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Libya: Operation Dignity and current civil war

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Aug 20 2014 09:07
Libya: Operation Dignity and current civil war

I thought I'd make a note of this, to put a marker down for possible future developments and possibly elicit information from anybody who has more info on the current composition of political forces involved in the current Libyan civil war.

Recent news stories:
MEE: Rival Libyan militias continue fight for supremacy in Tripoli (19 Aug)
Reuters: Renegade Libyan general claims air strikes on Tripoli

quick version - fighter jets from some air force other than Libya's (none of the factions has functional jet capability atm) struck islamist militia targets in Tripoli on Mon 18th. NATO and Egypt deny responsibility, some sources suspect Algeria, but not clear.

However, my attention was particularly drawn to General Khalifa Haftar and his "Operation Dignity" offensive since May this year. Particularly in relation to the implicit media position that the US/West does not have a dog in this fight. Having lived for 20 years in the US after splitting from Ghadaffi, being CIA trained and bearing a US passport, Haftar looks suspiciously like the US's dog in this fight, so may well be worthy of attention for people with an interest in under-reported imperialist conflicts.

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Aug 20 2014 11:22

Thanks, I hadn't heard about this. Sounds intriguing…

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Aug 20 2014 23:24

I haven't been following closely, but this was the inevitable outcome of the situation. Yes a few of the NATO powers managed to stop their imperialist rivalries, get their shit together, and destroy Gaddafi, with each NATO power believing that it would further their own interests. Yes the U.S., Italy, France, and England all were interested in replacing Gaddafi, but they were only interested in replacing him with a regime that would be more favorable to their interests alone. France does not want to share the new Libyan regime with Italy, England doesn't want to share it with France etc.

It really seems at this point that the only possible outcome of this situation is that Libya will devolve into a seemingly never ending proxy war of the imperialist powers and the gulf states. Libya sits on some of the most lucrative oil reserves in the world, the person who had control of them, Gaddafi, was killed and replaced with the NTC; a loose, informal amalgamation of hundreds of militias each attempting to advance their own interests only temporarily allied in order to topple Gaddafi. Not a situation conducive to stability.

Edit:
I guess if you think about it Libya has been engulfed in proxy fighting since the war between Libya and Chad, fighting which claimed tens of thousands of lives, additionally there was the war between gaddafi and the lifg

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Aug 20 2014 15:30

Despite the somewhat misleading title, this is also not bad:

MEE: Mystery air strike raises specter of invasion in Libya

Quote:
Bombing raids on Sunday night and the early hours of Monday morning struck a Misratan militia base at Qasr Ben Gashir which had been used to bombard the nearby Tripoli airport for the past month, killing six militiamen.
.
But Libya’s government denies it was behind the strikes.

Chief of staff Major General Suleiman Obeidi said the strikes were precise, using laser-guided bombs at night, which were beyond the technical capabilities of its air force.
[...]
France and Italy both rushed out statements denying involvement, with some Libyans speculating that Algeria and Egypt may be involved. NATO, which monitors Libyan air space, has yet to comment, though its surveillance planes operating over the Mediterranean will have tracked the bombers.

In other words, NATO knows where these planes came from, but are keeping shtum.

Despite the title, the article does go on to explain why NATO intervention - neither air power, still less ground forces - is vanishingly unlikely. Some possible air power interventions by Algeria and Egypt. The only potential for ground forces intervention would be by Egypt in the East - even that would likely be ultimately be unwinnable and thus highly unlikely.

IS has, reportedly attempted to reach out to Salafist groups in Libya. According to the article linked below, they got the bums rush from Al Qa'ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), so are pinning their hopes on Ansar al Sharia in Libya (not to be confused with the Syrian Islamic Front group of the same name, who are currently fighting against IS north of Aleppo). What exactly would be the practical advantage for the Libyan Salafis to swear allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is not clear, however. Indeed given the current hoo-ha over IS' head-chopping antics, the Libyans may feel that such a move might increase the chances of a public move by al-Sisi's Egyptian armed forces. Still you never know...

