Author: Abdel Bari Atwan
Five years ago, thousands of Libyans took to the Liberty Square (formerly known as the Green Square) in Down Town Tripoli to celebrate and support the intervention of the NATO jets that toppled the regime of Col. Muammar Gaddafi and liberated Libya from his tyranny. Currently, thousands of protestors are going to the same square to participate in protests against France and its president, Francois Hollande, since the latter admitted the death of three [French] Special Forces troops who were on a helicopter that was downed by a rocket launched by a group affiliated to the Benghazi Defense Front in East Libya.
This rocket exposed the lies of the French government that had been constantly denying reports about its military intervention in Libya and merely saying that it is dispatching reconnaissance planes to roam the air for intelligence-related purposes. Interestingly, the UN-backed Libyan National Accord cabinet headed by Fayez al-Sarraj was the one entity that expressed the most vigorous condemnation and opposition to this French intervention, deeming it a violation of the Libyan sovereignty and the international Security Council that prohibits such interventions…
The Libyans are right to be suspicious about these military interventions taking place behind their backs and behind the back of the National Accord cabinet. The Libyans had placed high hopes in this cabinet to restore security and stability to the country because this cabinet was the result of a national dialogue under a western support in Skhirat, Morocco. However, clearly the West and its governments are not concerned with the stability in Libya but rather interested in controlling the country’s oil wealth. This is where the West’s real interests are. These [western] forces’ objective behind the infiltration of the Libyan lands is to secure the Libyan oil crescent in North Barqa and to prevent the Islamic State from reaching it. As for Libya, as far as they are concerned, it may as well go to hell.
Half the Libyan population is currently displaced to Tunisia, Egypt and the rest of the world. The other half is living in Libya and confronting hunger and poverty in addition to the lack of security and the basic services in one of the richest countries in the world. Just like Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, Libya is now the victim of the West’s lies and claims on democracy and Human Rights. We don’t believe that the exposure of French President Hollande’s latest lies will change any of these facts.
This wide Libyan movement that includes all the different parts of the Libyan people (except for Gen. Haftar and his parliament) and that opposes the British, American and French military intervention reveals a state of “awakening” and one united Libyan ground. Thus, Libya might have find the compass that might lead it away from some if not all of its crises, or so we hope.