Subtle Shift or Head Fake? CNN Actually Airs Statements Which Support Officer Darren Wilson

As usual the treehouse is right on the latest developments in this case. I suggest taking the time to read the various comments. Will there be a sudden shift away from the now discredited narrative? The release of information stating that there are more than a dozen witnesses supporting Wilson’s story is very interesting in my view…. how long before the DoJ stops intervening… and how long before finally someone arrests the black panthers?

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The Trayvon Martin Case, Update 28: Audio Evidence and Deadly Force

Stately McDaniel Manor

One of the most venerable lawyer’s aphorisms goes something like this:

If the facts and the law are against you, attack the police.

This is almost exclusively the province of defense lawyers as it is assumed—and virtually always the case—that the prosecution has the very great advantage of having the facts and the law on its side. There should be no arrests and prosecutions otherwise.  But this is not at all the case in the George Zimmerman prosecution.  Not only are the law and the facts aligned against the prosecution, so are the police.

It is always the defense seeking to establish reasonable doubt about the prosecution’s case.  In the Trayvon Martin case, it is the prosecution seeking to establish reasonable doubt about the case of the investigating police!  It is difficult to explain precisely how unusual and downright strange this is.  The prosecution is  in the position of arguing…

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Syria: Libya to the rescue?

Confusion continues to reign in the Middle East and North Africa. The latest from Egypt in my view is very unwelcome news. However, what about the war that is raging in Syria? Judging from the latest of the defections, the Prime Minister of Syria has defected, one should be able to come to the conclusion that the Assad regime is crumbling. However, Assad is getting assistance from Iran, Russia, China and Hezbollah in order to keep his control over the country going strong (or so it seems). Without accurate reporting because journalists are forbidden in Syria, it is impossible to get a finger on the pulse of this nation at war. The war itself has rapidly become Sunni vs Shia.

What is new in Syria is the involvement of Libyan former rebels who have gone there, not to participate so much as to give aid via training the Syrians who are fighting their government. It is difficult to approve of a regime who has treated people as badly as the Sunni of Syria have been treated since the Assads seized control of the country. Even if we did not like the eventual outcome of this war, I still believe that a people who have been oppressed by their dictator leader have the right to fight for their own freedom. They have the right to self-determination.

Reuters is reporting that former Libyan rebels, especially those who were a part of the successful unit from the mountains who stormed Tripoli and overran the Gaddhafi compound are now in Syria. Their role has been to train the Syrian rebels in methods of urban warfare, as well as helping them to source weapons.

I will let an Irish-Libyan explain the situation:

The Libyans aiding the Syrian rebels include specialists in communications, logistics, humanitarian issues and heavy weapons, he said. They operate training bases, teaching fitness and battlefield tactics.

Najjar said he was surprised to find how poorly armed and disorganized the Syrian rebels were, describing Syria’s Sunni Muslim majority as far more repressed and downtrodden under Assad than Libyans were under Gaddafi.

“I was shocked. There is nothing you are told that can prepare you for what you see. The state of the Sunni Muslims there – their state of mind, their fate – all of those things have been slowly corroded over time by the regime.”

“I nearly cried for them when I saw the weapons. The guns are absolutely useless. We are being sold leftovers from the Iraqi war, leftovers from this and that,” he said. “Luckily these are things that we can do for them: we know how to fix weapons, how to maintain them, find problems and fix them.”

Disorganization is a serious problem. Unlike the Libyan fighters, who enjoyed the protection of a NATO-imposed no-fly zone and were able to set up full-scale training camps, the rebels in Syria are never out of reach of Assad’s air power.

“In Libya, with the no-fly zone, we were able to build up say 1,400 to 1,500 men in one place and have platoons and brigades. Here we have men scattered here, there and everywhere.”

There is more to this article which I think might be pivotal as to the probably outcome of the conflict. At the present time the Syrian rebels remain disorganized. Although Libyan rebels were better organized it must be emphasized that some of that was illusory and we saw the outcome of their own disorganization after the fall of the Gaddhafi regime. However, in Syria there is a lot of disorganization which is holding up the final desired outcome for those involved – there are too many groups with their own self-interest. There is the Syrian Free Army and there are a pile of smaller Islamist outfits. Where Libyans were united against Gaddhafi, such that moderate Muslims who do not believe in Jihad were willing to lay down their lives to get rid of the hated dictator, Syria is divided by their own sectarian rivalries. Yet, Syria is a civil war that is Sunni vs. Shia. The difference in Syria from that of Iraq is that it has been the Shia who have been doing the oppressing of the Sunni majority.