Eurasian Review: Isis Woos Ansar Al-Sharia in Libya

Quote:
[...]According to Abdellah Rami, an expert on jihadist movements, AQIM’s refusal to recognise al-Baghdadi’s group kept ISIS from claiming the key position in the parent terror organisation.
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“The success or failure of the ISIS project hinges on the positions of three key jihadist organisations in the world: al-Qaeda in Yemen, AQIM and Ansar al-Sharia in Libya,” Rami said. “Without the allegiance of those groups, the caliphate project will just be ink on paper and will be a local organisation confined to Iraq’s borders.”

“However, this doesn’t mean that the caliphate state doesn’t have supporters in those areas,” Rami told Magharebia. “There are dozens of small groups and terrorist cells that have already sworn allegiance to ISIS in those countries, and there are hundreds of lone wolves that ISIS has already attracted. Therefore, al-Baghdadi can use those at any moment to carry out terrorist operations and destabilise regional countries.”

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Aug 21 2014 09:46
Soapy wrote:
I haven't been following closely, but this was the inevitable outcome of the situation. Yes a few of the NATO powers managed to stop their imperialist rivalries, get their shit together, and destroy Gaddafi, with each NATO power believing that it would further their own interests. Yes the U.S., Italy, France, and England all were interested in replacing Gaddafi, but they were only interested in replacing him with a regime that would be more favorable to their interests alone. France does not want to share the new Libyan regime with Italy, England doesn't want to share it with France etc.

Don't forget the regional powers - specifically Qatar. The toppling of Ghadaffi was the height of Qatari independent FP initiative. And the Qataris initially ended up with the biggest oil and gas concessions.

Since Libya went to shit, the lustre was knocked off Qatari FP success and after Saudi's reassertion of regional primacy, first in Bahrain, then in backing ISIS in Syria (Qatar backed the MB and Jabhat al Nusra), the head of Qatar's FP, HBJ (Hamad bin Jassim al Thani) was effectively deposed last summer, with the transition from Emir Hamad bin Khalifa to his son Tammim. Since then Qatar has taken a back seat, relatively speaking, as a regional player.

Saudi itself has come a cropper with the ISIS policy, resulting in the recent deposing of Prince Bandar bin Sultan, friend of the Bush clan, and orchestrator of the US - Saudi axis in ME policy for so many decades (NB the 2003 invasion of Iraq was supported by the Saudis and opposed by the Israelis - a fact worth recalling to them that takes the supposedly unequalled power of the "US Jewish Lobby" to conspiraloon extremes).

The post-Arab Spring period saw a brief surge in the influence of regional power players like Turkey, Qatar and Saudi, in the space opened up by a relatively less assertive, post-neocon US FP. However, all three have come to grief in the Syrian quagmire. Now as the US tries to find some purchase on the situation, its outreach to Iran is horrifying Saudi and Israel and its recent rediscovery of the Kurds is a strategic threat to Turkey. "There is great chaos under heaven..."

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Aug 26 2014 10:12

So the US are now saying that UAE jets carried out the attack from an Egyptian base. Without telling the US first. Interesting if true.

BBC: Libya crisis: US 'caught off-guard' by air strikes

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Aug 26 2014 11:12

The NYT coverage of this is interesting in making public the underlying struggle between the Turkey & Qatar on one side, and Saudi, Egpyt and UAE on the other.

Quote:
“In every arena — in Syria, Iraq, Gaza, Libya, even what happened in Egypt — this regional polarization, with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, or U.A.E., on one side and Qatar and Turkey on the other, has proved to be a gigantic impediment to international [read: US] efforts to resolve any of these crisis,” said Michele Dunne, a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and a former Middle East specialist at the State Department.

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Sep 10 2014 10:04

"I'm on a boat"
Grauniad: Libyan parliament takes refuge in Greek car ferry

Not going too well for Operation Dignity at the moment, with the more or less total victory of the Misratan/Islamist side over Gen. Hafter and his coalition - aka the Zintanis. Currently the Qatar/Turkey axis are in ascendency over Libya at the expense of the Egypt/UAE, and apparently somewhat bewilderdly*, the US.

US getting grumpy with Qatar & Turkey - ostensibly over their support for Hamas in Gaza
Al Monitor: Congress goes after 'frenemies' Turkey, Qatar

Meanwhile, there could be trouble ahead with the AQIM qadi announcing allegiance to ISIS, despite the military head of AQIM staying loyal to Zawahiri and AQ centre
AQIM defectors raise fears of IS branch in North Africa

Quote:
[...]
Algerian security sources following the issue estimate that the number of IS followers in North African countries could reach 1,000 fighters trained in the use of weapons and guerrilla warfare. The sources, who wished to remain nameless, indicated to Al-Monitor that these fighters include defectors from AQIM, whose ideology has found a breeding ground in the southeast of Algeria. However, the same sources anticipate that a new emirate affiliated with IS in North Africa might emerge in the southwest of Libya. This is especially likely after the progress made by jihadist groups currently battling moderate Libyan factions.
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The same sources also pointed to the strength and quality of training and armament of members of the Uqba Ibn Nafi Brigade in Tunisia, which is tied to Ansar al-Sharia in Libya and which attacked the Tunisian army at Mount Chaambi, not far from the border with Algeria.
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According to Algerian intelligence sources, a counterattack in Libya against the Misrata militias and Islamist militants is underway from the bases of the Zintan militia in the Nafusa Mountains of northwest Libya to regain control over vital facilities and centers in Libya that were overrun by militants.
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However, the large area of southern Libya and the southeast Algerian desert provides jihadists with a breeding ground to reappear on the scene. The Islamic State's innovative strategies in recruitment and propaganda, particularly via social media, may lure unemployed and disenchanted youths in the area to its cause.
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An IS affiliate in North Africa would open a new front in the global war on terrorism, a struggle that could redraw the map in some parts of the region.

* ok, not actually a word. hands up.

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Jan 12 2015 13:45

Still rumbling on:

AM: Regional powers fighting proxy war in Libya (Jan 8)

Quote:
[...]
Over the last four weeks, fighting has taken a serious turn, as Libya Dawn, a collation of Islamists and fighters from Misrata, attacked the biggest oil exporting terminal at Sidra, east of Sirte, setting at least five oil tanks ablaze and burning nearly 1 million barrels of crude oil, costing the country an estimated $1 billion.
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On the other hand, the Libyan army, led by the recently reinstated Gen. Khalifa Hifter, retaliated with airstrikes, targeting logistical and militia targets in Misrata itself for the first time. This development sends a clear message to Libya Dawn leaders and Misrata militias that their hometown is not immune.
[...]
The fighting in Libya is increasingly becoming a proxy war between regional players vying for influence in the shattered, oil-rich country, which has been in turmoil since NATO intervened to help destroy the government of Moammar Gadhafi in 2011. This regional dimension of the crisis must be understood if any settlement is to be reached and spare the country from further bloodshed and destruction. By doing so, Leon must by now have realized that a local solution without international involvement is no longer possible. After four years of fighting and militia domination, Libya has passed the stage of finding its own cure to its political and security mess.
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Sudan, Turkey and Qatar have joined forces, each for its own interest, to meddle in Libyan affairs. While Doha provides arms to the Islamists, Khartoum and Ankara provide political and logistical support to the illegitimate [sic] government set up by Libya Dawn in Tripoli after it conquered the capital in August. The trio has been acting within a broader strategy of helping Islamists in the region gain power.
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On the other hand, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia have been supporting the elected [sic] government, although not for Libya’s sake, but for their own purposes. Egypt is trying to make sure that its own fleeing extremists do not find safe harbor across its western border. The UAE and Saudi Arabia are acting within the broader regional context of countering the pro-Islamist Doha-Ankara axis.
[...]

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Apr 27 2015 13:36

Both of the following are from "security sources", so need to be covered by a health warning. Particularly the second one given that DEBKAfiles is an Israeli military linked source with strong Israeli Right and US neocon agendas. Doesn't always mean that all of their intel is disinfo tho.

MEM: Security source: Egypt embroiled in illegal emigration across Libya

Quote:
A Libyan security source who declined to be identified has told Arab 21 that the Al-Tabu entity allied with Khalifah Haftar, commander of the army aligned to the dissolved Tabruq Parliament, is actively transporting thousands of illegal emigrants from the south of Libya to the north. The emigrants are taken along routes protected by Al-Tabu starting from Abari in the south to Sabha all the way to the city of Tabruq in the extreme north of Libya in addition to Al-Qubbah, Al-Bayda, Ajdabya and Sirt in the east.
[...]
Another smuggling route, according to the source, is supervised by the Awlad Ali tribes who live along the eastern Libyan borders. They operate with the knowledge and collaboration of the Egyptian authorities. The Libyan-Egyptian borders, he added, are semi open and subject to no control. Each person pays one hundred Libyan dinars to the Awlad Ali smugglers on the Egyptian side to be conveyed to the border town of Imsaed via a smuggling network run by officers within the Egyptian army and intelligence services who receive a commission for each emigrant they smuggle.
[...]
The management of the illegal emigration networks is shared by Issa Abd Al-Majid, head of the Al-Tabu component and advisor on Africa affairs in the disbanded parliament, together with Awlad Ali, smugglers from Al-Zawiy tribe in Al-Kafrah in the Southeast of Libya and some chieftains from the tribe of Al-Ubaydat in Al-Jabal Al-Akhdar. They all run smuggling networks with the knowledge and directives of General Khalifah Haftar.
[...]
Observers of Libyan affairs have confirmed that Khalifah Haftar does indeed exploit the issue of illegal emigration in exactly the same way as did the late Colonel Muammar Al-Qaddafi in order to pressure countries of the European Union to intervene in Libya and support him directly. They also point to the existence of coordination between Haftar on the one hand and Al-Tabu and Zintan leaders as well as Ahmad Qadhaf Al-Dam, former head of Libyan-Egyptian investments on the other.
.
It is noteworthy that Britain, Germany and several other European states have dispatched naval ships and aircraft to the areas off the Libyan coast in order to assist in rescuing illegal migrants. This comes in the aftermath of last week's drowning of around 900 persons just before arriving at the Italian coast.

Debka: Large-scale Egyptian army massed for operation to capture eastern Libya from ISIS

for some reason that article now seems to be broken relative to a couple of hours ago. Here's the cover by the IBT:

IBT: ISIS In Libya Update: Egypt Reportedly Readying Assault On Islamic State Group Positions

Quote:
Egypt reportedly is preparing a large-scale ground and air assault along the Libyan border to oust the Islamic State group from eastern Libya. DebkaFile, quoting military and intelligence sources, said naval and marine forces are assembling at Egypt's Mediterranean ports for a possible assault on Derna, the militants' provincial capital.
[...]
The DebkaFile report said CIA Director John Brennan discussed a possible invasion when he visited Cairo April 19 to meet with Sisi. Sisi reportedly said he had no intention of keeping his army in Libya and would pull out after handing power back to the Libyan government. The government was moved to Tobruk from Tripoli after the capital was overrun by extremist militias operating under the banner of Libyan Dawn, including members of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.
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DebkaFile said Brennan told Sisi Washington would prefer if Egypt acted through Libyan militias, urging cooperation with Lt. Gen. Khalifa Haftar, a Libyan-American operating out of Benghazi. Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni appointed Haftar commander-in-chief of the Libyan army March 2. The report said Egypt has been supplying Haftar with weapons for the last six months.
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Haftar said Friday he would not object to outside military action similar to the Saudi-led operation in Yemen, but he needs to be in charge of forces that advance on Tripoli, Sky News Arabic reported. He also criticized U.N. Security Council sanctions for cutting off weapons to the Libyan army. He said if he had such weapons he could stem the flow of refugees to Europe [sic: see above].
.
Libyan Dawn conducted airstrikes Friday against ISIS in Sirte.

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Apr 27 2015 13:45

Interesting stuff. Yeah I was wondering what the US et al would do about the situation there. Obviously the best case scenario for the US is to have a neoliberal libya selling off oil contracts at rock bottom prices and recycling petrodollars through the US financial sector. Obviously cant do any of that with the government in shambles.

Imo it seems like since the catastrophic failures of state building in iraq/afghanistan the US has revealed how completely inept its bureaucracy has become at achieving foreign policy goals, dont think their state building in libya will end up going amy better.

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Apr 27 2015 15:12

EU military action over migrants unwise: Haftar

Quote:
[...]
EU leaders are considering a plan that would involve military action against people smugglers at the source — before they load their boats with human cargo. Of necessity, such an operation would involve operations within the territory of North African countries.
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But Haftar expressed dismay at the prospect in his interview with CNN.
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“Military action against Libyan territory is an unwise decision,” he said. “You need to deal with the Libyan crisis as a whole. We are a sovereign country that needs to be respected despite what we are going through right now.
[...]
But he said Libya is open to other kinds of cooperation on the issue of migration.
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“If they take the right approach, we will certainly cooperate,” he said, referring to EU authorities. “The appropriate approach will benefit Libya and its fight against terrorism. And I repeat, that means lifting sanctions against Libya — specifically those against the [sic] army.”

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May 13 2015 14:25

Time for boots on the ground? Purely to do with the migrant crisis, naturally...

G: Migrant crisis: EU plan to strike Libya networks could include ground forces

Quote:
European plans for a military campaign to smash the migrant smuggling networks operating out of Libya include options for ground forces on Libyan territory.
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The 19-page strategy paper for the mission, obtained by the Guardian, focuses on an air and naval campaign in the Mediterranean and in Libyan territorial waters, subject to United Nations blessing. But it adds that ground operations in Libya may also be needed to destroy the smugglers’ vessels and assets, such as fuel dumps.
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“A presence ashore might be envisaged if agreement was reached with relevant authorities,” says the paper which is expected to be endorsed by European Union foreign ministers on Monday before the mission is ordered by heads of government at an EU summit in June.

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May 13 2015 14:42

Meanwhile Il Manifesto is linking Haftar to the attack on the Turkish cargo ship that happened on Sunday.

IM: Tobruk boccia il piano Ue. Haftar attacca cargo turco (Tobruk rejects the EU plan: Haftar attacks Turkish cargo ship".

Quote:
[via Google trans] Yet the head of the Armed Forces of Tobruk, the former [sic!] CIA agent Khalifa Haftar, from words to deeds is past already. A Turkish ship in Libyan waters was bombed by its weak air force. According to the government of Abdallah al-Thinni the cargo began to approach Derna. The third captain of Turkish nationality, was killed in the attack and some crew members were injured. The Turkish government has spoken of attack "heinous."
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Ankara does not recognize the [Tobruk] parliament who moor off the Cyrenaica and instead supports the legitimacy of the [Muslim Brotherhood aligned] parliament of Tripoli. The Coast Guard of Tobruk reported that he had sent some warnings before the ship that was heading towards the city of Derna, under the control of militant jihadists would-be members of the Islamic state (Is), was attacked. Last January, the Libyan air force had bombed a Greek tanker, killing two crew members as he tried to get close to the city of Derna. According to the version of Tobruk these cargo would supply the fighters radicals of the coastal cities of Libya in the hands of jihadists: Derna and Sirte.

also, re ship attack:

HDN: Turkish captain denies Libya warned ship before attack

Quote:
The Cook Islands-flagged ship named “Tuna-1” was approaching Tobruk to deliver cargo taken from Spain when it was attacked from land and air late on May 10 in international waters, 13 miles from the Libyan port. Its third officer was killed and several other crew members were wounded in the attack.
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A Libyan military spokesman had told Reuters on May 11 that the Turkish vessel was bombed “after it was warned not to approach the Libyan city of Derna.”
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The damaged ship arrived in the southwestern Turkish province of Muğla on May 12, according to Doğan News Agency. Zafer Kalaycı, the second captain who was wounded in the attack, told journalists after he testified to police that they were not warned before the attack took place.
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“I was on duty. They gave no warning whatsoever. What they mean by warning is probably the first bomb,” he said.
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According to Kalaycı, the ship was attacked for a second time from the air even though it had already distanced itself from the Libyan coast, some 12-13 miles away.

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May 13 2015 15:16

Ah, the old piracy rears it's head. Good excuse. Worked in the Gulf of Aden/Horn of Africa.

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May 13 2015 15:18

I'd say today and tomorrow's NATO summit in Turkey will have interesting discussions on Libya in general and Haftar in particular:

R: Focus on Islamic State and Libya as NATO foreign ministers meet

Quote:
ANTALYA, Turkey (Reuters) - Preoccupied for more than a year by the Ukraine crisis, NATO foreign ministers meeting in Turkey this week will focus on instability on the alliance’s southern flank, ranging from Islamic State in Iraq and Syria to turmoil in Libya.
[...]
U.S. Ambassador to NATO Douglas Lute described an "arc of instability" around the east and south of the alliance, with the "maybe failed state of Libya" a funnel for illegal immigration from states such as northern Nigeria, Mali, Niger and Somalia.
[...]
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini is expected to brief the NATO ministers on the EU’s proposals for a military mission to capture and destroy smugglers’ boats used to ferry migrants on perilous Mediterranean crossings from Libya.
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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said NATO had not been asked to play a military role in the mission.
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But Lute said information-sharing between NATO and the EU could be possible. Accurate intelligence pinpointing smugglers’ vessels would be key to the success of the operation.

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May 13 2015 15:30

The drums are definitely pounding

LH: OpEd: Will Egypt send its forces into Libya?

Quote:
Top military officials from Egypt, Jordan, the UAE, Kuwait, Sudan, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, along with Libya, will meet in Cairo on 18 May to look at how to bring stability to Libya. France and Italy may also be represented. Political and security analyst Richard Galustian considers one possible outcome.
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A critical meeting in Cairo in the coming days of Arab defence officials could be one of the final conclaves before Egypt leads an international regional military coalition into Libya to fight against extremists of all stripes but especially the Islamic State (IS).
[...]
Importantly, Egypt is planning to host another meeting based on Libyan tribes later in the month in collaboration with the UN. This meeting, co-organised by Justice First, is the brainchild of Libyan billionaire businessman Hassan Tatanaki, and aims to gather a wide-spectrum of Libyan tribes to promote unity against the extremists in Libya.
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It is believed military action led by the Egyptians will be very much part of the behind-the-scenes talks in the US at Camp David this week, the first ever summit meeting between President Obama and leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) [NB: All of whom, except Qatar and Kuwait are now following Saudi in boycotting Obama over Iran - this is an ex-summit].
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It is further understood that this is why Cairo is seeking to lead a coalition, with the UN and EU hopefully backing up the military effort from behind, because it believes now is the time to act against Islamic extremists before bigger, more serious threats emerge from Libya.
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A proposed unilateral European military action is thought by many to take too long to reach a consensus by the many states that make up the EU and also is not popular with all the sides in the Libyan conflict as it would represent a ‘Western colonial’ act of force.
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However, a purely Arab coalition led by Egyptian Forces into Libya is deemed more viable and even necessary to eradicate the IS threat in the country, to the region and for Southern Europe.

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May 13 2015 16:30

Egypt sending troops into Libya may be the most scariest of it all. Could lead Egypt back to the 80s/early 90s of armed insurgents in Upper Egypt, though that will likely happen anyway due to how the Muslim Brotherhood was treated. Lots of disgruntled brothers who no longer will believe in taking the "peaceful", parliamentarian path to state power. But an invasion will likely accelerate the process. Not good.

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May 20 2015 15:55

On the establishment of ISIS-affiliate the Shura Council of Islamic Youth (MSSI - Majlis Shura Shabab al Islam) in Libya
Maghrebinote: ISIS in Libya

