advocates for turning Libya into a heavily armed nation. Of course American advisors, mercenaries, security companies, and all the trimmings — perhaps fresh from Iraq — will be necessary to complete the transformation. Hell, if we keep it up and have only one war every 3 years we could keep Xe and companies like it employed for a long time. If Libya turns into another Egypt or Jordan, the Arab Spring will be a bitter joke. In fact, the jury’s still out on what the accomplishments of the Spring are in Egypt, as influential as the military is. Ultimately the only thing we know for sure is that the Western colonial powers have flexed their muscles and shown those benighted people of the Middle East who’s really the boss. Colonialism is safe, at least for a few more years.

  3. MarkF
    August 24, 2011, 12:26 pm

    “This argument that they should have a vote in their occupier’s election is a joke.”

    Yeah, I’m sure the occupied are laughing too.

    Here, I’ll even give you all a new line:
    OK, fine, you want Israel to give the Palestinians a vote, then the U.S. should allow Iraqis to vote in the U.S. elections.

    Hmm, since we pay for Israel’s weapons and universal health care, maybe us American Jews can vote in Israel’s elections??

    Better line for the next AIPAC conference:

    Israel and the U.S. – Both standing togther strong, both brutally occupying M.E. countries against their wills, but making sure the U.S. foots both bills.

    • annie
      August 24, 2011, 1:18 pm

      Here, I’ll even give you all a new line:
      OK, fine, you want Israel to give the Palestinians a vote, then the U.S. should allow Iraqis to vote in the U.S. elections.

      absolutely, they deserve a say on who’s ruling their country. we need to get out. letting iraqis have a say on which puppet they get to vote for is not the same.

      Hmm, since we pay for Israel’s weapons and universal health care, maybe us American Jews can vote in Israel’s elections??

      since when do only american jews pay for israel’s weapons and health care? it comes out of all our pockets, if american jews got to vote on israeli elections based on the 3 billion we give them there would be no reason to limit the representation to american jews.

  4. Robert
    August 24, 2011, 12:27 pm


    If the settlers won’t leave, and its clear as day that they won’t, what choice is there but allowing Palestinians citizenship and the right to vote?

    • annie
      August 24, 2011, 1:13 pm

      it’s not just the settlers robert. it’s the damn occupation. if israel insists on ruling palestine then of course palestinians should have an opportunity to vote in israeli elections.

    • DBG
      August 24, 2011, 1:54 pm

      the settlers left Gaza and the Sinai. There will need to be some sort of swap, unless you don’t expect there to be a connection between Gaza and the WB.

      • annie
        August 24, 2011, 2:19 pm

        what are you talking about ‘swap’ dbg? what has this got to do w/the israelis leaving gaza or sinai?

      • DBG
        August 24, 2011, 2:33 pm

        1.) Settlers left Gaza and Sinai
        2.) Settlers will leave the majority of WB.
        3.) Palestine will require a land bridge between Gaza and the WB
        4.) Palestine will need to swap population centers for this land.
        5.) with negotiations there will be a sovereign Palestine which can dictate their own immigration policies.

      • annie
        August 24, 2011, 2:46 pm

        oh, you mean because israel was able to extract a few thousand settlers from gaza (and a small number from sinai) it gives credence to the allegation israel will be able to extract a 1/2 million settlers from WB? is that what you mean?

        gotcha, i’m so sure that won’t lead to a civil war/not.

      • Woody Tanaka
        August 24, 2011, 3:05 pm

        “3.) Palestine will require a land bridge between Gaza and the WB”
        “4.) Palestine will need to swap population centers for this land.”

        These latter does not follow from the former.

      • eljay
        August 24, 2011, 3:07 pm

        3.) Palestine will require a land bridge between Gaza and the WB
        4.) Palestine will need to swap population centers for this land.

        Swapping border population centers within Palestine (excluding Jerusalem and immediate surroundings, which would be too contentious) with land in Israel (excluding Sderot*, which would be too contentious) for the purpose of a surface road/rail/pipeline corrider (with appropriately-sized air corridor above it) seems fair.

        A couple of conditions:
        – Because it would be too contentious, Jerusalem and immediate surroundings should be exlcuded from the settlements Israel gets to include in the swap.
        – Since Israel gets to pick the settlements it keeps, Palestine, within reason, gets to pick the land for its surface corridor* between northeastern Gaza and southwestern WB, excluding Sderot and surrounding area because it would be too contentious.

        * A proposal I saw on-line suggested linking Beit Hanoun in Gaza with Dura in the West Bank. The proposal suggested a tunnel; however, given that the tunnel would have to be 30+ km. long, I think it’s impractical for several reasons, including cost and expectations (forcing Palestinians to regularly have to undertake a long, underground commute).

        A surface corridor makes much more sense, but the shortest route would cut through Sderot, and that’s not acceptable, so it would have to skirt that town.

        The corridor should be ~5km. wide, or whatever is required to contain, say:
        – a six- to eight-lane highway w/ land on either side for emergency (police, ambulance, etc.) and commercial use;
        – two rail lines;
        – pipelines for water, gas, oil, etc.
        – a buffer zone.

        Israel – in co-ordination and co-operation with Palestine – would be permitted to build as many short tunnels beneath the corridor as required to ensure free and convenient passage to its citizens to all points within Israel.

        All this, of course, is just my 2¢. :-)

      • DBG
        August 24, 2011, 5:20 pm

        I like it eljay! I would love to see Jerusalem become an international city. It could be the capital of both Israel and Palestine but governed internationally (somehow).

        I would like to see a surface corridor for the new Palestinian state with an underground corridor for Israel. (oops you made that point @ the end).

      • Chaos4700
        August 25, 2011, 12:44 am

        More settlers entered the West Bank than left Gaza in the same year.

        At no point in Israel’s history has the size of the occupation diminished, even if its topography has shifted from overlapping one neighbor’s borders to the other.

  5. annie
    August 24, 2011, 1:22 pm

    phil, i like your enthusiasm and wish i could share it with you. sure, i’m hopeful..but..like ehrens i am reserving judgement for similiar reasons mentioned in his post.

    still, your energy here feels good.

  6. Dr Gonzo
    August 24, 2011, 4:04 pm

    Possibly the most shocking piece I have read on Mondoweiss.

    Saying the US went into Libya and helped kill 13,000 people by Al Jaazera’s count in order to bring democracy is like saying the Soviet Union went into Afghanistan and killed thousands in order to improve workers rights.

    Maybe its just because I’m not American. So far the only death-toll I’ve heard from Tripoli is 1,300 dead (as in roughly the same as Gaza in 2008). I click onto Mondoweiss and its being celebrated?

    Guess Americans have learned nothing from the times of bringing democracy at the barrel of a gun. Also just because NATO bombed Gaddaffi for 6 months (half a year) and finally took control of Tripoli does not mean the revolution is a success. Just means that after half a year they were able to conquer a city that had its fuel and food supplies cut.

    As for the Rebel council… well like all US installed puppets they will probably be worse than the person they deposed. Remember the Shah of Iran? Or Pinochet after Allende was taken out?

    Also classic Disaster Capitalism. Maybe you should re-read Naomi Klein’s Shock Doctine to see who will reap the rebuilding and oil awards.

    • Walid
      August 24, 2011, 5:06 pm

      Phil is a romantic; he’s seeing things as he wishes they would be and he’s rooting for the Palestinians to catch a fever that was never there. Other than for an authentic movement for freedom in Bahrain that was snuffed out with America’s unromantic blessing, there wasn’t an Arabic spring anywhere.

  7. DICKERSON3870
    August 24, 2011, 6:08 pm

    RE: “These contradictions are too stark to be ignored.” ~ Weiss
    MY COMMENT: Wanna bet?
    WannaBet? ~ A magazine for kids about
    the dangers of gambling – link to wannabet.org

    Qaddafi Has Lost; But Who Has Won? ~ By Patrick Cockburn, Counterpunch, 8/23/11
    link to counterpunch.org
    Too Soon to Declare Victory ~ by Phyllis Bennis, CommonDreams.org, 8/23/11
    link to commondreams.org
    Libya: Obama’s Pyrrhic Victory ~ by Justin Raimondo, Antiwar.com, 8/24/11
    link to original.antiwar.com
    Triumph in Libya? Not So Fast, NATO ~ by Ivan Eland, Antiwar.com, 08/24/11
    link to original.antiwar.com
    Welcome to Libya’s ‘democracy’ ~ By Pepe Escobar, Asia Times Online, 08/24/11
    link to atimes.com
    Sweet and Lowdown: A Crude Analysis of the Libyan Liberation ~ By Chris Floyd, 8/23/11
    link to chris-floyd.com

  8. Brewer
    August 24, 2011, 6:28 pm

    Long term watchers should note:
    Since 1969 when Gaddafi took power in a bloodless coup:

    * The Libyan economy has become the best performing in Africa and has, from time to time, outperform­­ed developed countries such as Italy, Singapore, South Korea, Spain and New Zealand. Every citizen receives a dividend, paid into their bank account from the State Oil Industry.

    * The literacy rate has gone from 20% to the highest in North Africa; over 82% .

    * Education is free and compulsory up to secondary level.

    * Universiti­­es and higher technical and vocational institutes have gone from zero to 84 (with 12 public universiti­­es). Higher education is funded by the State. 1.7 million of 6.4 million Libyans are students.

    * Healthcare for every citizen is free, including travel for procedures not available in Libya.

    * Crime.
    Incarcerat­­ion: 173 per 100,000 people (U.S. 743 incarcerat­­ed per 100,000)
    Murder: 2.2 per 100,000 people (U.S. 5.5 per 100,000)

    * Agricultur­­e
    25-30% of State expenditur­­e goes to Agricultur­­al projects aimed at freeing Libya from its dependence on imported food.

    Let us see if these gains are maintained under the new regime.

  9. ToivoS
    August 24, 2011, 7:13 pm

    Phil wishes upon a star:

    Ten years ago Arundhati Roy wrote a famous essay in the Guardian attacking the U.S. military-imperial presence in Asia, and I want to believe that era is ending

    The US military does not do people’s liberation struggles, they do US imperialism (or to sound less radical they push US hegemony in our regions of interest, i.e. the whole globe). If you want to believe that that era is coming to an end perhaps you can explain why we are continuing to conduct war in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. And throw in support for tyrannical regimes on the Saudi peninsula.

    The overthrow of that buffonish government of Libya is probably a good thing but it is difficult to see how the people will be any better off than before, not even counting the 13,000 Libyan deaths so far. There are multiple factions vying for power right now and it is anybody’s guess who or what coalition will win. We can be sure of one thing: US, British, French and Italian interests will be working furiously behind the scenes to bring about an outcome that is in their interests. If in the interest of maintaining internal security (i.e. protection of Western oil interests) then we could see the emergence of another strong man or perhaps a committee that will oversee the oppression of the Libyan people.

  10. Brewer
    August 24, 2011, 8:29 pm

    Pepe Escobar reports:

    “Who are these people who suddenly erupted in joy on US and European television screens? After the smiles to the cameras and the Kalashnikovs shooting the skies, get ready for some major fratricidal fireworks….

    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. …

    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. …”

    link to atimes.com

  11. ToivoS
    August 24, 2011, 11:46 pm

    Painful to observe Brewer. The pain is the many well meaning people in the West who supported this Nato led insurrection. These fools have no idea what is at stake here. Khadaffi bad man, then it means if you oppose him then you support good. End of debate.

  12. Keith
    August 25, 2011, 12:26 am

    PHIL- Your brain has been pickled by a metaphor. And by your “liberal” bias. Can’t deal with the reality that Obama is a warmonger implementing the neocon agenda? If Bush was President, methinks that you would be calling this imperial intervention for what it is, based upon the simple facts of the matter. Rather difficult to ignore the reality of a massive US/NATO bombing campaign against this militarily weak oil rich country. Or the helicopter gunships. Or the drones. Or the mercenaries. Or the financial support and arming and training. But that is just what you have done, isn’t it? If the facts and relevant history contradict your narrative, ignore them and focus on the romantic metaphor of the “Arab Spring,” like it was the source of some river that actually existed which would sweep away the evil and cleanse our souls. And in so doing, tying together disparate events through the logic of your bogus metaphor, to imply a reality which doesn’t exist. Of course, you wouldn’t do that for a Republican warmonger, would you? But a Democrat, you betcha. It’s the liberal thing to do. Liberal solidarity and all. It is what the members of the liberal intelligentsia do, after all. Provide ideological cover for Democrats implementing the Republican- that is to say corporate- agenda.

    • Walid
      August 25, 2011, 2:01 am

      We have to keep in mind and perspective that as Brewer mentioned, the insurgency was comprised of about 1000 fighters and was going nowhere fast until Zionist extraordinaire and shit disturber, Bernard-Henri Lévy, peace be upon him, took over the campaign and started screaming from the rooftops the flagrant lie that Gaddafi was about to bomb the innocent civilians at Benghazi while Jazeera took it into overdrive. That was the signal NATO was waiting for and the signal for Obama to get an after-the-fact Congressional approval for the millions he had already authorized to arm the insurgents. Everybody loves a winner and wants to be on the winning team and Phil has caught the wave, thrown logic to the wind and started exulting. There was nothing spontaneous about what happened in Libya and far from being an Arab Spring, it was an orchestrated overthrow of a dictator for imperialistic vocations, not to improve anything in the country. But try convincing Phil of these unromantic nuts and bolts of what really happened.

  13. john h
    August 25, 2011, 1:25 am

    “I definitely will celebrate the formation of a democratic sovereign Palestine.
    5.) with negotiations there will be a sovereign Palestine which can dictate their own immigration policies.”

    Pray tell me, you two Zionists, what do you mean by “sovereign Palestine”? The same as what sovereign Israel has? Yeah right.

  14. john h
    August 25, 2011, 1:56 am

    “I like it eljay! I would love to see Jerusalem become an international city. It could be the capital of both Israel and Palestine but governed internationally (somehow).”

    DBG, now you’re talking. Seems like a good idea, it’s what was intended in 1947 and has never legally been Israeli or Palestinian since.

  15. Brewer
    August 25, 2011, 2:01 am

    “British military and civilian advisers, including special forces troops, along with those from France, Italy and Qatar, have spent months with rebel fighters, giving them key, up-to-date intelligence, and watching out for any al-Qaida elements trying to infiltrate or influence the rebellion.”
    link to guardian.co.uk

    Well well well:

    “British troops may act as peacekeepers if Libya descends into chaos”

    Read more: link to dailymail.co.uk

  16. john h
    August 25, 2011, 2:23 am

    “I like it eljay! I would love to see Jerusalem become an international city. It could be the capital of both Israel and Palestine but governed internationally (somehow).”

    So do I. Seems like a good idea, it’s what was probably intended in 1947 (but probably not exactly figured out), and has never legally been Israeli or Palestinian since.

  17. Brewer
    August 25, 2011, 5:24 am

    I only know what I read in the papers:

    “Rebels asks leader of UK’s Libyan Jews to run for office”
    link to jpost.com

  18. Brewer
    August 25, 2011, 7:54 pm

    “But, of course, the massive presence of Western diplomats, oil-mogul representa­tives, highly paid Western mercenarie­s and shady British and French servicemen – all pretending to be “advisers” rather than participan­ts – is the Benghazi Green Zone. There may (yet) be no walls around them but they are, in effect, governing Libya through the various Libyan heroes and scallywags who have set themselves up as local political masters.”
    link to independent.co.uk

    “We went to Libya on the 28th July and we came back on the 7th August and we found a totally different situation because NATO was bombarding civilians.

    The bombings were not only carried out on military targets, but they also hit houses, hospitals, schools, television centers, and this was totally against the humanitari­an reasons they said they were there for.

    I believe they were doing this to bring panic in the city. That’s why they were bombing the things that people use daily, like places with food and essential utilities like hospitals.­…….We went to Tripoli and to Zitan and we saw huge protests with thousands of pro-Gaddaf­i supporters turning out against NATO and all these demonstrat­ions were not shown in Italy.”
    link to rt.­com

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