The Economist are running a debate about the intervention between As'ad Abukhalil (The Angry Arab) and Menzies Campbell (former leader of UK Liberal democrats):
I wonder whether the people here on Dissensus who deem the Western intervention in Libya to be justified actually don't perceive any kind of cognitive dissonance when authorities use the term "peacekeeping measures" to refer to offensive military actions? Do you think to yourself: "Sure, that's euphemistic, however, I know that what they mean is a military operation; I'm smart enough to discern the real meaning from the standardized phrases of official language." Of course you are, but how can you be sure that the mode of expression in the official announcements and in the media didn't actually have a profound influence on your 'personal' assessment of the situation? That's how propaganda works, on a subsconscious level, and it is the more effective the more one believes one isn't lied to.
Oh, and while it's at it, why doesn't the Coalition of the Willing intervene in Côte d'Ivoire? The conflict between president Gbagbo and the supposedly rightful winner of the last election Ouattara is turning into a veritable civil war. A major humanitarian crisis is expected as a consequence. Who will stop it? Or should cacao be of less interest than oil?
Only in a legal system were accusations counted as hard evidence a defendant could be sentenced on the basis of such a reasoning as above. Such a legal system wouldn't be a legal system at all and the fact that, to push the analogy further, Ghaddafi has been sentenced without conclusive evidence of his alleged crimes only proves that international law is nothing but a charade in service of the fancy-worded legitimation of arbitrary power interests.
One could almost feel sorry for you because of your ignorance but denouncing me as "smug" for actually being interested in the truth is so incredibly low and so irredeemably perverse that all pity turns into disdain.
Last edited by lanugo; 24-03-2011 at 04:06 AM.
If this is an orchestrated campaign by the CIA etc, I still find it confusing; AFAIK, Gaddafi wasn't doing anything to hamper the oil majors' activities out there, so why go and shoot the place up?
*and as martin points out, Gaddafi apparently has no problem selling his country's oil to Western countries, so why would the CIA want to stir up trouble and provoke violence that's going to make it *more* difficult and expensive to buy Libyan oil?
Gaddafi bombs protesters near Tripoli" - that's Iran's state-controlled Press TV corporation - and this, from left-wing anti-war/anti-imperialism news blog Another World Is Possible: "Forces loyal to Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi have heavily bombarded pro-democracy protesters...[t]wo thousand people have been reported killed in the weeks-long violence." Unless they, too, are pawns of Thee Powers That Be...
Whereas you've already decided that the protesters are definitely guilty of killing black immigrants who are definitely not mercenaries. I've seen this contrariness-for-contrariness's-sake from you so many times before. It's not big and it's not clever.
Oh, and speaking of straw men, who are "the people here on Dissensus who deem the Western intervention in Libya to be justified"? Crackerjack says it might be, albeit with heavy reservations. No-one else here has said they support it. I'm not sure where I stand, and can see it doing more harm than good if for no other reason than that it risks de-legitimising the opposition.
Last edited by Mr. Tea; 24-03-2011 at 11:59 AM.
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 TRIPOLI 000967
DEPT FOR NEA/MAG, EEB/ESC/IEC/EPC
E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/6/2017
TAGS: ECON EPET LY
SUBJECT: GROWTH OF RESOURCE NATIONALISM IN LIBYA
REF: A) STATE 150999, B) TRIPOLI 912 CLASSIFIED BY: Chris Stevens, DCM, U.S. Embassy Tripoli, U.S. Department of State. REASON: 1.4 (b), (e)
1.(C) Summary: Libya has a long history of resource nationalism linked to the policies and rhetoric of the Qadhafi regime. Beginning in the 1990's, many of these practices were scaled back; however, the removal of U.S. and UN sanctions and Libya's attendant opening to the world have prompted a resurgence of measures designed to increase the GOL's control over and share of revenue from hydrocarbon resources. End Summary.
INVESTMENT SURGE ...
2.(C) With the lifting of UN and U.S. sanctions, foreign investment has surged back in to Libya over the past three years. -- U.S. companies adopted a number of return strategies, from buying back old concessions (Marathon and ConocoPhillips), winning bids for new blocs (Chevron and ExxonMobil), or a combination of both (Amerada Hess and Oxy). Since January 2005, there have been three Exploration and Production Sharing (EPSA) rounds, in which exploration areas have been competitively bid to foreign companies. These steps have produced a flurry of new work, as the more than forty international oil companies (exclusive of oil service companies) toil to discover marketable quantities of oil and gas. -- Several new "one-off" deals have also been concluded, including massive deals with Shell and British Petroleum, and a 25-year extension of Italian company ENI's oil and gas EPSA's. -- The GOL has also shown a growing interest in developing its natural gas capabilities; an EPSA round for gas will come to a close this December.
... SPARKS NATIONALIST RHETORIC, POLICIES
3.(C) With this inflow of capital, and in particular the return of international oil companies (IOCs), there has been growing evidence of Libyan resource nationalism. The regime has made a point of putting companies on notice that "exploitative" behavior will not be tolerated. In his annual speech marking the founding of his regime, Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi in 2006 said: "Oil companies are controlled by foreigners who have made millions from them -- now, Libyans must take their place to profit from this money." His son, Seif al-Islam al-Qadhafi, said in March 2007 that, "We will not tolerate a foreign company to make a profit at the expense of a Libyan citizen."