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May 26 2015 10:12

AM: [Tripoli] Minister warns of Libya's division

Quote:
Kamouka explained that among the competing political actors, the National Salvation Government — which holds northwestern Libya, and of particular importance Tripoli Province, site of the capital — controls the largest amount of Libyan territory. Another force controls Cyrenaica in the east, including its capital, Benghazi, while in the south armed tribal forces, most prominently the Saif al-Nasr (historically known to cooperate with the French), control the Fezzan and its capital, Sabha.
[...]
He believes that because of Libya's assets, certain foreign forces have ambitions in his country. “Libya is historically known for being divided into three regions. Historically, the French had influence over the southern Fezzan province, and France is today trying to restore this influence,” Kamouka said. His government believes France is seeking to undermine the unity of Libyan territory and divide it into three states, whereby Tripoli and its province will form a small state and have international trusteeship over another state formed in Fezzan. Kamouka also believes that Paris wants to change the geographic map by creating a passage linking the Fezzan to the city of Sirte, on the Mediterranean coast, for a new state France wants to have under its influence to control the closest port to Europe.
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“In addition to this French scheme,” Kamouka said, “Paris is trying to place the third region of our country, i.e., Cyrenaica, in the east, and its capital, Benghazi, under Egyptian trusteeship, as a third country, dominated by Cairo.” Kamouka noted that this area, adjacent to Egypt, is being subjected to Egyptian and Gulf intervention to arm Islamist groups.
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Kamouka believes Cairo is trying to sustain instability in the security and political situations to allow it to achieve the alleged historical ambition of gaining control of and annexing part of eastern Libya. Meanwhile, according to Kamouka, some Gulf regimes are supporting radical Islamist forces there to fight the Muslim Brotherhood, which allied with other forces to form the Tripoli-based National Salvation Government.
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These Gulf regimes consider the Muslim Brotherhood their enemy and therefore support other Islamist groups, such as the Salafists, to challenge the Brotherhood. Thus, the objectives of these regimes intersect with those of Egypt in the east of Libya. The Egyptian regime is also hostile toward the Brotherhood.

All to be taken with a pinch of salt, given the source.

Also from the same article, info on the structure of the Gadhaffi state - again, interesting if true

Quote:
Kamouka said, “The revolution that triumphed over the former dictator, Moammar Gadhafi, originally inherited the remains of a state. Libya lacks a state structure. It has no economy and no society. The only state apparatus was the police, and oil revenues were directly diverted to the leader, who distributed them to his subjects to ensure their silence and loyalty.”
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The fundamental obstacle facing his government, Kamouka contends, is how to reorganize the public sector. “The government found that Gadhafi made more than a quarter of Libya's population into government employees to buy their loyalty and bribe them with high salaries in return for doing nothing,” he said. More than 1.5 million Libyans out of some 6 million total worked for what was called at the time the “State of Gadhafi.” The annual budget for government salaries exceeded $8 billion, which, according to Kamouka, still failed to buy an effective public sector or state.
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He added, “For example, our government found out that we have half a million teachers [supposedly working] in public schools, most of which are nonexistent and without students. This was part of a network trying to subordinate people to the ruling power and to ensure their loyalty. We discovered that a large number of these employees were registered as civil servants in more than one job in order to receive more than one salary from the Libyan state. We realized that what sustained the power of the dictatorship was the corruption of those benefiting from it. We discovered a case where one person was receiving 52 salaries from 52 different government departments, claiming to be an employee in all of these departments, while in reality he did not work in any of them.”

Sounds analogous to a modern day palace economy. Which resonates with the extent of the collapse of the palace economies of (pre-) antiquity in the Late Bronze Age Collapse. Perhaps an analogy too far, but still.

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May 27 2015 12:31

Wikileaks just released a couple of docs from the EU Military Committee (EUMC) and the EU Politico-Military Group (PMG) on the forthcoming "anti-smuggler" military intervention. Statewatch has done a quick summary review:

SW: Manufacturing consent, EU style: The EU’s anti-smuggling military operation

Quote:
A EU military planning document reiterates that the EU’s new anti-smuggling operation could result in a ground conflict in Libya that leads to the loss of life of soldiers, refugees and
smugglers, and destabilise Libya in the process. The document makes clear that most of the
key details of the plan have not been worked out yet, and there is no political end point. But
this is all fine, because the document plans a media strategy designed to brush these
problems under the carpet.
[....]
Military planning?
.
The document explicitly acknowledges that the operation has no clear end point:
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"the political End State is not clearly defined"

tl;dr - might need some spin on this one as we have no clue what we're doing, but sure, it'll be grand...