Another interesting point in the article is that there are foreign Muslims who are willing to join in the fight. This is the opposite of the situation in Libya where the people in charge were adamant that there were to be no foreign boots on the ground. In Libya they managed to keep the presence of Al Qaeda Islamists to an absolute minimum, but so long as the Syrian civil war is festering there will be a desire for other Sunni Muslims to join in to defeat Assad. Such an outcome remains undesirable. Again, I will use the words of this Libyan to tell of his own fears:

Najjar said militancy would spread across the region as long as the West does not do more to hasten the downfall of Assad.

“The Western governments are bringing this upon themselves. The longer they leave this door open for this torture and this massacre to carry on, the more young men will drop what they have in this life and search for the afterlife,” Najjar said.

“If the West and other countries do not move fast it will no longer be just guys like me – normal everyday guys that might do anything from have a cigarette to go out on the town – it will be the real extreme guys who will take it to another level.”

The Syrian situation remains a powder keg waiting to blow up in the faces of the Western powers. With such a weak leader as Obama in charge the Middle East has become a real powder keg, and should he be returned for another 4 years then there will be no peace in the world. The fuse in the Middle East is ready to blow. Whilst there is focus on Syria we must not forget that war continues in Yemen, and we cannot ignore the latest developments in Egypt, which make the region extremely dangerous – a situation that has not been as apparent after Anwar Sadat signed the agreement with Menachim Begin.

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The good news and the bad news

It is so very difficult trying to fathom Syria because there are so many players. If and when the opposition wins the battle against Bashar al-Assad it is unlikely that Syria will be under the control of the Iranians, especially after the Syrians captured something like 40 Iranians believed to be a part of the Republican Guard who have been in Syria helping Assad put down the rebellion. I imagine that when this phase is over, it will be payback time. I do not know whether or not the Syrians will maintain ties with either Russia or China after Assad is removed from power. This could be good news for the rest of the world if Syria is neutralized (just like Libya appears to be neutralized).

However, there is no reason to get one’s hopes up about what might happen when Assad is inevitably forced from holding power. From what I understand of the situation, there is likely to be a civil war in the future of Syria. This is because there are many disparate forces who have joined together for the short term so that their goal of defeating Assad becomes a reality. It is also because there are Islamists and Islamists. This is where the tribes come into play.

Assad belongs to the Alawite tribe, which is an offshoot of Shia Islam. Under the Assad regime Syria has been a puppet of Iran, and a sponsor of both Hezbollah and Hamas as well as being a middle-man for Iran in the West Bank as well as in Lebanon. A majority of the Syrians are Sunni and as such they are either members of the Ba’ath Party or they are associated with Al Qaeda. This is the bad news for Syria.

However, let’s look a little more closely at what some of those leaders who are fighting are actually stating and maybe we can take a little bit of comfort from the words of such a person (I just do not know whether these are just weasel words or not). Reuters has an article from one of the leaders who is fighting in Syria, and perhaps what he has to say will give us a little bit of comfort (but I remain wary about him anyway).

The part of the story that I want to highlight is the comment from the Syrian commander stating that he is an Islamist and that he wants a conservative style of Islam that is similar to what is found in Turkey. It seems that at the present time they are prepared to tolerate the jihadi extremists, but they also seem to not want them involved. They want to establish an Islamic state in the future, complete with Sharia law, but they want to bring people on board before it is established. It sounds very much like they are trying to follow the Libyan example.

However, there is not enough known about these people to be able to draw any kind of conclusions. It seems to me that they really do not want the extremism, and they do not want an Iranian style theocracy. On the other hand they are fighting not just against Assad but also the Iranians. Maybe that will shape their way of thinking in the future. There are simply too many unknowns to draw any safe conclusions at this point in time. Obviously they are allowing the foreign jihadis because they bring some expertise as well as necessary equipment, but they do not seem to want to work with these same people. It is a very odd situation.

