Sunday, May 25, 2014

A Mound Of Sound Guest Post: Libya - We Screwed Up Good, Real Good

Libya, remember that place? That's where NATO waged a bombing campaign against the forces of the late dictator, Muamar Gaddafi. When Gaddafi was ousted we figured we'd done real good.

If you judge our warfighting prowess by the outcomes, Libya ranks right up there with Afghanistan. The country has become ungovernable, plagued by militias and Islamist terrorists. Foreign consulates have closed down in Benghazi and even Arab embassies are clearing out.

The Libyan military, fed up with the government's refusal to move against Islamist militias, has mutinied. General Kalifa Hafter, supposedly with the backing of Egypt's military government, is waging a campaign to clean the Islamists out of eastern Libya. Whether he has much chance of succeeding is far from clear. Militias are tough to take out. Like guerrillas, they can dissolve, melt away and return as insurgents.

Sad to say but I saw this coming back in February, 2011 when I wrote that the only effective way to deal with Gaddafi was for Egypt's army and air force to take him out. Gwynne Dyer came to the same conclusion a month later. This became especially urgent when al Qaeda announced they intended to use the Libyan civil war to get a toehold in north Africa that they missed during the Egyptian uprising that toppled Mubarak. And that, as our bombing campaign dragged on for week after week, was exactly what al Qaeda did. Even before Gaddafi was toppled, Islamist fighters assassinated the rebels’ top general.

Now, three lost years later, the Egyptian military wants a say in how Libya should be run. Now Islamist radicals are well entrenched across north Africa. Now we see plainly how little NATO really accomplished in Libya.

Embarrassing as this rightly is for NATO, it's far worse for Washington. Both sides, Hafter and the Islamist militias, blame the United States for the bloodbath now taking place in Libya.


  1. We continue to blunder around the world.

  2. .. and into the Valley of Political Adventurism, Vain Opinionation & Vote Pandering venture the Great Economist and John Baird.. Speaking for no ordinary Canadians.. but attended by clapping & standing ovations in Parliament.

    To read their plea for election donor dollars, one might think they were Giants of History, embarking on campaigns against the Infidels or Palestinian devils.. or Hitler's armored corps" .. or the Frumious Libtards.. or Dangerous Elusive Elizabeth May

    They seem tired.. wearied by their own ignorance and deceits
    unable to track the endless variations of their dull passage and lies

    And so they sit.. unable to move coherently in any direction
    They are the lost hollow boyz ... about to explore political cannibalism ..
    its the last desperate item on the menu, they haven't tried

  3. Gaddafi was a threat to the west for a number of reasons. His regime increased the literacy rate and provided free education and health care for its citizens. But the biggest sin was to establish a continental African based bank that was independent of the World Bank. I think that was why the neoconservative west, via NATO, bombed Libya back into the stone age.