Keith Harmon Snow has written and important and far ranging article on the current situation in Libya and how it has come about entitled GENOCIDE IN LIBYA? NATO INVASION UNDER WAY. ITS THE OIL, STUPID..
It is a necessarily long article and well worth the effort taken to read it in full. But to give it some added coverage and to encourage others to read it, I have excerpted (in italics) extensively from it below and hope I haven't done Mr. Snow a disservice in the process.
PETROLEUM & EMPIRE IN NORTH AFRICA
Muammar Gaddafi Accused of Genocide? NATO Invasion Underway.
Muammar Gaddafi Accused of Genocide? NATO Invasion Underway.
"Are events unfolding in Libya, Tunisia and Egypt more about petro-terrorism or about freedom and democracy? How much oil is there in North Africa? Who is in control of that oil? What is the relationship between the West and Muammar Gaddafi? Is he really the terrorist we've all been led to believe he is? Who is the Libyan "opposition" and who are the "rebels" we read about?" ......
..."In almost all western media accounts, the so-called "opposition" in Libya includes the unspecified, unnamed, unidentified "rebels" of the National Front for the Salvation of Libya (NFSL). These are not innocent 'pro-democracy' protestors who began with a 'peaceful sit-in' as reported by the New York Times and uncritically repeated everywhere else.
Reportage of atrocities in Darfur, Sudan (2003-20011) and Rwanda (1990-1994) was always blamed on the governments (Omar Bashir in Khartoum and Juvenal Habyarimana in Kigali) with no context to the foreign backed insurgency and intervention occurring, which in both cases involved the US, UK and Israel. Similarly, in Libya today, there is no context or history to the FNSL 'rebels': they are categorically presented as the good guys, no matter that they seem to have appeared out of thin air. No one explains who these people who are cited as sources by the New York Times or CNN or Democracy Now are.
The FNSL was part of the National Conference for the Libyan Opposition held in London in 2005, and British resources are being used to support the FNSL and other 'opposition' in Libya. The FNSL was actually formed in October 1981 in Sudan under Colonel Jaafar Nimieri-- the US puppet dictator who was openly known to be a Central Intelligence Agency operative, and who ruled Sudan ruthlessly from 1969 to 1985. The FNSL held its national congress in the USA in July 2007. Reports of 'atrocities' and civilian deaths are being channeled into the western press from operations in Washington DC, and the opposition FNSL is reportedly organizing resistance and military attacks from both inside and outside Libya.
Italy and France are also said to be backing these opposition groups, as the Italian and French oil companies Total, AGIP and ELF seek to control, protect, and expand their penetration into the extractive industries sector in Libya. Many of the petroleum concessions in Libya, Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt appear (the map is 15 years old) to be held by state-owned oil companies -- but foreign interests have been deeply involved in joint ventures with Libya's National Oil Company (NOC) for many years.
European, Korean and Japanese penetration of the Libyan oil market had already occurred before the US sanctions were lifted in 2004: US multinationals were losing out. AGIP has been involved in Libya's oil sector for decades in LIbya's Elephant Field (and other sites) through its joint ventures between Italian Eni Corporation and Libya's NOC; these operations also involved a consortium of Korean and British (LASMO) corporations. Eni is Italy's largest multinational oil and gas corporation, involved in 70 countries, and Eni has worked in Libya since 1959. Belgian giant Petrofina also has sizable operations in Libya.
In late February, British Special Forces evacuated hundreds of British nationals from the Libyan desert. The companies they worked for, and their reasons for being in Libya, were not reported (as usual).The operations were coordinated with Germany, Italy, Turkey -- and certainly with the US. British Petroleum last year was embroiled in a scandal for influence-peddling used to secure a contract for petroleum exploration in Libya. Royal/Dutch Shell also held some 26 high-level meetings in Libya and won [sic] contracts against US rivals like Texas oil corporation Occidental Petroleum (OXY), ejected when Libya's oil fields were nationalized in 1970.
OXY was the first US petroleum corporation to resume operations in Libya when sanctions were lifted in 2004. In 2008, Oxy reached new 30 year agreements with Libya to redevelop and explore in its "most prolific producing area" -- the Sirte Basin. US major ExxonMobil reported "milestone achievements" in the Libyan oil sector in 2009.