This is why there is good news and bad news, but mostly it is bad news.

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More Red Flags where Syria is concerned

In expressing my doubts about the Syrian civil war that is now raging, I have consistently expressed a lack of knowledge about those who started the protests in the first place as well as doubts about the Syrian opposition to Bashar al-Assad. The latest available information has done nothing to allay my doubts and fears about these people. If anything, the latest entrant into the mess, the Muslim Brotherhood, only makes the situation extremely murky.

The Telegraph reports that the Muslim Brotherhood have been busy establishing their own militia in such places as Homs and a number of other small towns. This is not good news, especially when it becomes clear that the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood are probably further to the right than the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood (they are still fascists).

I continue to have no clear understanding about the Syrian opposition. They seem to be a lot more shadowy than those who had opposed Moammar Gadhafi. There are obviously more groups than there were in Libya and I see this as an indication that the Syrian opposition lacks the kind of leadership that had set Libya apart from the rest. The length of time that it is taking to get a resolution also means that I have a foreboding about an eventual outcome that would see Assad being deposed.

To date there are at least 3 distinct groups: the Syrian Free Army, Muslim Brotherhood, and Al Qaeda. The latter group is a genuine problem because they are the most militant, and on top of that they consist of foreigners from such countries as Iraq, the U.K. and Pakistan. They are the most extreme of the three distinctive groups. The SFA consists mostly of army personnel who have deserted or defected from the Syrian army. As a group they are not easily defined, BUT if they were to be the winners of the conflict then it is likely that Syria would end up with a military dictatorship…. it is a long shot.

The Syrian opposition is not well armed, and as a consequence this has left the way open for the more militant types such as Al Qaeda to get involved and to inject funds as well as equipment so that the opposition can push back against Assad. There is talk of Turkey secretly training the opposition fighters. There is also talk of Turkey providing weapons. In some respects this is fair enough because Iran, Russia and China have been providing weapons to Assad.

The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood is not quite the same as the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, yet at the heart of the goals of the Muslim Brotherhood there is the desire to bring on jihad. This is a most unwelcome development. The man behind this establishment of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood has been raising money to supply arms to the opposition in Homs, but it has to be noted that they are not affiliated with the Syrian Free Army.

In the short term, I have to agree that Assad needs to be removed because he has used his military against the civilian population with a massive loss of life over the past 17 months. It is by no means inevitable that he will be overthrown in the way that Gadhafi was overthrown, but Assad has chosen this path, so he must accept the consequences of his own actions. In the longer term, with all of these disparate groups, I forsee a prolonged civil war because each group will want to be in the ascendancy. I think that this is where the Ba’ath Party comes into play, or at least trying to fit the Ba’ath Party into the pieces of this particular jigsaw puzzle.

They Syrians are not coming across to me as being people who want freedom in the sense that they are pro-Western like the opposition in Libya. It could very well be that any group that takes over will continue the same hostility to the west that already exists… in fact if Muslim Brotherhood or Al Qaeda gained control then there will be added danger in the Middle East.

What I see is that the Syrian situation has just entered a new and more dangerous phase, thanks to Russia and China refusing to allow the U.N. to perform its role in the region.

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Assad Regime uses the Gadhafi form of propaganda

Whilst it is in fact true that there are foreigners in Syria, (I do think that this could have been avoided), the allegations within a letter sent to the UN is patently false. Assad is now using the same kind of propaganda that was used by the Gadhafi regime when that regime began its attempt to shell Benghazi. The claim is set out in a letter to the UN where Syria is stating that the rebels are being funded by Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar, and that it is the rebels who are holding the people hostage, and using them as human shields.

The report that I have just read points to another truth (not about the funding, because it is more than likely that Turkey at least is supplying arms to the Syrian Free Army), that it is government troops who are shelling districts where there are rebel strongholds. If these people were being held as human shields by the rebels, then they would not be able to get into any kind of vehicle and flee into surrounding villages, or across the border into Turkey. The Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad is lying about the reality of the situation.