4.(C) Beyond the rhetoric, there are other signs of growing resource nationalism. -- Some IOCs with local subsidiaries have been forced to adopt Libyan names this year, including TOTAL (now officially titled "Mabruk"), Repsol ("Akakoss"), ENI ("Mellita") and Veba ("Al-Hurruj"), although these names have yet to catch on. -- The Libyan National Oil Corporation (NOC) is currently in the process of reworking long-standing oil concessions with several different IOCs (Ref B), in an effort to wring more favorable terms. There is a growing concern in the IOC community that NOC, emboldened by soaring oil prices and the press of would-be suitors, will seek better terms on both concession and production-sharing agreements, even those signed very recently. -- Libyan labor laws have also been amended to "Libyanize" the economy in several key sectors, and IOCs are now being forced to hire untrained Libyan employees. The Libyan National Oil Company (NOC) has recently begun insisting that deputy general managers, finance managers and human resource managers in local offices of IOC's be Libyan. -- The enactment of Law #443 of 2006 obligated most foreign companies to form joint ventures with Libyan companies in order to operate in the country. (Note: This currently excludes IOCs, but includes all foreign oil and gas service companies. End Note).
5.(C) The latest EPSA rounds could well prove to be a testing ground for how far Libya will travel down this path. The intense competition of the bid rounds led to winning bids that TRIPOLI 00000967 002 OF 002 are widely considered by hydrocarbon industry experts to be economically untenable. Chinese and Russian bids that allow companies to book only 7-10% of future production were hailed by NOC Chairman Shukri Ghanem as "very good for us...and "[clearly] also good for the companies, since they submitted the offer"...
The whole situation seems even more bizarre and morally twisted if you consider recent history.
In 2003, Gadaffi made the famous 'deal in the desert'. He agreed to open up Libyan oilfields to Western companies (greatly benefiting BP and Italian firms), and make efforts to stem the movement of African migrants to Italy in return for the normalisation of business and political links and the eventual lifting of sanctions. Now thats par for the course with friendly tyrants, but the management of perception by the West is where it gets interesting. In order to sweeten the deal the following was requested:
1) That Libya Admit responsibility for Lockerbie and pay compensation to the families of victims
2) That Libya discontinue its WMD/nuclear programs
3) That Libya admit responsibility for the '86 Berlin disco bombing and pay compensation.
The problem with these conditions is 1) that Libya had nothing to do with Lockerbie, 2) it had no WMD or nuclear programs to abandon and 3) it had nothing to do with the '86 bombing, which was itself used as a pretext for the the April '86, US primetime bombing of Tripoli which killed one of Gadaffis adopted daughters.
So in effect, in order to be welcomed back into the fold Gadaffi was asked to rubber stamp and justify Westen propaganda and intervention going back 20 years, which it seems he was happy to do so considering the enormous potential personal gains renewed resource exploitation would bring - only now those same mea culpas are being used to back up the case for the current intervention... And thats all before we even look at Blairs dodgy dealings...
Last edited by droid; 24-03-2011 at 11:13 AM.
Re. Lockerbie, there's been allegations and evidence pointing both to Libyan culpability, and Syrian/Iranian. Think just flatly stating Libya didn't do it is pushing it a little...
This argument always comes up and I'm not sure why. Just because some atrocities have been ignored it's surely not a reason to ignore others. Would you ever say "we fucked up before, we should fuck up again"? Or are you arguing that we should be in Cote d'Ivoire and Bahrain as well?"There's footage of government forces in Bahrain shooting protestors at point-blank range and one is left to wonder why this kind of repression is not perceived as a "crime against humanity" by the international community.
Oh, and while it's at it, why doesn't the Coalition of the Willing intervene in Côte d'Ivoire? The conflict between president Gbagbo and the supposedly rightful winner of the last election Ouattara is turning into a veritable civil war. A major humanitarian crisis is expected as a consequence. Who will stop it? Or should cacao be of less interest than oil?"
I understand the point that the reason for selecting one rather than another is normally cynical but... that's a separate issue.
Last edited by IdleRich; 24-03-2011 at 12:01 PM.
I dont want to drag us off topic, but this is not even controversial.
The bomb was was most likely planted by the PFLP, built by a Jordanian double agent, and paid for with $10 million from the Iranian foreign ministry with intelligence support from Syria, all with the explicit motive for revenge against the US for the shooting down of Iran Air 65 over Iranian waters.
The evidence against Libya is laughable, the trial and attempted trials were all jokes, aviation and intelligence experts have repeatedly testified to the existence of a cover up... Ask Craner if you dont believe me.
On what basis do either of you claim Libya's involvement?
Yeah, I mean the conviction always looked a bit dodgy to say the least but I don't think you can state it categorically."Re. Lockerbie, there's been allegations and evidence pointing both to Libyan culpability, and Syrian/Iranian. Think just flatly stating Libya didn't do it is pushing it a little..."
Was a grubby little deal to get him out anyway. Good for BP though - at the time.
I honestly didn't think there was anyone left who believed the official line, especially since they released al-Megrahii primarily to avoid what would have been a hugely embarrassing appeal.
Anyway. Id urge you to do some research on this: