by Matt Agorist, The Free Thought Project:
By Moussa Ibrahim, spokesperson of the Libyan Government and Minister of Media, 2011
On the 19th of March 2011, the NATO bloc began a violent 8-month long military onslaught of Libya, a sovereign African-Union founding member state, which had enjoyed four decades of stability, prosperity and one of the highest Human Development Index (HDI) scores in all of Africa.
NATO’s justification for the aggressive and bloody attack was the now-infamous “protection of civilians” doctrine, formalized under UN Security Council Decree No. 1973. The French Air Force, however, had already initiated a major raid on immobile Libyan Army units. They had already pulled out of the city of Benghazi, a protest hotbed, in a show of goodwill and peaceful intent. More than 400 resting Libyan officers, soldiers, medical and media personnel were massacred without the chance to fight back against an unjustified and undeclared foreign air attack.
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Tens of thousands more Libyans would later perish under more than 26,000 air raids, 100 cruise missile attacks and a naval blockade conducted by NATO’s 30-member coalition. Among the victims were a terrifying number of civilians from all walks of life. The number of women and children killed was especially high, as they sought refuge in civilian buildings deliberately targeted by the mighty NATO: including houses, apartment blocks, schools and community centers. As we witnessed time and time again in Iraq, Serbia, Afghanistan and Syria, NATO justified these attacks by claiming they were seeking out fighters and weaponry housed in civilian facilities. No evidence has ever been presented.
In the weeks that led up to this aggression, I spoke officially for the Libyan Government in countless international press conferences, media appearances and diplomatic appeals. Before hundreds of international media outlets, I expressed one single demand: that all hostilities cease under the direct supervision of the UN and that the African Union installs an international fact-finding mission to determine who committed what act, paving the way for a national conference of all Libyan parties to the conflict. This single most powerful and earnest appeal was rejected without consideration in Western centers of hegemony and ridiculed in Western media outlets.
The only solutions that were endorsed and praised were more rockets, bombs and the continuous arming of Islamist and tribalist terrorist groups on the ground.
In the years after, “crimes against humanity” charges against the revolutionary government of Libya were either never proven or were shown to have been false. In fact, given its 12 years of total control over Libya (land, resources, institutions and archives), the West has been unable to show the alleged 8,000 victims of rape by the Libyan army, nor the 10,000 “murdered” civilians, nor the neighbourhoods of Tripoli allegedly destroyed by Muammar Gaddafi’s air force, nor the African mercenaries supposedly imported by the Gaddafi government in the first week of the “Libyan Spring” (15-22 February 2011).
The actual “crimes” of the Libyan revolutionary Government, however, were real and consequential: Gaddafi’s Libya was re-shaping the political, economic and cultural context of the African continent in radical and independent ways not seen since the nominal de-colonization of African countries in the 1950s and 1960s.
On September 9, 1999, under the leadership of Gaddafi, the establishment of the African Union was announced in his birthplace, the coastal city of Sirte (the very city in which he would fight his last battle against NATO in 2011). Gaddafi then announced the start of a major revolutionary project for the plundered and exploited continent: building pan-African economic, security and communication institutions with the aim of gaining complete and true independence from the control of the West. The most consequential of these institutions were the African Central Bank (ACB), the African Golden Dinar, the African Gold Reserve, the African Security Council (ASC), the Unified African Army (UAA), the African Parliament, the African Organisation for Natural Resources (AONR), the African Communications Network (ACN) and the African Common Market.
Indeed, Gaddafi led the way towards the establishment of some of those institutions, initiated the build-up of the Libyan gold reserve and was on the threshold of issuing the African Golden Dinar, which he considered naming the Afro.