In the meantime, there is further evidence that the Syrian regime might be on the verge of collapse as more diplomats are defecting. The latest is a minor diplomat in the Syrian embassy in London. The pattern for defections is now set… and I expect that in the coming months there will be further defections as many of these Syrians will not be able to stomach the actions of the regime.

Innocent women and children have been killed at the hands of the Assad regime. One man lost his wife and son in an attack upon their home, and his daughter has lost the use of her eye.  Syrians are fleeing and crossing over, not just into Turkey, but also Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq.

The diplomat defections have just begun, but already more than 20 generals have crossed the border into Turkey and have joined the SFA.

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Syria – the key to understanding the Middle East

The crisis in Syria has been raging for more than 16 months, and it is still a toss up about how this will end. The problem that I have with the Syrian situation is that I have not fully understood the motivations of all of the players. Once again, I need to start looking at the history of the country before I can fully comprehend what is taking place, and why Syria is virtually a satellite of Russia, China and Iran.

I have been writing about the Syrian situation on one of my other blogs, and in doing so, I have been questioning the origins of those who are in opposition to Bashar al-Assad. However, my questioning is based upon my own ignorance of the socio-political situation in Syria. Once again, I point out that Libya has always been the different case, because prior to Gadhafi Libya had stronger ties to the West than did Egypt and Syria. I am also pleading ignorance about the socio-political history of Tunisia.

Amazingly, the one thing that I have missed in my own analysis is influence of the Ba’ath Party. This is an angle that I have failed to explore in my own analysis regarding Syria in particular. As such I need to do a lot more in the way of research on the founding of the Ba’ath Party in Egypt, Syria, Iran and Iraq in particular. At the same time I need to do further research into the ideology of the Ba’ath Party, because I do fear that many people who think that someone like Bashar al-Assad is somehow ok, are in fact like me, and ignorant about the origins of that particular party.

The news article that got my interest in the subject going concerns the defection of the first politician from the Syrian Parliament, a woman – mother of 6 children – who crossed into Turkey announcing that she was upset by what is taking place. It is as a result of that article, that I suddenly realized that I had been overlooking something quite important – the Ba’ath Party and its origins. Did you know that the founders of the Ba’ath Party were admirers of Adolf Hitler? I did not know that until now, but it is true. This is something that I will explore in greater detail, but for now it is just an interesting fact.

The origins of the Ba’ath Party go back to at least the 1950s. There is a link between Egypt and Syria in the 1950s, when Nasser was leader in Egypt. It is significant to note that Nasser was pro-Communist and that he was backed by Russia. However, the leaders of the Ba’ath Party in Syria did a split from Egypt because of Nasser’s dictatorial ways.

There is a common thread in these countries that have been run by the Ba’ath Party. One of the most significant points about the Ba’ath Party is that it seems to be the party of the Sunni Muslims. On the other hand the Muslim Brotherhood tend to be Shia. The hardliners tend to be Salafist and of Sunni origin. What we find with the Ba’ath Party is that they tend to be secular, hence the opposition to the Ba’athists tend to be those who are Salafist or religiously minded. The problem in Syria though, is that Bashar al-Assad is not a Sunni but an Alawite which is an offshoot of the Shia sect within Islam.

At the very heart of the conflict in Syria is the Sunni vs. Shia. This is the same kind of conflict that we saw when Iran and Iraq went to war with each other. It is also the same conflict that has caused destabilization in Iraq. We need to keep in mind that in Iraq the Sunni tribes are the minority and that they had held power over the majority Shia through Saddam Hussein after he had seized control of the Parliament in the 1960s.

Even though there is a religious element in this conflict, I think that it is simplistic to only consider the religious aspects of such conflicts. I think that it is essential to discover the ideology of the various players, and how that ideology leads back to the Soviet Union.  Also, I think that it is necessary to learn more about the period of the 1950s when the Middle East was undergoing turmoil which had been the seed for the so-called Arab Spring. In reality the Arab Spring probably happened in the 1950s, and what we have been witnessing has been more like an Arab winter.  The key to the conflicts within the Middle East seems to be the fascination with the socialist ideology.

One cannot possibly understand the politics in the Middle East without at least understanding the role of socialism in these countries, as well as the desire of the population to overthrow that same kind of ideology.