National Endowment for (non) Democracy
In 1983, the Pentagon, USAID, US State Department, and the CIA were all involved in the creation and implementation of 'Project Democracy' --based on National Security Decision Directive 77 (NSDD 77) -- and this led to the creation of the National Endowment for Democracy. After that, some of the 'softer' tactics used in covert interventions were shifted away from the CIA and onto the NED, whose involvement with covert operations and foreign interventions are nonetheless well-established.
A 'soft' intervention CIA front, the National Endowment for Democracy has been deeply involved in Libya along with the CIA fronted Freedom House (under their Blue Umbrella program and others). These entities have backed 'opposition', supported propaganda campaigns and so-called 'pro-democracy' movements, and are known to be involved with backing armed insurgents and interventions." ......
....."[W]estern reportage on the alleged [sic] use of Libyan government air forces to attack 'rebel' forces is extremely biased, extremely duplicitous, and extremely hypocritical. First of all, Libya is under attack -- acts of aggression in contravention of international law -- and has every right to defend its government and interests. Of course, the "international community" will justify all aggression using the new doctrine of "responsibility to protect" -- an imperial faux doctrine meant to serve the most powerful and ostensibly innocent -- even in contravention of international law. In 2009 the air attacks by Israel against Sudan were treated as justice by the western media. Worse still were the massive Israeli air strikes on Gaza -- also in contravention of international law and international humanitarian law: these are war crimes, crimes against humanity and, in the Palestinian case, they are part of a greater genocidal war against the Palestinians."......
....." "[T]he fundamental problem and issue before the people in the region is that the US rulers seek imperial control and imposition of semi-colonial country-selling regimes," reports Ralph Schoenman, in 'US Imperialism Against Democratic ME'. "The more autocratic and brutal, the better from the point of the US imperialism that is unrelenting history. Every time the population is given the opportunity to shape its own destiny, to seek its national independence, to seek its own control over its own resources, to seeks its own sovereignty and determination of its own future, that is incompatible with the US imperialism."
When Barack Obama was accepted by the US people as the new president, Gaddafi praised Obama and described Obama's White House house-sitting gig as "a victory against racism" and he urged the first Black U.S. president "to lead his country boldly and with integrity."
"The Black people's struggle has made tremendous advances against racism in America," Gaddafi said. "It was God who created color. Today President Obama, son of a Kenyan father, a true son of Africa, has made it in the United States of America."
At a speech he gave in his private tent in Tripoli in September 2008, Gaddafi rambled and muddled and zipped his all-over-the-place speech up as quick as he began it. Is he a desert mystic? Did he write the infamous "Green Book" or was it ghost-written? Are his sometimes rambling speeches emblematic of his propensity to try to please, to do what he likes, to be careful not to say the wrong thing, while being unable to remain silent when the hypocrisies of the west are (or were) thrown up in his face?
The Green Book says that workers should be involved and self-employed, and that the land must be of those who work it and those who live in the house. And power shall be exercised by the people directly, without intermediaries, without politicians, through popular congresses and committees, where the whole population decides the fundamental issues of the district, city and country. These are fighting words to predatory international capitalism.
When Gaddafi bowed to Western demands in 2004 it was most likely in part due to the incredible alignment of forces against Libya. Gaddafi and the Libyan government, and governments of other countries, will agree to a lot of imperialist dictates to avoid having a war launched against their country and to allow the people to still enjoy some decent standard of living and peaceful lives. Gaddafi played along with the West's moral righteousness for "The War on Terror" knowing that he didn't have much choice. His opening to western interests made no difference in the end, as too many forces have desired his destruction for far too long. Now that time has come. This is no 'popular revolution' sweeping Libya, though there is a significant popular element to the revolts we are seeing in Libya.
Pentagon Invasion Already Underway?
The US will use any propaganda necessary to whip up American fervor over Gaddafi and justify Pentagon or MI-6 or NATO operations. US and British warships sit off the coast of Libya -- and they don't sit there idly. The imposition of a 'no-fly' zone means that US/NATO planes can do as they like, with the understanding that what we are really talking about are possible bombing and fighter sorties against Libya.
