Video: Libya Conflict Legacy Of NATO War
May 19, 2014
Libya conflict legacy of NATO war: Analyst
Press TV has interviewed Rick Rozoff, the manager of Stop NATO Network, to talk about the situation in Libya.
Below is a rush transcript of the interview.
Press TV: Now, looking at the situation in Tripoli at the moment, it’s quite clear that there is nothing but chaos ensuing there. What do you make of it? Is this the legacy of what NATO did to topple Muammar Gaddafi?
Rozoff: It is exactly that. What we are seeing of course is the two most populous cities in the country, in Libya, engulfed in violent uprisings where it’s very difficult to know what the various factions are, so that we’ve seen not only the kidnapping of parliamentarians in the capital and brutal fighting which accounts for, by the reports that I’m familiar with, at least for 70 deaths in Benghazi.
This is precisely the legacy of the first African war by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). I’m talking about the six-month-long so-called Operation Unified Protector. Well, let’s recall that that was preceded for 19 days by the first war launched by the US Africa Command, which was referred to as Operation Odyssey Dawn. That lasted most of the month of March of 2011.
So, the after-affect is very much as it is in any other part of the world where the US and its NATO allies have launched unprovoked attacks and wars, which is to say the integration of a country, the deterioration of the social fabric of the country, in an almost endless series of internecine civil conflicts that we see escalating to a perhaps unprecedentedly dangerous degree in Libya, as you have remarked. And all the more reason to oppose, then, military action by NATO and the United States in nations like Syria and Ukraine, because we know already from Libya, Afghanistan, the former Yugoslavia what to expect.
Press TV: Mr. Rozoff, there are those that say that NATO is no longer bombarding Libya. There is an interim government in place, which has been trying to demilitarize these missions as well. So, how have these militias survived ever since the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi? Who has been funding them? Who has been supporting them and what incentive do they have to continue on like this instead of bringing together a stable Libya?
Rozoff: That’s a good question you raise. In a more equitable and reasonable world, we’d be able to sit down, various parties would be able to sit down and discuss this. I suspect by the very nature of covert arming and funding of groups, it’s difficult to determine who ultimately is providing the arms and the finances to purchase the arms.
But we do know that three years ago, the United States and its European NATO allies and their military allies, linked through what is called the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative between NATO and the Persian Gulf monarchies, allies of NATO in the Persian Gulf – Qatar, United Emirates, Saudi Arabia and so forth – arming extremist elements in several countries as in Syria now and Libya three years ago. So one would have to suspect those entities I just mentioned to you as being the most likely suspects. But again, it’s difficult to really determine.
Nevertheless, I think we can say that, once having opened the Pandora’s Box of civil discord and national disintegration in Libya, as the US African Command and NATO did three years ago, all of this is unfortunately logically to be expected. You create chaos and the most anti-social and self-interested parties are going to exploit it. I’m afraid I don’t see an imminent resolution of this conflict in Libya.