The overthrow of Moammar Gadhafi in Libya has been the tentative first step of a Middle-Eastern country to try and shrug off the imposed socialism of a dictator. Few people outside of Libya seem to understand that one reason that there was resentment towards Saddam Hussein was due to his attempt to create a Socialist Republic. Libyans are a deeply religious people and they did not like the socialism, yet that is just one reason why Libyans managed to join together to overthrow a most hated dictator. Libya is only now beginning to form a new government. It will take time for this new government to form. There is no guarantee what it will be like, but the people who were in charge of the NTC during the conflict were individuals who were pro-West and who understand democracy.  At some point I will visit this subject in greater detail. For the moment it is only necessary to mention Libya in the context of Moammar Gadhafi’s Socialism and the impact that had on why Libyans were willing to take up arms against their government. Always keep in mind that Gadhafi seized power in a bloodless coup.

When considering that the Ba’ath Party has been quite strong in Syria, it should not be surprising that many Syrians crossed the border into Iraq and were taking up arms against the military occupiers. We have been expressing this in terms of “Al Qaeda” and it would appear that “Al Qaeda” has been active, especially amongst the Sunni Salafists. However, I now think that we have to look beyond “Al Qaeda” to learn more about those behind the various conflicts. In other words, these are people that border hop in the name of jihad. As Syrians they have returned to fight for freedom from Assad, but what happens once he is defeated?

Posted in Al Qaeda, Syria

The Tripoli Underground

During periods of war many people take big risks. There is one story in Scripture where a woman, who was a prostitute, helped Joshua and his men take Jericho. She took a very big risk, one that could have seen her killed by the people of Jericho, yet she remained protected. Travelling through time we come to the first and second world wars and here again we continue to learn about the brave deeds of the resistance – in Germany, France, Poland, and other European countries. They worked together, and sometimes they were betrayed. Yet they were the resistance.

This year Libya was at war, but unlike the world wars, this was a civil war which ended the reign of the dictator Moammar Gadhafi. The story of the resistance within Tripoli is just beginning to filter through, and the BBC has up a story about three brave individuals and the risks that they took to help bring down the regime.

In each of these stories the people took enormous risks. The woman met with strangers to receive “packages” and then to pass those “packages” onto others. She walked to her destination, carrying her handbag. She was bright enough to know that there was less chance of being searched if she went by foot than by car. The dentist was a diver, and he took the biggest risk, and the same is true of the three naval officers he helped. This man was captured and did undergo some torture. The fall of Tripoli came just in time, because his name was on a list marked for execution on September 1 (if Tripoli had not fallen). The third man took even bigger risks because he was amongst those who was providing information on the whereabouts of the weapons depots that were outside of civilian areas.  He was not alone in that work, because there was another man, a dentist who had been residing in Scotland who was doing the same kind of work.

The driving force for these people was the fact that the original protesters were unarmed and that they were being shot and killed in the streets. This was sufficient reason for the resistance in Tripoli to gain momentum.

In this respect these people have a lot in common with the German resistance of the 2nd world war, as well as the French resistance, and the Polish resistance. These were the people that knew what was happening within their country was wrong, and so they acted within the shadows to bring about “regime change”.

These were people who were not motivated by Islam to play a part in the resistance, but in the case of the woman, I need to smile over her comment about reading the Koran and feeling safe. In her way, it was her belief in God that helped her and protected her when doing this dangerous task.

Posted in The resistance

Why I believe that the Libyan experience is not the same as Egypt

The Arab Spring as it is known began in Tunisia when a young man torched himself over an issue relating to the sale of food. The real story in Tunisia was a people fed up with the corruption and the torture that they constantly faced under the regime. It took a few weeks, but the dictator fled to Saudi Arabia. Now the Tunisians are preparing for an election that will lead the way to the next step in their lives. Will it mean that they shift towards Islamism? I do not know. The leader of the largest Islamist party is trying to project an image that may just be taqiyyah. It is a troubling time for the people of Tunisia because for them it seems that nothing really changed.

Protests broke out in Yemen, Bahrain, Syria, Egypt and Libya, to name some of the Arab countries where there has been some upheaval. My focus here is on Egypt and Libya and why I do not believe that Libya will end up like Iran, but I do believe that Egypt could end up like Iran.

In order to try and understand what is happening I have found it necessary to abandon my own western psyche to try and step into the shoes of those who have been fomenting for change. It has been necessary to set aside my own objections to Islam in order to try and understand what is happening in these Middle Eastern countries, and then try to interpret what that means for the West. What I have discovered is that comparing the experience of Egypt with the experience of Libya is like comparing chalk and cheese. There is simply no comparison between the two situations.

When Gadhafi came to power via a bloodless military coup, Nasser was in charge in Egypt. Very few people seem to appreciate that Nasser was in fact a Communist, and it is important to understand this point because to the young army captain, Moammar Gadhafi, Nasser was a hero. It is also important to understand some of the modern historical background of Libya, especially the struggle to be free of Italian colonial rule.

Libya is a majority Islamic country. It is already under Shariah Law but the laws are not hardline like they are in both Saudi Arabia and Iran. However, they are bad enough because a thief can end up without his hands, and a woman who has been raped will not get satisfaction in the courts. This is why Eman el-Obeidi was so brave when she broke into the Rixos Hotel in order to tell her story to the foreign journalists. She declared to the world what no other Libyan woman would have been willing to declare, and as a result she was slandered by the regime.  Since Libya is already under Shariah it seems pointless for people from a western culture to get their noses out of joint on the subject. In the context of this being a Muslim country we do need to acknowledge that Shariah Law is the norm.

Another area that needs context is that of the people who were shouting “allahu Akbar”. It is important that context is given because this was not the same as the jihadist on an aircraft who makes the same utterance, or is it the same as the Fort Hood murderer who made that utterance before he killed innocent people. The true context in Libya happens to be the relationship that Moammar Gadhafi had with the people of Libya. He thought of himself as “the King of kings”, or in other words he thought of himself as God. (the man I dub the Grand Poohbah in Iran, aka Ayatollah Kahmenei does exactly the same thing. He also thinks that God speaks through him).  The Libyans explain it best when they talk about the posters that abounded in Tripoli and elsewhere, as well as the use of the Little Green Schoolbook. There was in effect a “Cult of Moammar” that was in existence.

The men who have been called Islamists certainly objected to theis deification of Gadhafi. This is best illustrated in the context of some of the things that took place during battle. In one instance a doctor who was in the field trying to attend to the wounded, and who was in an ambulance when he was shot, was seen on the ground with a mercenary standing over him. The mercenary was demanding that the doctor proclaim Gadhafi as his “leader” or supreme, but the young doctor stated “allahu akbar” meaning that Gadhafi is not above God. This man exemplifies how many of those Libyan revolutionaries saw the situation. Gadhafi was not above God or Allah for them, only Allah was Supreme.

When one considers the history of Libya it should come as no surprise that there are Islamists. King Idris’s grandfather founded the Muslim sect known as Sanusi. It was a mixture of the Sufi and the Sunni Islam. The grandfather had been influenced by the Wahibbi school of Islam and it is true he had no real love for the Western colonial powers. In fact he was hostile to those western powers. By the time of Idris however, the Libyans were under the thumb of the Italians and they wanted to break free of their colonial masters. As is typical of Libya though, there was a divide in attitudes between East and West. The people of the East, that is people from Benghazi and similar towns were more inclined to want to shake off that colonialism but the people of Tripoli and Sirte were willing to keep the status quo. During the Second World War, Idris did a deal with the British and the French, that his people, the Sanusi Army would help the Allied forces and in return after the war, the British and the French would help Idris to throw off the yoke of the Italian colonial masters…. and so it was that Idris came to power. Needless to say the people from Tripoli were not happy about government being located in Benghazi.

Thus, we have to keep in mind that Islamism has always been a part of modern Libya and that Islam is a part of the fabric of society. Yet, these people also want to have some form of democratic system. It can be done, because this is what Turkey achieved through Attaturk. The question is how far will Libya go in setting up democratic systems?

