, by OWAIS AHMED
The Libyan war has taken a very ugly turn indeed. Col. Muammar Gaddafi’s forces have orchestrated the worst kind of human rights violations on its own people killing (massacring is what the western media wants us to believe) and orchestrated heavy fighter plane bombardments on its own people killing “hundreds of people”. And this is the stage when the gallant joint forces of the NATO have taken action to stop this merciless and deranged killer. Sounds fishy?
An important clarification is needed here. Whatever the reasons behind NATO’s intervention, this should be clear. The NATO is not there to safeguard the Libyan people. This official excuse, let’s call it, has a ring of odd familiarity in it. Analysing the west’s history of colonialism, we find a lot of such blatant lies such as the superiority complex (white men more advanced than the eastern barbarians and it is their job to right these ‘heathens’), Napoleon’s call to liberate people of the neighbouring Europe and hence occupation of a large part of Europe and the more recent ‘liberation’ of Afghanistan and Iraq from the oppressive Taliban and Saddam Hussein respectively. We don’t lack examples of such excuses.
Why the intervention then? A topic of hot debate, this question has drawn a lot of different answers. I feel the most probable one is oil. The rebels takeover the oil and natural gas fields and supply them at minimal costs (maybe free, who knows what’s on in the closed doors talks between the rebels and NATO) to all those ‘helpful’ European nations. After all, the fall of US-backed regimes in Tunisia and Egypt must have been a harsh blow to America and the interests of its controller, Israel, from both military and strategic points of view.
While the world opinion swings in favour of the intervention and the NATO forces bombard the barbaric forces of Gaddafi, we seldom, if never, hear anything from Gaddafi’s side other than the meticulously repeated and ‘chilling’ rants of Gaddafi about killing the rebels and finishing them of in Benghazi. But how many of us have actually reviewed the original speech of Gaddafi? (No doubt we have all seen doctored accounts and incriminating out of context scenes presented to us by CNN, BBC, etc.).
I am certainly not advocating Gaddafi or his actions but has the media given equal and fair coverage of this war and told the other side of the story? The one pertaining to torture and killing of its own people in its own controlled areas? And yet until now the media has treated this topic as a gray area. And of course, the American controlled U.N. has only launched investigations on the war crimes perpetrated by Gaddafi’s forces behaving like a good boy listening only to what the U.S. asks it to do.
On April 19 I switched on the TV to watch Mr. Stephen grill some rogue politician on the show he hosts – Hard Talk – aired by the BBC. And the invited politician of the day was the spokesman for foreign office of Gaddafi. Thence began the grilling and all those tough questions that the host put forward. To my great surprise, this person began giving answers to all those accountability questions very well indeed.
In this interview he strove hard to make several points such as why the U.N. has not sent its observers to the Gaddafi side to observe whether all those allegations of HR violations are true or not and why is the NATO supporting the rebels when they are themselves killing their own civilians. He enumerated the calls made by the ‘legitimate’ government for peace talks and the rebels’ refusal to come to the round table.
While this person is trained to make such a clear and opinion-swinging talk, it has obviously got me thinking as to why the world media wants to debase and demonise the Qaddafi regime so much.
While all these questions remain pertaining to the immediate action of the U.N. and the Security Council and the call to ‘liberate’ the Libyan by the Arab League (it took the U.N. five years to intervene in Bosnia and is still taking its time to cover the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, Gaza and all those other daily incursions in the Strip) the NATO and America along with its puppet allies of the Gulf are ready to provide all the bombs and none of the answers seem to be forthcoming.