Libya: The next Iraq

Posted on March 16, 2011


Oh god I hope not!, if not for any other reason, it is because petrol is already bloody expensive enough. But there is another reason, which is that I have nothing but absolute respect and admiration for the people who had the spine to stand up and fight for their rights, even though they were heavily out gunned. What they achieved so far in itself is nothing short of astonishing, taking over towns with sticks and stones. But now with guns, they seem to be losing the battle. Kudos for France for recognising the people as sovereign and not a tyrant. Possibly this is because it reminded them of their own revolution so long ago. But what of that other power, the one that claims to represent the free world, the guardian of democracy and liberty, as well as being the world policeman – typically late that’s what. When the Shia uprising occurred in Iraq in 1993, despite pleas for aid this was not given, allowing Saddam to crush and massacre these people – again who were only fighting for their own freedom – and survive so that the west could invade and dispose of him at their own convenience, this time on false pretenses, take control of local resources and enforce ‘freedom’ on those that didn’t get it when they were actually asking for it.I fear Libya is on the same path. The only difference is that Libyan oil is already available to the west, so they are in no hurry for regime change here.

Here’s news for you Mr UN and Mr EU: condemning in unequivocal terms do not stop the bullets and air strikes. and Mr US, standing by the Libyan people doesn’t stop them from getting shot either, you kinda have to stand in front of them for that. But given my cynical and pessimistic persona, here is what I believe will happen.

UN draft resolution currently being circulated will condemn Col Gaddafi in the ‘Strongest Terms’ (ooh he must just piss his pants at that….scary), but  even this will be vetoed by Russia and China Nato and EU will urge urgent action to save the Libyans, and will keep urging without actually doing anything themselves, using the UN inaction as an excuse. Arab league and African Union will condemn the west for this inaction and keep urging the No fly Zone, despite the 450 odd fighter aircraft and 4000 odd M1A1 Abrams tanks sitting next door in Egypt, means they can do it themselves if they really wanted to (besides there are many Egyptians caught up in the middle anyway). The US will keep observing and analysing the rebels for possible links with Al Qaeda, which they probably won’t find.

Meanwhile Col Gaddafi will  capture Benghazi, albeit with much bloodshed, line up all the ‘traitors’ and shoot them crushing this national council, (meaning that the Libyan people will have no alternative leadership, especially since Crown Prince Muhammad As Senussi has not really acted as someone deserving to be called the King of the Libyan people – well he hasn’t really done anything in this revolt) massacre a few thousand civilians here and there, hold a grand victory parade and go back to his tent and his eccentric ways, or even an Italian holiday (after all this stress I’m sure he deserves one).

The US will finally declare its full support for the National Council, the day after they are shot, and urge UN to impose sanctions on Libya. When this causes fuel prices to rise, The US will call for military action instead, which will be vetoed by China and Russia, again. The US will then attack unilaterally with help from Britain and this time France as well, and depose Gaddafi with the loss of a couple dozen soldiers to Helicopter accidents and friendly fire. Given they allowed the National council to be destroyed, there will be no locally developed leadership to replace the Gaddafi regime. The crown prince will start knocking on doors sensing the opportunity, but these will probably not open. Undaunted by this, the West will scour the email lists of Goldman Sachs, Halliburton, and other high-end corporations for an executive who is even remotely Libyan. Lo and behold they will find someone who left the country when he was probably 1 or 2, who will be called “our man in Libya”. He will be appointed to lead a largely ineffectual government, seen by all as a puppet. During this time most Libyan oil assets still under government ownership will be sold to Mobil. Fearing that Col Gaddafi’s tribesmen will revolt and suspecting that they are behind any and all opposition to the new regime (even though being bedouins they probably couldn’t care less), harsh measure will be taken against them, framing them as evil, and agents of Al Qaeda. A Bedouin triangle will be established within which Apache pilots overdosed on Meth and Private defense contractors will have free rein. This will eventually cause the tribes to revolt and create a state of anarchy from which the Next American president will slowly back out.

I hope I am wrong but I fear that history will repeat itself here.

My only hope: given that they had publically recognised the Benghazi based Libyan National Council as the legal government of Libya, France will provide bilateral military aid as soon as this is asked for (which I believe will happen the way things are going despite reservations about involving Western troops) and come and save the day, despite their patchy record with military success

Vive l’ France 🙂