The legacy of Gadhafi is that he made sure that there was no central government system in place. All the power was concentrated in Tripoli with Gadhafi cronies having the top positions. This in turn has led to a whole lot of corruption. Libya is not a poor country because of its oil wealth, yet on the whole a majority of the Libyan people are poor. This is because Gadhafi was shrewd enough to give the people an allowance every month. He spent lavishly on Sirte, and he spent lavishly on supplying weapons etc to other African nations.( His sons helped themselves to the wealth of the Libyan nation, and the luxuries of their foreign mansions, as well as their mansions in Libya were absolutely obscene. There is no better example of this obscenity than Aisha’s house in Tripoli with its indoor swimming pool and huge swimming pool size bath. The money that was spent and socked away by the Gadhafi family could have been used to build new apartment blocks many times over for the people all over Libya). The various towns had their committees but nothing else.

Gadhafi was a Marxist. His little Green schoolbook was based upon Mao’s Little Red book. He changed the flag to that green thing which had little or no meaning because it was just green. He renamed Libya as the Socialist Republic of Libya. 

There is no need to rehash the background of the first protest in Benghazi, what caused it etc. but it is the outcome that is of significance. Once the walls of the town “fort” was breeched, and the people had control of the weapons, they began to organize themselves, forming a committee that was to become the National Transitional Council. What is quite significant, and what I believe separates Egypt from Libya, is that at this juncture the old flag of Libya began to appear. That flag became the symbol of the revolution. The fact that there was a flag that symbolized the revolution was something that set the revolution apart from what took place in Egypt.

One thing that I have noticed is that the critics of the Libyan revolution seem to be comparing the situation in that country to Iran prior to takeover by the Mullahs. However, there are some very significant differences. Whilst it is true that there are imams who played a role in the fall of Tripoli, there does not seem to be any real influence from any Mullah or Imam in Libya. This is a very striking difference between the 1979 revolution in Iran and the 2011 revolution in Libya. In Iran the leading figure of dissent was in fact the Ayatollah Khomenei who was living in exile. It was that fool, Jimmah Carter who did not have the brains to recognize the danger of this particular person, and saw him only in religious terms, thinking that he must be ok. The problem for Carter is that he equated Khomenei to a Baptist preacher. He had no understanding regarding Islam, and thus he helped create the evil that is Iran.

When the Egyptians began their protests in Tahrir square, it was both Coptic Christians and Muslims involved in the protest. The mix of people is significant because it has not panned out as expected. Amongst those protesters were anarchists, left-wing types, Marxists, Salafists etc. These people were demanding “democracy” but it is with a forked tongue. Here again in Egypt we have an element that is perhaps unsavoury. The real influence was the Muslim Brotherhood, yet they pretended that they were not involved. There is also a figure returned from “exile”, sort of, in the form of el Barabrandi (sp). This particular man desires to be Egyptian President but if that happened it would be one very big mistake since el Barabrani is allied to Iran. He is sort of a part of Muslim Brotherhood, but it seems that Muslim Brotherhood do not want to own him. Perhaps there is hope here because MB do not seem that keen on ties with Iran!!  Since the revolution in Egypt the situation for both the Copts and the Israelis has deteriorated. This is the fault of the military. I point out here that one of the leading imams in Egypt is Tawanti (sp) who just happens to have the same name as that of the man in charge of the military, and who is currently in charge in Egypt. To the dismay of those early protesters though, nothing has really changed when it comes to the suppression of protests or even the suppression of free speech.

There are similarities between Egypt and Libya in that under the dictatorship there was a lack of free speech and the people were suppressed in similar ways. However, the differences are still quite stark. In Libya the people lived in constant fear of their neighbours dobbing them into the “authority” or perhaps a better phrase is the “thought police”. The suppression in Libya was always far more brutal than it was in Egypt. Another difference is that Gadhafi was exporting terrorism in many countries. Whilst it is assumed that he had quietened down after the invasion of Iraq, that was not necessarily the case since he was supplying weapons etc. to a variety of tin pot dictatorships in Africa. The only thing that really happened is that he shifted his emphasis away from the West.

Without a doubt Libya has a very long way to go on the road to democracy. This will not be democracy like we experience in the West. Here in Australia we are a Constitutional Monarchy and we are semi-independent from Great Britain. We elect our own politicians who sit in the various Parliaments in the States and Federally. Our form of democracy is different from that of the USA, which is a Republic. What we have in common though is that we elect our representatives. This is something that was denied to the Libyans. They have never experienced such structures, and now they must start from scratch.