US troops have already moved ashore in Libya, joining the 'opposition ' and 'rebel' forces in 'rebel' controlled territories. The US, France and Britain have already set up Bases in Libya. The recent report noted that British and US special forces entered Libyan port cities of Benghazi and Tobruk on February 23 and 24.
US covert operatives have been on the ground for weeks, and probably much longer than that, whether they have entered by sea (SEALS) or by way of Niger, where the US has openly published information about its covert operations.".......
......."Another strategic geopolitical concern of the western powers is the protection and control of the massive nuclear (uranium) resources both inside Libya and nearby. France and Canada had already signed memorandums (circa 2007-2008) with Libya to explore and exploit uranium in Libya.
France's entire nuclear weapons complex (and massive nuclear power industry) revolves around uranium extracted from Agadez and Arlit in northern Niger and it was built, over the past 50 years, out of the blood, sweat and tears of the Nigerienne people. Japanese companies have been extracting uranium out of Niger through the Overseas Uranium Resources Development Corporation (OURD), in cooperation with U.S., Israeli, German and French corporations. In 2008, France and former colony Algeria signed defense and civil nuclear power accords, including cooperation in research, training, technology transfer and the exploration and production of uranium, all of interest to French nuclear giant Areva Corporation. Canadian and Australian corporations are also mining in Libya's other southern neighbor, Burkina Faso. And yet, unlike Libya, where the people have seen some benefits from the extraction of wealth from their land, Niger remains the second poorest country in the world and Burkina Faso is close behind.
Russia and Ukraine had also signed memorandums with Libya regarding uranium exploration and development. However, China intends to quadruple its uranium consumption and China's largest nuclear power corporation China National Nuclear Corp, has signed an agreement with China-Africa Development Fund to jointly develop uranium resources in Africa. Western nuclear corporations aim to monopolize Libya's uranium sector and exclude China and Russia from the exploration and development -- so they can build the nuke plants themselves and sell uranium to their Asian competitors.".....
(China and Russia have inexplicable abstained from voting at the UN Security Council vote on invading Libya rather than exercising their veto which would have prevented this criminal act of war against Libya. Has some deal been struck over this uranium with China and Russia? ed.)
....."In short, almost everything in the western press on the crises in Libya is slanted by some faction, or interest, or it is tainted by western arrogance, or by anti-imperialist ideology (of 'solidarity'), even in the case of what is perceived to be the 'alternative' media. There is very little accurate reporting of any kind (but some good work linked or cited herein).
Muammar Gaddafi is portrayed as champion for people of color -- providing funding, hope and solidarity where none existed, and this correspondent is aware that this [white] correspondent's writing herein is deficient in presenting all the positive aspects of his collaboration with people of color.
"The lies of the media cannot hide the fact that Gaddafi has supported the struggles of peoples for liberation in Nicaragua, Cuba, Angola, Mozambique, South Africa and many other countries, specifically concretely helping the people who fought for liberation," writes Antonio Cesar Oliviera, in Who Is Muammar Gaddafi? "In practice, Gaddafi has always been a benefactor of mankind," Oliviera continues, "but for the mercenary [western] media, a benefactor is one who creates wars in search of profits for the arms industry or to dominate the world, as were the wars created by the U.S. in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, El Salvador, Nicaragua and many other countries."
Gaddafi's alliance with Islam and his support for truly revolutionary movements must be understood for what the capitalist system sees them as: slaps in the face of power and threats to that power. This is one of the biggest reasons that Gaddafi, throughout his tenure as leader of the Libyan Revolution, has been considered the devil incarnate by Washington and London et al. Perhaps there is more truth to this than his supporters would like to believe.".......
There is much else (including links to references) in the full article such as mercenaries and mineral claims, Barrink Gold, The Carlyle Group and our old friend Tony Buckingham and his Heritage Oil. Other countries involving resources and false reporting include Egypt, Sudan, Rwanda and the Congo. I thoroughly recommend it. GENOCIDE IN LIBYA? NATO INVASION UNDER WAY. ITS THE OIL, STUPID.