The gap that has been created by the death of Gadaffi is such that there is the danger of tribal rivalry now that the common enemy has been eliminated. I personally do not believe that there is any threat from Al Qaeda or Hezbollah or any other outside group. I have no point of reference regarding the strength or otherwise of Muslim Brotherhood. Considering the way in which political parties were suppressed, I doubt that MB ever gained a foothold in Libya. Yet, there are Islamists.

This brings me to the leading Islamist, Mr. Belhaj. Up front, I believe Belhaj when he states that his focus was anti_Gadhafi, and that the focus of his LIFG was not global jihad, but was a jihad that would see the ouster of Gadhafi. I suspect that Mr. Belhaj was characterized by Gadhafi and his henchman as Al Qaeda when in fact he was not anything of the sort. According to this man he rejected the Al Qaeda idoeology. On the other hand I need to know more about Mr. Belhaj and his activities when he lived outside of Libya. He is one of the 2 men who was subjected to torture via the policy of rendition. I do suspect that Gadhafi and his henchmen lied about both men.

At this point in time it is hard to predict the future direction in Libya. If the people are true to their word, then they will be a pro-west nation. How far will they go in being pro-west? Will they follow the example of Idris with regard to Israel? At least under Idris there was little in the way of hostility between the two countries. The real hostility occurred under Gadhafi. Perhaps this is an indication that in the future there is a chance that there will be some form of reconciliation between these two countries, or at least a “look the other way” form of relationship, just like there is between Saudi Arabia and Israel.

With Gadhafi gone there are some big losers: Russia, South Africa, Nigeria, Algeria, China and Iran are all losers with the death of Gadhafi. The noises being made by the Russians make it obvious that they are afraid of losing their oil contracts. They backed the wrong pony. This is also true of China.

The evidence seems to point to a new regime that is not Marxist. These people do not want to be a part of a Peoples Republic. Libya will be an Islamic Republic, and hopefully they will come to grips with the daunting task that lies ahead of them.


Posted in Uncategorized

The Libyan Dictator and RAT is dead

At last, this morning I heard the news that I have been praying to hear since the beginning of the revolution in Libya – Moammar Gadhafi is dead. The similarity of his capture to that of Saddam Hussein is indeed quite eerie. The Libyan people are to be congratulated because they achieved what the Iraqi people could not achieve on their own. It is an end to a most brutal dictatorship.

The capture of Sirte seemed to have been a very long drawn out affair. The brutality as it was revealed was breath-taking. There are people who have been critical of the now government forces, that they had retaliated against those who had been very willing to kill them, and yes there were cases of that form of revenge, but nothing quite like the brutality meted out by Gadhafi to his own people. As a typical example of that brutality, the bodies of at least 30 pro-government people were found bound by tape as they were captured and executed by the Loyalists obviously under the direction of Gadhafi. As people managed to escape the city the harrowing tales began and amongst those was the story that the Loyalists had slashed the tyres of the cars of the civilian population so that they could not escape. Instead, they were left to suffer whilst Gadhafi held their town hostage.

There are many reports on the death of Gadhafi and there are pictures to be seen of his bloodied body. The scene that went down was the following: a convoy of cars began to accumulate on the outskirts of Sirte. This convoy was seen by two French jets, and I believe that they shot at the convoy. The occupants scattered, and the French NATO jets left the Libyan government troops to take care of those who were in the convoy. Gadhafi was found by these men in a drain. He was shot and they loaded him on a truck, but he tried to escape. He was shot and killed, and then the body was taken by ambulance to Misrata.

It has been confirmed that Muttassim Gadhafi has met the same fate as his father. Once again, it is good riddance to an extraordinarily brutal man. The people of Las Ranuf must be relieved to know that Muttassim is dead. The fate of Saif al-Islam Gadhafi is less certain. There are conflicting reports that he is dead or that he was wounded and taken to Tripoli.

Amongst those captured was Moussa Ibrahim, the Baghdad Bob wannabe. Moussa Ibrahim Gadhafi had remained the spokesman and front person for the regime, and he will deserve his coming fate – hopefully it will just be time in prison. He is, of course a known liar.


Posted in Daffy Duck aka Gadhafi